Who would ever think that after more than sixty five years of performing, this Grand Lady of Rebetiko would still be giving concerts... singing and narrating stories about herself and her fascinating genre. Rena Stamou grew up in an orphanage in Crete, Greece. At the age of thirteen, she moved to Athens to live with her mother. Soon she had to run away from home due to problems with her step father. By chance, she found work as a care-taker in the house of legendary singer Rita Abatzi, who eventually introduced her to Rebetiko Music. A book about Rena's life has been published recently in Greece and another one is on its way. Rena worked for two years as part of a 'dream team' of Rebetiko musicians including Markos Vamvakaris, Vassilis Tsitsanis, Yiannis Papaioannou, Apostolos Chatzichristos, George Mitsakis, Stelios Chrysinis, Apostolos Kaldaras, Mpatis, Kaplanis, Stratos Pagioumtzis and Odysseas Moschonas.
With her beautiful singing she made a name for herself and performed all around Greece, England, France,Turkey, America, Australia, New Zealand etc...She recorded great Rebetiko songs such as 'Apopse M'Egkateleipses' (Tonight You Deserted Me), 'To Vasanaki' (The Little Torment), 'Tsiggane Spase To Violi' (Gypsy Break The Violin) and many more. From one point of view, Rena is the best reference for Rebetiko in the world, today. A new album by Rena Stamou and Moosootoo band has now being published in Greece. Almost half of the tracks were recorded in London, in May 2011. Thanks to Adam Mamais for his precious input in setting-up, recording and engineering the whole project. The rest of the tracks were recorded at 'Charin Euphonias' studios in Athens with the help of 'Paidia Tis Patras' and friends. Special thanks to the incredible three-string bouzouki player Yiannis Papavasileiou (Vlahos) for coming to record with us. Samples of the work can be played here:
01. Tsigane Spase to Violi
02. To Diko Sou To Marazi
03. To Minore Tis Avgis