Greek Music – my tribute, our passion, our inspiration, our love – by Anastasis Thrasyvoulou.

The undeniable classics of Kazantzidis, Mitropanos, Aggelopoulos, Giota Lydia, the great Voulla Balla are just a few of the best singers to ever sing in Greece.

In fact, who is in doubt now that Kazantzidis is not the best singer in the world ever.  Not sure?  I have no hesitation in believing it!

How can we forget those hits which are irreplacable:

Naha ekato karthies (Giota Lydia)

Syghora me (Voulla Balla)

Mono esy m’agapises (Manolis Aggelopoulos)

Roloi komboloi (Grigoris Mbithigotsis)

Anapse to tsigaro (Kaiti Grey)

Stin kaliva ti thiki mou (Stelios Kazantzidis) – sorry I mean To pabloma!

The list is endless.  These are the kind of songs that our parents grew up with, most of us grew up with, and our children (through us) have grown up with.

These songs tell of hardship, desire, passion, disappointment and hope.  They tell of history, of mass immigration, children leaving home and financial hardship.  But most of all, love, which was the outstanding factor and driving force behind every song.

My Story.

I was born in  Cyprus and was a child there in the 60’s, so all these familiar songs I’d listen to on the radio along with my parents and siblings.  My move to London in the late 60’s meant that I lost touch with Greek music until the early 80’s. Having my own car with a cassette player meant that I could once again reach that inner passion I had almost lost through my teenage years.  Tons of cassettes later in 2006, I changed to a vehicle which only played CDs.  Four years later I decided to purchase a system that would transfer all my tapes to CD.  My system also recorded vinyl records to CD and it was then that my real work began.

One day I happened to be passing a vinyl record shop in Southgate.  I went in and enquired if any Greek records have passed his way.  He informed me that the next door shoe mender was often given them.  I gave my phone number to this fella and asked that if anyone offered to sell to him,  and if he wasn’t interested in purchasing any more himself, to pass my number on.

Around 4 months later I received a call from a lady who had approximately 200 Greek records to sell to me.  After agreeing a price, she said she’d like me to transfer them to CD for her as it was her and her late husband’s music and she wanted to cherish the memories.  So I did exactly that for this friendly and likable lady.

The records that she gave me were some of the best loved songs from my childhood.  It then dawned on me to advertise in Parikiaki as I wanted to buy more of these great records from our community to enjoy, with the offer of copying to CD for them if they desired so at least they wouldn’t lose the music they so loved.

Within a few months I held a huge collection of over 6000 singles and over 1500 albums.

As you can imagine, 3 years later I am still transferring these records to cd and at nowhere near the end.

My next thought was to get a stall at the Cyprus Wine Festival, offering a service of transferring customers vinyl records to CD for them so they could enjoy the pleasure of Greek music as I have.  As I most probably have all their music on vinyl myself, I could in fact make their CDs through my own collection.

I also have in my collection, all the biggest hits on vinyl records in frames, so if anyone wants a particular hit song to look at, admire and remember, they could have it hanging on their wall.  Along with that framed record, a CD of that song and other songs to play and enjoy.

My now upgraded system has the best quality sound to make sure I can get the best recording of my Greek vinyl records.

This was never done as a profit for myself as the price I have paid and am still paying will never be refunded to me, but having the pleasure of enjoying them and sharing these magnificent sounding Greek songs with others is enough for me.

With well over 50 years of past Greek music to catch up on, you can imagine the excitement every day of recording a hit I forgot about and a new hit I have discovered.

You can start from the 50’s with Kazantzidis – Mbithikotsis, up to the most recent of Mitropanos and again Kazantzidis.

You have the greats of inbetween years like Kaiti Grey, Voulla Balla, Giota Lydia, Aggelopoulos, Voskopoulos, Parios up to Glykeria, Terzis not to mention other never ending great singers.  Our love for these singers and their music is forever.

I am willing to share this passion for these great songs with anyone who wants, so if you would like to know more, please contact me on   07984 472152.

4 Responses to Greek Music – my tribute, our passion, our inspiration, our love

  1. Mike says:

    Great stuff Tas

    I admire your passion for the great man and Greek music in general.

    I feel it is important that as part of the Greek diaspora we keep the traditions and culture of our roots alive, not just for ourselves, but for the generations that follow.

    Regards
    Mike

  2. Kyri Georgiou says:

    WOW! i am impressed woth your collection.. I’m an avid Giota Lydia fan. Over the years i’ve been hunting for one specific album she released on the “sonora” record label and a couple of 45’s to complete my collection..If you can help me that would be great…

  3. tori says:

    Hi Anastasis. Would like to have your opinion/help. My soon to be hubby and I are finding it difficult to find Greek song/s for our parents reception entry. Do you know of any songs suitable for them. Nothing too old or slow would be good. Thank you.

  4. I was an Irish soldier serving in Cyprus in the mid 60s. I loved this song that we always played and heard on the radio.. I can only roughly write what the name sounds like. Kaimuz.I recently heard it played here in Ireland but with English words. can you help. Thanks

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