Filler
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PHOTO CREDIT: Above photo by John Rickman Photography, San Jose, California.

Αράπικο λουλούδι
(Arapiko Louloudi)

(Arabian Flower)

 

This page contains a translation into English of the lyrics to the popular Greek song "Arapiko Louloudi" (Αράπικο λουλούδι), which was sung by Stella Haskil (Salonikia) and Vasilis Tsitsanis as a duet. Also included is a pronunciation guide for the Greek lyrics so you can sing along if you like.

For more information about the laiko and rebetiko styles of music, see Introduction to Laiko / Rebetiko Music elsewhere on this web site.

Song lyrics are provided for educational purposes. If you like the song, please purchase either the album or a download from an authorized source.

About Vasilis Tsitsanis

Vasilis Tsitsanis was the composer and lyricist for this song. He was also part of the original duet that introduced this song.

Tsitsanis was a versatile musician who learned to play violin, mandola, mandolin, and bouzouki. He collaborated with a number of singers to record the songs he had composed, with him accompanying them on bouzouki. His music helped launch several of his collaborators to fame and successful careers.

ABOUT THE PHOTO: Vasilis Tsitsanis as a young man.

Vasilis Tsitsanis

Song: Arapiko Louloudi – Arabian flower, 1947

Lyrics: Vasilis Tsitsanis (Vlahos)

Music: Vasilis Tsitsanis

Original Artists: Stella Haskil (Salonikia) and Vasilis Tsitsanis (duet)

Τραγουδι: Αράπικο λουλούδι, 1947

Στίχοι: Βασίλης Τσιτσάνης

Μουσική: Βασίλης Τσιτσάνης

Πρώτη εκτέλεση: Στέλλα Χασκίλ (Σαλονικιά) & Βασίλης Τσιτσάνης (Ντουέτο)

 

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Lyrics

Numbers in parentheses refer to footnotes that appear at the bottom of the translation.

Greek Lyrics

Pronunciation

English Translation

Απόψε σε θυμήθηκα ξανά Apopse se thimithika hana Tonight I remembered you again
κι η καρδιά μου δε σε ξεχνάει ke ee kardia mou den se hehnai and my heart doesn’t forget you,
αράπικο λουλούδι μαγικό arapiko louloudi mayiko magical Arabian (1) flower.
όνειρό μου μεθυστικό oniro mou methistiko My drunken dream,
μεθυστικό methistiko drunken.
     
Πως μπορείς εσύ να λησμονήσεις pos boris esi na lismonisis How can you forget
μια πεντάμορφη που θ' αγαπήσεις mia pendamorfi pout ha agapisis a beauty that you will love
κι όσα έζησες μ' αυτή να σβήσεις ke osa ezises m’ afti na svisis and everything you lived with her, to forget it all? (2)
     
Θα σε δέρνει ο πόνος σαν το κύμα tha se derni o ponos san to kima The pain will hit you like a wave,
θα σε κυνηγάει σκληρά το κρίμα tha se kinigai sklira to krima the pity will pursue you relentlessly,
και με τη σειρά σου θα 'σαι θύμα ke me ti sira sou tha ‘se thima and you will be a victim as well,
θα το πληρωθείς tha to plirothis you will pay for it.
     
Πως μπορείς εσύ να λησμονήσεις pos boris esi na lismonisis How can you forget
μια πεντάμορφη που θ' αγαπήσεις mia pendamorfi pout ha agapisis a beauty that you will love
κι όσα έζησες μ' αυτή να σβήσεις ke osa ezises m’ afti na svisis and everything you lived with her, to forget it all?
     
Θα σε δέρνει ο πόνος σαν το κύμα tha se derni o ponos san to kima The pain will hit you like a wave,
θα σε κυνηγάει σκληρά το κρίμα tha se kinigai sklira to krima the pity will pursue you relentlessly,
και με τη σειρά σου θα 'σαι θύμα ke me ti sira sou tha ‘se thima and you will be a victim as well,
θα το πληρωθείς tha to plirothis you will pay for it.
  1. Many of the old songs use the word "Arapia" liberally. The lyrics generally use it to refer to Arabic-speaking, Romany, or Indian women. Unfortunately, in the modern Greek language, the term "Arapis" has become an offensive racial slur for people with dark skin. Although this newer definition now exists, it did not mean this when the lyrics were written. When newer generations listen to these older songs today, they realize the lyrics are referring to an innocent use of the word, and can enjoy the music in the way it was intended.
  2. The original Greek simply says "erase" or "forget", doesn't include the words "it all", but "it all" was added to help convey what the lyrics are saying.

 

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Translations of Songs Composed by
Vasilis Tsitsanis On This Site

Other translations of songs composed by Vasilis Tsitsanis on this web site include:

 

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About the Translator

This page was contributed by Panayiota Bakis Mohieddin, who is happy to share her culture and music she grew up with! Here's how Panayiota describes her background:

I always love engaging with intelligent like-minded people, especially artists. I love sharing anything and everything about my Hellenic culture and upbringing, especially music and dance. A conversation with me will bring you back to America's favorite Greek-American movie by Nia Vardalos called My Big Fat Greek Wedding.

I love investigating Greek culture, history, music, and dance. Speaking of investigating, I think I missed my calling, I probably should have been an investigator. Instead, I use those skills to dig and dig and dig tirelessly, often times falling asleep on my laptop... just to find the truth. But, most importantly, accurate truth. For me personally, and other respectable folklorists, my culture and accuracy are very important. Each generation of ethnic born artists has a duty to do the best it can to pass down our traditions as was taught to us. We have been given this artistic gift to be the gatekeepers of our heritage and culture.

Panayiota

 

 

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