The talented international folk musician was born and raised in Exo Lakonia, a small village in Lassithi, Crete. Inspired by Greek, mostly Cretan, traditional music, Haroulis plays a mixture of Greek folk and traditional Cretan music, infused with rock elements and modern sounds.
He first became interested in music at the age of 6, when his father, a sculptor, showed him how to play the mandolin. Shortly after, he acquired his first lute and began to study the traditional folk music of his homeland. By the age of 15, he started performing at local festivals.
In 2002, Giannis travelled to Athens to take part in a concert, dedicated to Nikos Xilouris, a great Cretan composer and singer, which was recorded and released as an album entitled ‘When My Friends Come, Mother’ in 2003. He has also released a number of hit solo albums, ‘Around Me and Within’ in 2003, ‘Winter Flower’ in 2006, ‘Witchcrafts’ in 2012 which received the Golden Album award, live album ‘A Thousand Times Welcome – Live’ in 2015 which entered the Greek music charts at the number one slot and ‘Twelve Lays of the Gypsy’ in 2016.
In 2010, he also recorded two songs composed by Minos Matsas, a prominent rebetiko musician ,which were included in the soundtrack of the TV series “The Island” (based on the book by Victoria Hislop).
Considered as a milestone in his career, Giannis collaborated with composer Stavros Xarhakos, a Greek composer and conductor in January 2011. He joined the noted composer for eight concerts dedicated to his music, as well as the songs of Manos Hatzidakis and Mikis Theodorakis, accompanied by the twelve-member State Orchestra of Greek Music.
Another milestone for Giannis occured in November 2012, when he interpreted the songs of Nikos Mamangakis, a famous Greek composer for the first time at the Athens Concert Hall, accompanied by the National Symphony Orchestra, the Choir of the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation ERT and the Nikos Mamangakis Lyric Orchestra.
Performing around 100 shows per year, at venues ranging from 8,000 capacity theatres to small clubs and from Ancient Greek amphitheaters to modern rock stages, touring Greece and Cyprus, Giannis has become one of the most successful artists in Greece.
Every performance is highly energetic and met with excitement, as his voice, both mature and passionate, allows him to transform, becoming one with each song he interprets, thus disclosing the meanings behind the lyrics.
Listen to Giannis here.
Or follow his Instagram https://www.instagram.com/giannisharoulis/