1/ So First Off - Tell Us your Name, City and Country and what you currently do for a living?
Hi I'm Mert from Turkey. I study at Middle East Technical University. Currently I'm too busy enjoying the summer in beautiful Florida.
2/ Is This Something You Always Wanted To Do? What Do You Enjoy About It?
Creating playlists have been one my favorite ways to ease my mind. I love spending time with hundreds of albums and trying to make sure every single track is in its right place. For sure, I knew I wanted to do something with music but, I would never guessed I could get a job like this. I love this community so much. What I enjoyed the most about doing this is the little talks with other curators, having a discussion about what the best track is off a new album and things like that.
3/ Tell Us About Your First Musical Memory - Why Do You Think You Remember It?
Two years ago I answered this question with Shakira. I have so many memories about her album Laundry Service. We had that little cassette tape in the car all the time, I check once in a while if it is still in my family's home. Feels good to see the old friend when I'm back in my hometown.
4/ Who Did You Make Your First Mixtape / Playlist For - What Was The Result - Did They Dig It?
I'm a real jealous type when it comes to sharing playlists, but I assume it must be in primary school years when I was trying to learn how to flirt with a girl like trying the figure out how to impress the popular girl. Exact same years when I learned that music is the answer :)
5/ What Made You Go Online And Search About Music Curation?
I was working at a radio station back then, I started to realize I did not enjoy it anymore as much as I did in the first place. Sometimes you need new beginnings, and that's what I was looking for. I became qualified in studio recording, sound editing and production in general. Although I had many experiences during my radio years, my intention was not specifically curating a playlist because I knew that it requires a whole another experience. Somehow I ran into musicto advert, then I met Andrew and he was really the kindest person. We had a little chat about music in general and the magic of playlists. After that talk, I knew that I already decided to do this job.
6/ Tell us about the name of your Playlist - where did that come from?
My playlist is called Music to Take Over the Night. I was looking forward to create another playlist earlier this year; I knew the concept, I knew the genre but I just needed some time to shape it because it appeared in my head more like a brand. I wanted to exhibit the whole brand like a work of art. I did not want it to be superficial. Take Over the Night is not just a playlist, it reflects everything who I am and everything who made me who I am today. I get this question so much, "what's with the night?" I usually say: stories. I've seen my best movies at night, I've listened to most of my favorite albums at night. I've had so many stories when it's dark out. That's why I create this playlist. I wanted to tell stories as much as I can; sometimes mine, sometimes the artists'.
7/ What does a track have to have to make it onto your list, is there something special that you look for?
I will say stories again. I'd love to tell another story, if the track matches the components of the playlist (like genre, the concept etc.) it will make into the list eventually.
8/ What can an artist do in their track submission to your list to ensure that you'll listen to their track?
Artists can get in contact with me through the submit a track section on the website. It's an almost guaranteed way to make sure that I will listen to your tracks. I'd like to take my time and give it a chance. You don't have to find the perfect summarized definition, I love reading long writings. I promise I will read yours too.
9/ We know - these change all the time - but as of this week - what are your all time top 5 favorite tracks.
Whoa, It really changes all the time doesn't it? Two years ago, I had 5 different answers to this question, now I have another 5. Here are my favorites:
Colors and Shapes by Mac Miller
January 28th by J. Cole
Nights by Frank Ocean
Ode To Viceroy by Mac DeMarco
Where's the Catch (feat. André 3000) by James Blake
10/ And finally - which Music to Curator should we interview next?
Though Music to Explore Everything is one of my favorite musicto playlists, I haven't had a chance to get to know the brain behind it. I'd love to hear more about Maria and her beautiful playlist.
(Oh - and you can read Mert’s original Interview back in 2017 here!)