Freaks N' Greeks
:: Fallin' ::
:: Far Away ::
Though I’m a big, fat, hairy Greek, I haven’t really heard much music from Greece. Well, I’ve heard a little bit, but it’s mainly relegated to the music that is played at big, fat, Greek weddings when those crazy circle dances start up. My sisters and I always got a good laugh watching my father link arms with other partiers, hopping counter-clockwise and kicking the air. More fun would ensue when we’d break glasses on the floor, spit on the bride and spray Windex on each other for good luck.
Actually, there’s one band from Greece I’ve heard and dig: psychedelic/progressive-rock band, Aphrodite’s Child. Their final album from 1972, 666, a soundtrack to events described in The Book of Revelations, is a strange, intense, and incredible trip. Demis Roussos was the bassist and vocalist for the band, which is why I picked up his solo offering from 1976, Happy to Be, when I saw it for two bucks a few months ago. (That doesn’t mean that I’m also picking up albums by Aphrodite’s Child bandmate, Vangelis, by the way.)
Upon first listen, I let out a groan and turned it off before side one had even finished; it all felt a little too much like one of those Eurovision compilations for my tastes. Over the weekend, I thought I’d give this fellow big, fat, hairy Greek another chance and plopped it onto the turntable. I’ll be damned if I didn’t like what I was hearing this time around. Roussos’ tremulous warble jumps out, as opposed to the way I remembered it being buried within all of the instrumentation, chanting and psychedelic weirdness of 666. When I hit the Arabic-styled song, “Far Away,” I was sold on him. It was worth the two bucks, anyway. And yeah, I know that Roussos is well known to the rest of the world, but here in ‘murka he’s been virtually ignored.
Phil Beta Kappa