01.05.2013, www.gerryco23.wordpress.com, UK
«Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri at the Barbican: songs of faith, songs of hope» – by Gerry

For me, The Athens Concert, of all the peaks attained by Charles Lloyd in his illustrious career, is the most sublime: a stirring blend of Greek folk songs, Byzantine hymns and improvised jazz. When I learnt that Lloyd was bringing his Greek project to the Barbican, I knew that I had to make the journey down from Liverpool.

Introducing Maria Farantouri, Lloyd declared ‘she has been my teacher for the last decade or so.

Jazz grew out of the quest of African Americans for freedom, and the music of the Greek Suite which the ensemble now performed, is ultimately a reflection of contemporary Greek struggles against tyranny and economic exploitation, drawing on centuries old folk music as well as more recent texts by Theodorakis, Eleni Karaindou and Giorgos Seferis. The confluence of jazz and Greek song that the musicians have achieved here sounds seamless and unforced because it entwines two streams of music based in the struggles of two cultures to overcome oppression.

London Jazz News 30.04


30.04.2013, London Jazz News, UK
«Charles Lloyd Quartet with special guest Maria Farantouri at Barbican» - by Geoff Winston

Cue Maria Farantouri, whom Lloyd declared "has been my teacher for the last decade or so!" Having played a series of concerts together, they had established a natural blend and balance as her sculpted, tonally modulated voice became the fifth instrument in a unique rapport between Greek rebetiko and contemporary jazz idioms. The stringed lyra of Socratis Sinopoulos was the raw, ancient sixth voice which underscored the history, emotion and landscape evoked by Farantouri…

Any compromises made to either genre were entirely sympatico and made in the best of civilised spirit - given Lloyd's brief address about the debt owed to Greek culture, philosophy and civilisation, that was more than apt.

Farantouri's voice welled in tandem with the ensemble, was perfectly pitched against the quartet's flair, and wound down with an immaculate sense of timing. Duetting with Lloyd, voice and saxophone became uncannily and thrillingly interchangeable and she showed, in encore, that she was very much at home with the jazz chanson...


The Telegraph 29.04


29.04.2013, The Telegraph, UK
«Charles Lloyd Quartet, Barbican Hall» - by Ivan Hewett

Then it was time for Maria Farantouri to sail on to the stage in her billowing smock, accompanied by Socratis Sinopoulos on the tiny Greek bowed lyra. What a wonderful throaty sound that little thing made, as dry as baked sunflower seeds but wonderfully expressive. And what a contrast it made with Farantouri’s soulful tone. One number, a sort of deep lullaby with Farantouri and Lloyd musing in parallel melodic lines, was hugely affecting.

The Guardian 29.04

29.04.2013, The Guardian, UK
«Charles Lloyd Quartet with Maria Farantouri» – by John Fordham

For the London leg of his 75th birthday celebrations, Charles Lloyd is joined by a particularly significant friend Maria Farantouri…

He plays this gig with accompanists including the brilliant pianist Jason Moran, and with Farantouri will revisit the poetry, dances, ballads and prayers of their majestic Athens Concert.


Financial Times 29.04

29.04.2013, Financial Times, UK
«Charles Lloyd, Barbican, London» – by Mike Hobart

Maria Farantouri has a deep voice, pure tones and a beautifully controlled vibrato. At this gig she delivered a mix of traditional Greek music and the compositions of Mikis Theodorakis with the conviction of a singer known as the “Greek Voice of Resistance” (she was in exile during the military junta). Lloyd and his band adapted brilliantly to the disciplines of her lyric-driven music by following each contour of her vocal delivery and blending with the micro-tonal inflections of Sokratis Sinopoulos’s kementsé (its sound is akin to a violin).

ECM 1st

20.03.2013, ECM Reviews, USA
«Serving the Music: Going Astral with Charles Lloyd» - by Tyran Grillo

Yet it was Greek singer Maria Farantouri who spread the richest wings of the concert. Joined by lyra master Socratis Sinopoulos, she assumed a vast presence in her rendition of the Greek Suite from the Athens Concert album. A lone improvisation from Sinopoulos served to emphasize the holiness of the space. Farantouri was the twilight itself, an Adriatic dream realized before the ears. Lloyd and Farantouri always seem to bring out the best in each other, and on this stage the vibe was no different. Traveling down the River Styx and back again, Moran appending thoughtful diacritics along the way, the group inscribed its journey with nary a backward glance. Harland wound a fantastical roll to whisper strength, the lyra tracing a perfect horizon line.

After this two-hour tour de force, Farantouri lightened the mood by singing “Happy Birthday” to Lloyd before encoring with the joyous “Yanni Mou”, thus signing off on a living résumé of the saxophonist’s legacy and influence.


artinfo 2

20.03.2013, Art Info, USA
«Saxophonist Charles Lloyd: Wisdom and Wonder at 75» - by Larry Blumenfeld

The true revelation of Friday’s performance was the chance to hear music from Lloyd’s 2011 recording, “Athens Concert,” in a concert setting. Even listeners familiar with the tenderness and clarity of Lloyd’s singular work would have been unprepared for that riveting two-CD set, recorded at an open-air theater at the foot of the Acropolis. The Temple of Dendur evoked something of the spiritual heft of that setting (though, alas, not the acoustics). Farantouri’s voice was buoyant and light-hearted in some passages, dark-hued and reverent in others; seated, she sang with purposeful command and obvious joy. In Sinopoulous’s hands, the lyra’s tone moved from pure to fibrous. He is a virtuoso player in tune with those of Lloyd’s band, and a wonderful sonic counterpoint to Lloyd’s own playing, especially when Lloyd switched to tarogato.



New York Times18.03.2013, New York Times, USA
«Summoning Jazz Spirits to the Temple» - by Ben Ratliff

But the show’s final quarter, most of it drawn from Mr. Lloyd’s recent album “Athens Concert,” felt the rarest — partly because the music, interpolating modern and traditional Greek songs, had significantly less to do with Coltrane; and partly because Ms. Farantouri, another linker, another it’s-all-one-music personality, was strong enough to amplify Mr. Lloyd and work as his foil. Seated, she sang in waves, clear and earthy — a big, controlled voice. When they weren’t all lining out a strong melody or building a groove, the instrumentalists fed off one another’s ideas: the glissandos of lyre and saxophone, the intersecting stippled patterns of rhythm section instruments.


Independent25.04.2012, Independent, USA
«Charles Lloyd New Quartet at the Lobero – Charles Lloyd appears with singer Maria Farantouri» - by Joseph Miller

Wednesday’s program marked the North American premiere of the Athens material, and it was rich in imagination and showed a kind of inspiration that knows nothing of age or borders…

Elastic tempos gave an incantatory aura to the opening number, the Byzantine “Hymn to the Holy Trinity”, as well as to the “Lament from Epirus Region”. Lloyd’s rhythm section navigated both the amorphous and the defined easily...



23.04.2012, Examiner, USA
«Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri at Herbst» - by Stephen Smoliar

One quickly appreciates why the chemistry between Lloyd and Farantouri is so powerful. Both have a solid command of pitch. Both have the sensitivity to recognize that every note deserves its own special attention to shape. Most important, however, is that both have an intimately shared sense of dynamic. As a result, even with the intervention of amplification, their two “voices” sing in harmony with a subtle sense of blend that is rare enough in the domain of classical art song. This was particularly evident last night in their performance as a duet in Lloyd’s wordless “Prayer”.

Passatiempo20-26.04.2012, Pasatiempo, USA
«Converging Paths» - by Bill Kohlhaase

Η ένωση του σαξοφωνίστα Charles Lloyd με την τραγουδίστρια Μαρία Φαραντούρη ακούγεται σαν να έχει γίνει στον ουρανό αλλά οι ρίζες της είναι περισσότερο γήινες.

Ο Lloyd και η Φαραντούρη αντιπροσωπεύουν τη συναισθηματική και πνευματική δύναμη της μουσικής.

Ο Lloyd θαυμάζει το συναισθηματικό βάρος της εμπειρίας της Φαραντούρη που φέρει η φωνή της. «Όταν ακούς τη Μαρία να τραγουδά, υπάρχει τόσο βάθος χαρακτήρα στη φωνή της. Θα πρέπει να είναι κάποιος από πέτρα για να μη συγκινηθεί. Το σύνολο της εμπειρίας της, από τη βαθειά λύπη και τον πόνο έως την έκσταση το ακούς και το αισθάνεσαι».

Metal Jazz19.04.2012, Metal Jazz, USA
«Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri at Lobero Theater» - by Greg Burk

Over the last couple of years, Lloyd has also been refreshed by the wellsprings of his collaboration with Greek singer Maria Farantouri. We observed what he likes about the partnership: the spiritual exchange with a comparable voice, and an opportunity to swing beyond his usual jazz-blues-Latin orbit. When the two performed Greek folk songs and hymns together, he clearly relished taking on the foreign scales and rhythms -- approaching them at his own angle, not trying to duplicate the forms from (as he said) the missionary position.

Montecito Messenger



13-19.04.2012, Montecito Messenger, USA
«A musical marriage made in Montecito» - by Jane Heller

"Maria is Alethea, Athena, Aphrodite, Demeter, Gaia, Phemonoe - Mother of the Universe" said Lloyd, reminding me of the names I studied as a classics major in college… "She graced me by singing songs as ancient as the stones of Delphi".


Montecito Journal12-19.04.2012, Montecito Journal, USA
«Where Ancient Greece meets modern Jazz» - by Steven Libowitz

"Είναι σαν την Αφροδίτη, την Ελληνίδα θεά. Η φωνή της είναι αγγελική και όμορφη. Και το τραγούδι της με πήγε πίσω στην παιδική μου ηλικία και στην Billie Holiday έστω και αν δεν ακούγονται ίδιες. Αλλά αυτή η απ' ευθείας σύνδεση άγγιξε βαθειά την ψυχή μου. Έμεινα κατάπληκτος ακούγοντάς την και βγήκα εκτός μάχης από το πνεύμα και την ποιότητά της. Πέταξε τη στέγη του Campbell House κάτω!... Είναι παγκόσμια και ανθρωπίστρια... Σε αναπτερώνει. Όταν παίζουμε, κάτι συμβαίνει και αλλάζουν τα μόρια στην ατμόσφαιρα. Οι άνθρωποι γυρίζουν σπίτι τους σε άλλη κατάσταση. Δύο κόσμοι έρχονται σε επαφή με βαθύ σεβασμό και ενδιαφέρον ο ένας για τον άλλο. Δεν ξέρω πως να το πω... Μεθάμε όταν παίζουμε μαζί.

01 Le Devoir


18.02.2012, Le Devoir, Canada
«The residence of Charles Lloyd» - by Serge Truffaut

What about the Greek musicians? Above all else, a solemn singer — at will. A performer in keeping with the live drama: five years of recession for millions of Greeks. She is called Maria Farantouri. Please note her name.

Also there is Socrates Sinopoulos at the lyre and Takis Farazis at the piano, who have become the bridge between two distant universes both geographically and musically. And the programme? It is worth or rather commands our attention preferably with all your senses.

02 Eleftherotypia


05.12.2011, Eleftherotypia, Greece
«Jazz meets Byzantium» - by Natali Hadziandoniou

From Mikis Theodorakis to Manos Hadzithakis, Maria Farantouri’s opus brims with important co-operations with eminent composers. This is no coincidence. However, there was still room for one more great meeting—perhaps the most exotic and poetic one she has had to date…

02 Le Devoir


03.12.2011, Le Devoir, Canada

«The masterpiece of Charles Lloyd» - by Serge Truffaut

Very often Maria Farantouri departs from her austere tone, a tone in favour of a more appropriate one to shed a tear...

...softness and lamentation at the same time...


04 Jazz Police


27.11.2011, Jazz Police, USA

«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Andrea Canter

…and the reverent “Prayer”, the latter perhaps where Lloyd and Farantouri most conjure two human voices… or is it two horns?

Magnificent, transcendent music.

05 Kultur22.11.2011, Kultur, Austria
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Peter Füssl

Charles Lloyd’s latest work has a decisively classical touch. Indeed he sings with his saxophone. For his memorable concert of June 2010 he collaborated with another unique voice: Maria Farantouri. Lloyd is absolutely thrilled with her: we’re dealing with a miracle of modern times climbing from the ruins of civilisation.

06 Ελευθεροτυπία


22.11.2011, EleftherotypiaGreece
«Maria Farantouri meets the saxophone of Charles Lloyd» - by Yorgos Papadakis

The result, at least for those who have no blinkers on, ranges from fascinating to -at times– revelatory. There is not much to say about the aesthetic enjoyment. Beauty is beauty. Any available, open-minded tolerant listener partakes in and is the receptacle of what art provides. Nevertheless, what frequently emerges and is of great interest is the possibility of  the rapprochement of two musical worlds which are as far apart as zenith and nadir and as difficult  to coexist and blend into each other  as is difficult for water and oil to mix as  Pythagoras, the father of music pointed out before.

 07 L Unita

20.11.2011, L’ Unità, Italy
«Greek notes and jazz from two veterans» - by Aldo Gianolio

The singer Maria Farantouri and the saxophonist Charles Lloyd have produced a mix which exudes poetry and mysticism.
The merging of jazz and ethnic has been searching for mediations and responses with varying results, which sometimes reach the apex of poetry. Such an apex was achieved by the recent marriage between the voice of the Greek singer Maria Farantouri and the jazz quartet of the saxophonist and flutist Charles Lloyd.

At the peak of their artistic career they discovered a way of composing and perfecting a precious elegy .And yet the result is not a mixture of non – identifiable elements. Each entity surpasses the other one alternately without ever overshadowing it.

The result is touching, at a high pitch, in a musical achievement of dense mysticism.

08 Der Tagesspiegel


15.11.2011, Der Tagesspiegel, Germany
«River and Dam» - by Stefan Hentz

Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri, an idol of the democratic movement of the 60s, built a cosmic bridge between their respective musical worlds.

The experience of this flirting between the voice and the saxophone moving nearer -and then away from- each other was pure pleasure. You could feel that the pianist Jason Moran, the bassist Reuben Rogers and Socrates Sinopoulos at the lyre, with their sporadic tones, were creating the space where the performer and the saxophonist could start their slip-ups. You could sense the drummer turning the space into swing. The high art of improvisation, open in all directions, defied stylistic categorisation.


10.11.2011, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Germany
09 Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung«How could you forget Liz Wright?» -by Ulrich Olshausen

Another momentous event was the seemingly improbable meeting of Maria Farantouri and Charles Lloyd, which has already been recorded on cd  (recently awarded  a reviewers’ prize). The great voice of democratic Greece and Charles Lloyd, who is deeply rooted in the tradition of the saxophone tenor, fitted together as if by magic. Maria Farantouri looked relaxed and happy with the songs — some of them of course by Mikis Theodorakis.  Fast-paced short verbal exchanges with Lloyd were integrated into the whole rationale. At times she almost swayed discreetly .A pessimist might see in this nearly sacred concert the synecdoche for a requiem for Greece. But the audience who, gave the musicians a ten-minute standing ovation, seemed to be interpreting it as a hopeful resurrecting rhetoric.

10  London Jazz


09.11.2011, London Jazz, UK
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Chris Parker

'A musical bridge between our two worlds' is how saxophonist Charles Lloyd describes his collaboration with Greek singer Maria Farantouri, but – as with a number of similar ECM projects – the resulting music is so seamless, so natural-sounding, as to be almost sui generis.

Her rich, affecting voice blends beautifully with Lloyd's trademark spiritual warble, but with Moran in particular bringing an adventurous jazz sensibility to the mix, there is just enough grit in the musical oyster to produce a pearl of an album, melancholy, celebratory, hypnotic by turns, but always profoundly moving.

11 Süddeutsche Zeitung




08.11.2011, Süddeutsche Zeitung, Germany
«The Hymn to Freedom» - by Christian Bröcking

There is a radical transparency which is crystal clear at the concert of the legendary saxophonist Charles Lloyd. His laudatory meeting with the great performer of the music of Mikis Theodorakis is profoundly moving and is enriched by the excellent band under Jason Moran, who is the most outstanding pianist among America’s young people on the music scene. The result is an extremely personal genre of music.

12 Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik

05.11.2011, Preis der Deutschen Schallplatten Kritik, Germany
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by P.Schulze

That was a fascinatingly new meeting of serene African-American and Mediterranean cultures at the highest level and by the deepest souls. Maria Farantouri and Charles Lloyd: two voices that meet as suddenly as persuasively.

13 Augsburger Allgemeine




02.11.2011, Augsburger Allgemeine, Germany
«A conflict of worlds and styles» - by Alois Kramer

It was a particularly exciting event. The way the two worlds and styles merged during the performance. How wonderfully Farantouri’s voice and the silky sound of Lloyd’s saxophone met, how poetic the expression of the Greek language… How perfectly the rhythm and Farantouri’s voice were checked by Lloyd’s young musicians and complemented by Jason Moran at the piano, Eric Harland at the drums and Reuben Rogers at the bass. The Greek Socrates Sinopoulos created magic moments with his lyre. But softly stroking his lyre he created an admirable soundscape. You thought you were listening to Homer’s voice in Farantouri’s archaic song. … Roaring rounds of applause and rapturous acclaim!

14 Έθνος


26.10.2011, Ethnos, Greece
«Her voice brought tears to my eyes» - by Anastassia Kouka

“I always believed that when you search for something, this something looks out for you too. Apparently, I had always been looking for Maria’s voice. And since her voice brought tears to my eyes, I knew I had found what I had been looking for.” These are the touching words Charles Lloyd used to describe his karmic artistic relationship with the Greek performer. The relationship, as they both admitted, started eight years ago in Santa Barbara, California, where Maria Farantouri had been invited to give a concert at the University.

“Since that night she has opened her world to me and I have shared mine with her,” stated the great musician to which she responded by confessing that apart from everything else she has been offered, she was motivated to develop a more complete relationship with jazz music.

15 Νέα



24.10.2011, Ta Nea, Greece
«A Saxophone turns into a bridge» - by Hari Pontitha

   A return to the bridge that connected the voice and the saxophone, the African-American tradition and our own traditional songs. The communication between the two is not a coincidence. For a decade now Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri have been meeting in Greece as well as outside Greece — recently as friends. “From the very first moment, I felt that her voice would fit my song Blow Wind perfectly.”

“One of my wishes, before I stop singing, is to do whatever I can to promote Greek music abroad,” confided in me Maria Farantouri in the past. “I feel that my country has been done injustice in this respect. Some artists are making the effort, but we are alone in this. The release of the CD by ECM is the vindication. I always wanted elements of our culture to co-exist with another culture and to travel everywhere. Much more so right now...”


16 Neue Zürcher Zeitung



21.10.2011, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, Switzerland
«Beyond all frontiers» - by Anonymous

         Two voices which explore their musical worlds and mature beyond them. They gave a concert which proved, amazingly so, how close two distant worlds can get when they put aside their stylistic dogmatism. While the two protagonists share the same air space in this amicable conflict of cultures, they play round each other, support each other and reach their peak, the musicians in the orchestra pit stoke this meeting like a well balanced organism that breathes dynamically –sharpening the melodious movements with developed sounds and filling the gaps between the two worlds with plenty of imagination.

Examiner cd09.10.2011, Examiner, USA
«Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri in concert on ECM» - by Stephen Smoliar

               Farantouri performed wordlessly in one of Lloyd’s instrumental selections, “Prayer”, offering a seductive harmony to his melodic line.

Taken as a whole, the general mood of the concert is one of quiet introspection. Translations are provided for Farantouri’s Greek texts, all of which tend to connote nostalgic melancholy. The Lloyd Quartet is never intrusive upon this moodiness, and the atmosphere is such that one can grasp the sense of the words without having to rely on strict translation. In terms of sonority, the lyra definitely steals the show.

17 Le Monde

 08.10.2011, Le Monde Magazine, France
«Straight from Mount Olympos» - by Yann Plougastel

One might wonder what is common between the art of bright improvisation of the one and the sense of tragic of the other, which verges on paroxysm. One night last year, at the foot of the Acropolis, Lloyd’s strains met Farantouri’s music, and the result was an explosion of intensity, intelligence and emotion. Was it jazz, song, opera, rembetiko? What does it matter?
When in a country which is on the brink of catastrophe, such a kind of divine liturgy emerges for this chaotic era, then this music event deserves our eternal respect.

18 Jazzwise

01.10.2011, Jazzwise, UK
«Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Duncan Heining

This must have been one hell of a night. How rarely does the atmosphere at a concert come over as powerfully as this? It just bristles with electricity. Maria Farantouri – long associated with the music of composer Mikis Theodorakis – has one of those voices that would strike fear in the hearts of oppressors everywhere and summon hope in those of the oppressed. The way in which she and her two musicians combine with Lloyd and what is arguably his finest group astonishes. Lloyd himself is at his most elegiac on this record but Jason Moran rises just as spectacularly to the occasion, while Rogers and Harland play with an unrivalled sensitivity.

19 Die Zeit


22.09.2011, Die Zeit, Germany
«Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Stefan Hentz

In the 100 years of the history of jazz music, the art of performing melodies and the display of emotions have always been critical. Saxophonist Charles Lloyd is a master in this respect. In June 2011, he recorded Athens Concert with singer Maria Farantouri, which reflects the relation between the saxophone and the voice on a higher level. Lloyd in cooperation with lyrist Socrates Sinopoulos and pianist Takis Farazis created an anthology of traditional and modern Greek hymns. Maria Farantouri and Charles Lloyd are soulmates who are bewitched by each other’s voices. Energy is their common ground.

20 New York Times18.09.2011, New York Times, USA
«Charles Lloyd Quartet with Maria Farantouri» - by Ν.C.

The earthy but quasi-mystical tenor saxophonist Charles Lloyd has done some fantastic work with his current quartet, which features the pianist Jason Moran. Athens Concert, on two discs, captures the group in collaboration with the celebrated Greek vocalist Maria Farantouri, finding a middle ground between respective traditions.

21 The Independent11.09.2011, The Independent, UK
«Album: Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Phil Johnson

 For this historic concert recording from the ancient Odeon of Herodes Atticus, the band are joined for some songs by vocalist Farantouri, a famous interpreter of Theodorakis, and two further Greek players on lyra and piano. Lloyd sounds on absolute top form, burbling soulfully.

22 Daily Telegraph 

10.09.2011, Daily Telegraph, UK
«Album: Charles Lloyd and Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Phil Johnson

Republication of the previous article in another newspaper.


23 The Irish Times

09.09.2011, The Irish Times, Ireland
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri» - by Ray Comiskey

His tenor does it with everything from contemporary Greek composers and poets such us Theodorakis to early Byzantine hymn, and shows extraordinary affinity with Greek traditional material, becoming a superbly contrasted, lyrical voice to Farantouri's stunningly dramatic contralto.

 24 Al About Jazz

06.09.2011, All About Jazz, USA
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri» - by John Kelman

 ...here, Farantouri's expressively warm, vibrato-thick voice proves that her roots may be in Greece, but she's easily capable of crossing over completely into a mainstream jazz environs.

And when Farantouri sings in tandem with Lloyd on the tranquil spiritual, "Prayer," the two interweaving voices seem made for each other.

25 Dagsavisen



03.09.2011, Dagsavisen, Norway
«Summit meeting under the Acropolis» - by Roald Helgheim

Charles even surpasses himself in his co-operation with the queen of song Maria Farantouri in this historic double album. Hemet her in 1992 in Santa Barbara and she taught him songs that he included in his repertoire. He calls her “Athena or Aphrodite emerging from the ruins of ancient Greek civilization”. Her voice touched him as profoundly as Billie Holiday’s , who she listened to when he was young on a radio under his pillow like a lullaby. We listen to Farantouri’s magnificent voice from the very first song and later on Charles Lloyd’s Blow Wind, which here sounds more beautiful than ever.


01.09.2011, All Music, USA
«Athens Concert» - by Thom Jurek

26 All Music

 It should come as no surprise then, that The Athens Concert, a double disc with the truly legendary Greek contralto Maria Farantouri, is as full of the exploratory wonder and delight as his other dates for the label. There isn't anything to really describe this music other than to say it is equally out of historical time and simultaneously concurrent within its stream. The two musical traditions -post-millennial jazz and those of Greece's various eras and regions- are made seamless, creating an entirely new and singular work that is dramatic, subtle, completely soulful, and full of startling musicianship. Indeed, the quartet plays this music as if it were part of their standard repertoire for a very special occasion. Improvisation, harmonic invention, and Lloyd's singular sense of leadership don't demand fine performances from his players; they are given freely. In turn, he offers his finest to Farantouri, who brings the collective bounty to the listening audience. The Athens Concert is truly inspirational and quite a watermark in a career full of them for Lloyd.


27 Jazzthing


01.09.2011, Jazzthing, Germany
«Charles Lloyd & Maria Farantouri» - by Ralf Dombrowski 

A joint interview of the two artists in which they refer to their acquaintance that ended up in their collaboration on the scene. The live recording of the CD is registered as a magical and emotional evening with a taste of melancholy turning into emphatic and admirable music themes.

American blues seem to flow naturally straight into the passion of Greek sounds. Tradition and the magic of the moment click in this superb album.



01.09.2011, Stereophile, USA
«Charles Lloyd & Maria Farantouri» - by Thomas Conrad

Lloyd's horn and Farantouri's contralto share a gift forimposing their own world on silence. They occupy the same rapt emotional domain. 

29 L Avenir
31.08.2011, L’ Avenir, Belgium

«Charles Lloyd: The Music is my Religion» - by Jean Pierre Goffin

 Στ’ αλήθεια ερωτεύθηκα τη φωνή αυτής της τραγουδίστριας. Είναι αγνή σα θεά. Δεν ήθελα να τραγουδήσει τζαζ – ήθελα να είναι ο εαυτός της και βρήκαμε μια γέφυρα ανάμεσα στις μουσικές μας. Όλοι έχουμε ρίζες στον ελληνικό πολιτισμό, στη μητέρα Αφρική, στην Ινδία. Με τη μουσική μας δημιουργούμε τη μεγάλη αλήθεια, μια αλήθεια που δεν χωρίζει – ζούμε σ’ έναν μικρό πλανήτη. Η μουσική που κάνω μ’ αυτήν την «κυρία» βγαίνει από την καρδιά – αυτή η συντροφιά γέννησε αυτό το έργο.


30 The Times


27.08.2011, The Times, UK
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by John Bungey 

Lloyd is a soulful saxophonist enjoying a rebirth in his seventies. Farantouri is a revered Greek singer.

With Lloyd's saxophone curling around the singer's rich contralto, they make music of deeply spiritual beauty.

31 2011 Νέα

27.08.2011, Ta Nea, Greece

«Mori Kontoula Lemonia» - by Hari Pontitha

Περίεργο να βλέπει κανείς στο Ίντερνετ τίτλους όπως "Epirotiko Meroloi" ή "Mori kontoula lemonia" και δίπλα τους κορυφαίους σολίστες της τζαζ -εκτός από τον Λόιντ, τους Τζέισον Μοράν και Έρικ Χάρλαντ- αλλά, πιστέψτε με, τα τζαζ με τα δημοτικά και τα κομμάτια του Θεοδωράκη και της Καραΐνδρου βρήκαν πρόσφορο έδαφος, μέσα από τις ενορχηστρωτικές ιδέες του Τάκη Φαραζή, και κατάφεραν και στάθηκαν αλλιώς μέσα στον τζαζ κόσμο του Λόιντ και τις ερμηνείες της Μαρίας Φαραντούρη.

32 Financial Times


27.08.2011, Financial Times, UK
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri, Athens Concert» - by Mike Hobart

The saxophonist's airy tone and ululating warbles blend with and elaborate Maria Farantouri's precise diction and classical vibrato... 


26.08.2011,The Guardian



26.08.2011, The Guardian, UK
«Charles Lloyd / Maria Farantouri» - by John Fordham

Lloyd's Autumn leaves-like Requiem finds Jason Moran's piano brilliantly mirroring Farantouri's phrasing of the Greek lyric.

12.08.2011,Zeitungshaus Bauer

12.08.2011, Kultur, Austria
«The Voice of Resistance» - No name

Ευγενή και γεμάτη με υψηλό φρόνημα χαρακτηρίζει τη φωνή της Μαρίας Φαραντούρη το δημοσίευμα και επισημαίνει ότι το σαξόφωνο του Lloyd αγγίζει τις καρδιές των ακροατών, ενώ το κονσέρτο γεμάτο πάθος, βυζαντινούς ήχους και ελληνική παράδοση συγκλονίζει κάθε πνεύμα, ψυχή και σώμα.

 35 Ελευθεροτυπία06.08.2011, Eleftherotypia, Greece
«Σαν την κατσαρή ουρά ενός σκύλου»- by Natali Hadziandoniou

«Αγάπησα τη φωνή της από την πρώτη στιγμή που την άκουσα. Αλλά αγαπώ και τη μουσική ολόκληρη. Όσο για τη μουσική που ονομάζεται τζαζ και την οποία υπηρετώ όλη μου τη ζωή, είναι πρωτίστως η μουσική της ελευθερίας και της αναζήτησης. Και η Μαρία διαθέτει ακριβώς αυτό. Πίστευα πάντα πως όταν κάτι αναζητάς, σε αναζητά κι εκείνο. Προφανώς τη φωνή της Μαρίας την αναζητούσα πάντοτε. Κι αφού η φωνή της έφερε δάκρυα στα μάτια μου, ήξερα πως βρήκα αυτό που έψαχνα».


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