Urban Folk Dances
The rapid growth of the population and the emergence of large cities, such as Istanbul and Smyrna, the appearance of musicians, singers and dancers as separate professional groups, the songs and dances with musical instruments that started to become more popular, the growth of the economy that led to a boom in social and cultural events, were the fundamental elements for the existence and preservation of urban folk songs and dances or, as it is called, the rembetiko.
The measures of the Zeibekikos and the Hasapikos dances are the main core of the rembetiko song. The Zeibekikos dance has a 9/8 measure, which is the main rhythm of the rembetiko music, originating from the 9/8 dancing music of the Cycladic islands and Pontus.
“You must release these 9/8 from within, to accept their power. Otherwise you will lose them, because they will not wait for you. We will see them very naturally and correctly raise their voice in our immediate surroundings and come alive, sometimes as our interpretation and sometimes to help us
come to terms with our inner self.
The rembetiko song is genuinely Greek, uniquely Greek”. Manos Hatzidakis