The Lotus Eaters


One of many records to feature the theme Who Pays The Ferryman?, The Aphrodite Inheritance and The Dark Side of the Sun all had specially written scores which the BBC released as soundtrack LPs, and singles. Presumably it was the immense popularity of the theme for Ferryman which prompted them to market the music in this way. Hellespontus

The theme for The Lotus Eaters was not an original composition: it is called "Ta Trena Pou Fyghan" and was a track from "Hellespontus", an LP of music by Stavros Xarhakos. I am told that it translates as something about a train leaving a station ...
Ta (the) Trena (train) Pou (where) Fyghan (left...gone. departing ....more towards gone...) so The train has left or gone .. (from the station perhaps?)

It was released as a single by Columbia in 1973 by the Stavros Xarhakos Orchestra with a "Greek Version" of the theme (by Stella and Bambos) on the B side. Numerous versions have appeared on TV theme compilation discs or general Greek Music compilations.
Steve Rawdon from New Zealand tells me;
"My LP of the original music was pressed in NZ in 1974 purely because the series was such a hit here .... In 1975 a follow up LP was released here by EMI.... It contained an alternative version of the main LE there by Stavros Xarhakos ..."

Xarhakos returned ten years later to compose the music for The Dark Side of the Sun.
Plays the theme from 'The Lotus Eaters'
(Be patient!)

Music copyright
Stavros Xarhakos

And just to prove that Michael Bird wasn't infallible ...

In October 1971 Bird wrote to Producer Anthony Read suggesting that the theme for the series should be a ballad "Three coins in the Fountain type stuff but to Cretan style music. And it might be a good scheme to have our singer sing the theme in Greek over the opening title and then in English over the closing credits."

He offered the lyrics alongside "just to give you an idea of the kind of thing I have in mind."

Read's response is not documented, but as we know the suggestion was not taken up.

Perhaps that was not a bad thing!

To eat the fruit of the lotus
Is to lose all hope of home.
Eat the fruit of the lotus
An exile you'll forever roam.

Lotus leaf and lotus flower
Beware its fruit, beware its power.

So eat the fruit of the lotus
On the shores of a timeless sea.
Feast on the fruit of the lotus
And come away with me.

Lotus leaf and lotus flower
Beware its fruit, beware its power.

I've eaten the fruit of the lotus
And savoured its heady taste
But I fear not the power of the lotus
For my home is in your embrace.

Michael J Bird Tribute Website

This page was last modified: