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

Ουζάκι Ουζάκι, Μάλμπορο
(Ouzaki Ouzaki, Marlboro Tsigaraki)

(Ouzo, Marlboro Cigarette)

 

 

This page contains a translation into English of the lyrics to the popular Greek song "Ouzaki Ouzaki, Marlboro Tsigaraki" (Ουζάκι Ουζάκι, Μάλμπορο), which was sung by Christos Drakoulis. 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

The song's instrumental form was originally used for wedding processions in Thraki (Θράκη); most specifically, Kessani of Anatolian Thraki (Κεσσάνη Ανατολικής Θράκης). In a tradition that continues today among some families, Greek weddings originate from the home of the bride rather than the Western custom of everyone meeting at the church. The groom meets the bride at her home, along with musicians and family. Together they all proceed towards the church, playing traditional music and dancing.

ABOUT THE PHOTO: Panayiota Bakis Mohieddin (the author and lyrics translator of this page) poses in a traditional Macedonian folk costume.

Christos Drakoulis recorded a modern Greek version of this song under the title "Ouzaki Ouzaki Marlboro Tsigaraki", and that is the version translated on this page.

One of the Turkish names for this song is "Ussak Karsilamas" (Καρσιλαμάς Ουσάκ). Another is "Mastika". Both Greeks and Turks have song this song mixed in both languages. There is also an unknown Greek mastika lyrics version which is a bit cheesy, as it mentions souvlaki! It was recorded in Turkey by Turkish singers in the Greek language.

Song: Ouzaki Ouzaki, Marlboro Tsigaraki (Ouzo, Marlboro Cigarette), 1984

Lyrics for 1984 Version: Christos Drakoulis

Music: Traditional

Original Artist for 1984 Version: Christos Drakoulis

Other Known Versions:

  • In Turkish
    • Ussak Karsilamas
    • Mastika
    • Demir with Turkish lyrics by Ahmet Selçuk İlkan

Dance Style:

  • Karsilamas
  • Belly dancing (but only if you know how to dance to the 9/8 rhythm)

Album: Mistiries Yinekes

Τραγούδι: Ουζάκι Ουζάκι, Μάλμπορο

Τσιγαράκι, 1984

Στίχοι: Χρήστος Δρακούλης

Μουσική: Παραδοσιακή

Πρώτη Εκτέλεση: Χρήστος Δρακούλης

Άλμπουμ: Μυστήριες Γυναίκες

 

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Lyrics

This translation is for the 1984 version of the song titled "Ouzaki, Ouzaki". Numbers in parentheses refer to footnotes that appear at the bottom of the translation.

Greek Lyrics

Pronunciation

English Translation

Στο κορίτσι που αγαπώ πάω sto koritsi pou agapo pao I am going to the girl that I love,
και κανένα' σας δεν ρωτάω ke kanena' sas den rotao and I am not asking any of you.
πως κοιτάει στο καθρεφτάκι pos kitai sto kathreftaki As she is looking in the mirror,
σα' φωράει το κραγιονάκι sa' forai to krayionaki as she is putting on her lipstick.
     

Chorus

Chorus

Chorus

ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
     
Θα της πάρω κόκκινο φουστάνι tha tis paro kokino foustani I will get her a red dress,
και καμιά σας δεν θα την φτάνει ke kamia sas den tha tin ftani and none of you [women] can come anywhere close to her (2)
πως λυγάι Θεέ μου το κορμάκι pos ligai The-e mou to kormaki How she is bending her body, my God,
σαν χορεύει τσιφτετελάκι san horevi tsiftetelaki as if she were dancing tsifteteli! (3)
     

Chorus

Chorus

Chorus

ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
     
Πως την λένε pos tin lene What is her name?
να μην με ρωτάτε na min me rotate Don't ask me.
και στα μάτια μην την κοιτάτε ke sta matia min tin kitate And don't look her in the eyes.
τελειώνει φέτο' το σχολείο telioni feto' to sholio She is finishing school this year.
πως αντέχει Θεέ μου στο θρανίο pos andehi The-e mou sto thranio Oh God, how can she handle being at the school desk? (4)
     

Chorus

Chorus

Chorus

ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
     

Instrumental

Instrumental

Instrumental

     

Chorus

Chorus

Chorus

ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Ουζάκι oυζάκι ouzaki, ouzaki Ouzo, ouzo (1)
ooooooo ooooooo ooooooo
Μάλμπορο τσιγαράκι marlboro tsigaraki Marlboro cigarette
  1. Ouzo is an anise-flavored Greek distilled spirit (liquor).
  2. This means "None of you can look as good as she does."
  3. The word "tsifteteli" is the Greek word for belly dancing, and it also refers to a musical style that is appropriate to use for belly dancing.
  4. The expression "being at the school desk" refers to still being in school. It's a common saying.

 

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Related Articles

  • Mastika: The Story Behind the Song. The song on this page shares the same traditional melody as the song "Mastika" that has Turkish lyrics. This article provides background information about the song.

 

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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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