Friday, June 3, 2016

Interview with Greek composer Sakis Gouzonis

Sakis Gouzonis is an independent electronic music composer from Greece. Since 2008, Sakis Gouzonis has released nine instrumental electronic music albums; First Contact (2008), New Earth (2009), The Tree Of Life (2010), Ultimate Love (2011), Vast Victory (2012), Spiritual Unity (2013), Golden Heart (2014), A World At Peace (2015) and Liberating Truth (2016).

For his high-quality music, Sakis Gouzonis has received several prominent awards and distinctions, some of which are: 1st Prize in the International Composition Competition 2010 for his music tracks Seed Of Hope and Eternal Peace, a Semi-Finalist Award in the UK Songwriting Contest 2010 for his music tracks Eternal Peace and Elegy, 2nd Prize in the International Composition Competition 2009 for his music track Elohim, and 1st Prize in the 2nd Meeting of Music & Poetry 2009 for his second album titled New Earth.



Thanks for coming on to the interview,
Tell us about yourself.

Before we begin our interview, I do want to take the time to thank you, Matt, for giving me the opportunity to present my music and my thoughts to the visitors of your blog. My name is Sakis Gouzonis, and I am 38 years old. I come from Greece. Specifically, I was born in a studio apartment of fifteen square meters in Thessaloniki, which is located on the northern fringe of the Thermaic Gulf.


How old were you when you first got into the music scene? What got you started in music?

When I was twelve years old, my parents bought me an electronic keyboard, and I immediately started playing and composing music. Even though I was just a kid, I had the innate ability to play by ear, to improvise, to arrange music and to create compositions. At the age of sixteen, my parents bought me a semi-professional electronic keyboard. I would spend countless hours creating sounds, composing, arranging, and playing electronic music live.


What genre is your music?

My music is instrumental, electronic and cinematic, as well as very melodic and atmospheric. My compositions and orchestrations are written and performed with a lot of passion and positive energy. I always do my best to keep my music interesting and exciting. Most people are not indifferent when listening to something with a lot of heart and soul.


Have you released any albums or singles?

To this day, I have released 9 studio albums:
First Contact (2008) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-34.html
New Earth (2009) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-35.html
The Tree Of Life (2010) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-100.html
Ultimate Love (2011) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-121.html
Vast Victory (2012) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-136.html
Spiritual Unity (2013) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-142.html
Golden Heart (2014) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-150.html
A World At Peace (2015) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-168.html
Liberating Truth (2016) - http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music-group-173.html


If you could go anywhere in the world to perform, where would you go and why?

It doesn't matter in which country I am. Every country has its own charm and beauty, and every performance is unique. It's not the country, but the type of the venue and the audience that makes a performance memorable.


How do you typically get psyched up for a gig?

I get ready for shows mentally by focusing on my vision and goals and the way that I want my fans to be affected by my performance, and physically by warming my fingers and making sure I have plenty of water. Before a live performance, I also check my instruments to make sure that if something goes wrong, it's not something I could have fixed beforehand.


Where does the majority of your inspiration come from? Older music or more modern music?

The music from the 80’s and 90’s still has a major influence on me. I am also influenced by great composers, such as Vangelis, Yanni, Jean Michel Jarre, John Williams, James Horner, Alan Silvestri and Danny Elfman. I listen to a lot of different music though, and I love digging for things that are new and different.


These days free music downloading has become the norm. It's a constant struggle for artists to make money from music sales. How do you feel about this?

It is true that the internet has enabled people to download music for free. But it is also true that the internet has lowered, and in some cases has eliminated, the cost of music production. Music can now be electronically stored and reproduced instantaneously, with no need for a vinyl, cassette or CD. In the future, everything will be free. The advances we have seen in the last few years -file sharing via the internet, cars that drive themselves, humanoid robots, 3D printers, etc.- are only the beginning of what is yet to come. People will not have to work to feed themselves, clothe themselves or put a roof over their head.


Is your music available for free download anywhere?

I want people to be able to stream and download my music for free, and I want them to share it with their family, friends and colleagues. Everyone can stream and download my music for free at http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/music.html without having to sign up.


Are you a part of any other musical projects?

Not currently.


Do you have a job other than your music career?

I teach English as a foreign language in Greece. As an English teacher, I have always loved the power of words. People frame words, and words in turn impact people. This relationship has always been of interest to me.

How often do you rehearse? Where do you typically rehearse?

I rehearse two or three times a week, depending on whether I have a live performance that week or not. I rehearse in my studio in Elassona, Greece.

Do you have any web pages?

Yes, I do. My official website is www.sakisgouzonis.com. It includes detailed biography, complete discography, a frequently updated electronic press kit, press releases, questions and answers, album reviews, articles, interviews, news, contact details and links. People from around 100 countries visit my official website every month.

How would you describe your sound in one sentence?

Melodic electronic sound that lets you escape to some place in your mind that you have never visited before.

Any pearls of wisdom for all other artists out there with less experience than you?

Don't give up, and remember why you do what you do. The music is supposed to be for you and not about getting loaded with cash. Love and respect your fans and the people that contributed in one way or another to your success.


Great, thank you again for coming on with us. To learn more about Sakis go to http://www.sakisgouzonis.com/home.html

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