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

Ρούντολφ Το Ελαφάκι
(Roudolf To Elafaki)

(Rudolph the Reindeer)

 

 

This page contains a translation into English of the lyrics to the popular Greek song "Roudolf To Elafaki" (Ρούντολφ Το Ελαφάκι), which was sung by Thanos Kalliris and later 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 Thanos Kalliris

Thanos Kalliris is the stage name for Athanasios Kalliris. He was born to a musical family in 1962 in Athens, Greece. In 1987, he teamed up with Vassilis Dertilis to represent Greece in the Eurovision competition as a duo act named Bang. They reached 10th place, and became a great commercial success back home in Greece. Over the following years, they released three successful albums, then disbanded in 1991.

Since 1991, Kalliris has gone on to pursue a solo career. He has released 10 solo albums and many singles.

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.

 

Keti Garbi

About Michalis Hatzigiannis

Michalis Hatzigiannis is a popular Cypriot recording artist, born in 1978. He is a gradute of the Cyprus Music Academy, with a degree in piano, guitar and music theory. He represented Cyprus in the Eurovision music competition in 1998, performing a song he had written, and placing 11th.

In 2000, Hatzigiannis released his first solo album, Paraxeni Giorti, which went double-platinum. Three of its songs became top hits. In 2003, his album Monos Mou went triple platinum. In 2010, he released his first English-language album.

Song: Roudolf To Elafaki (Rudolph the Reindeer), 1995

Lyrics: Martha Logothetou

Music: Johnny Marks

Original Artist: Thanos Kalliris with backup vocals by Children's Choir of Spiros Labrou

Has Also Been Recorded By:

  • Gene Autrey, 1949, in English ("Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer")
  • Keti Garbi, 1998
  • Michalis Hatzigiannis, 1998

Album: Hristouyena Ston Galaxy (Christmas In The Galaxy)

Τραγούδι: Ρούντολφ Το Ελαφάκι, 1995

Στίχοι: Μάρθα Λογοθέτου

Μουσική: Τζονι Μαρκς

Πρώτη Εκτέλεση: Θάνος Καλλίρης
Συμμετέχουν: Παιδική Χορωδία Σπύρου Λάμπρου

Άλλοι Ερμηνευτές:

  • Καίτη Γαρμπή, 1998
  • Μιχάλης Χατζηγιάννης, 1998

Άλμπουμ: Χριστούγεννα Στον Galaxy

 

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Lyrics

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

Greek Lyrics

Pronunciation

English Translation

Ρούντολφ το ελαφάκι Roudolf to elafaki Rudolph the reindeer
με καρδούλα ταπεινή me kardoula tapini with a pure simple heart,
σαν πέφτει το βραδάκι san pefti to vradaki as the night falls,
έχει μύτη φωτεινή ehi miti fotini has a brightly lit nose.
     
Οι φίλοι του λαμπιόνι ee fili tou labioni The friends of the lamp, (1)
τον φωνάζουν και γελούν ton fonazoun ke yeloun they are yelling at him and laughing.

τη' μύτη του στο χιόνι κρύβει όταν του μιλούν

ti' miti tou sto hioni krivi otan tou miloun He hides his nose in the snow when they talk to him.
     
Όμως μια πρωτοχρονιά omos mia protohronia However, one New Year's,
είπε ο Άι Βασίλης ipe o Ay Vasilis Saint Basil (2) said,
Ρούντολφ, είσαι εσύ σοφός Rudolph, ise esi sofos "Rudolph you are wise
έχεις μέσα σου το φως ehis mesa sou to fos you have the light in you."
     
Τα ελάφια στο κοπάδι ta elafia sto kopadi The deer in the herd,
χαμηλώσανε τ' αυτιά hamilosane t' aftia they lowered their ears.
τώρα απαλή σαν χάδι tora apali san hadi Now soft like a caress,
είναι όλων η ματιά ine olon ee matia all of them are looking. (3)
     
Από τότε apo tote Since then,
και κάθε καινούρια χρονιά ke kathe kenouria hronia and every new year,
του έλκηθρου πρώτος τραβά tou elkithrou protos trava He is the first to pull the sled.
τα σκοινιά ta skinia The ropes —
Ο Ρούντολφ οδηγεί o Rudolph odiyi Rudolph is driving
τον Άι Βασίλη στη' γη! ton Ay Vasili sti' yi! Saint Basil (2) to earth!
     
Ρούντολφ το ελαφάκι Roudolf to elafaki Rudolph the reindeer
με καρδούλα ταπεινή me kardoula tapini with a pure simple heart,
σαν πέφτει το βραδάκι san pefti to vradaki as the night falls,
έχει μύτη φωτεινή ehi miti fotini has a brightly lit nose.
     
Οι φίλοι του λαμπιόνι ee fili tou labioni The friends of the lamp, (1)
τον φωνάζουν και γελούν ton fonazoun ke yeloun they are yelling at him and laughing.
τη' μύτη του στο χιόνι κρύβει όταν του μιλούν ti' miti tou sto hioni krivi otan tou miloun He hides his nose in the snow when they talk to him.
     
Όμως μια πρωτοχρονιά omos mia protohronia However, one New Year's,
είπε ο Άι Βασίλης ipe o Ay Vasilis Saint Basil (2) said,
Ρούντολφ, είσαι εσύ σοφός Rudolph, ise esi sofos "Rudolph you are wise
έχεις μέσα σου το φως ehis mesa sou to fos you have the light in you."
     
Τα ελάφια στο κοπάδι ta elafia sto kopadi The deer in the herd,
χαμηλώσανε τ' αυτιά hamilosane t' aftia they lowered their ears.
τώρα απαλή σαν χάδι tora apali san hadi Now soft like a caress,
είναι όλων η ματιά ine olon ee matia all of them are looking. (3)
     
Από τότε apo tote Since then,
και κάθε καινούρια χρονιά ke kathe kenouria hronia and every new year,
του έλκηθρου πρώτος τραβά tou elkithrou protos trava He is the first to pull the sled.
τα σκοινιά ta skinia The ropes —
Ο Ρούντολφ οδηγεί o Rudolph odiyi Rudolph is driving
τον Άι Βασίλη στη' γη! ton Ay Vasili sti' yi! Saint Basil (2) to earth!
     
Ρούντολφ το ελαφάκι Roudolf to elafaki Rudolph the reindeer
με καρδούλα ταπεινή me kardoula tapini with a pure simple heart,
σαν πέφτει το βραδάκι san pefti to vradaki as the night falls,
έχει μύτη φωτεινή ehi miti fotini has a brightly lit nose.
     
Ρούντολφ το ελαφάκι Roudolf to elafaki Rudolph the reindeer
  1. Here, "lamp" refers to Rudolph, because his lighted nose illuminates the area around him like a lamp does.
  2. St. Basil is the Greek name for Santa Claus.
  3. Literally, "they are everyone's glance" or "everyone is looking".

 

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Translations of
Thanos Kalliris' Songs On This Site

Translations of songs performed by Thanos Kalliris on this web site include:

  • Roudolf to Elafaki (Rudolph the Reindeer). A version of the song "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer" with Greek lyrics.

 

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Translations of
Michalis Hatzigiannis' Songs On This Site

 

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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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