The music ensemble LOXANDRA was founded in Thessaloniki, Greece. It is named after the heroine of a famous Greek novel known, apart from other things, for her cooking mastery. The ensemble, exactly as the great cook “Loxandra” did, collects many different “musical ingredients”, mix them with mastery and creates an original blend of music. Initially, LOXANDRA’s musical roots sprang primarily from the urban musical tradition of the Greek people (Rum) of Istanbul and Smyrna, the extremely diverse Greek folk and traditional music, the contemporary Greek urban music, and has since then blended with stylistic references to the classical Ottoman music, the oriental sound of the Arabic East, the Sephardic music and the music of the Balkans. The ensemble’s first album was released in 2006 under the title “Almost like in the Past” (Music Mirror), simultaneously in Greece and Turkey (Eterna productions), while the second “Meyhane - Kafe Aman” (Polyphonon) was released six years later and ascended at the Top 8 of the World Music Chart of Europe (September 2012) while the song “Psaradika” (Fishing Boats) of the same album was included at the CD collection of Septembers’ 2013 issue of “Folk Roots” magazine. LOXANDRA has been playing in numerous festivals and music venues in Greece as well as in Turkey, Switzerland, Italy and France, such as “EUROMUSICA”, “Dimitria”, “Balkan Stage”, “Para thin alos”, “FESTIVAL VOX FEMINA”, “Earth Festival “, “Mediterranean Music Festival”, “Balkan Caravan” and various others.Ιn 2010 "Loxandra Ensemble" participated by playing live on stage in the successful theatrical show called "Loxandra". The play was produced by N.T.N.G. (National Theater of Northern Greece) and it was based on a novel with the same title by Maria Iordanidou.In 2013 the members of the ensemble were invited by the "University of Macedonia" and realize a three day workshop on the music of "Kafe Aman" for the students of traditional music of D.M.S.A. (Department of Musical Science and Art). Since 2015 the ensemble reformed and has been coping with a lot of fresh ideas, experimenting in “exposing” known Greek and Balkan traditional and folk music and songs to the influence of other musical styles, such as swing, blues, Bollywood, rumba, aiming to match together in a tasteful way different musical traditions.New adaptations of old songs and some inspired new compositions of the ensemble’s members, form a smashing new sound for LOXANDRA as a Greek folk fusion band and results to the creation of their new cd, “Loxandra in transition” that is being released on 20th of April 2018 by “Dalit music”.
The LOXANDRA Ensemble consists of the following musicians:
Nikos Aggoussis - clarinet/back vocals, Foibos Apostolidis - percussion, Makis Baklatzis - violin & vocals, Ria Ellinidou - vocals, Thanassis Koulentianos - qanun/back vocals, Loukas Metaxas - electric bass/double bass/back vocals, Dimitris Panagoulias - percussion, Kyriakos Tapakis - oud.