Iris (Romanian band)
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Iris is a Romanian rock band established in 1975 by Ioan 'Nelu' Dumitrescu (drums), Ion 'Nuțu' Olteanu (lead solo guitar and vocals) and Emil Lechințeanu (bass guitar). They achieved success, followed by tours throughout Romania and recordings for radio broadcast. At the 2006 MTV Romania Music Awards, Iris won the Best Rock Award and were nominated for Best Band and Best Live Act.
|Genres||Classic rock, hard rock, pop rock, blues rock, heavy metal, speed metal, symphonic rock|
|Years active||1975 - present|
|Labels||Electrecord, Zone Records, Roton, Cat Music, MediaPro Music|
|Associated acts||Harap-Alb, Domino, Voltaj, Totuși, Holograf, Rosu și Negru, Ion Olteanu Band, Lotus, Cristi Minculescu & Nuțu Olteanu Super Grup, Bună Seara Prieteni!|
|Members||Ioan 'Nelu' Dumitrescu (drums)|
Ion 'Nuțu' Olteanu (guitar)
Aurelian 'Relu' Marin (keyboards)
Constantin 'Costi' Sandu (vocals)
Matei Cioca (guitar)
Daniel Moroiu (bass)
Cristi Lucian Dumitrescu (drums)
Iris began in 1975 with Emil Lechințeanu, Ioan 'Nelu' Dumitrescu and Ion 'Nuțu' Olteanu. Through the years, the band has experienced many line-up changes. In 45 years of activity, Iris became one of the biggest names in Romanian music history. First appearance on an album was in 1978 with the song "Corabia cu pânze" on "Formații de muzică pop III" compilation album. At the beginning of the 1980s, Ioan 'Nelu' Dumitrescu, Ion 'Nuțu' Olteanu (guitar) and Cristian 'Cristi' Minculescu, who are still present in the current line-up, played with Florin Ochescu (guitar) and Mihai 'Marty' Popescu (bass guitar). Together they released a debut-album, Iris I, which included songs that became some of the most popular Romanian rock songs: "Doar pentru voi" ("Only for You"), "Trenul fără naș" ("The Train without a Ticket-Collector"), "Pe ape" ("On Water"), and "Cei ce vor fi" ("Those to Come").
In 1987, Iris II was released with an extravagant cover depicting the communist regime, a cover which represented one of Cristian 'Cristi' Minculescu's idols, Angus Young, "in action".[clarification needed] The band's line-up was Cristian 'Cristi' Minculescu (vocal), Ioan 'Nelu' Dumitrescu (drums), Valter Popa (guitar), Mihai Alexandru (guitar, vocal) and Doru 'Boro' Borobeică (bass guitar). On this album, notable songs included "Strada ta" ("Your Street"), "În parc" ("In the Park"), and "Zi și noapte" ("Day and Night").
One year later, Iris released its third album, Nu te opri ("Don't Stop"), which featured the same line-up as Iris II. The disc contained eight tracks, but the most important are "Floare de iris" ("Iris Flower"), "Uită tot ce‑a fost" ("Forget All That Was"), "Eu și cu tine" ("Me and You"), "Ploaia de vise" ("Rain of Dreams").
In December 1989, when the downfall of the Romanian communist regime began, Iris recorded the album Iris IV in Tomis Studio, without Mihai Alexandru, but with Cristian 'Cristi' Minculescu, Ion 'Nuțu' Olteanu, Doru 'Boro' Borobeică and Valter Popa. Hits from this album include "De ce oare ai plecat?" ("Why Did You Leave Me?"), "Vino iar" ("Come Again"), "Rock and roll", and "Cine mă strigă în noapte?" ("Who Is Calling Me in the Night?").
In 1992, Iris held an anniversary concert called Iris 15 ANI ("Iris 15 years") at Sala Polivalentă in Bucharest in front of 10,000 people. This was a record audience for a Romanian band, unequalled since that time. That same year, at the Cannes Festival, Iris won second place in the rock section and they appeared on MTV.
The fifth Iris album was named 1993 and was recorded with the Iris IV line-up, plus guitarist Dan Alex Sârbu. Iris played in Italy and on the Malboro Tour, in the big cities of Romania. In July 1996, following Dorian Ciubuc's idea, Iris signed a contract with Polygram for 6 years. In this time, Iris recorded 6 albums. In October 1998, they released Mirage, an album with a union of tracks and orchestration.[clarification needed] The album was co-authored with Mihai Godoroja.
In 1997 on October 17, Iris celebrated 20 years of existence with a live performance in Bucharest, featuring both active and former band members. Three weeks later, the band released a celebratory album entitled "20 DE ANI" (20 years). The album has 13 tracks from the live concert: "Pământul îl cuprind", "Călătorul", "Trenul fără naș", "Speranța", "Iris, nu pleca", "Pe ape", "Mirage", "Cine mă strigă în noapte", "Valuri", "Floare de iris", "Tot zbor", "Baby", "Somn bizar".
In 2000 the band began the largest tour ever undertaken by a Romanian band. The "mega-tour", as it was known, was named ATHENAEUM. The band also released an album of the same name. Two years later, DIGITAL ATHENAEUM, a DVD featuring recordings of concerts on the tour, was released. In 2002, the "Iris 25 Years" concert gathered thousands in the biggest concert hall in the country. The next album, Mătase albă ("White Silk") featured ballads, such as "Iubire fără de sfârșit" ("Endless Love") and a cover version of "Lady in Black" by Uriah Heep, which won an MTV Music Award. This album was followed by 4Motion and, in 2005, Iris Maxima. The most notable ballad on Iris Maxima is "Vino pentru totdeauna" ("Come Back for Always").
On October 5, 2007, the band was honored by Romanian president Traian Băsescu for 30 years of contributions to Romanian culture. On the same day, the band performed in a live show in the front of over 15,000 fans.
In 2009, frontman Cristian 'Cristi' Minculescu underwent a liver transplant. The costs of the surgery was partly covered by the Romanian Ministry of Health. The minister of health at the time, Ion Bazac, stated: "It is a sign of respect and gratitude for an artist who has delighted our souls".
On October 8, 2009, the band performed in the first big concert after the liver transplant. On the occasion of this live performance, Integral Iris, a boxset comprising the band's entire discography, was released.
On 22 June 2012 Iris held an anniversary concert in Piața Constituției, marking release os album "Iris 35". At spectacle was presented multimedia projections with moments from band history, and soprano Felicia Filip sang Iris melody “De vei pleca”.
On September 3, 2012, Minculescu, who had been with the band since 1980, stepped down and was replaced by Tony Șeicărescu. On 25 June 2013 Toni Șeicărescu left the group, on the background of some disagreements with Ioan 'Nelu' Dumitrescu, being replaced by Rafael Cătălin Paul Ciobotaru. In April 2015, Cristian 'Cristi' Minculescu returned to Iris.
- Ioan 'Nelu' Dumitrescu – drums, percussion, backing vocals (1975 - present)
- Ion 'Nuțu' Olteanu – guitar, vocals (1975-1980, 1981-1986, 2017 - present)
- Aurelian 'Relu' Marin – keyboards, piano, backing vocals (2002 - present)
- Constantin 'Costi' Sandu – lead vocals (2017 - present)
- Matei Cioca – guitar, backing vocals (2019 - present)
- Daniel Moroiu – bass (2019 - present)
- Cristian Lucian Dumitrescu – drums, percussion (2003 - present)
- Cristian 'Cristi' Minculescu – lead vocals (1980-1982, 1983-1984, 1985-1990, 1991-2012, 2015-2017)
- Doru Borobeică 'Boro' – bass, backing vocals (1984-2000, 2001-2017)
- Valter Popa – guitar, backing vocals (1986-2017)
- Emil 'Brando' Lechințeanu – bass (1975-1978)
- Mihai 'Miki' Bujor – bass (1978-1979)
- Sorin Chifiriuc – guitar, bass, vocals (1978-1980)
- Ion 'Nelu' Jecan – lead vocals (1978)
- Lucian Chivu – lead vocals (1978-1980)
- Mihai 'Marty' Popescu – bass (1979-1980, 1981-1984)
- Anton Hașiaș – bass (1980-1981)
- Clement Iordănescu – guitar (1980)
- Florin Ochescu – guitar (1980, 1982-1984)
- Adrian George Ilie – guitar, backing vocals (1980-1982, 1984-1985)
- Nicky Dinescu – drums (1981)
- Marin Iliescu – bass (1981)
- Gelu Vintilă – guitar (1981)
- Dan Bădulescu – guitar (1982)
- Geo Stănică – lead vocals (1982)
- Sanda Lăcătușu – lead vocals (1982-1983)
- Dan Bittman – lead vocals (1984-1985)
- Bogdan Stănescu – guitar (1985-1986)
- Mihai Alexandru – guitar, backing vocals (1986-1989)
- Nelu Popovici – bass (1988)
- Dan Alex Sârbu – guitar (1989-1990, 1990-1994)
- Manuel Savu – guitar (1990)
- Tony Șeicărescu – lead vocals (2012-2013)
- Rafael (Cătălin Paul Ciubotaru) – lead vocals (2013-2015)
- Alin Moise – guitar (2017-2018)
- Andrei Bălașa – guitar (2018-2019)
- George Costinescu – bass (2017-2019)
- Iris I (LP, Electrecord, 1984)
- Iris II (LP/MC, Electrecord, 1987)
- Iris III – Nu te opri! (Iris III – Don't Stop!) (LP/MC, Electrecord, 1988)
- Iris IV (LP/MC, Electrecord, 1990)
- Iris 1993 (LP/MC, Electrecord, 1993)
- Lună plină (Full Moon) (CD/MC, Zone Records, 1996)
- Mirage (CD/MC, Zone Records, 1998)
- Iris 2000 (CD/MC, Zone Records, 1999)
- Mătase albă (White Silk) (CD/MC, Zone Records, 2002)
- I.R.I.S. 4Motion (4xCD/4xMC, Zone Records, 2003)
- Iris Maxima (CD/MC, Zone Records, 2005)
- Cei ce vor fi – Vol. I (Those Who Will Be – Vol. I) (CD/MC, Roton, 2007)
- Cei ce vor fi – Vol. II (Those Who Will Be – Vol. II) (CD/MC, Roton, 2007)
- 12 porți (12 Gates) (CD/MC, Roton, 2010)
- O lume doar a lor – 35 de ani (A World Only for Themselves – 35 Years) (CD, Cat Music, 2012)
- Lumea toată e un circ (All the World Is a Circus) (CD/2xLP, MediaPro Music & Universal Music România, 2018)
- Casino (CD/MC, Zone Records, 1999)
- De vei pleca... (If You Went Away...) (CD/MC, Zone Records, 2000) (featuring Felicia Filip)
- Da, da, eu ştiu! (Oh, Yes, I Know!) (CD/MC, Zone Records, 2002)
- Iris 20 de ani (Iris 20 Years) (CD/MC, Zone Records, 1997)
- Iris Athenaeum – Vol. I (CD/MC, Zone Records, 2000)
- Iris Athenaeum – Vol. II (CD/MC, Zone Records, 2000)
- The Best of Iris (CD, Electrecord, 1993)
- Muzică de colecție – Vol. 22 (Collection Music – Vol. 22) (CD, Roton, 2007, with Jurnalul Național newspaper)
- Legenda merge mai departe (The Legend Goes On) (CD, Roton, 2009, with Adevărul newspaper)
- Iris Digital Athenaeum (DVD/VHS, Zone Records, 2001) (reissued in 2010)
- Iris Aeterna – Dăruind vei dobândi (Iris Aeterna – Giving You Will Acquire) (DVD, Roton, 2010)
- Integrala Iris (21xCD, Roton, 2009) (1984–2007 discography reissue)
- Trooper: Gloria – Tribut pentru Iris (The Glory – Tribute to Iris) (CD, self-released, 2006)
- Miron Ghiu Caia: Iris – Spectacolul abia începe (Iris – The Show Is Just Beginning) (Humanitas, Muzzak Collection, 2003)
- 2006 - MTV Romanian Music Awards - Best Rock
- Cotidianul - „Iris, decorați de Băsescu” Archived 2008-05-15 at the Wayback Machine - Articol apărut în ziarul Cotidianul, numărul din 5 octombrie 2007; Accesat la data de 15 iunie 2009
- InfoMusic.ro - „La Mulți ani, Iris” - Recenzie apărută pe InfoMusic.ro pe 23 iunie 2012; Accesat la data de 31 august 2012
- InfoMusic.ro - „Cristi Minculescu părăsește trupa Iris, dar nu și scena muzicală” - Știre apărută pe InfoMusic.ro pe 28 august 2012; Accesat la data de 31 august 2012
- Adevărul, 26 iunie 2013”
- "Cristi Minculescu, primele declaraţii despre revenirea în IRIS: "Sunt legături care nu dispar, orice ai face"". Romania TV. 2015-04-23.
- Interviews (in Romanian)
- "Avem o energie extraordinară și cântăm mai bine ca acum 15 ani", Iulian Ignat, Formula AS - anul 1999, numărul 361
- 25 de ani de "Formula... Unu", Formula AS - anul 2002, numărul 502
- VIDEO „E normal să nu mai fim unica supapă de distracție“, 18 noiembrie 2010, Ruxandra Grecu, Adevărul
- Valter Popa, chitaristul de la Iris: "Prima mea chitară era din tablă și semăna cu o tigaie", 13 decembrie 2011, Evenimentul zilei
- Cristi Minculescu vorbește despre albumul IRIS 35 de ani, 12 aprilie 2012, Info Music