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

Ο Άη Βασίλης Πάλι Θα 'ρθει
(O Ay Vasilis Pali Tha 'rthei)

(Santa Claus Will Come)

 

 

This page contains a translation into English of the lyrics to the Greek Christmas song "O Ay Vasilis Pali Tha 'rthei" (Ο Άη Βασίλης Πάλι Θα 'ρθει), which was sung by Keti Garbi. 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

This is a Greek version of the American Christmas song, "Santa Claus is Comin' to Town", which was first sung on Eddie Cantor's radio show in 1934. It has been recorded by over 200 artists.

About Keti Garbi

Keti Garbi is the stage name for Ekaterini Garbi, the artist who recorded the version of this song with Greek lyrics. She has been considered a queen of Laiko & Greek pop styles of music. She robbed the cradle by marrying her younger colleague Dionisis Shinas (Διονύσης Σχοινάς).

Keti Garbi rose to fame in the 1993 Eurovision Song Contest, taking ninth place. She became one of the most successful Greek artists of the 1990's. She achieved great commercial success with the album To Kati, which was released in 2000. She has won 11 Pop Corn Music Awards (including 3 for Album of the Year) and one Arion Music Award.

To this day all her work is phenomenal.

Keti Garbi

Song: O Ay Vasilis Pali Tha 'rthei (Santa Claus Will Come), 1998

Lyrics: Martha Logothetou

Music: James Haven Lamont Gillespie, John Fred Coots

Original Artist: Keti Garbi with backup vocals by Kids Chorus of Spiros Lambros, Konstantinos Paliatsoras

Album:  Hristouyena Me Tin Keti (Xmas With Keti)

Τραγούδι: Ο Άη Βασίλης Πάλι Θα 'ρθει, 1998

Στίχοι: Μάρθα Λογοθέτου

Μουσική: Τζειμς Χαβεν Λαμοντ Γκιλλεσπη, Τζον Φρεντ Κοοτς

Πρώτη Εκτέλεση: Αικατερίνη Γαρμπί (Καίτη Γαρμπί)

Συμμετέχουν: Παιδική Χορωδία Σπύρου Λάμπρου, Κωνσταντίνος Παλιατσάρας

Άλμπουμ: Χριστούγεννα Με Την Καίτη

 

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Lyrics

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

Greek Lyrics

Pronunciation

English Translation

Ξανά απ' την αρχή xana ap' tin arhi Again from the beginning,
ο χρόνος γυρνά o hronos yirna the time of year is returning. (1)
το έλκηθρο εκεί to elkithro eki The sleigh there
τ' αστέρια περνά t' asteria perna passes the stars.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     
O σάκος βαρύς o sakos varis The sack is heavy,
κι αν ήσουν καλός ke an isoun kalos and if you were good
τα δώρα θα βρεις ta dora tha vris you will find gifts
στο τζάκι σου εμπρός sto dzaki sou ebros in front of your fireplace.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     
Σε βλέπει όταν κοιμάσαι se vlepi otan kimase He sees you when you're sleeping,
στο σπίτι στη' δουλειά sto spiti sti' doulia at the house and at work,
γνωρίζει όπου και να 'σαι gnorizi opou ken a 'se he is aware of your whereabouts, wherever you are
κάθε μια σου σκανδαλιά kathe mia sou skandalia all of your mischief.
     
Ξανά στην αρχή xana stin arhi Again from the beginning,
ο χρόνος γυρνά o hronos yirna the time of year is returning. (1)
το έλκηθρο εκεί to elkithro eki The sleigh there
τ' αστέρια περνά t' asteria perna passes the stars.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     

Instrumental

Instrumental

Instrumental

     
Ξανά στην αρχή xana stin arhi Again from the beginning,
ο χρόνος γυρνά o hronos yirna the time of year is returning. (1)
το έλκηθρο εκεί to elkithro eki The sleigh there
τ' αστέρια περνά t' asteria perna passes the stars.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     
O σάκος βαρύς o sakos varis The sack is heavy,
κι αν ήσουν καλός ke an isoun kalos and if you were good,
τα δώρα θα βρεις ta dora tha vris you will find gifts
στο τζάκι σου εμπρός sto dzaki sou ebros in front of your fireplace.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     
Σε βλέπει όταν κοιμάσαι se vlepi otan kimase He sees you when you're sleeping,
στο σπίτι στη' δουλειά sto spiti sti' doulia at the house and at work,
γνωρίζει όπου και να 'σαι gnorizi opou ken a 'se he is aware of your whereabouts, wherever you are,
κάθε μια σου σκανδαλιά kathe mia sou skandalia all of your mischief.
     
Ξανά στην αρχή xana stin arhi Again from the beginning,
ο χρόνος γυρνά o hronos yirna the time of year is turning. (1)
το έλκηθρο εκεί to elkithro eki The sleigh there
τ' αστέρια περνά t' asteria perna passes the stars.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     

Instrumental

Instrumental

Instrumental

     
Σε βλέπει όταν κοιμάσαι se vlepi otan kimase He sees you when you're sleeping,
στο σπίτι στη' δουλειά sto spiti sti' doulia at the house and at work,
γνωρίζει όπου και να 'σαι gnorizi opou ken a 'se he is aware of your whereabouts, wherever you are,
κάθε μια σου σκανδαλιά kathe mia sou skandalia all of your mischief.
     
Ξανά στην αρχή xana stin arhi Again from the beginning,
ο χρόνος γυρνά o hronos yirna the time of year is returning. (1)
το έλκηθρο εκεί to elkithro eki The sleigh there
τ' αστέρια περνά t' asteria perna passes the stars.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     
Ξανά στην αρχή xana stin arhi Again from the beginning,
ο χρόνος γυρνά o hronos yirna the time of year is returning. (1)
το έλκηθρο εκεί to elkithro eki The sleigh there
τ' αστέρια περνά t' asteria perna passes the stars.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
     
Ξανά στην αρχή xana stin arhi Again from the beginning,
ο χρόνος γυρνά o hronos yirna the time of year is returning. (1)
το έλκηθρο εκεί to elkithro eki The sleigh there
τ' αστέρια περνά t' asteria perna passes the stars.
     
ο Αϊ Βασίλης πάλι θα 'ρθεί o Ay Vasilis pali tha 'rthi Santa Claus will come again.
  1. The word "hronos" can mean "year", and it can also mean "time". The word "yirna" means "to turn", but it can also mean "to return". The choice of Greek words here is similar to the English expression, "that time of year is coming around again".

 

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Translations of
Keti Garbi's Songs On This Site

Translations on this web site of lyrics for songs performed by Keti Garbi include:

  • Τin Kardia Sou Rota (Ask Your Heart). A duet with Burak Kut that is partly in Greek, partly in Turkish. The Turkish title is "Kalbine Sor".
  • To Narkotiko Mou (My Drug). The same melody was later used for the Turkish song "Zordur Oğlum".
  • Ton Hristouyenon Kabanes (The Christmas Bells). A version of the song "Silver Bells" with Greek lyrics
  • Touli Gia To Hristouli (Veil for the Christ Child). A version of the song "Adeste Fideles" with Greek lyrics
  • Zilia (Jealousy). A version of Amr Diab's "Kalast Feek Kol al Kalam" with Greek lyrics.

 

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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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