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Aynur Dogan gets Americans to sing her tune

"In the US, unlike Europe, many in the audience heard Kurdish music for the first time," says Aynur Dogan, a Kurdish-Alevi musician from Turkey, after her tour.

Kurds are by now a part of the American political news, but their place in America's cultural news is limited and few Kurdish singers are known there. Last month, music lovers in New York were introduced to Aynur Dogan, a Kurdish Alevi music diva from Turkey — and one of Al-Monitor’s list of 50 people shaping the culture of the Middle East — who completed her Sept. 14-30 US-Canada tour with a concert in New York.

The tour included various US cities in California, Indiana, Iowa, New Mexico and Wisconsin, and in Ontario, Canada. Dogan, known as simply “Aynur” to her fans, was accompanied by a group of musicians from Syria and Azerbaijan, as well as a German-born Turk. During and after each of her concerts, fans would post short clips, photos and praise on different social media platforms expressing how impressed they are with the Kurdish tunes.

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