PSARANTONIS REBETIKA - GIANNIS PAXIMADAKIS
Psarantonis and I have known each other and played together for a long time. He had once expressed his wish to record an album together including Rebetika and Smyrneika songs.( urban popular songs created in Smyrna , Asia Minor up to 1922).
He had told me that he, himself, along with his brothers, Nikos and Giannis Xylouris , would perform Rebetika and Zeibekika at many village fests. For example, the song: ‘Den xanapaizo zaria pia’ ( I ain’t playing dice anymore) or ‘Fragosyriani” or “ Synnefiasmeni Kyriaki” (Cloudy Sunday) and many more.
Psarantonis had also narrated that Stelios Foustalieris was familiar with Rebetika as well as their composers since Stelios lived in Piraeus for many years and got connected with them. Psarantonis and Stelios grew a valued friendship and as a result , Psarantonis grew also a love for this music genre and later he collaborated with one of the rebetika singers, Giorgos Mouflouzelis in Plaka, downtown Athens.
When Psarantonis got to know me and realized my own love for rebetika and traditional songs, it was a natural outgrowth that , amidst friends, we, together, have played all the songs presented in this album and some others as a token of our valued friendship.
I believe Psarantonis breaks all stereotypes and performs rebetika in his unique ‘teatrale” way!!
Enjoy this exceptional performance!