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Monsieur Doumani: Launching of the album ‘Grippy Grappa’

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08-May-2013

Monsieur Doumani: Launching of the album ‘Grippy Grappa’

Grippy Grappa is the title of Monsieur Doumani’s debut album. The group was formed in 2011 in Nicosia by Antonis Antoniou (tzouras), Aggelos Ionas (guitar) and Dimitris Yiasemides (wind instruments). Although each member of Monsieur Doumani comes from a different musical background all three are influenced by Cypriot folklore on various levels. They focus on rearranging Cypriot traditional songs adding their own particular colour to the sound and feeling of the songs. They also compose their own songs in the Cypriot dialect, which are inspired by contemporary Cypriot society, as for example the recent financial crisis that hit the island.

“Even though our musical education was mainly oriented towards Western musical paths, neither of us has ever ignored the simplicity, the beauty and the unique melodies of our land’s traditional music”. It is this uniqueness that Monsieur Doumani has focused upon, enriching traditional songs with new arrangements, melodies, rhythms and sounds and crafting a style distinctively their own. This they perform in such a way that will pleasantly surprise those who are familiar with the original music; will trigger the curiosity for more information by the Cypriot audience and will thrill non-Cypriot audiences. The traditional element is highlighted brilliantly in the album Grippy Grappa, through the diversity of musical styles echoed in the group’s fresh and daring approach to the Cypriot folklore.

While fully respecting traditional Cypriot music, Monsieur Doumani creates its music under the prism of experimentation. They deconstruct the elements that constitute a traditional song and then proceed in reviewing and rebuilding them, making new associations, forming new balances and possibilities. All the above elements are combined with a generous dose of refined musical humour creating a sense of alertness and devotion, while any established forms are shaken away in a rather unpredictable and often abrupt manner.

All the above could be the reason why the group was announced as the third most favoured music group at the 2012 “Ferrara Buskers’ Festival”, the most prominent festival of its kind worldwide, where the group represented Cyprus.

Grippy Grappa was produced in Nicosia, Cyprus and comprises of 11 covers of traditional Cypriot songs plus 3 original compositions: “Ahaparos”, a satirical song with music and lyrics by Antonis Antoniou was inspired by an unfortunate incident that the group experienced at a festival in Cyprus last year. The second song titled “Peakin Myroaton”, also composed by Antoniou, gives the listener a first taste of what their next album will sound like. The song’s lyrics in the Cypriot dialect are caustic and satirical commenting on the recent financial crisis in Cyprus, and moving on a traditional-style melodic lines ‘dressed’ with electronic elements.

“Peakin Myroaton” is sung by Maroulla Constantinou from Astromeritis in her distinctive, earthy voice with Symis Soukiouroglou on the clarinet and vocals and Dimitris Aristidou and Efthymia Alphas also on vocals.

The album’s cover is the work of the well-known Cypriot artist, Hambis Tsaggaris from his book “O Spanos tzai oi 40 Dratzioi” (Spanos and the 40 Dragons). His son Giorgos Tsaggaris has adapted the work with colour. The design of the album’s layout is the work of Lara Alphas.

The album is sold on the group’s official website:

www.monsieurdoumani.com

and at selected shops in Nicosia: Kala Kathoumena coffee shop, New Division Bar, Yiousouroum Bar, Enteka coffee shop.

Concert programme:

15th May 2013, Nicosia – Kala Kathoumena-9pm (reservations: 99588942)
16th May 2013, Nicosia – Kala Kathoumena-9pm (reservations: 99588942)
17th May 2013, Nicosia – Kala Kathoumena-9:30pm (reservations: 99588942)
19th May 2013, Limassol – Yiagkini-9pm (Saripolou square)

Stella Christou’s music accompanied by Ellie Aloneftou on vocals will be the support act το Monsieur Doumani for the show in Nicosia.

All concerts will have an entrance fee of 10 euros with a free “Grippy Grappa” CD.

For more information visit: www.monsieurdoumani.com

 


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