Famous music producer and owner of Atlantic Records Ahmet Ertegun who died last year in December at the age of 83, was commemorated on April 17th by a night organized by his wife Mica. Many famous names from the art and politics arena attended the night held at Jazz Hall of Lincoln Center in New York.
Ambassador of Turkey to the US Hon. Nabi Sensoy, Permanent Representative to the UN Hon. Baki Ilkin, New York Consul Mr. Mehmet Samsar were among the participants along with Former Secretary of State Hon. Henry Kissinger and Mayor of New York Mr. Michael Bloomberg. Also, Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Stevie Nicks, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Solomon Burke, Kid Rock ve Sam Moore, Ben E. King, Wynton Marsalis, Manhattan Transfer and Dr. John participated from the music community. Limited number of people made speeches during the night where the music festival was quite a blast.
Egemen Bagis, being one of the invitees, addressed the audience on his relations with Ahmet Ertegun. Mentioning that he admired Ahmet for being "a universally successful Turk", Bagis said that ever since they met in 1985, his own life has become more colorful. His entrance to politics through AK Party in 2002 elections was first regarded awkwardly by Ertegun. But when Ertegun realized AK Party as an opportunity to push Turkey towards being a democratic, just and developed nation on the path of being a member of European Union, he got rid of his bias towards the party. Bagis noted that ever since, he has always felt his support.
Bagis also mentioned that by the decision of the Council of Ministers and the Prime Minister, Ahmet Ertegun had been awarded a "State Medal" last year. However due to his unexpected death this medal had never been delivered. Bagis underlined that this medal would be presented to his wife Mica during her first visit to Turkey . With this message direct from the Prime Minister himself, Bagis delivered the greetings of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdullah Gul.