13 April – Close my eyes, still see you inside

Have you noticed that the last few birthdays have featured singers using stage names. Maybe it’s a thing to give them a completely different persona to the off-stage singer. But it’s interesting that stage names can be very different to real names.

Today’s birthday girl Μαντώ/Mando probably chose her stage name for a different reason. Outside of her native Greece it might be difficult to pronounce her real name of Αδαμαντία Σταματοπούλου/Adamantia Stamatopoulou. Even I was having trouble. But Mando she is, and she’s been a big name in the Hellenic world for a long time. She’s even performed with a singer that beat her in 2003 – Sertab. Anyhoo, her outfit was a lot more daring than her Turkish friend. But her downfall was probably performing between newbies Ukraine and a classy ballad from Norway. But post-Mando, there was a run of eight top 10 places for Greece. So it must mean she was almost a trailblazer.

Mando is 53 today.

Χρόνια πολλά, Μαντώ!