By Nick Stamatakis
It was Christmas of 1994, and I was walking in a shopping mall in Long Island when my eye caught the cover of a cd on the front window of a music store (in our main photo), featuring a young Greek guy with the Akropolis in the background… Out of pure curiosity, I entered the store and bought the cd… A few days later, after I played it at numerous holiday gatherings, the whole “Stamatakis circle” was hooked!… And I mean seriously hooked!! As I rode in friends’ cars, Chris Spheeris’ “Culture” was the first thing to hit the cd player… “Addictive” cannot even partially describe the feeling we all had…
Almost three decades later, I sometimes return to this beautiful, uplifting music…
A fantastic “new wave” music with nine tracks, one more unique than the other, one more inspirational than the other… All wrapped up in a very Greek, cosmopolitan bundle… Chris Spheeris’s “Culture” represents exactly what I meant in a recent post about “Aphrodite’s Child”: “The whole Greek “pop” lineage, starting with “Aphrodite’s Child,” has great importance to us in the Greek-American community, as they all were either born or had great careers here; above all, they display a powerful sense of cosmopolitanism throughout their life and career, an identity trait created by our ancient forefathers, which remains our treasured gift to humanity. Let’s not forget that Vangelis ended up as an official composer of NASA (!!) and Chris Spheeris’ album “Culture” is a monument of Cosmopolitanism.”
(For a short biography of Chris Spheeris, please link here… Have no doubt, we will return to this and especially to Spheeris’s early relationship with fellow Greek-American Paul Voudouris…)
In the rough times we all live, as we are not sure whether the whole world will collapse before our eyes soon, there is no better way to grasp some sense of peace and stability than listening to this beautiful music!! And let’s anchor ourselves in our heritage of cosmopolitanism!!
HAPPY NEW YEAR 2023 TO ALL HELLENISCOPE’S READERS!!
ENJOY THE NINE WONDERFUL PIECES OF CULTURE!!