Şerif Muhiddin Targan
الشريف محيي الدين حيدر


Şerif Muhiddin Targan (also known as Al-Sharif Muhiddin Haydar in the Arab world) was born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1892. His father was Vezir Ali Haydar Pasha, the Ottoman governor of Mecca. The young Şerif showed an early interest in music, learning the oud from the age of six (and later cello) and studying Turkish music with Ali Rıfat Çağatay, Rauf Yekta Bey and Ahmet Ersoy. In 1924 the family moved to New York, where Şerif's oud and cello recitals received great acclaim. In 1932 he returned to Istanbul, where he joined the Istanbul City Orchestra, but two years later he was invited to Baghdad by the Iraqi government to found a music conservatory in the city. This would become the famous Music Institute, which produced such great oud players as Jamil Bashir, Munir Bashir, Salman Shukur and Ghanim Haddad, and was perhaps Targan's greatest legacy. In 1948 he returned once again to Istanbul, where he married the famous Turkish classical singer Safiye Ayla, and he remained there until his death in 1967. Targan had begun work on an oud method as early as 1920 and this was published posthumously.


Selected Recordings

Peygamber Torununun Müziği
(Kaf Müzik)

This is a collection of archive recordings of Targan performing taksims and his own compositions. The recordings are old and so the sound quality is rather poor, but this is nevertheless a unique chance to hear one of the greatest and most influential oud players of the 20th century.

1. Kapris No.1 2:48
2. Koşan Çocuk 2:11
3. Çocuk Havası (Dans Eden Çocuk) 2:26
4. Kanatlarım Olsa İdi 1:44
5. Müsteâr Taksim 4:06
6. Müsteâr Sazsemaîsi 2:54
7. Ferahfezâ Taksim ve Sazsemaîsi 3:54
8. Hicaz Taksim and Peşrev 4:58
9. Uşşak Taksim 3:10
10. Uşşak Sazsemaîsi 3:06
11. Uşşak Taksim 5:02
12. Uşşak Sazsemaîsi 2:36
13. Uşşak Taksim 5:08
14. Uşşak Sazsemaîsi 3:00
15. Etüd No.1 3:27
16. Etüd No.2 2:00
17. Etüd No.3 1:24
18. Etüd No.4 1:57
19. Etüd No.5 1:57
20. Etüd No.6 1:18


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