April 19, 2012

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Last Goodbye To Dimitris Mitropanos

"All of us will mourn for you... because you belonged to Greeks everywhere"

Genuine, a "magga" and a fan of the Olympiakos team, Dimitris Mitropanos will be buried today at the Athens First Cemetery at 14:00. His friends say that he was a man, with a capital "M," who stood by his principles and always focused on the family. So much so, that he was the one who usually did the grocery shopping for his three favorite women, or his wife Venia and his two loving daughters Mirsini and Anastasia.

His coffin was placed on public display a little before the funeral and tens of hundreds of people holding a simple rose, or carnation visited the small chapel to pay their last adieu. Aside from his family and close friends, tens of hundreds of common everyday people rushed to the cemetery to honor him. Because of this the family of the deceased asked that instead of wreaths, that a deposit be made to the Welcome Center and Solidarity Municipality of Athens for the Homeless, Account No. 064 / 48,000,015, at the Greek National Bank.

Dimitris Mitropanos died on Tuesday morning at the age of 64 after suffering a serious heart attack, exactly one year after the untimely death of Nikos Papazogloy. The popular singer whose deep voice spoke to our hearts with every breath, was born on April 2, 1948, is a beloved singer to millions of Greek people all over the world for his mastery in Laïkó music (a type of Greek music).

His song "Alimono" (which says "woe" to all of those who will never come to know what love is... for they will never realize how beautiful life can be) is one example of the magic of his voice. Anyone who has loved, and has endured pain because of this love has listened to this song on more than one occasion and every time it is the same ritual. We pause, hum the words and feel a sharp tingle in our hearts.

Mitropanos followed one philosophy "life is a lottery" he would often say. He believed in the simple life, things such as the sound of the bouzouki, the gentle strum of the guitar, and the need to always have an open kiosk close by to get a pack of cigarettes were his biggest passions. A simple, humble man and one who sang with earnestness and fervency. This is what we believe Greece will miss the most.

But music fans will always remember him for giving voice to the deplorable position of Greece in the difficult post-war period. Because he experienced poverty for many years, this was directly channeled through his music and deep voice. It was an almost childlike expression of hurt, deep from within the soul and it made our hearts ache sweetly.

This gentle manliness and scorn for luxury was actually the secret to his greatness and this is why common everyday people felt so connected to him.

Basically, Mitropanos' achievement was to express the undiluted social and emotional upheaval that Greeks have experienced in the periods before and after the junta. At first the listener may not be aware of this, but his voice is saying something powerful and direct about the last four decades in Greek history because every song gave many the ability to feel unified and equal. .

No Dimitri... we may have yet to find Kithara, as you say in your song... and we are determined that someday our people will get there! The inspiration to reach our potential as a people speaks volumes in your song and through your voice our dreams and desires as a people are conveyed.

Your death is an emotional event for all of us and today every one of your fans all over the world will mourn for you, but we promise you this... that your words, and especially your music, will forever be impressed on our memories.

May your soul rest in perfect peace!

Goodbye Dimitri...

With deep regards
Marina Spanos

Read more About Dimitris Mitropanos here


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