Turkish darbuka player and singer Bilal Goregen has shared the spotlight with a cat in a viral YouTube video recently. He says he admires US President-elect Joe Biden.
Turkish musician Bilal Goregen wants to play the darbuka for US President-elect Joe Biden and congratulate him on his win.
"I would like to congratulate Biden and play the darbuka for him. Biden is very democratic. I love him very much," the visually-impaired Goregen told Turkish wire service Anadolu Agency.
"Democracy, freedom, equality [...] are, in fact, values that every human being should defend. So I congratulate Joe Biden as someone who defends these values."
A video of Goregen recently went viral on social media showing him performing the popular Finnish song 'Ievan Polkka’ on the darbuka, a goblet-shaped single-headed hand drum, while sitting on a park bench.
‘Ievan Polkka’ is a song made famous by Finnish band Loitima that was formed in Helsinki in 1989 to introduce Finnish music to the world. Goregen sang the song with his unique darbuka style in a public area and made a video recording. Then he added a cat GIF to it and uploaded that version to YouTube, and history was made.
The funny video, which features a ginger cat "vibing," or rhythmically bobbing its head to the song, became a viral meme.
Goregen shared the cat version of the video on his YouTube channel on Nov. 1 and it received millions of likes within a month (close to 19.5 million as of time of publication).
Parodies of his video were also shared by millions of people around the world.
Biden supporters later added a dancing Donald Trump to the video after Trump lost the November 3, 2020 presidential election, and Goregen became world-renowned amid the tense US polls. Goregen became a world famous celebrity thanks to his cover of Ievan Polkka and its edits.
YouTube shared a post on its official Twitter and Instagram accounts describing Goregen's viral video and inviting users to subscribe to his channel and listen to his music.
Meanwhile in the Portuguese League, after the football game that was played between Pacos Ferreira and Famalicao on December 3, the home team Pacos players celebrated their 2-0 victory with Bilal Goregen’s music.
Goregen, whose family is from Bitlis, eastern Turkey, was born in 1988 in Hatay province’s Dortyol municipality, without sight. He completed his primary and secondary education in Dortyol, and got into Istanbul University Literature department but took a break from his university studies to focus on his musical studies.
Speaking about his musical ability, Goregen said: "I cannot act modestly about this."
"In Turkey, everyone plays the darbuka, sings a song and makes music. But I am the only one in Turkey who can play percussion instruments and imitate various rhythms with my mouth and create instruments from these sounds."
With his unique playing style of the darbuka, Goregen, 32, became popular in Turkey on the local version of Got Talent, a TV competition, 10 years ago.
This is what Goregen said about the shares after the US elections and YouTube recommending him to its viewers: “It is something else being world-renowned. There are tens, hundreds of content creators for YouTube in Turkey. Some get a lot of clicks. In this social competition market called YouTube, I am the first Turkish citizen YouTube has officially shared.”
“I feel an extraordinary joy and elation because of this. I can even say this spurs me on,” he continued. “If it goes on like this, I will have more than 1.5 million subscribers. After YouTube shared my video, among international viewers I gained 34 percent Indian subscribers. Second place is the UK, and third place is the US,” he continued.