Stou Thoma to magazi is a Greek song heard in the movie Rempetiko and is included in the Rebetiko OST.
Stou Thoma to magazi translates to “At Thomas’ place”. It was originally sung by Kostas Tsiggos and later on by numerous Greek singers, such as Haris Alexiou, Giorgos Ntalaras, Takis Mpinis and more.
The movie Rempetiko (or Rebetiko) was based on a true story; it was a music drama about the life of Marika Ninou, the renowned Greek singer, who was born in 1917 in Smyrne (Izmir), and was deported to Greece after the tragic events of Asia Minor in 1922.
Marika Ninou died in 1955 in Athens, and the movie shows her career in Greek music and the rebetiko music in Greece upon the arrival of all the Greeks from Asia Minor. The movie won the Silver Bear in Berlin Festival 1984.
Except for the movie that was vastly appreciated, the soundtrack also made a blast, since there were several songs that were played for the years to come, being extremely popular among the Greeks.
Stou Thoma to magazi is one of the most known songs from the original soundtrack. In the version presented here, the song is performed by several actors playing in the movie, although the voice of Kostas Tsiggos, the original performer, is easily distinguished.
The lyrics of the song obviously refer to the consumption of certain “substances”, that were very much associated with the rebetiko scene at the time. This is why the lyrics say that “if you want to understand things in depth, Babis will explain to you”…
These substances (marijuana, hashish) were – and are – illegal and were a common secret among the ones hanging out in rebetika places. The sense of freedom and liberality among rebetiko lovers and performers is somewhat evident in the song Stou Thoma to magazi.
The movie is interesting because it provides an insight to the overall social and political condition of Greece at the time. The story of the movie shows that the rebetiko genre was not appreciated in mother Greece at first, considered an “imported” and “Anatolian-like- type of music; however, it gradually gained people’s admirance and acceptance over the years.
Rempetiko became a rather beloved genre of Greek music in the last 4 decades in Greece. If interested, you can read more about the history of rempetika songs and their development in the Greek society.