Alexx Antaeus talks to “ET” for his award 2024-02-21 14:23:06

Somewhere among her awards Taylor Swift and her Miley Cyrus at the recent Grammys, a Greek man picked up the coveted award thanking his mother, who lives in Ilia and in the past spent many winters with him in New York and Jamaica. The reason for him Alexx Antaeuswho left our country before even finishing school and today is proud of the Grammy for best reggae album of the year that adorns his living room.

The Greek producer spoke heartily to “ET”, despite the fatigue of the days following the award, about his meeting with his son Bob Marley, TgUlianthe creation of the winning album “Colors of royal”, his favorite Greek artist and his desire to spend an entire summer in the Greek islands.

After confiding to us his dream of having a studio in the southern suburbs of Athens “to work with a view of the blue sea”, he promises that “the next Grammy I will dedicate to my countrymen”, since the one he won was dedicated to his Jamaican friends , who accepted him on the island as one of their own.

Although, as the saying goes, it doesn’t usually do you any good to… don’t listen to the Greek mother, it turns out that Alexx Antaeus did the right thing, after all, and didn’t listen to his mother, Maria Diamantaku, who did not want her son to leave Greece. Besides, in Kingston, Jamaica, which she often visits, she has “acquired” countless other “children”, her son’s friends and acquaintances, who all call her “mama Maria”.

Why do you think this album stood out and went on to win a Grammy?

Winning a Grammy requires a combination of two things: 1) Great music that challenges the listener and sends positive messages, and 2) good promotion to the members of the Recording Academy, who vote for the awards. I think we did a good job in both areas.

From what I’ve heard, the sound of the album is not purebred reggae as he knows hergoh so far Do you want to talk to us a little bit about that?

Julian Marley is a Roots Reggae artist, like his father. But for this job my goal as a producer was to create a new chapter in reggae and bring Julian to new audiences. I would say that my production includes elements of reggae, dancehall, afrobeats and reggaeton.

How did the collaboration with Tgjulian marley?

I used to own a club and bar in Kingston, Jamaica. Inside one of them I had built a recording studio so that I could control the work in the shop and record music in the same place. Many famous personalities are my friends, like Usain Bolt. The Marley family were friends and customers of mine at the store. One afternoon Julian had come to the pub for a drink, I invited him to the studio and made him listen to the songs I had written. He really liked my style, which he was not very familiar with. We started with a single and that led to the album ‘Colors of royal’, which eventually won a Grammy.

What does he have in common with his father other than his name?

Of all Bob Marley’s children who have careers in music, Julian sounds and has his father’s moves more than the others. When he performs his songs on stage, the resemblance is uncanny. Julian is simple and humble, like his father.

What did he say to you in your first communication after the award?

When the award was held, he was asleep as he was in Australia on tour and it was past midnight there. When we finally spoke, he said, “You did it. If you hadn’t worked so hard on the production and promotion of the record, we might not have won the award.”

Which global artist do you dream of working with?

I do not have a preference. What I like is being in a studio and creating. Music is a gift given to us by a higher power. I feel lucky to be able to filter inspirations and send them back out into the universe for the world to enjoy.

Stand outgare you into greek music?

I admire many Greek musicians and composers. Our music has a lot of depth and history. My “hero”, however, is Vangelis Papathanasiou. If I could go back in time, I would love to work under his guidance.

What is your favorite album of all time?

I don’t have a specific one. There are many. In general, I love classic rock and reggae (Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Bob Marley), disco and funk (Donna Summer, Isaac Hayes, Bee Gees, Earth, Wind & Fire – who I worked with) and West Coast hip hop (Dr. Dre).

What’s next for a man who just won a Grammy?

But to win one more to dedicate to my countrymen, since the one I just won is dedicated to Jamaica. At the moment I’m working on a dance/electronic album and I’m looking for a soprano to record arias. Do you have any good Greek opera singers you can recommend?

I left Greece at 17, I’m now “atypical” ambassador in TgJamaica

Why did you leave for America and how did you end up in TgJamaica?

Against my mother’s wishes, I left Greece at the age of 17, before I even finished school. I was ready to explore and discover. I remember when I was 14 in Greece I kept a diary and on one page I had drawn the map of California and put a red arrow pointing to Los Angeles. It was probably prophetic, because that’s where I graduated from university, that’s where I started my music career, that’s where I finally won a Grammy.

From Los Angeles I returned to Greece, where I worked with the owner of Sonar Music, Andreas Giatrakos, with whom we are still friends and partners in various works. At that time I had released a record, “Byzantine Meditation”.

After a few years I returned to the USA, to New York. At the same time I was spending some time in Jamaica, where I eventually opened a successful Greek restaurant, the only Greek restaurant in Jamaica. There I started to meet a lot of people and became an “informal” Greek ambassador, since in Jamaica there is neither a consulate nor a Greek church nor a Greek community.

I’ve always dreamed to have a studio with view of the Greek sea

Do you ever think of returning to Greece to work here?

Of course, there is the possibility of returning to Greece to explore any collaborations with Greek artists. I always dreamed of having a studio somewhere in Voula, Vouliagmeni or Varkiza and working with a view of the blue Greek sea.

What is your favorite place in Greece?

I love the Peloponnese and the Ionian Islands. After all, I am Peloponnesian, born in Patras, originally from Mani and Ilia, where my mother, Maria Diamantakou, lives. However, I also love Mykonos, which I have been visiting since I was a small child. I have many friends there, such as the great jazz musician and restaurant owner, Konstantinos Zouganelis.

My dream is to sail to the islands for a whole summer.

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