‘A show for everyone’: Thanasis Pylarinos to perform at Songs of the Sea concert in Sydney

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On Sunday, May 12, a special tribute show ‘Songs of the Sea’ will take place at the Bankstown Sports Club in Sydney, New South Wales to celebrate Greece’s legendary musicians.

In an exclusive interview with The Greek Herald, the ensemble’s lead bouzouki player, Thanasis Pylarinos spoke about what audiences can expect for the upcoming show and how he himself got into the music scene.

Thanasis’ musical journey

“I’ve been around the Greek music scene in Sydney for 20 years,” Thanasis told The Greek herald.

“I have performed at various old Greek clubs, as well as at weddings, christenings and various events, and I have done a lot of tribute shows for the past few years as well.”

His journey into the music world came about when he was only a child.

“I started playing piano at the age of five and then, when I was around 12 to 13 years old, I picked up the bouzouki as well,” Thanasis said.

“After that… I continued playing and when I got older, I went to university to study music, and have now just continued to play music and perform throughout my life.”

Thanasis said although he was a “local boy” who grew up in Sydney, he spent most of his life travelling back and forth to Greece to pursue music.

“When I was in Greece, I would perform in a lot of local taverns,” he said.

Thanasis Pylarinos

“My father was from Zakynthos and my mother was from the Peloponnese, but when I’d visit Greece, I loved to stay in Athens and play gigs. I would mostly go to local venues in Monastiraki.”

As someone who has pursued music all his life, Thanasis described the feeling of performing.

“It’s like a euphoria. It’s freedom. It’s a feeling that you can’t describe,” he said.

“Sometimes in life, we feel stuck, we feel like we’re in a trap, but we as musicians, can just jump on stage, plug our lead into our instruments, and then just perform in front of everyone and feel this sign of relief and freedom. That just makes me so happy.
“I also love seeing the expressions on other people’s faces in the audience, and seeing them relax, laugh, dance, and feel these raw emotions that music makes them feel.”

Thanasis Pylarinos

Songs of the Sea

Thanasis said his latest upcoming performance will be for the tribute show, ‘Songs of the Sea’.

He will be performing amongst eight other members of an ensemble including Kosta Benetatos on bouzouki,
Eleni Doukas, Ioannis Kelligianis and Nikos Filippatos on vocals, John Logothetis on keyboard, Frank Lambis on drums, George Ganakas on bass and Themis Ioakimidis on guitar.

A special international artist is also expected to join them on stage.

“‘Songs of the Sea’ is a two-part show. The first part showcases songs of the ocean, songs that are about love and happiness and that remind us of Greece. They’re songs that make us feel like we are on that beach or yacht, and being transported across the Mediterranean,” Thanasis said.

“Some of the songs are historic too, from the 1960s and 70s, which may not have even been heard in Australia before.

“The second part of the show features songs about migration as well, and the mass exodus of [people] from Greece in the 1950s, whether they came to Australia or America or wherever the case may be. We take a complete turn in the second set, where we talk about how children were leaving their parents behind in search for a better life.”

Thanasis Pylarinos

The ‘Songs of the Sea’ tribute show will feature 40 songs and run for two to two-and-a-half hours.

“People should expect to see some of Sydney’s best musicians take the stage and perform their hearts out,” Thanasis said.

“It’s a show for everyone. With the music we’ve chosen, you generally think people aged 50 and over would come along, but in saying that, I’ve been pushing for years for the younger generation to be more involved, and as I’ve seen in Melbourne, they are, which is fantastic, and I am trying to do my part to bring that to Sydney too.”

Thanasis said that as the show takes place on Mother’s Day, he expects lots of people to come with their parents and enjoy the show.

“They can have dinner at the club and then come in to see the show. It’s going to be a really fun night and we’re all really looking forward to it,” he said.

Event Details:

  • WHAT:  Songs of the Sea | Τραγούδια της θάλασσας
  • WHEN: Sunday 12 May 20247:00 pm
  • VENUE: Bankstown Sports Club, 8 Greenfield Parade, Bankstown NSW 2200
  • TICKETS: $30 + Booking fee. Book here.

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