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Κανελόριζα
(Kaneloriza)

(Kaneloriza)

 

 

This page contains a translation into English of the lyrics to the traditional Asia Minor song "Kaneloriza" (Κανελόριζα). (Asia Minor is the land mass where modern-day Turkey resides.) 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 this Song

Kanela (Κανέλα) is a very common Greek name for girls. It literally means Cinnamon! This is a very famous traditional folk song from Asia Minor, the land mass where modern-day Turkey resides. It is also played in Thraki, and even in Crete. Almost all Greeks know this classic song. The rhythm is both 9/8 and 7/8.

There are assorted versions with lyrics different from each other, and many singers have performed it. This translation is based on a version recorded by the late Domna Samiou, who was a legend in the traditional Asia Minor genre.

About Domna Samiou

Domna Samiou was known for researching and performing Greek folk music. She was born in a refugee neighborhood of Athens, to parents who had fled the genocide in the area near Smyrna (where modern-day Izmir, Turkey is located). Her musical training began at age 13 when she studied Greek Byzantine music and folk music.

Samiou's first job was working for the national radio station of Greece, National Radio Foundation. In 1963, she began touring the Greek countryside to conduct field research in traditional music. She launched her career as a performer in 1971, singing at a club named Rodeo. She signed with Columbia Records in 1974, which led to several record albums.

Song: Kaneloriza

Lyrics: Traditional Asia Minor *

Music: Traditional Asia Minor *

Recording Used for This Translation: Domna Samiou, 1995

Dance Style:

  • Karsilamas
  • Andikristos

* Asia Minor is the land mass where modern-day Turkey resides.

Τραγούδι: Κανελόριζα

Στίχοι: Παραδοσιακό Μικρασιάτικο

Μουσική: Παραδοσιακό Μικρασιάτικο

Ερμηνευτές: Δόμνα Σαμίου, 1995

Χορός:

  • Καρσιλαμάς
  • Αντικρυστός

 

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Lyrics

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

Greek Lyrics

Pronunciation

English Translation

Κάτω στο γιαλό kato sto yialo Down by the seashore,
κάτω στο περιγιάλι kato sto periyiali down by the beach, (1)
κόρην α' korin a' someone's girl I lo.. (2)
κόρην αγαπώ, κόρην αγαπώ korin agapo, korin agapo someone's girl I love, (2) someone's girl I love.
     
Κόρην αγαπώ korin agapo Someone's girl I love —
ξανθή και μαυρομάτα xanthi ke mavromata blonde and black eyed.
δώδεκα dodeka Twelve, (3)
δώδεκα χρονών dodeka hronon twelve years old, (3)
δώδεκα dodeka twelve, (3)
δώδεκα χρονών dodeka hronon twelve years old. (3)
     
Δώδεκα χρονών dodeka hronon Twelve years old,
που ο ήλιος δεν την είδε pou o ilios den tin ide during which the sun didn't see her,
παρά η μα' para ee ma' except for her mo',
παρά η μάνα της para ee mana tis except for her mother,
παρά η μα' para ee ma' except for her mo',
παρά η μάνα της para ee mana tis except for her mother.
     
Παρά η μάνα της para ee mana tis Except for her mother
Kανέλα τη' φωνάζει Kanela ti' fonazi calls her Kanela, (4)
Κανελό', Kανελόριζα Kanelo', Kaneloriza Cinnamo', Cinnamon Roots, (3)
Κανελό', Kανελόριζα Kanelo', Kaneloriza Cinnamo', Cinnamon Roots. (4)
     
Κανελόριζα Kaneloriza Cinnamon Roots, (4)
και άνθη της κανέλας ke anthi tis kanelas and the blossoming of cinnamon.
φούντα της founda tis Branches of,
φούντα της μηλιάς founda tis milias branches of the apple tree.
φούντα της founda tis Branches of,
φούντα της μηλιάς founda tis milias branches of the apple tree.
     
Φούντα της μηλιάς founda tis milias Branches of the apple tree,
στα μήλα φορτωμένη sta mila fortomeni loaded with apples.
τ' άκουσα t' akousa I heard,
τ' άκουσα και εγώ t' akousa ke ego I heard it too. (5)
τ' άκουσα t' akousa I heard,
τ' άκουσα και εγώ t' akousa ke ego I heard it too. (5)
     
Τ' άκουσα κaι εγώ t' akousa ke ego I heard it too. (5)
πάω να κόψω μήλα pao na kopso mila I'm going to pick apples.
μήλα δε' mila de' Apples I di...
μήλα δεν ήβρα mila den ivra apples I didn't find.
μήλα δε' mila de' Apples I di...
μήλα δεν ήβρα mila den ivra apples I didn't find.
     
Μήλα δεν ήβρα mila den ivra I didn't find apples.
μόν' τον καημό που πήρα mon' ton kaimo pou pira I only got the longing.
πέφτω σ' α pefto s'a I end up, (6)
πέφτω σ' αρρώστια pefto s' arostia I end up (6) ill.
πέφτω σ' α pefto s'a I end up, (6)
πέφτω σ' αρρώστια pefto s' arostia I end up ill (6).
     
Πέφτω σ' αρρώστια pefto s' arostia I end up ill (6),
σε κίνδυνο μεγάλο se kindino megalo dangerously ill. (7)
φέρτε το ferte to Bring the,
φέρτε το γιατρό ferte to yiatro bring the doctor.
φέρτε το ferte to Bring the,
φέρτε το γιατρό ferte to yiatro bring the doctor.
  1. The word "Periyiali" is translated here as "beach", but it also is used to refer to certain areas in Greece, such as Corinth (Κόρινθος).
  2. The word "kori" literally translates to "daughter", but it can also mean "girl". In this song, the lyrics refer to someone's daughter, not another man's girlfriend.
  3. The lyrics may have intended that when he was young he fell in love with a girl near his age. In those years, most children were married by their mid-to-late teens. Today, of course, we don't hear lyrics referring to such a young age!
  4. Kanela is a very common Greek name for girls. It literally means Cinnamon, and Kaneloriza means "cinnamon roots".
  5. Here, "I heard it too" means "I got scolded". It's a manner of speech.
  6. Literally, "I fall into".
  7. Literally, "in big danger".

 

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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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