AK - If you could paint music how would you do it?
CA - With borrowed colors and brushes - and I wouldn't just paint on canvas and paper, but on walls, floors, trees .. anywhere! I would try to paint on new surfaces.
AK - You're on stage and the lights go off after the show. What sense prevails?
CA - A strange "jumble" of emotions. Joy for this 'journey' that I just experienced; heartache that it ended ... relief that everything went well, but at the same time Longing for the next time. They are symbiotic
AK If you 'give yourself' at every show how do you replenish that?
CA It’s strange because you don't give only - although that appears to be the case i.e. you play alone, sing alone - but there is also the receiving end that is the audience. If there weren't it would be something like a "broken line". It is a wonderful feeling, as if traveling on a vehicle of mass transport where both destination and origin are different every time. The only common moment is the moment of the show / concert. Because for this moment we traveled together. Everyone experienced - depending on their own experiences, different moments on this trip. This moment is beyond reproach.
AK Is there a fixed ratio between the giving and taking, or is it different in each performance?
CA What is different is your state before you get on stage. No matter how much we want to be shielded from our personal issues, what affects us is the condition we're in before the lights go on. On the stage anything that happens is a given and a new experience perfectly justified. A spectator that is present can explain it too! What no one can guarantee you is the mental 'state' you are in as you 'climb' on stage! Even small mundane things (can not find parking, etc.) can undermine the mental peace you need to be able to break free faster.
AK Can the audience provide relief?
CA The relationship is ambiguous! You give and you get. You need to tune in that vibration to protect yourself
AK Can you imagine life without melody?
CA No. There is no life, no speech, or language without melody. Both melody and rhythm are part of our being, the rhythm is in our heartbeat, the melody is in the tone of our voice. These two are inseparable .
AK When did you come to America?
CA I came in 2007. It was coincidental, I was on a tour in Europe and in April 2007 I was asked by the Greek Cultural Center NY to be the Vocal Coach and Musical Director for their upcoming production
AK A new day / era dawns. What changes in Christos or Christos himself?
CA Forgets the easy way. The known difficulties or facilities that existed in Greece do not exist here. From the simplest thing, the everyday things. Thankfully the language was never an issue, but yet there are so many things happening that you do not have time to realise! New York never sleeps.
AK You started collaborating with Americans. Why?
CA Not consciously but completely coincidental.
AK The ability to pick between the two is a luxury, you have to have talent to be able to choose.
CA ...Or be fortunate
AK The country you live does not promote the second without background.
CA completely to the theory that "having talent is good enough"! "My theory is that 'Just Talent" means nothing without effort, without commitment, humility towards your art or even your talent. I'll tell you the biggest difference I've experienced in Greece / Europe (where I studied) and America. In Greece when you audition for and get a job, there is a sense in the air that even though they chose you, there are many who could've been chosen instead. Whereas in America (I had the pleasure to experience this first hand) the first thing they tell you is that you are the best that could be in this position and that's why they chose you. The implication of this is you want to better yourself because the effort is recognized and rewarded. There are no limits anymore .... you are set free. This is where the factor of study, education and training come to justify your talent.
AK You chose to present your first Greek album in the city that has offered not only musical revolutions but also musicians of international standing. why?
CA I feel that it was the natural progression. The missing piece of the mosaic. It is not just a Greek album, it is a deposition of personal moments and private emotions and thoughts in a time of my life where, while I lived and breathed in English there was a part of me that many people do not know: That I sing in Greek and that I write music and lyrics. This album is a window to my soul - my diary - and now I feel I have the strength and maturity to position myself in front of friends, acquaintances and strangers and share without any feeling of shame and hesitation! Isn't this what art is ultimately about?
AK In your album Ston Idio Dromo "On The Same Path" (by Nostos Records) you chose to rendition "Nai Nai" of Zik Zak. Why?
CA It is a beloved song one of the first I had learned on the guitar and accompanied myself. Zik Zak was the favorite band of my mother who is not with us anymore. The idea came from their end during our North America tour in 2014. It was brought up on the plane flying from Chicago to Florida, I learned the history of the song and thought it would be a nice tribute. It was a circle that was finally closing, that's how I sensed it... I remember many years ago when my mother came at my premiere at STRATOS (famous night club in Greece) with Mary Linda and Antipas - I was 18 years old - my mother told me after the show: "I cannot believe MY child is singing with Mary Linda on stage" This became was a secret pact with her ... ....
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