Information on Greek music

By | April 9, 2021


Not much is known about the earliest Greek music. There was no way to record the earliest Greek music, as no way had yet been found to write music. Despite this, there is some information about the types of instruments that early Greek musicians used thanks to drawings. Pipes, lyres, drums and cymbals were all types of instruments used in the early days of Greek music. The music was often played when people worshiped Dionysus, who was the god of wine and festivals.


Greek culture and language had a major impact on the way the Western world now knows music. In fact, several musical words were derived from the Greek language. The Greek word ‘muses’, believed to be the group that included the daughters of Zeus, was adopted to become the word we now know as ‘music’. The Greek word ‘rhythm’ became ‘rhythm’ and the word ‘melos’ became the word ‘melody’.


Men and women played music in Greece for various reasons. Most women who played musical instruments in Greece were poor women who worked as slaves or as entertainers for parties. On the other hand, men played musical instruments to compete for prizes in music competitions. There were musical competitions in every city. Few people know that the ancient Olympic Games also included musical competitions among Greek men.

Time frame

Although Greek music was very important in ancient Greece, it was a long period of time during which Greek music was all but extinct. With the fall of ancient Greece and the rise of the Roman Empire, Greek music slept for almost 2,000 years. Greek music experienced a rebirth in the 19th century, thanks to the work of artists such as Nikolaos Mantzaros, Spyridion Xyndas and Spyros Samaras, who composed operas that influenced earlier music.


There are many types of Greek music that affect current Greek music. Greek folk songs can be traced back to ancient Greek music and poetry. Cantadha is a romantic serenade developed in the 19th century. Nisiotics were created on Greek islands and contain violin, guitar and clarinet complementation along with the voice of a highly competitive woman. The late twentieth century of music such as Georgios Ntallaras, Stavros Xarhakos and Nikos Papazoglou mixed old music styles with modern rock to create yet another genre of Greek music. Greek music is a genre of music that is full of diversity. One of the main reasons for this is that Greece is one of the oldest civilizations in the world. Therefore, there have been many different types of music that have come from the country over the years. Likewise, Greece is a country that has been strongly influenced by other civilizations. In Greek music, the influence of European and Asian culture is obvious.