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

Μια Δεκάρα Δεν Αξίζει Η Αγάπη Σου
(Mia Dekara Den Axizi I Agapi Sou)

(Your Love Isn't Worth A Dime)

 

 

This page contains a translation into English of the lyrics to the popular Greek song "Mia Dekara Den Axizi I Agapi Sou" (Μια Δεκάρα Δεν Αξίζει Η Αγάπη Σου), which was sung by Manos Papadakis. Also included is a pronunciation guide for the Greek lyrics so you can sing along if you like.

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

In the early 1930's, two recording companies merged to form EMI Group, and formed a partnership with Greek investor Lambropoulos Brothers Limited to produce music records in Greece. In the decades that followed, EMI created subsidiaries throughout the world. Songs that became popular in the homeland of one of EMI's subsidiaries thus became candidates to re-release elsewhere with local artists and local-language lyrics. Because of this, there have been many songs including this one which were released with lyrics versions in multiple languages including Greek, Arabic, Turkish, and others.

ABOUT THE PHOTO: The photo shows Semiramis Pekkan, the first Turkish artist to release a version of this song.

Versions of this song were released in both Greek and Turkish in 1969. The 1969 Turkish version was titled "Ne Geçti Elime" (Γκετσι Ελιμε), and was recorded by Semiramis Pekkan. Its Turkish lyrics were written by Fikret Senes (Φικρετ Σενες), and the composer is credited as "V. Vassiladi", with arrangement by Norayr Demirci (Νοραγρ Ντεμιρτσι). We know that the 1969 release in Greek was composed by Vasilis Vasiliadis, the same person. However, it's impossible to know which artist's recording, Pekkan's or Papadakis', was released to the public first.

Later, Gönül Akkor released a different Turkish version of this song under the title "Ne Oldu Sana" with different lyrics by Sezen Cumhur Önal (Σεζεν Κυμχερ Οναλ). In 2012, Sibel Can, a popular Turkish belly dancer who became an accomplished singer, released her own version of "Ne Oldu Sana" on her album Meşk.

About Manos Papadakis

Manos Papadakis was born in Crete in 1941. His early musical influences came from his father, who had studied Byzantine music. At age 17, he moved to Athens and began his apprenticeship in music at "Romantika", which was a live music venue operated by Christos Kolokotronis (Χρήστος Κολοκοτρώνης) and Akis Panou (Άκης Πάνου). He worked alongside many of the musical stars of the time, and in 1960 recorded his first song for Columbia Records, "For Hambibi Thani Talal".

A major milestone in his career was that of beginning to work with composer Vasilis Vasiliadis. Their first hit collaboration, "Mavros Kapnos" (μαύρος καπνός), was released in 1967. It was followed shortly by another, "Tha ta Kapso ta Lefta" (Θα τα κάψω τα λεφτά μου), which became an even bigger hit and established Manos Papadakis as a top name in the Greek nightclub circuit. His next major hit was "Mia Dekara Den Axizi", in 1969.

A long career followed in which he worked with many stars of Greek music. He died in October 2018.

About Vasilis Vasiliadis

Vasilis Vasiliadis, the composer of this song, was born in Attica in 1927, the son of an Anatolian Pontian Greek refugee family. He launched his musical career as an accordion player at festivals. As his reputation grew, he was in increasing demand playing for recordings and nightclubs.

Weary of the grueling schedule, he accepted an opportunity to play for an orchestra. When he went downtown, he heard a harmonica for the first time, and was intrigued. He bought one to take back to Greece and incorporate into his music.

Vasiliadis composed his first song in 1964, and it became a hit. Hundreds of songs followed as he worked with nearly all the big names in the Greek music industry.

Vasiliadis died in 2010.

Song: Mia Dekara Den Axizi I Agapi Sou (Your Love Isn't Worth A Dime), 1969

Lyrics: Pithagoras Papastamatiou

Music: Vasilis Vasiliadis

Original Artist: Manos Papadakis with backup vocals by Rena Violanti

Dance Style: Belly Dancing

Has Also Been Recorded By:

In Greek:
  • Litsa Yiagousi, 2002 (modern version)
In Turkish:
  • Semiramis Pekkan, 1969 ("Ne Geçti Elime")
  • Gönül Akkor, 1972 ("Ne Oldu Sana")
  • Sibel Can, 2012 ("Ne Oldu Sana")
In Farsi:
  • Giti Pashayi, 1971 ("Gole Maryam")
  • Sheila, 2006 ("Gole Maryam" on album Sheila Tonight)
  • Mory, 2005 ("Gole Maryam"). Instrumental version.
In Afghanistan:
  • Ahmed Wali ("Gule Maryam")

Τραγουδι: Μια Δεκάρα Δεν Αξίζει Η Αγάπη Σου, 1969

Στίχοι: Πυθαγόρας Παπασταματιού

Μουσική: Βασίλης Βασιλειάδης

Πρώτη Εκτέλεση: Μάνος Παπαδάκης
Συμμετέχουν: Ρένα Βιολάντη

Άλλοι Ερμηνευτές:

In Greek:
  • Λίτσα Γιαγκούση, 2002 (σύγχρονη έκδοση)
  • Σίμπελ Τσαν, 2012 ("Νε Ολντου Σανα")
Τούρκικα:
  • Σεμιραμις Πεκκαν, 1969 ("Νε Γκετσι Ελιμε")
  • Γιονιουλ Ακκορ, 1972 ("Νε Ολντου Σανα")
Φαρσί:
  • Γιτι Πασιαγι, 1971 ("Γκολ Μαργιαμ")
  • Σιλα, 2006 ("Γκολ Μαργιαμ")
  • Μορι, 2005 ("Γκολ Μαργιαμ")
Αφγανιστάν Ντάρι:
  • Αχμαντ Ουαλιντ ("Γκουλε Μαργιαμ")

 

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Lyrics

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

Greek Lyrics

Pronunciation

English Translation

Μια δεκάρα mia dekara Not even a dime (1)
Μια δεκάρα δεν αξίζει mia dekara den axizi not even worth a dime — (1)
η αγάπη σου ee agapi sou your love.
και ας το πλήρωσα χιλιάδες ke as to plirosa hiliades And even if I paid thousands
κάθε δάκρυ σου kathe dakri sou every tear of yours.
     
Στη' φωτιά sti' fotia Into the fire...
στη' φωτιά θα ρίξω sti' fotia tha rixo I will throw into the fire
τις αχαριστίες σου tis aharisties sou your unthankfulness,
να καούν εσύ κ' αυτές na kaoun esi k' aftes to burn you and them,
και οι αμαρτίες σου ke ee amarties sou your sins.
να καούν, να καούν, να καούν na kaoun, na kanoun, na kaoun To burn, to burn, to burn.
     
Έκανα βλακεία ekana vlakia I made a stupid mistake
που σε πίστεψα pou se pistepsa by believing you.
και όλη την ζωή μου ke oli tin zoi mou And my entire life
την αχρήστεψα tin ahristepsa I wasted.
μου πουλούσες ψέμα mou poulouses psema You sold me lies
μα δεν είχες αίμα ma den ihes ema but you had no mercy. (2)
μα που να το φανταστώ ma pou na to fandasto But how could I anticipate this? (3)
     
Μια δεκάρα δεν αξίζει mia dekara den axizi not even worth a dime — (1)
η αγάπη σου ee agapi sou your love.
και ας το πλήρωσα χιλιάδες ke as plirosa hiliades And even if I paid thousands
κάθε δάκρυ σου kathe dakri sou every tear of yours.
     
Μια καρδιά mia kardia A heart,
Μια καρδιά που είχα δώσει mia kardia pou iha dosi a heart that I had given,
την εχάρισα tin eharisa I gave to you.
μα την πήρα πληγωμένη ma tin pira pligomeni But I got [my heart] back injured,
και λαχτάρησα ke lahtarisa and freaked out.
     
Στη' φωτιά sti' fotia Into the fire...
στη' φωτιά θα ρίξω sti' fotia tha rixo I will throw into the fire
τις αχαριστίες σου tis aharisties sou your unthankfulness,
να καούν εσύ κ' αυτές na kaoun esi k' aftes to burn you and them,
και οι αμαρτίες σου ke ee amarties sou your sins.
να καούν, να καούν, να καούν na kaoun, na kanoun, na kaoun To burn, to burn, to burn.
     
Έκανα βλακεία ekana vlakia I made a stupid mistake
που σε πίστεψα pou se pistepsa by believing you.
και όλη την ζωή μου ke oli tin zoi mou And my entire life
την αχρήστεψα tin ahristepsa I wasted.
μου πουλούσες ψέμα mou poulouses psema You sold me lies
μα δεν είχες αίμα ma den ihes ema but you had no mercy. (2)
μα που να το φανταστώ ma pou na to fandasto But how could I anticipate (3) this?
     
Μια δεκάρα δεν αξίζει mia dekara den axizi not even worth a dime — (1)
η αγάπη σου ee agapi sou your love.
και ας το πλήρωσα χιλιάδες ke as plirosa hiliades And even if I paid thousands
κάθε δάκρυ σου kathe dakri sou every tear of yours.
     
Μια δεκάρα δεν αξίζει mia dekara den axizi not even worth a dime — (1)
η αγάπη σου ee agapi sou your love.
και ας το πλήρωσα χιλιάδες ke as plirosa hiliades And even if I paid thousands.
  1. "Mia Dekara" is equal to about ten cents in U.S. money. So the lyrics are effectively saying, "Your love is not even worth ten cents!"
  2. The literal translation is "you had no blood", but in this context it means "you had no mercy".
  3. The literal translation is "How could I imagine this?"

 

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Related Translations

  • Gole Maryam (Flower of Mary). A Persian song that uses the same melody as "Mia Dekara Den Axizi I Agapi Sou".
  • Tha Ta Kapso Ta Lefta (I Will Burn My Money). Another song by Manos Papadakis, the same artist as "Mia Dekara Den Axizi I Agapi Sou".

 

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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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