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Kristi's Secrets

"We met in Án Club which was the most underground rock club in the Exárchia area of Athens," remembers Kristi. "Exárchia area was where there were the punk groups and the outlaws and things like that and we met one night when I was playing, with another band that I had, doing covers of the Pretenders, Blondie, Kate Bush, and also some traditional Greek songs with strange anarchist, more rock arrangements. And that's when we met and we started to play music together. We formed a group called Selána. That's one of those groups where you have four musicians who are thrown together as if God has planned it, if we believe in God, and he just decided that 'this man would fit with that one, and this one would fit with that girl, and let's put them together and see what happens.' And we got together and started playing and it was the first time in the life of all four of us that you wouldn't tell the others 'could you play that' because they were playing what you were imagining."

Kristi live
Photo: Yannis Voulparakis
Kristi live
"It was a sort of garage rock," interjects Stathis. "Lots of people were shocked. Because new Greek music is conservative in the arrangements. In 10 years you hear the same sound. It's not changing. For me it's boring but not for most of the people. And we did something that was different."

Selána never recorded but were minor legends on the club circuit.

"At that time," points out Kristi, "and there still is, a distinction between commercial music and underground music and traditional music. In commercial music at that time, you wouldn't dare play such strong sounds as we did. The indie groups were singing in English. If you dared sing in Greek they would say that you just wanted to make money, even if you sang about dying or something. Whatever the lyrics were, whatever the music was, for them you were then very commercial so you wouldn't dare use Greek elements."


This feature first appeared in fRoots 237, March 2003

 

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