EXPERIENCE ROCK HISTORY!
VANGELIS O. – EARTH – 1973
Vangelis O. Papathanassiou is now known as the electronica genius composer of film scores, albums and phenomenal music that has influenced both artists and music lovers world-wide for the past four decades.
His Academy Award winning soundtrack for “Chariots of Fire” brought him deserved attention which he immediately followed-up with the exquisite soundtrack to “Bladerunner” and the rest is history – but before that, Vangelis was a Greek Rocker.
“Earth” is Vangelis’ first solo album after leaving his Psychedelic Rock band “Aphrodite’s Child” who created the psychedelic cult classic double album “666”.
I was beginning to really groove to the many different European Rock LPs that were becoming available and was a fan of the Vertigo label artists so I immediately took an interest in 666 and it is still one of my esoteric favorites; but it was this Greek-flavored LP, Earth, that really struck a cosmic chord with me and my soul.
I love everything about this album, everything – the soul of the songs, the Rockin’ beat, lyrics, vocals, instrumentation – the lively up-tempo tracks and the heartfelt melancholy ones.
Vangelis’ essence can be heard throughout that would later become full-length albums based on his unique use of ritual chants, truly Earthen moods, cosmic passages and keyboard wizardry.
I became a Vangelis fiend and honestly purchased everyone of his releases – the import versions – religiously up into the the late ’90s. And I feel compelled to recommend some of them (titles italicized are extra special favorites)::
(1973) L’Apocalypse des Animaux, (1975) Entends-tu les chiens aboyer? (Ignacio)m
(1975) Heaven and Hell, (1976) La Fête Sauvage, (1976) Albedo 0.39
(1977) Spiral, (1979) China, (1979) Opera Sauvage, (1980) See You Later
(1983) Antarctica, (1984) Soil Festivities, (1985) Mask, (1988) Direct,
(1990) The City, (1994) Blade Runner, (1995) Voices, (1996) Oceanic
Earth by Vangelis O.:
Side one:”Come on” – 2:09, “We Were All Uprooted” – 6:51, “Sunny Earth” – 6:41
“He-O” – 4:12
Side two: “Ritual” – 2:45, “Let It Happen” – 4:19, “The City” – 1:16,
“My Face in the Rain” – 4:23, “Watch Out” – 3:02, “A Song” – 3:28
About a decade ago, we sealed-off our attic from squirrels, pigeons and rats only to find afterwards a just-hatched pigeon.
It was all eyes and beak with just hairs for feathers. I thought I’d do my best to keep her alive and did. Her name was So Sweet, as she was, and I raised her from squab, to junior, to fledgling and finally to a young adult, who on Fathers’ Day took her first flight with the flocks of pigeons in our rustic ‘hood.
I was sad, but realized this day would come and was also joyous when she took off. But the next morning she was hovering outside the window wanting in and thus became a bonded friendship as she lived with us with the freedom to fly about the house and outside if she wished.
I tell this tale because from her very early days I would sing “My Face In The Rain” to her and she would blink her eyes and flutter the tips of her wings in peaceful appreciation. She loved that song and my singing it to her. We had a very special relationship.
After six years of mutual love and affection I sang “My Face In The Rain” to her one last night as the next morning she died in my hands – I don’t know why, it was quick and totally unexpected – and I’ve grieved ever since. She was truly, So Sweet.
I thank Vangelis for giving the gift of song that brought so much joy and meaningful inter-species relationship between me and my dear sweet friend.
In a totally ironic note, here are the lyrics to “A Song”, the closing track on “Earth”:
“I would like to write a song that is so vibrant and so intimate that the Earth would adopt it as if it had sprung like the stream from the land’s memory as if no one had written it but life itself.
And my song would travel along from bird to wing to tree to breeze to heart to breath to song because a song belongs to everyone like the spring.”
“… from bird to wing …”
You did Vangelis, you did.
And I now know how Tesla felt.