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Moutzouris Christos | Lesvos | Biographical data
• Place of birth

Kato Chorio Plomariou, Lesvos
• Short biography

Christos Moutzouris (born 1934) was brought up in Kato Chorio, in the Plomari region, and settled in Plomari itself in the 1950s. He was an amateur singer and choir singer, and made his living as a barber.

Christos Moutzouris began working from a very young age. Until the age of 15, he helped his parents with collecting olives on the groves where they worked. While in High School in Plomari, he spent some time working as an assistant tailor, and trained as a barber from the age of around 15 or 16. After getting married, in the mid-1950s, he opened his own barbershop in Plomari, which he ran until he retired, in the late 1990s.

Due to financial difficulties, he never learned to play an instrument: “I was obsessed with learning an instrument. My voice helped a bit. But we didn’t have the means, the finances… so I never learned.” He did, however, sing couplets to the tune of the most famous local instrumental piece, known as “Plomaritikos” or “parapounikos”, which he learnt from older generation amateur singers in the cafés in Plomari. The couplets were improvised by the singers and he wrote many of them himself: “Because I was obsessed, when they were singing somewhere, I always wanted to go, you know, to hear them singing. There was a thing in those days, they didn’t sing the whole song (he is referring to the couplets of the “parapounikos” or “Plomaritikos” tunes, known as the couplets “of sorrow and love”), so that that girls wouldn’t hear them, they only sang half the song (one line). So that the girls would have to ask someone, to find out the rest. But me, because I was obsessed, I’d go on my own, and I wrote down half and worked out the rest of the song from that. And so I have about 750 songs in a book. I can write many songs, just sitting here.”

Christos Moutzouris used to sing, along with his friends, on an amateur basis, in the cafés of Plomari. During the 1950s and 1960s, he collaborated with several bands, and he has also taken part in festivals, and performed in cafés in neighbouring villages, such as Palaiochori.