Σάββατο, 4 Ιουλίου 2009

Fab & Glam DeVa


Despina Vandi


Despina Vandi (Greek: Δέσποινα Βανδή) (born Despina Malea, 22 July 1969, near Stuttgart-Tübingen, West Germany, Germany) is a Greek singer famous mainly in Greece and Cyprus, with international success too.



Personal life


Although born in Germany, Vandi's family was from Kavala, Greece, where she and her family moved when she was six years old. As a result, she did not learn German, unlike the rest of her family. She has one older brother and an older sister. Living in a lower middle-class family her dream was to become either an actress or a singer but she always knew that she should have something more solid as a background so she went on to study psychology, philosophy, and education at the University of Thessaloniki. At the start of her singing, Despina changed her last name to Vandi, to hide that she was singing from her parents.

Despina Vandi is married to Demis Nikolaidis, ex-international soccer player and former President of AEK soccer club. She has a five year old daughter named Melina and a son named Giorgos born in August 2007.

A Discovery Channel documentary entitled Europe's Richest People estimated Vandi and Nikolaidis' combined fortune to be in excess of 10 million euros in 2003.

On August 18, 2008, Vandi was in a car accident on Kifissias Avenue in Kifissia, Greece. The car she was in, driven by her chauffeur, slipped on an oil slick that leaked from a tanker truck causing the car to crash into the truck ahead of her. After drivers helped pull her out of the vehicle, she was transported by ambulance to the general hospital in Athens and then moved to a private clinic.Vandi only suffered a cut to her head and got stitches.After the accident, Greek media called it a "miracle" that Vandi only had minor injuries as her Porsche Cayenne was totaled beyond recognition. Vandi faced criticism after stating that she would rather have died than be left paralyzed and was asked to give a public apology but refused



1994–1996: Early years


Despina Vandi's first album was released in 1994 under the Minos EMI label, titled Gela Mou (Smile at Me). This album was distinguished by her duet To Adieksodo (No Way Out) written by Vassilis Karras, with Giannis Parios, a very popular singer at the time.

In 1996, Despina Vandi released her next album, Esena Perimeno (You're The One I'm Waiting For). Hits on this album include Esena Perimeno, Den Pethainei I Agapi, and Efiges songs written by her friend and now musical director Tony Kontaxakis.



1997–1999: Popularity established


1997 proved to be a big year for Despina Vandi as she teamed up with popular songwriter Phoebus. Phoebus wrote the songs of Vandi's next album, Deka Entoles (Ten Commandments), which was awarded platinum status in Greece. Despina Vandi's partnership with Phoebus would turn out to be a very successful one, and they celebrated their 10 year partnership with the release of 10 Hronia Mazi (10 Years Together). With the success of "Deka Entoles" Despina Vandi quickly became popular in the Greek Music industry with a string of hits and popular appearances.

Later that year, Despina experimented with acting. She was asked to play a guest star role in the hit television show "Dio Xenoi" (Two Strangers). Despina accepted the role and made her first appearance on television. She played a singer of a local small city, who was able to change the sexuality of the main gay character. She managed to gain good reviews for her acting talent.[citation needed]

Despina's next album Profities (Prophecies) was released in 1999 and was certified gold the day of its release. It eventually became a triple platinum album in Greece. Later that year Despina gave her first sold-out solo concert at the concert hall of Lycabettus with 7,000 people in attendance.



2000–2002: Further success


In 2000, Despina Vandi released the single Ipofero (I Suffer). The single went six-times platinum and was awarded as being the most successful single of all time in Greece, by Richard Branson of Virgin.

Despina Vandi and Phoebus decided to sign with Heaven Music, a new break-out record label in 2001 owned by the Athena Group. Despina's next album Gia (2001), meaning "Hi" was a double album including 21 new songs. The album went 4x platinum in only 11 days. Many of the songs on the album became hits not only Greece, but also in neighboring countries such as Cyprus, Turkey and Lebanon. Shortly after, Vandi gave a free concert in Thessaloniki drawing in a reported 62,000 people.

At the 2002 World Music Awards, Vandi was awarded as the World's "Best Selling Greek Artist". It was the first time that this award was given to Greek artist who actually lived and worked in Greece. For her acceptance speech, Despina said "Above all though, I would like to thank my Greek fans around the world. I dedicate this award to all the Greeks who have supported me with their love all these years and it is because of them that I find myself here at this moment."

Following the success of Gia, Despina released a CD single titled "Ante Gia" (Goodbye) in 2002, with the title track being a remix of "Gia". The single also included three new tracks and another remix, and achieved double platinum status. Gia and "Ante Gia" were then compiled and re-released as "Gia & Ante Gia: Collector's Edition", along with four previously unreleased remixes.



2003: International exposure


With Gia having gone multi platinum in the Greek market, some of the songs broke out into the international market in neighboring countries. Seeing potential in an international career, she embarked on one in 2003.

Her first three international singles, "Gia" (2003), "Opa Opa" (2004) and "Come Along Now" (2005) entered the charts around the world. Her first internationally-distributed albums are named after the songs "Gia" and "Come Along Now". "Gia" and "Opa Opa" have both charted on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play and Hot Dance Airplay charts, with Gia reaching number 1 on the latter. All three singles reached #1 on the Australian charts.

She made an appearance on the hit international show Top of the Pops where she performed her song "Gia" as she was included in some of that week's best-selling popular music artists.

Her work has been remixed by celebrated global DJs and producers, such as Armand Van Helden, Milk & Sugar, Nick Skitz, Roger Sanchez, Junior Vasquez, Pete Tong, Bass Bumpers, DJ Gregory, Level K, XTM, Minimal Chic and Highpass amongst others.

Her albums Gia and Opa Opa have been Records of The Week on BBC Radio 1's dance shows. Despina Vandi has also won many international awards.

At the end of August (2004) Despina performed live at the Beatstock Festival in New York.



2004–2007: Stin Avli Tou Paradisou & "Kalanta"


Despina's next studio album was released at the end of 2004, titled Stin Avli Tou Paradisou (In The Garden Of Paradise). It reached double platinum status in 2005, the album was repackaged as a special edition and included 5 new songs, including a duet with Giorgos Mazonakis. Katiana Balanika guest starts in one of the music videos for the album. The special edition was released in Greece, Cyprus, Russia, Ukraine, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey.

In July 2006, Despina gave a concert in the theater of Lycabettus in Athens singing many of her popular songs.

Despina Vandi released the CD single "Kalanta" (Carols) in Greece on November 22, 2006, which reached double platinum status.The videoclip of "Kalanta" was released on December 19, soon followed by the video of her next hit single, "Mehri Mai Mina" (Till The Month Of May).

Vandi performed her last show at the Rex Music Theater on February 18, 2007 and it marked an end to her singing there for the past seven years. Due to her pregnancy, Vandi did not plan any summer concerts for 2007, and on 21 August 2007, she gave birth to a healthy boy, her second child after Melina.



2007–Present: 10 Hronia Mazi & New CD Single


On October 10, 2007 (10/10) Vandi released her new single "Thelo" (I Want) simultaneously on all radio stations and TV stations across Greece at 10 AM.It marked her 10 year anniversary of collaborating with Phoebus. The song reached the top of the Nielsen's Radio Airplay chart for Greece for five consecutive weeks.The second radio single from the album and the title track "10 Hronia Mazi" (10 Years Together) was released on November 16, 2007.The song is a rock ballad about the 10 year collaboration with Phoebus and charted on the airplay charts.

The album 10 Hronia Mazi was released December 6, 2007 on three discs featuring fifteen new songs.The first disc features eight new pop and rock songs and two remixes, while the second disc features seven new Laika songs and three remixes. The third disc is a "bonus" and features some of the best songs from Vandi and Phoebus with new mixes as a thank you to their fans. The album achieved platinum certification on the first week, but it should be noted that this included preorders.

On March 6, 2008, Vandi released the third single from 10 Hronia Mazi, titled "Agapi" (Love), along with a video to promote it.The single was on the MAD TV Charts for six weeks with one week at number one. On April 24, 2008, Vandi released the fourth single from 10 Hronia Mazi titled "Fantasou Apla". The video was filmed at the same time as "Agapi".



Vandi was featured on the gold-certified album Sehnsucht by German electronica act Schiller, which was released in early 2008, providing vocals for the song "Destiny", composed by Phoebus. She performed the track with Schiller on June 17, 2008 at the MAD Video Music Awards 2008, where she won the category of "Best Female Artist" and also performed "I Gi Ki I Selini".Her live appearance in the MAD Video Music Awards 2008 was included in the live edition of Sehnsucht (Desire).

On June 24, 2008, following the MAD Awards, the album was repackaged with the title 10 Hronia Mazi: It's Destiny as one disc. The repackaged version includes the song "Destiny" by Schiller featuring Despina Vandi. The one disc repackaged version features all the songs from the original first and second disks, excluding all the remixes (with the exception of "Ta Lefta (Remix)"). Two more songs were released as singles, "I Gi Ki I Selini" and "Tha Thela"; the music video for "I Gi Ki Selini" was her performance at the MAD Awards, while the video for "Tha Thela" was the live performance of the song at the Love Radio party which took place on May 12, 2008.

Near the end of 2008, Vandi began touring out of Greece for the album. On October 10, 11 and 12 she performed three sold out concerts in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide and then from May 15-24, 2009, she sang a five venue tour of the United States and Canada.


Discography


Albums

All the albums listed underneath were released and charted in Greece and Cyprus.

Year Title Certification


1994 Gela Mou

[Smile for Me]

-
1996 Esena Perimeno

[I'm Waiting For You]

-
1997 Deka Entoles

[Ten Commandments]

  • This is the first album composed by Phoebus
Platinum
1999 Profities

[Prophecies]

3× Platinum
2001 Gia

[Hi]

4× Platinum
2002 Gia & Ante Gia Collector's Edition

[Hi + Goodbye]

  • Album sales combined with Original version
4× Platinum
2003 Despina Vandi: Live
Platinum
2004 Stin Avli Tou Paradisou

[In the Garden of Paradise]

  • Re-released in 2005
2× Platinum
2007 10 Hronia Mazi

[10 Years Together]

Platinum

Singles

Listed below are the CD singles released by Despina Vandi.

Year Title Album/CD Single Notes














1997 "Spania" Profities Platinum
2000 "Ipofero" Ipofero 6× Platinum
2002 "Ante Gia" "Ante Gia" 2× Platinum
2003 "Gia" (English Version) Gia (US Edition) Gold
2004 "Come Along Now" feat. Phoebus Come Along Now Platinum
*Official song of the 2004 Olympics Coca Cola Campaign
2004 "Opa Opa" Gia (US Edition)
2006 "Kalanta" "Kalanta" 2× Platinum
*Greece Annual Top 50 Singles 2006 - No. 2

Full Singles Discography & Music Videos

Listed below are promo singles released by radio and music video by Despina Vandi. They were not released as stand-alone CDs, as is common in Greece and Cyprus.

Year Title Album/CD Single














1994 "Gela Mou" Gela Mou
1994 "Den Iparhi Tipota" Gela Mou
1994 "To Adiehodo" Gela Mou
1996 "Esena Perimeno" Esena Perimeno
1996 "Den Pethainei I Agapi" Esena Perimeno
1999 "Nyhtolouloudo Mou" Deka Entoles
1999 "O Perittos" Deka Entoles
1999 "Outopia" Deka Entoles
1999 "Thelo Na Se Ksehaso" Deka Entoles
1999 "Deka Entoles" Deka Entoles
1997 "Spania" Profities
1999 "Profities" Profities
1999 "To Koritsaki Sou" Profities
1999 "Giatriko" Profities
1999 "Apapa" Profities
1999 "Sta 'Dosa Ola" Profities
2000 "Ipofero" Ipofero
2000 "Lypamai" Ipofero
2002 "Gia" Gia
2002 "Hristouyenna" Gia
2002 "Anaveis Foties" Gia
2003 "Olo Leipeis" Gia
2003 "Lathos Anthropos" Gia
2003 "Thelo Na Se Do" Gia
2003 "Ela" Gia
2003 "Simera" Gia (US Edition) + Ante Gia
2003 "I Melodia Tis Monaksias" Gia (US Edition) + Ante Gia
2003 "Gia" (English Version) Gia (US Edition)
2003 "Thimisou" Gia (US Edition)
2003 "Oti Oneirevomoun" Despina Vandi: Live
2003 "Fevgoume Kardia Mou" Despina Vandi: Live
2004 "Come Along Now" ft Phoebus Come Along Now
2004 "Opa Opa" Gia (US Edition)
2004 "Happy End" Stin Avli Tou Paradisou
2004 "Na Tin Hairesai" Stin Avli Tou Paradisou
2005 "Stin Avli Tou Paradisou" Stin Avli Tou Paradisou
2006 "Jambi" Stin Avli Tou Paradisou: Special Edition
2006 "Amane" ft Giorgos Mazonakis Stin Avli Tou Paradisou: Special Edition
2006 "Kalanta" "Kalanta"
2006 "Mehri Mai Mina" "Kalanta"
2007 "Thelo" 10 Hronia Mazi
2007 "10 Hronia Mazi" 10 Hronia Mazi
2008 "Agapi" 10 Hronia Mazi
2008 "Fantasou Apla" 10 Hronia Mazi
2008 "I Gi Ki I Selini"(MAD Video Music Awards 2008) 10 Hronia Mazi
2008 "Destiny" Schiller ft Despina Vandi 10 Hronia Mazi: It's Destiny
2008 "Tha' Thela"(Love Radio Live) 10 Hronia Mazi

Official compilations

  • 2001 - The Best (Gold)
  • 2004 - Ta Laika tis Despinas
  • 2004 - Despina Vandi: Ballads
  • 2004 - Despina Vandi: Dance
  • 2004 - Despina Vandi: The Ultimate Collection
  • 2005 - Come Along Now
  • 2007 - Despina Vandi: Singles
  • 2007 - Despina Vandi: The EMI Years (The Complete Collection)
  • 2008 - Monadikes Erminies
  • 2008 - The Best Despina Vandi

International Releases


Albums

All the albums listed underneath were released and charted internationally.

Year Title Certification


2004 Gia

(Double CD Released in the US)

-
2005 Come Along Now

(Gia European Edition)

-



Singles

Year Title Album/CD Single














2004 "Opa Opa" Gia (US Edition)
2004 "Gia" Gia (US Edition)
2006 "Jambi" Stin Avli Tou Paradisou: Special Edition



International Charts

"Gia" Charts

Chart Peak
position
US Billboard Club Dance Airplay 1
Greece IFPI Top 50 Singles 1
Romania Airplay Singles Top 100 8
US Billboard Hot Dance Singles Sales 18
Finland Top 20 Singles 20
Sweden Top 60 Singles 25
Australia Top 50 Singles 35
Germany Singles Top 100 36
US Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play 39
Australia Club Charts 41
Belgium Singles Top 50 42
UK Singles Top 75 63
Switzerland Top 100 Singles 73



"Opa Opa" Charts

Chart Peak
position
Greece IFPI Top 50 Singles 1
Denmark Top 20 Singles 14
Germany Top 100 Singles 51
Austria Top 75 Singles 54
Switzerland Top 100 Singles 81

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