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Lefteris Papadopoulos: A living legend

Lefteris  Papadopoulos (Greek: Λευτέρης Παπαδόπουλος) is a Greek lyricist, writer and journalist.

Lefteris Papadopoulos was born in Athens, Greece on 14 November 1935. He is the son of Greek refugees from the Asia Minor and Russia. He enrolled at the Law School of the University of Athens but he stopped during the third year in order to work as a journalist. Since 1959 Papadopoulos has worked in the newspaper Ta Nea and has become a popular columnist over the time.

Papadopoulos became involved with music in 1963. He has written the lyrics for about 1,200 songs and has co-worked with nearly all of the well-known musicians, composers and singers of his generation, namely Mikis Theodorakis, Stavros Xarhakos, Manos Loizos, Stavros Koujioumtzis, Mimis Plessas, Christos Nikolopoulos, Stelios Kazantzidis, Grigoris Bithikotsis, George Dalaras, Marinella, Viki Mosholiou and others. In 1969, composer Mimis Plessas’s work of songs “O Dromos”, to which Papadopoulos contributed the lyrics, became the fastest selling Greek album. Of all the creative partnerships that Papadopoulos has had with Greek composers, that of his closed friend Manos Loizos is considered a landmark of his career.

Papadopoulos contributed lyrics to some of the most beautiful and much-sung Greek songs from 1960 to 1990, although the stunning overall overproduction of his lyrics is understandably of very uneven quality. He also wrote a few literary books and one about the lyricist Eftichia Papagiannopoulou. He has presented various programmes about Greek Music on television; the most recent one, entitled “Makrines Filies” (Remote Friendships), was broadcast on National Television, ERT. Criticism has been voiced as to his insistence on being on the spotlight of contemporary music industry whilst his creative prowess has long sagged.

Lefteris Papadopoulos is married to director Raea Mouzenidou and has a son and a daughter as well as two grandchildren.