Dandelion Radio
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'Broadcast One' - Dandelion Radio's 1st compilation album

Bumper month with 31 hours of December shows - plus 2022 Festive 50 arriving from Christmas day.

Artist Info

Tassos Chalkias

Powered by Audioscrobbler™Anastasios Halkias or Tassos Halkias (last named also transliterated as Chalkias; Greek: Αναστάσιος Χαλκιάς; born 1914 in Ioannina, Epirus; died 1992 in Piraeus) was a famous Greek virtuoso of the clarinet. He is the father of Lakis Halkias (Greek: Λάκης Χαλκιάς).

At the age of four, Halkias lost his father. When he was six, he asked his mother to buy him a Gypsy clarinet. He became an autodidact, not being being able to read sheet music. His four brothers, all musicians played in the Kompania Chalkias, to which he was admitted when he was 17 years old. The "Kompania" played in Epirus at summer festivals and in Athens during winters.

When WWII broke out he joined the resistance and fought in the ranks of the People's Liberation Army. He was wounded in 1940 and his wife and two children were killed by the Germans in 1941.

After the war, the Company was reconstituted and began recording for the Columbia firm. In 1950 he went to Cairo with great success. He then lived in the United States between 1958 and 1963 (with C. Papaioannou, St. Tzouanakis, etc.) where he met fellow clarinet player, Benny Goodman. Goodman was stunned upon hearing Halkias playing, and rushed to congratulate him as a great virtuoso.

After returning to Greece in 1964, Halkias formed a new family group, which appeared in prestigious venues in Athens ("Mavrommatis", "Jungle", etc.). He returned to America, to stay there for three more years, and recorded about 180 songs ("Βασιλικέ μου τρίκλωνε", "Έρωτα πανάθεμά σε", "Το παράπονο του τσοπάνου", etc.). He returned to Athens and in 1970 performed with Dionysis Savvopoulos.

During his career, Halkias played on dozens of albums and recorded with hundreds of musicians. In the last years of his life he was unable to play, due to heart attacks and pulmonary edema. Halkias died in Piraeus in 1992. According to continental customs and his last wishes, the burial ceremony was an opportunity for a group of thirty fellow Epirus clarinetists to perform a lament over his grave.
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