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Demis Roussos

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Biography

Singer Demis Roussos, known for his dramatic, operatic vocal stylings, was born Artemios Ventouris Roussos in Alexandria, Egypt, on June 15, 1946, to Greek expatriate parents. In the early '60s, however, the family decided to return to their homeland, and once there, the young Roussos (who had studied trumpet and sung in the church choir in Egypt) began playing in local bands. One of these was Aphrodite's Child, which also featured Vangelis Papatanassiou and Lucas Sideras. A huge hit in Europe, especially France, the band released a handful of albums before breaking up in 1971. With his label contacts in place, however, Roussos was able to secure a deal as a solo recording artist, and later that same year issued the single "We Shall Dance," also included on the album On the Greek Side of My Mind. The 1970s were a prolific time for Roussos, and he released a number of singles and albums that charted highly on the European and Latin American charts. In 1978 the singer decided to retire, and moved to Malibu Beach, where he kept a lower profile. Eventually he moved back to Greece, however, and it was there from which he boarded TWA flight 847 to Rome on June 14, 1985. The plane was hijacked by members of Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad, and Roussos and his wife, along with the other passengers, were held captive for a few days. The experience changed his life, and he decided the best way he could help others and promote understanding in the world was by returning to music. The Story of Demis Roussos came out shortly thereafter, and for a short while the singer's career was reignited, especially in southern Europe. Demis Roussos died in Athens in January 2015; he was 68 years old.

Top Songs

Birth Name:

Artemios Ventouris Roussos

Born:

15 June 1947 in Alexandria, Egypt

Genre
Years Active:

'60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Followers

Contemporaries