Yanni Quotes

"It’s what I believe. These lines that are in the maps, they really don’t exist. They’re not on the ground. I don’t see them. My dream is that some day, they will fade away. And finally we will realize that we are all one people living in this one magical place called Earth."

On “World Without Borders” tour

 

“Ever since I left Greece more than two decades ago, it has been my dream to return and perform at the Acropolis. This project took more than a year and a half to plan and accomplish, and I would like to thank my band and crew and the scores of people involved in helping my dream become a reality.” - Yanni

 

“People didn’t know what to do with my music because the rhythms I use and the sounds I use, they’re not Western. It’s not classical, it’s not really rock ‘n’ roll, it’s not jazz and it’s not Middle Eastern, it’s not Mediterranean and yet all of those elements are in it. So what do you call it? So, you know, I think for lack of a better term, some brilliant person in Los Angles somewhere in an office came up with an idea: “Let’s call everything ‘New Age’ that we don’t know what to do with,” and they threw everything in there.” - Yanni

 

“It’s more electronic than acoustic. There are a lot of new fresh sounds and rhythms. It’s edgy. I think this album is very honest, and there’s a beautiful complexity in the rhythmic content.” 

 

"And, I’ve read things in the newspaper where a little girl wrote - I get goose bumps even saying this story right now. It moved me to tears. It’s a 6-year-old girl saying that she goes to sleep with my music because she thinks if my music is playing the bad guys can’t hurt her."

 

“The live concerts are everything and I’m very grateful that most of my career, I’m a live artist, I’ve been doing this. So I’ve traveled quite a lot, played in - I never stopped playing.” - Yanni

 

“I don’t really like to explain my songs. The absence of lyrics in most of the pieces of music I’ve written in my career says that much. Everything that I want to say is right in the music, and I feel that attempting to explain this music with words diminishes it.” - Yanni

 

“Well, besides being entertained, I’d like to move them emotionally. I mean I really want to uplift them. I want to look down at the audience, and this is personal experiences now I’m going to tell you. It’s like you look down at the audience and see people smiling, crying, hugging each other. I want them on their way home to feel empowered like they can do anything.”  - Yanni

 

“I’m very approachable and tend to be humble. I treat everyone equally. I believe if you spend time with people to make them feel comfortable, then you’ve served your purpose in life. But when I’m alone, I’m a very complex person with complicated emotions and am competitive in a good way, which I think is necessary to be creative. Some things were very difficult — I’ve gone through painful times but I’ve learnt so much from the pain. I’ve no regrets.” - Yanni

 

“…the way I design it is I close my eyes. I pretend I am sitting tenth row center, lights go down, what’s the first sound that comes out? What’s the first thing they see? What’s the - you know, and it begins from there. And then it’s a thread. It’s like you start pulling a thread because every song has to be a good neighbor to the song before and to the song that’s coming after it. It’s how you serve it is extremely important too.” - Yanni

 

“Treat each instrument separately, and then put it back together and amplify it….”

 

“Sometimes we get caught up in our troubles and our problems and we let life slip away, but life is precious, all of life, and one must try to take in as much of it as possible.” - Yanni

 

“Creativity is an inherent quality of highest order. When we create, we become more than the sum of our parts.” - Yanni

 

"Focused will is incredible. If you have a dream and you don’t give up no matter what obstacles come up, then life’s problems will fall away and you will get what you want. It happens. It works."

 

“It’s like flight, you’re flying… When you’re hitting something that’s turning you on, you get goose bumps. It’s a rush. It’s very exciting and that’s what I’m hoping to do to the audience.” - Yanni

 

As I understand life at different levels, I can use music to express what these levels feel like to me. Hopefully the listener can be transported to this understanding by listening to the music.” - Yanni

 

“Of all the forces that are exerted on us over our lifetime, at least for me, love has been the most powerful of all.” - Yanni

 

“I truly believe greatness is in all of us. Don’t let anyone talk us out of our truth.” - Yanni

 

 

"By nature I’m an artist and by schooling a psychologist. The people I admire are not necessarily musicians, but all are original and independent thinkers: Christ, Buddha, Socrates, Leonardo da Vinci. Michelangelo had enormously focused creative energy and greatly inspired me. I felt connected to them all."

 

 

"My musicians can play everything, and they have played everything. Most of them have played rock ‘n’ roll for years, like my drummer, Charlie Adams. They grew up in America playing rock ‘n’ roll. That’s all they did. And a lot of them are jazz-trained. Most of them are jazz musicians, and some of them are jazz and classically trained. It’s kind of cool to be in the middle of so many talented people, and, for some reason, they listen to me. I can’t believe it."

 

 

“I want the listener to make up their own story as to what it is and get the emotion pure without using logic. So I don’t want to give it a name that will put the song into a box. So I really torture a lot about trying to give names that kind of point you in a direction but leave it open to interpretation.” 

 

“There’s a very deep connection among human beings. All we have to do is open our minds to it.” 

 

“In the beginning, I thought it was kind of neat if somebody recognized me. But that was when it happened once every two weeks. When it happens to you 24 hours a day, it’s not as much fun anymore. It’s not that I don’t like the public and don’t enjoy the attention, but a lot of times you want to be anonymous. You don’t want to be the public Yanni—whatever the persona is—you just want to be.” 

 

"That adage about genius being 5 percent inspiration and 95 perspiration - it’s true."

 

“You need a mind open to possibility, conditioned to love the creative spirit we all have inside ourselves.” 

 

“Studying psychology definitely has an influence on the way I create music… When I create music, it is a reflection of my soul, my experiences in life and my relationships with other people and cultures. Psychology, and understanding who we are as people in this world, is present in almost every creative thought I have, either directly or indirectly.” 

 

“Now I know our world is going through a very difficult time right now… but I will never lose my faith in humanity and our incredible ability to overcome just about anything we are challenged with.” 

 

“The fact that I left Greece when I was 18 and moved to America, automatically helps your open your mind as far as not being absolutist about how life is, and how life should be and what’s the right way and the wrong way.” - Yanni

 

“I realize it’s possible in ways both large and small to make a difference in someone’s life.” - Yanni

 

“As our population increase, our planet becomes smaller and smaller. It’s therefore very important that we a learn how to love and accept each other. Whenever that’s not possible, let us at least learn how to tolerate one another.” - Yanni

 

 

“Everything great that has happened to mankind, since the beginning, has begun as a single thought in someone’s mind, and if anyone of us is capable of such a great thought, then all of us have the same capability, because we’re all the same.” - Yanni

 

 

“It’s instrumental music — the beauty of it is it’s a great language. It bypasses logic. It just produces an emotional reaction inside you. And I describe emotions, not circumstances, in the pieces. And therefore, they tend to be undefined, so it’s much easier for a human being to feel the emotion and relate that to their life, and hence I have to be a little more abstract and point to a direction. I don’t want to pinpoint a piece of music. It’s one of the reasons why I mostly avoid lyrics…” - Yanni

 

 

"Sometimes we get caught up in our troubles and our problems and we let life slip away, but life is precious, all of life, and one must try to take in as much of it as possible."

 

“I’ve always lived in the moment.” - Yanni

 

“I know there are people in the audience that don’t want to be there. Somebody brought them there, you know. But I know that they’re going to walk away satisfied. I know they’re going to at least look at this orchestra and listen to this sound and I know they’ve never heard better sound in a concert and I know they have to be impressed with the virtuosity of the musicianship.” 

 

"The less you want, the richer you are. The more you need in order to be happy, the more miserable you’ll be."

 

"I think we have much more to say about what happens to us than most people believe."

 

“I don’t really like to explain my songs.” - Yanni

 

"Sometimes the knowledge you’ve been given in school or by an elder - “this is just the way it is” - keeps you from accomplishing because it traps you in a box in your mind and limits your freedom to deliver."

 

 

"I think we have much more to say about what happens to us than most people believe."

 

 

“The truth is that when you meet people from other societies, and you see their personalities and their attitudes about life, you realize how different they are—from us and from each other.” 

 

“No matter what happens in life, never lose sight of who you are.” 

 

“My father once said, ‘If the whole world wants to go left and you feel like going right, go right. You don’t have to follow. You don’t have to make a big deal about which way you’re going. Just go. It’s very easy.’”

 

“The most important battle is one to conquer yourself.” - Yanni

 

“I really and truly believe that music represents humanity’s soul.” - Yanni

 

“If all our souls can come together in our music, then they can come together anywhere, and as a race, we can always achieve harmony and peace in our mind.” - Yanni

 

“It’s really strange, but they speak to me — the notes and the chords. So when I hear other people’s music, I can feel the composer. Whoever created that, I can see in their soul.” 

 

“All you need is passion. If you have a passion for something, you’ll create the talent.” - Yanni

 

“The engaged mind stays sharp and retains tremendous capacity.” 

 

"When people ask me for advice, I will always say, “I don’t know if I have the right to tell you."

 

“Today I understand that music follows a natural emotional flow from its creator.” - Yanni

 

“The lessons I’ve learned have allowed me the opportunity to think deeply about life; where I cam from, where I’ve been, where I’m going next - and the miracle of creativity that has made it all possible.” - Yanni

 

"The more doubt you have, the less likely it is that the creation will come to life."

 

“When I create music, it is a reflection of my soul, my experiences in life and my relationships with other people and cultures. Psychology, and understanding who we are as people in this world, is present in almost every creative thought I have.” - Yanni

 

“My father once said, ‘If the whole world wants to go left and you feel like going right, go right. You don’t have to follow. You don’t have to make a big deal about which way you’re going. Just go. It’s very easy.’” 

 

 

“I have had a very special relationship with China for many years… This was a very heartfelt honour as China has reserved the adoption of Pandas for nations rather than celebrities or personalities. They also gave me the opportunity to name the Panda and after careful consideration, I chose the name Santorini. Santorini is made up of the Greek works for ‘Saint’ and ‘Irini,’ which means peace. Santorini also happens to be the most beautiful of the Greek islands, making this panda the ‘Beautiful Panda of Peace.’” - Yanni

 

“The most important battle is one to conquer yourself.” - Yanni

 

“I really and truly believe that music represents humanity’s soul.”

 

“Symphonies can generate a tremendous amount of sounds, beauty, and emotion. That is part of their human feel and sweetness. Keyboards, on the other hand, give us access to millions of sounds. When I put the two together, the result is unique, and it’s not only pleasing to the ear, but produces emotional responses that neither of the two can achieve on their own.” - Yanni

 

“…I’ve lived a lot. I go out and take chances in life… I don’t want to say I’m fearless. I do experience fear, but I don’t spend a lot of time in it.” - Yanni

 

“Truth is the number one element in whatever you do with music. You never express love if you don’t know what love is. "

 

“Nobody could believe in me the way I believed in myself.” 

 

"If my music can change someone’s mood for the better even a little bit, that’s amazing."

 

“If all our souls can come together in our music, then they can come together anywhere, and as a race, we can always achieve harmony and peace in our mind.” - Yanni

 

“It’s really strange, but they speak to me — the notes and the chords. So when I hear other people’s music, I can feel the composer. Whoever created that, I can see in their soul.” 

 

“All you need is passion. If you have a passion for something, you’ll create the talent.” 

 

“I’m very honest about my emotions…” 

 

“My new question was, What do you do when your dreams come true? My answer was: Find new ones.” - Yanni

 

“My goal is to connect with people emotionally. I take life’s experiences and translate them into music — music that hopefully creates an impact on the listener.” 

 

“With instrumental music, you can play a song that expresses an emotion, and no matter where you are in the world, every audience recognizes that emotion as the same.” -

 

“There absolutely was a specific place in mind, but it’s difficult to describe with words. It’s not so much a physical place, but more of a spiritual place that has to do with creativity and higher understanding.” - Yanni

 

“Whether a person is spiritual or not, we all seek to get away from the stress, anger, and anxiety of everyday life. Some people drink, do drugs, or do worse to escape, and they hurt themselves in the process. Some people listen to music, mine included, and feel better.” - Yanni

 

“While most of the music I write is instrumental, I love to use the human voice as another instrument.” - Yanni

 

“…I’ve lived a lot. I go out and take chances in life… I don’t want to say I’m fearless. I do experience fear, but I don’t spend a lot of time in it.” - 

 

"I tend to avoid writing music about initial reactions to situations, like frustration or anger. I’d rather wait till I go through the problem, and write about the learning that took place."

 

"I am so happy that I didn’t go to school and I didn’t have anyone to tell me how to position my fingers on the piano correctly."

 

“Not being able to read and write music is not the same as being illiterate in speech and writing.” 

 

 

"If my music can change someone’s mood for the better even a little bit, that’s amazing."

 

"The greatest things in life—truth, creativity, imagination, love, kindness, compassion—are already inside us, and they’re all free."

 

 

“Truth is the number one element in whatever you do with music.”

 

"As soon as you put your art out there for people, someone will say, “Because it is blue, I love it”, and, for the exact same reason the next guy will say, “Because it is blue, I hate it.” Once you understand that, there’s freedom in the creative process. Otherwise, your creation is just a reaction to criticism."

 

“Miklos is just a great composer. I love the guy. He was in Los Angeles. We never even got together. He was working in Los Angeles. I would send him ideas, and he would work on them and send some of his ideas back. Or, he would have an idea. And then Ric Wake would listen to ideas Miklos had, and he would say, ‘Hey, what do you think?’
“He  would sort of start a song or [have it] in a very raw form, and Ric would kind of pick and go, ‘I think I like this one. Why don’t you listen to it tonight and see what you think?’ I liked some of the ideas, and then I took them and then I made them into songs… He had some really nice ideas, a lot of stuff, and I will be working with him in the future many times.” - Yanni

 

“Psychology… was interesting. I wanted to understand the human condition.” - Yanni

 

"Left alone with your own thoughts, you will exercise focusing your mind. Like a muscle, the ability to focus will keep getting stronger."

 

"It seems that in every culture, however tough life is and however impossible the conditions, there are some resilient human beings who find their way through, who survive and make something of themselves."

 

"It’s a cliché - but true - that life is not a dress rehearsal. You get to do it once, so do it well."

Yanni

 

There are as many ways to live life as there are people on this planet."

Yanni

 

It is very difficult, if not impossible, to lie with instrumental music because it deals in emotions only. So telling the truth with music about what life feels like to you, which is what I try to do, is probably the only way that I know how to do it and how to connect. If a musician feels romantic, and knows what romance is, then he can express it in notes instead of words.” - Yanni

 

“I replenish myself through time alone. By freeing my mind of all other distractions, I can concentrate on getting to the place where creativity dwells. Creativity really exists in the void. It is in silence where music lies.” - Yanni

 

“I’ve always lived in the moment.” - Yanni

 

"If my music can change someone’s mood for the better even a little bit, that’s amazing."

Yanni

 

"The more doubt you have, the less likely it is that the creation will come to life."

Yanni

 

“When I create music, it is a reflection of my soul, my experiences in life and my relationships with other people and cultures. Psychology, and understanding who we are as people in this world, is present in almost every creative thought I have.” - Yanni

 

"You have to give up some of the old so that you can make room for the new."

Yanni

 

“My father taught me that one of the most important abilities in life is to be able to take the pain and persevere, and for years this lesson had served me well.” - Yanni

 

“Thanks to Linda [Evans], in November 1990, my vision of being on Oprah became a reality… To be perfectly honest, it took me three months before I could watch a tape of the show, and I had to get bombed to do it…” - Yanni, Yanni in Words

 

"By nature I’m an artist and by schooling a psychologist. The people I admire are not necessarily musicians, but all are original and independent thinkgers: Christ, Buddha, Socrates, Leonardo da Vinci. Michelangelo had enormously focused creative energy and greatly inspired me. I felt connected to them all."

 

“Going to the school to meet the visually impaired was special. I thought I was inspiring them. I was thinking what I could possibly say to inspire them. Instead of me inspiring them, I felt they inspired me. They showed me how much courage they have, and how hard these teachers are working for these children. They made me feel like I don’t have any problems in life. It gave me uplift. They made me feel so great.” - Yanni

 

"It’s only by living that you grow old."

 

 

 

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