Phoebus (songwriter)

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Birth name Evangelos-Phoebus Tassopoulos
Born (1971-01-01) January 1, 1971 (age 43)
Origin Greece
Genres Modern Laika, pop, dance, rock
Years active 1993–present
Labels Sony Music Greece (1993–1997)
Minos EMI (1997–2000)
Heaven Music (2001–2009)
The Spicy Effect (2010–present)

Phoebus (Greek: Φοίβος, pronounced [ˈfivos], born January 1, 1971), sometimes spelled Phivos or Fivos (pronounced "fee-vos"), is a well-known songwriter in both Greece and Cyprus. Phoebus is mostly known for his music through Despina Vandi and Katy Garbi, although he has composed albums for many other artists in Greece and Cyprus. A high percentage of the albums he composes receive certification making him one of the most successful Greek songwriters of the 1990s and 2000s, selling 3,500,000 records.[1] In 2009 he founded his own record label, The Spicy Effect, to which he has signed various artists, many of whom he has collaborated with in the past.


Phoebus was born on January 1, 1971 in Athens, Greece. He first got interested in music during his school years where he was a drummer in a rock band. During that time he experimented with the music fads of the time.

Despite getting into Athens Law School, Phoebus did not want to pursue a career in law, and instead focused on his involvement in music and began to compose his first songs.

While studying harmony and music at the conservatory and taking private tutorials by Demis Roussos, he started writing his first lyrics. His talent was quickly shown, and he signed his first contract with a record label at age 22.

At the start of his second decade in music, Phoebus made amazing record accomplishments. By that time, he had composed over 18 gold LP's and CD singles, 19 platinum, 9 albums that are two times platinum, 2 albums that are 3 times platinum; Evaisthisies and Profities, 2 four times platinum; Gia and To Kati and 1 six times platinum CD single; Ipofero, selling more than 150,000 units.[2] This in turn gave him his name in Greek music history.

During his career, Phoebus has shown the ability in mixing popular music trends with different ideas as well as bringing new artists into the spotlight with his music. Apart from writing and composing, Phoebus, almost exclusively, programs, orchestrates and produces his albums. His producing abilities have broken new ground while he has gone on to sign the highest contracts with all of the record labels he has worked with; starting off with Sony Music Greece, moving to Minos EMI and finally signing on to Heaven Music.

In the summer of 2001, Phoebus' career passed a significant milestone as he gained international recognition. Along with Despina Vandi, he received the award for the best-selling album of the year in Greece for the CD single Ipofero (I’m suffering), awarded to him by the director of the Virgin Megastores in London, Sir Richard Branson.

In the period 2001-02, Phoebus collaborated with tha famous international producer Desmond Child and other international producers as well for the album of Sakis Rouvas Ola Kala, which was released in the European market by Universal Music France. The album was released in Greece by Minos EMI.

On March 6, 2002, Phoebus and Despina Vandi, receive another honour. They won the "World’s Best-Selling Greek Artist 2001" award (for the sales of the album Gia) in the World Music Awards.

The greatest global success composed by Phoebus came with the song "Gia" by Despina Vandi. It went multi-platinum in the Greek market, and broke into the international music scene. It was included in the playlists of celebrated DJs and clubs worldwide. "Gia" reaching the No1 spots in the US Billboard Dance Charts and the UK Dance Charts. It was released as a CD single in Europe, the USA, Australia, Turkey and Northern Africa while it has been included in more than 120 compilations, worldwide.

In the spring of 2004, Phoebus teamed up with Coca-Cola to compose the tune that will accompany all of Coca-Cola’s activities in its Olympic Sponsorship agreement. Phoebus composed the song "Come Along Now" with Despina Vandi singing it, and the tune was heard all around the world in Coca-Cola's ads.

In the beginning of 2005, the Greek football team AEK asked Phobus to compose the teams new anthem. This imposing melody is played and sung by the team’s sports fans until today.

2005 and 2006 were again big years for Phoebus. Despina Vandi’s album Stin Avli Tou Paradeisou, after a huge local success was also released in Bulgaria, Russia, Ukraine and Turkey reaching the 2nd position on the charts. The album was also repackaged for the Greek market entitled "Special Edition" and contained 4 new songs composed by Phoebus. The album sold over 100,000 copies in Greece only. Both albums where used by TIM telecommunications for their campaign throughout the whole year since they had a sponsorship contract with Despina Vandi.

In the summer of 2005 Phoebus and Victoria Halkiti teamed up and release the song "Telia", which once again was used by Coca-Cola's ads, but only in Greece and their Sound Wave campaign. Only a few months later their next single "F...Magic" was hear in all the Attica commercials, one of Athens's biggest shopping malls.

After big scores during the 2005 and 2006, together with artists such as Despina Vandi, Elli Kokkinou, Thanos Petrelis, Giorgos Mazonakis and Victoria Halkiti, Phoebus composed the Christmas dance single "Kalanta" along with Despina Vandi. The single was once again used by TIM telecommunications for their 2006 Christmas campaign. After only two weeks from release date Phoebus and Vandi achieved a 2x platinum CD single.

This success over the years and particularly with Despina Vandi has put a name out in the Greek music industry that Phoebus is the composer to go to for an automatic hit. This can be seen also with Heaven Music asking him to compose a song on Fame Story finalist Maro Lytra's second album, which shot her to the number 1 spot on the radio charts with the song "I Mihani Tou Hronou" (The Time Machine).

After some delay, October 21, 2009 brought the end of Phoebus's eight-year collaboration with Heaven Music, announcing through his official site.[3] Reasons of this label change, and the fate of the artists he was collaborating with under the label's name including Despina Vandi and Thanos Petrelis were currently unknown at the time. Vandi officially announced she was leaving Heaven Music on November 2, 2009.

The Spicy Effect[edit]

In 2009, Phoebus decided to start his own record company, in collaboration with Star Channel called "The Spicy Effect",[4] and has signed Despina Vandi,[5] Elli Kokkinou,[6] Nino,[6] and Thanos Petrelis, among others.[7]


Phoebus has collaborated with the following artists:

  • Aggelos Dionysiou
    • Fovamai Mi Fygeis (Minos EMI - 1994)**
    • Iposyneidito (Minos EMI - 1999)*
  • Alexandra
    • Meli Kai Fotia (Sony Music / RIA - 1995)*
  • Angela Dimitriou
    • Pes Afto Pou Theleis (Sony Music - 1994)*
    • Mi Mas Agapas (Minos EMI - 1996)*
    • 100% (Minos EMI - 1998)
    • Margarites (Minos EMI - 1999) - CD Single
  • Anna Fotiou
    • Poias Gynaikas Fili (BMG / Ariola - 1994)*
  • Dimitris Kokotas
    • Diadoseis (Eros Music - 1994)
    • Sineidisi (Eros Music - 1995)
    • Dance Mixes (Eros Music - 1997)
    • Aharistia (Eros Music - 1997)
    • The Best Of (Eros Music - 1999)
    • The Remixes (Eros Music - 2000)
  • Dionysis Shoinas
    • Proti Agapi (Sony Music - 1994)*
    • An M' Agapas (Sony Music - 1995)* - CD Single
    • S'Agapo (Sony Music - 1995)*
    • Mou Tairiazeis (Sony Music - 2000) - EP
  • Eleni Dimou
    • I Eleni Ton Feggarion (Sony Music - 1994)*
  • Giorgos Lempesis
    • Eksartisi (Minos EMI - 1999)
    • I Agapi Vlaptei Sovara Tin Ygeia (Heaven Music - 2001)
    • Eliksirio (Heaven Music - 2002)* - CD Single
    • I Mera I Kali (Heaven Music - 2003)*
  • Giorgos Mazonakis
    • Koita Me + Beat (Heaven Music - 2002)* - Repackaged edition of the album "Koita Me", featuring two new songs by Phoebus and some new remixes
    • Savvato (Heaven Music - 2003)
    • Savvato + To Gucci Ton Masai (Heaven Music - 2004)
    • Summer In Greece! (Heaven Music - 2006) - CD Single
    • S' Eho Epithymisei (Heaven Music - 2007) - CD Single
    • Ta Ohi Kai Ta Nai Mou (Heaven Music - 2007)*
  • Jelena Karleusa
    • Samo za tvoje oci (For your eyes only) (Heaven Music - 2002)*
  • Maro Lytra
    • I Mihani Tou Hronou (Heaven Music - 2007)*
  • Nino
    • 14 Flevari (The Spicy Effect - 2012) - cd single released in different Postcard type covers
  • Pashalis Terzis
    • Mesogeios (Sony Music - 1994)*
    • Astatos (remix) (Sony Music - 1995)* - CD Single
    • Afise Me Mono (Sony Music - 1995)*
    • Auta Einai Ta Tragoudia Mou (Sony Music - 1996)*
    • Ta Zeimbekika Tou Pashali (Sony Music - 2001)* - Compilation album including the previously unreleased song "Ki An De Me Thes" written by Phoebus
  • Polina
    • Kainourios Erotas (Sony Music - 1994)*
    • Deka Hronia Meta (Sony Music - 1995)*
  • Sakis Rouvas (collaboration with Desmond Child)
    • Disco Girl (Minos EMI - 2001) - CD Single
    • Disco Girl European Release (Universal Music France - 2002) - CD Single
    • Ola Kala (Minos EMI - 2002)*
    • Ola Kala European Release (Minos EMI/Universal Music France - 2002)*
  • Thanos Kalliris
    • Kapoio Kalokairi (Sony Music - 1994)*
    • Monaxa Tin Psyhi Sou (Sony Music - 1996)*
  • Thanos Petrelis
    • Eixe To Hroma T' Ouranou (Heaven Music - 2004)*
    • Thymizeis Kati Apo Ellada (Heaven Music - 2005)
    • Eftyhos (Heaven Music - 2006) - CD Single
    • Eimai Akomi Eleftheros (Heaven Music - 2007)
    • Eimai Akomi Eleftheros (Special Edition) (Heaven Music - 2007)
    • Ksypna Thanasi (Heaven Music - 2008) - EP
    • To Paihnidi Einai Pleon Diko Mou (Heaven Music - 2008) - EP
    • Live (Heaven Music - 2009)
  • Tolis Voskopoulos
    • I Sosti Apantisi (Heaven Music - 2002)
    • The Greek Experience (Heaven Music - 2004)* - Compilation album with the new duet "Mia Gynaika Ftaiei" with Vasilis Karras.
  • Vasilis Karras
    • Tilefonise Mou (Minos EMI - 1996)
    • Fenomeno (Minos EMI - 1998) - CD Single
    • Epistrefo (Minos EMI - 1999)
    • The Greek Experience (Heaven Music - 2004)* - Compilation album with the new duet "Mia Gynaika Ftaiei" with Tolis Voskopoulos.
    • Kyrios Ma... Kai Alitis (The Spicy Effect - 2013)
  • Victoria Halkiti
    • Teleia (Heaven Music - 2005) - CD Single ft. the theme of Coca Cola 2005 campaign
    • Teleia f***ing edition (Heaven Music - 2006) - CD Single - Repackaged Edition of the cd single "Teleia"


(*) Phoebus composed only some tracks and not the whole album.

(**) In 1994, Phoebus composed the song "Pes Mou Ti Sou Kanei" for the album "Fovamai Mi Fygeis" of Aggelos Dionysiou. According to the album's credits, the composer of the song seems to be Mirto Nikolopoulou. In fact, the real composer is Phoebus.

(***) The song Opa Opa was composed by Giorgos Alkaios and not by Phoebus. This song was originally performed by a very famous Greek singer, Notis Sfakianakis in 1992. In 1999, a second, more beat version of Opa Opa was performed by the group Antique, which gave a rebirth to the song. The Despina Vandi version is the final one and features English lyrics for the first time. Although Phoebus is not the composer of the song, he was involved in the arrangements and the whole production. Opa Opa became a huge international hit.

20-Year Anniversary Concert[edit]

On 24 September 2012, a special 20-year anniversary special concert dedicated to Phoebus was held.[9] The concert took place in the OAKA Stadium in Athens and featured the majority of the artists that have collaborated with Phoebus during the last 20 years. The artists that participated are: Despina Vandi, Katy Garbi, Angela Dimitriou, Thanos Kalliris, Panos Kalidis, Vasilis Karras, Elli Kokkinou, Dimitris Kokotas, Konstantina, Giorgos Mazonakis, Manto, Nino, Thanos Petrelis, Antonis Remos, Dionysis Shoinas and Tus.[10][11] The show was directed by Fokas Evaggelinos. On 25 December 2012, the concert was broadcast for the first time by ANT1 Television and in late October 2013, its audio part was released in a 4-cd deluxe package by Spicy.


External links[edit]