Der türkischstämmige amerikanische Komponist Bülent Arel gehörte zu den Vorreitern der frühen elektronischen Musik. Moderne Künstler wie Autechre, Aphex Twin oder Squarepusher wären ohne seine Grundlagen kaum möglich gewesen und schon in den 70ern gab Frank Zappa ihn als wichtigen Einfluss an.
Bülent Arel's (1919 Turkey - 1990 USA) work occupies a special place in the history of electronic music because one thing is certain: Arel's work is still fresh, groundbreaking, and it seems always to look out for the next adventure in sound. Bülent Arel was a Turkish-born American composer of electronic and contemporary classical music. He was also a devoted teacher, a sculptor, and a painter. From 1940 until 1947 Arel studied composition, piano, and 20th century classical music at the Ankara Conservatory. In 1959 Arel came to the U.S. on a grant by the Rockefeller Foundation to work at the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center. By that time the center had just started out under its director Vladimir Ussachevsky. During Arel's work in Princeton he also met Edgard Varèse with whom in 1962 he worked on the electronic sections of Varèse's 'Déserts'. Frank Zappa lists Arel as a key influence. Today's electronic music - may it be by Autechre's 'Confield', Aphex Twin's 'Selected Ambient Works Vol. II', or Squarepusher's 'Do you know Squarepusher' - builds upon a solid foundation which Bülent Arel helped to pave.