Donnerstag, 26. August 2021

Pankow - Hans im Glück (1985)

Pankow are a German rock band, founded in East Berlin in 1981. Their name came from the Berlin district of Pankow, which was once home to most of the officials of the East German government. The band's original lineup consisted of Jürgen Ehle, André Herzberg, Rainer Kirchmann, Jäcki Reznicek and Frank Hille. Other members were Stefan Dohanetz, Ingo York and Jens Jensen.

As their lyrics often contained criticism of the East German regime, they frequently encountered problems releasing their music. "Like many writers, they were among the established names of aesthetic subversion," the journalist Christoph Dieckmann wrote in a 1999 article published in Rolling Stone.

With the fall of the Iron Curtain and the associated open access to media outside Germany Pankow also moved briefly into the focus of the Anglo-American journalism. The U.S. historian Timothy W. Ryback, known for his 1990 published book "Rock around the bloc: a history of rock music in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union", characterized Pankow as one of two most prestigious and most professional groups of East Berlin's rock music scene, writing that they "originally showed the influence of the Rolling Stones, but has developed into a dynamic band that combines the energy of the Clash with the innovation of the Talking Heads."

In the song "Langeweile" ("Boredom"), the criticism was expressed in the words "Seen the same country too long, heard the same language too often, waited too long, hoped too much, bowed down to the old men too often". The song "Paule Panke" was banned by the state-run Amiga record label, while "Langeweile" was banned from radio airplay; however, the band performed both at every concert.

On November 3, 2011, Pankow commenced a 30-year anniversary tour. In 2021 they will celebrate a 40-year anniversary-tour.

"Hans im Glück" was their second album, released in 1985.


A1 Festrede (Teil 1) 1:51
A2 Die Schule ist aus 3:47
A3 Hoppe hoppe Reiter 1:12
A4 Der Aufstiegsspezialist 3:42
A5 Klappsmühle 1:57
A6 Businessman 5:19
A7 Knast 1:27
B1 Familienpapa 4:50
B2 Mitropa 1:36
B3 Hänschen Mittelmaß 5:00
B4 Trinkerheilanstalt 1:42
B5 Hans Negativ 3:55
B6 Festrede (Teil 2) 0:29
B7 Stille 3:34

(320 kbps, cover art included)

Mittwoch, 25. August 2021

Frejlechs - Soll Sayn Freylekh - Jiddische Klezmer-Musik (1991)

Klezmer is a traditional style of wedding music played by Eastern European Ashkenazi Jews. Part of Yiddish heritage, modern klezmer integrates different influences, such as Roma music and jazz.

The term "klezmer" derives from Yiddish, meaning "vessels of song," or music instruments. Traditionally played at weddings by itinerant Jewish musicians, it is a celebratory music with a strong Rom influence. The genre evolved after the arrival of Yiddish-speaking Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe in the US in the late 19th and early 20th century, building on early jazz and international influences. In the 1970s, klezmer went through a revival led by Giora Feidman, The Klezmorim, Zev Feldman, Andy Statman, and the Klezmer Conservatory Band.

The mid-1990s were the heyday of the Berlin klezmer revival. In 1998 the Berlin cultural bimonthyl Zitty advertised as many as 302 klezmer concerts, most of which were staged by the Hackesches Hoftheater. Ten years later, when the theater had been closed for two years, the number of klezmer concerts dropped by more than 50 percent. In 2013 there were more than twenty professional and semiprofessional klezmer bands performing in Berlin, comprised of both Germand and foreign musicians, both Jewish and non-Jewish. There are a number of clubs, bars and cafés, as well as churches that have klezmer in their concert repertoire. 

Klezmer has been a controversial phenomenon in post-Holocaust Europe, ever since this traditional Jewish wedding music made it to the concert halls and discos of Berlin, Warsaw, Budapest and Prague. Played mostly by non-Jews and for non-Jewish audiences, it quickly gained the epithet of “fakelore” and was branded commercially-motivated heritage appropriation.


Cafe Klez
1 Moldever Hore (Moldavian Hora) 3:01
2 Sherele 2:41

Zol Zayn Freylekh
3 Doyne / Kiever Freylekhs (Doina/Kiev Freylekhs) 3:14
4 Odeser Bulgar (Bulgar From Odessa) 2:38

A Kholem Fun Libe
5 Di Sapozhkelakh (The Little Boots) 3:38
6 Di Zilberne Khasene (The Silver Wedding) 2:21
7 Di Goldene Khasene (The Golden Wedding) 3:14
8 Medyatsiner Valts (Medyatsiner Waltz) 2:28

Ale Lakhn, Makhn Fun Mir Shpas
9 Papirosn (Cigarettes) 5:54

In Der Heym In Shtetele Amol
10 Sirbe (Serba) 3:01
11 Terkishe Melodye (Turkish Melody) 3:13
12 Bukevine (Bucovina) 2:13

Veln Zayn Gute Tsaytn
13 Shnirele, Perele (String, Pearl) 5:25
14 Shlof, Mayn Kind (Sleep, My Child) 2:32

Frejlechs - Soll Sayn Freylekh - Jiddische Klezmer-Musik (1991)
(320 kbps, cover art included)

Dienstag, 24. August 2021

Gisela May & Alfred Müller - Im Ernst, wir meinen es heiter (Amiga, 1980)

This album sees Gisela May accompanied by Alfred Müller as an interpreter of lyrics of Heinrich Heine, Kurt Tucholsky, Otto Reutter, Johann Nestroy, Joachim Ringelnatz, Volker Braun and Jacques Brel. And there is a song written by Gisela Steineckert, the GDR politician and poet featured on some "Oktoberklub / Singebewegung" postings in the last weeks.
The album was recorded live at 22./23.02.1980 in the Maxim-Groki-Theater, East Berlin, accompanied by the Studio Band Berlin and Rolf Markert
Live at 22./23.02.1980 in Maxim-Gorki-Theater, Berlin.

A1 Entree Composed By - Henry Krtschil Words By - Gisela May
A2 Willst Du Dein Herz Mir Schenken Composed By, Words By - Anna Magdalena Bach Words By - Anna Magdalena Bach
A3 Lyrisches Intermezzo Composed By - Manfred Schmitz Words By - Heinrich Heine
A4 Knopfballade Words By - Anonymous
A5 Heinrich Zille Composed By - Henry Krtschil Words By - Kurt Tucholsky
A6 Mit Der Uhr In Der Hand Composed By, Words By - Otto Reutter Words By - Otto Reutter
A7 Planschulden Composed By - Karl-Ernst Sasse Words By - Chris Hornbogen
A8 In Sachen Adam Und Eva Words By - Inge Ristock
A9 Liebe In Unseren Tagen Composed By - Wolfgang Pietsch Words By - Peter Ensikat

B1 So Muss Es Sein Composed By - Henry Krtschil Words By - Volker Braun
B2 Aphorismen Words By - Johann Nepomuk Nestroy
B3 Vorsorgezögling Composed By - Rolf Zimmermann Words By - Peter Ensikat
B4 Im Park Composed By - Peter Koch Words By - Joachim Ringelnatz
B5 Moderne Technik In Aktion Words By - Inge Ristock
B6 Aphorismen Words By - Kurt Tucholsky
B7 Man Ist So Dran Gewöhnt Composed By - Bernd Wefelmeyer Words By - Heinz Kahlow
B8 Franz Composed By - Gérard Jouannest Words By - Jacques Brel
B9 Hier Bin Ich Geboren Composed By - Günther Fischer Words By - Gisela Steineckert
B10 Verschenkt Den Traum Nicht Words By - Heinz Kahlau
B11 Ein Lied Geht In Die Weite Welt Composed By - Rolf Lukowsky Words By - Günter Kolb
B12 Freund, Salut Composed By - Michael Höft Words By - Gisela Steineckert

Gisela May & Alfred Müller - Im Ernst, wir meinen es heiter (Amiga, 1980)
(192 kbps, cover art included, vinyl rip)

Peter Rohland - Un as der Rebbe singt - Jiddische Lieder (CD)

Peter Rohland was a German singer and songwriter, born 22 Febuary 1933 in Berlin, Germany, died 5 April 1966 in Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany.

The early wave of interst in Yiddish songs in West Germany dates back to the 1960s and the German student movement. Peter Rohland, with his 1963 program "Der Rebbe singt" ("The rabbi sings"), is considered the first Germn singer to have broken the postwar silence over the Nazi persecution of Jews and made a gsture of reconciliation. His manifesto concerning the treatment of Yiddish songs as part of German folk music was received as programmatic. Yiddish songs thus came to be employed by left-wing artists as a means of protest against the generations compromised by its participation in the Nazi regime.

This programm was recorded in 1964 - 65.  


1 Un As Der Rebbe Alimelech 3:30
2 Fohr Ijch Mir Arois 2:51
3 Hot Majne Homntashn 2:00
4 Wolt Ijch Sejn A Rov 2:30
5 Mai Komashma Lon 2:29
6 Jich Nehm Dos Peckel 2:21
7 Frateg Far Nacht 1:32
8 Baj Dem Shtetl 1:25
9 Bin Ijch Mir A Schnaijderl 1:46
10 Jomme, Jomme Shpil Mir A Lidele 2:07
11 Un As Der Rebbe Singt 2:47
12 Hot Der Tate Fun Jaridl 1:50
13 Tzen Bridder 3:42
14 Amol Is Gewen A Majsse 3:40
15 Tumbalalalaika 1:50
16 Unter A Klajn Bajmele 2:04
17 Du Majdele, Du Shajns 2:20
18 Lo Mir Ale Singen 4:45
19 Baj Majn Rebben Is Gewen 1:45
20 Un As De Jontefdige Tejg 2:45
21 Shlof, Majn Sun 1:55
22 Unter De Chirwes Von Pojln 2:47
23 Shtil, Die Nacht Ist Ojsgeshternt 2:04
24 's Brennt, Bridderlech, 's Brennt

(192 kbps, cover art included)

Montag, 23. August 2021

Georg Kreisler - Die alten bösen Lieder

"Composer and cabaret singer Georg Kreisler entered my life as a dictation in a German class. It was in 1996, early in my time in Vienna, and a spirited teacher at the Volkshochschule Brigittenau decided to challenge the students in the B2 class with the irresistible verses of “Tauben vergiften im Park” (Poisoning Pigeons in the Park) – one of Kreisler’s trademark bits of black humour that made him a cabaret legend in 1950s Vienna. It was hard-going for an intermediate German class. Still, you knew people were getting it, as suppressed giggles rippled about the room.

This first encounter led to the discovery of Kreisler’s “best of” song collection Everblacks, where I received important lessons in the culture of my new home: For example “Der Tod, das muss ein Wiener sein” (“Death must surely be a Viennese”) as “he” understands the importance of punctually at the Gates of Heaven, or, my favorite, the deliciously scathing “Wie schön wäre Wien ohne Wiener” (“How beautiful Vienna would be without the Viennese”). This gleeful revenge fantasy gives voice to the bottomless sense of betrayal of the Vertriebenen, those who had been driven out of their beloved city after the Anschluss.

With transcendent merriment, Kreisler sings of his beautiful Vienna that, “like a sleeping woman,” is presumably better to look at than to have to deal with. He sings of empty streets and unspoiled parks that would be a boon for tourism. And think! No more construction sites! No more folk bands! And not a blessed thing on television! And in this paradise, he muses, anti-Semitism would finally be consigned to the dusty shelves of a second-hand bookshop.

Born in Vienna in 1922 in a middle-class Jewish family, Kreisler and his parents were forced into exile in 1938, emigrating to the U.S., where he became a citizen in 1943. He returned to Europe with the army, acting as a translator and with opera scholar Marcel Prawy, writing and performing songs for the troupes. In Hollywood after the war, he performed in nightclubs and film studios, serving, for example, as ghost pianist for Charlie Chaplin in Monsieur Verdoux. Record companies were less receptive, finding the biting wit of his songs “un-American,” according to his biographers, and he returned to Vienna in 1955.

Here he became a fixture of the legendary Wiener Kabarett, alongside Helmut Qualtinger, Gerhard Bronner and Peter Wehle, then went independent, performing solo with his then-wife Topsy Küppers at the Marietta-Bar. He wrote songs and verses, stage and radio plays, cabaret sketches and musicals, including the highly successful Heute Abend, Lola Blau, and the television series, Die heiße Viertelstunde.

His relationship to Vienna was an uneasy one, however. As popular as he was with critics and his cabaret audiences, his increasingly biting political humor also led to censorship on both television and radio. His critiques of Austrian politics, made all the more powerful by his dazzling lyric gift, may have simply pushed too far in a country still in such deep denial about its role in the war. He was never invited to reclaim his Austrian citizenship, nor did the City of Vienna choose to honor him, as it did, for example, for Marcel Prawy.

“This city never lifted a finger for me,” he was quoted recently in the German news weekly Der Spiegel. “Rather than welcomed, I was chased away with bared teeth.” Kreisler became a man without a country, moving to Munich in 1958, then Berlin (1976), Salzburg (1988) and Basel (1992), finally returning to Salzburg in 2007.

He never lived in Vienna again.

Still, he visited from time to time on a series of “Farewell Tours,” the last in 2001. After that, he concentrated on poetry, publishing Zufällig in San Francisco: Unbeabsichtete Gedichte (Accidentally in San Francisco: Unintentional Poems), awarded the 2010 Friederich Hölderlin Prize.
It was to read from these and other lyrics that Kreisler was back in Vienna last January, at the venerable Kabarett Simpl. Bent over and clearly frail, he shuffled onto the stage on the arm of his wife, actress Barbara Peters, and seated himself awkwardly behind a desk. As he began to read, the years fell away, his resonant voice filling the hall, answering with hers, ringing with perfect clarity to the back of the house, the music of words, the masterful marriage of sound and sense.

Georg Kreisler died on 22 Nov. in Salzburg at the age of 89. Perhaps it mattered to him after all to die in Austria, even if not in Vienna. “Your homeland remains your homeland,” he once said, “even when you have been clobbered with it.” "-


1My psychoanalyst is an idiot3:20
2Please, shoot your husband2:20
3Bidla Buh3:05
4Das Triangel4:07
5Das Mädchen mit den drei blauen Augen2:17
6Der guate alte Franz3:25
7Die Wanderniere3:29
9Lied für Kärntner Männerchor5:02
11Zwei alte Tanten tanzen Tango4:57
12Der Bluntschli4:02
13Max auf der Rax4:50
14Der Musikkritiker6:46
15Zu leise für mich3:41

Georg Kreisler - Die alten bösen Lieder
(320 kbps, cover art included)

Di Grine Kuzine - Klezmer´s Paradise (1999)

Di Grine Kuzine is a German klezmer, folk and ska band, formed in 1993. "Klezmer´s Paradise" was their self-released debut album.

"The New Desire for Life-Klezmer", reads a headline in TIP, a Berlin cultural magazine, in 1996. The smiling faces of klezmer musicians on the cover testify to the vitality of the booming scene. "Life" is the key word here. Nothing is a more powerful celebration of life than a wedding. And it is wedding music that is the embodiment of what is the most vigorous in folk culture. Snorre Schwarz of "Di Grine Kuzine", when asked about what attracted im to klezmer, states taht the genre was simply strikingly different form the usual associations that a German might have with Jews: "When you read about Jews inGermany, they are always in the victim position, of course", says Schwarz. "But this was a totally differenz approach: fantastic, lively, strong, sometimes mean, funny music. It was something very alive. That´s why I was so fascinated."


1 Aman 3:01
2 A Glezl Vayn 2:59
3 Čirpansko Horo 3:51
4 Araber Tants 4:51
5 Stepil Dobri 4:28
6 Vranjanskij Ekspres 4:24
7 Asi Pare' 4:03
8 Salut Naftule 1:35
9 Lebedik Naftule Bulgar 3:51
10 Noch A Glezl Vayn 4:30
11 Üsküdar 4:07
12 Ruska Slatna 4:18
13 Chava 5:32

Di Grine Kuzine - Klezmer´s Paradise (1999)
(320 kbps, cover art included)

Sonntag, 22. August 2021

Tom Zé - Same (Lá Vem A Onda, 1970)

Tom Zé began his career together with Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Gal Costa, and Maria Bethânia. As a composer, he influenced Caetano and many others and delivered an expressive body of work through his own discography. A restless thinker, he was adept at modern erudite music experimentations, yet he was always ignored by both industry and audiences until he was discovered by David Byrne. He can be better understood through his self-coined definition: "I don't make art, I make spoken and sung journalism."

He is a songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, innovator and composer who was hugely influential in the Tropicália movement of 1960s Brazil. Zé is often thought of as Brazil’s answer to Zappa or Captain Beefheart; a true innovator and a true artist.

Continuing in a similar musical vein to his debut "Grande Liquidicao", "La Vem A Onda" is a wonderful combination of guitars, layered of percussion and tough rock ’n’ roll, underpinned by Ze’s instantly reconisable vocal.

1. Lá Vem a Onda
2. Guindaste a Rigor
3. Distância
4. Dulcinéia Popular Brasileira
5. Qualquer Bobagem
6. O Riso e a Faca
7. Jimmy, Renda-se
8. Me Dá, Me Dê, Me Diz
9. Passageiro
10. Escolinha de Robô
11. Jeitinho Dela
12. A Gravata

(256 kbps, cover art included)

Freitag, 20. August 2021

Nara Leão ‎– Nara Leão (1968)

Nara Leão, the Musa da Bossa Nova (Bossa Nova's Muse, as she is affectionately known), was a prominent figure in bossa nova. She didn't restrict herself as a bossa nova singer, though, and was one of the first artists to engage in the movement later known as "canção de protesto" (protest song), an artistic movement which denounced military dictatorship in Brazil. She launched the careers of such composers/interpreters as Chico Buarque, Zé Keti, Martinho da Vila, Edu Lobo, Paulinho da Viola, and Fagner. An international performer in spite of her short, uneducated voice, she left an expressive discography even though death caught her by surprise at such a precocious age.

Nara Leão's vocal style is reminiscent of Elis Regina, slightly breathy and well-articulated. Her self-titled album is a rather bizarre entry in the Brazilian tropicalia vein -- bizarre for its conventionality. Featuring full orchestral arrangements, the album waxes '60s pop one minute and '30s waltz the next, while always remaining cleanly and immaculately produced. Yet there is a classicist feel to the record, with the traditional Brazilian fare remaining very conservative compared to other tropicalia artists such as Os Mutantes. The first track "Lindonéia" is a tango-influenced bossa nova written by Brazilian legend Caetano Veloso, whose songs are peppered throughout. The horn and flute accents on "Quem É" might remind some pop culture junkies of the theme to the game show Match Game. "Anoiteceu" is that particular brand of mid-'60s bossa nova often associated with jet-setting love affairs and seaside roadways. One of the true joys of the album, though, has to be the cover photo -- sans any print -- of Leão reclining on an orange Turkish rug and wearing a purple cotton shirt, with a far-off look on her face.


Quem É
Donzela Por Piedade Não Perturbes
Mamãe Coragem
Um Chorinho Chamado Odeon
Medroso De Amor
Deus Vos Salve Esta Casa Santa
Tema De "Os Inconfidentes"

(320 kbps, cover art included)

Donnerstag, 19. August 2021

Hannes Zerbe - Blech Band (1984)

Hannes Zerbe is a German pianist and composer, born 17 December 1941 in Litzmannstadt, Germany. He will celebrate his 80th birthday this december.

Initially, Hannes Zerbe graduated in electrical engineering at the Technical University Dresden.

Later on, he studied jazz piano at the conservatoire in Dresden and continued with studies of composing at the conservatoire “Hanns Eisler“ in Berlin under professor Wolfram Heicking. From 1985 to 1987 he was one of Paul-Heinz Dittrich’s master pupils for composition at the Academy of Arts (Eastern Berlin).

For projects and music tours, Zerbe collaborated with several musicians of the contemporary music scene with special emphasis on jazz (among others Charlie Mariano, Willem Breuker, Lauren Newton, Bernd Konrad, Klaus Koch, Dietrich Unkrodt, Gebhard Ullmann and Jürgen Kupke).

From 1975 to 1977 he was extraordinarily successful with the jazz quartett FEZ which he formed with trombonist Conrad Bauer, bassist Christoph Niemann und drummer Peter Gröning.

1979 he initiated the HANNES ZERBE-BLECH BAND, which was composed of not only jazz musicians, but also included musicians from symphonic orchestras (Staatskapelle Berlin, Komische Oper Berlin and Berlin Symphonic Orchestra). The ensemble comprised around 15 musicians and played own compositions as well as 20th century’s compositions (among others Paul Dessau, Hanns Eisler, Kurt Weill) and adaptations.

In addtion, Hannes Zerbe is composing for vocals, bigband, chamber music, symphonic orchestra, audio drama, theater and film.

Presenting different line-ups and projects, Hannes Zerbe appeared on many national and international concerts and festivals e.g. in Berlin, Leipzig, Moers, Nürnberg, Hannover, Münster, Bloomington (USA), Warsaw, Wroclaw, Prague and Bratislava.

"Blech Band" was recorded 9. - 15. Januar 1984, AMIGA-Studio, Berlin. It is a fascinating album by the avant-garde pianist / composer Hannes Zerbe and his Brass Band, an eighteen-piece brass ensemble consisting mostly of East German (DDR) players and three guests from behind the Iron Curtain: Dutch saxophonist Willem Breuker, British trumpeter Martin Mayes and West German tuba player Pinguin Moschner. Together they perform five pieces, one of which is an original composition by Zerbe, three are his arrangements of compositions by Austrian / Jewish composer Hans Eisler and Russian composer Alexander Mossolow and the remaining one is by German composer Paul Dessau. Of course these three composers were all "approved" by the DDR regime (Eisler even composed the DDR National Anthem) and the choice is by no means incidental.

The modus operandi applied by Zerbe is to play initially a straightforward part of the composition and then let the band enters a lengthy Free Form collective improvisation part, finally returning to the composition at the closing of each piece. This adventurous and highly unique approach proves very effective and the resulting music has a powerful impact. Of course Zerbe also pays tribute to the German Brass Band tradition, which was an important element of the German musical scene for centuries.

Why such avant-garde music was allowed to exists and was recorded by the  GDR state label is a part of the many absurdities that existed in the Socialist countries at the time, with the regime seeing art in general and jazz in particular a sort of pressure valve, which enabled the musicians to express themselves relatively freely, and using this as a tranquilizer of political unrest. As a result, some of the most advanced avant-garde music was created behind the Iron Curtain, with DDR and Poland leading the way.

In retrospect this is an intriguing document of the era and a piece of music which is every bit as challenging today as it was at the time it was created. For free jazz / improvised music listeners this is something none of them would like to miss!

As all the East European countries under the Socialist regime, East Germany, or DDR as it was known at the time, had only one state owned and controlled Music Company, which released most of its productions on the Amiga label. Among the many Amiga releases the legendary "orange J" series was dedicated to Jazz recordings, many of which were licenses from the West, but others were original productions, mostly of Jazz made in DDR. Some of these releases, like the one described above, were absolute gems.

Following the unification of Germany, the Amiga albums disappeared from the face of the earth and only in 2012 a German label reissued 15 Amiga Jazz albums on CD. They are all worth checking out!


A1 Metamorphosen I (Frei nach Teilen der "Suite für Orchester Nr. 6" von Hanns Eisler) 9:46
A2 Überlagerung 12:12
B1 Metamorphosen III (Frei nach Teilen der "Eisengießerei" von Alexander Wassiljewitsch Mossolow) 4:24
B2 Guernica 6:38
B3 Rondo Und Finale (Frei nach Teilen der "Suite Für Orchester Nr. 3" von Hanns Eisler) 8:35

(320 kbps, cover art included)

Dienstag, 17. August 2021

Jack Elliott - Muleskinner (1956 / 1964, Topic)

Rambling Jack Elliott who sings these American folk songs was born in New York, son of a Brooklyn doctor. He began to get restless at the age of nine, ran off to join a Wild West rodeo at fourteen and by the time he was twenty was wandering over the United States with Woody Guthrie. 

Writing about Jack Elliott in the sleeve notes of his album ‘Talking Woody Guthrie’ 12T93, Paul Nelson and Jon Pankake say ‘He heard a Guthrie phonograph record and the profound effect it made on him was to change his whole life. Soon after that he met Woody. They lived together for one year and, packing only guitars and razors, rambled around the country, on and off, for the next five years …’ 

When Woody was unable to travel any more and had to be hospitalized, Jack busked across the United States alone, then went to England. In 1956 skiffle was going strong in London and Jack began to sing in pubs and create something of a name for himself. In 1957 he sent for his buddy Derroll Adams, banjopicker from Portland, Oregon and together the two sang and made a Topic album billed as the Rambling Boys. This record is a re-release of the material on the album "Jack takes the floor".

A1 San Francisco Bay Blues
A2 Ol' Riley
A3 The Boll Weevil
A4 Bed Bug Blues
A5 New York Town
A6 Grey Goose
B1 Mule Skinner Blues
B2 Cocaine
B3 Dink's Song
B4 Black Baby
B5 Salty Dog

Jack Elliott - Muleskinner (1956 / 1964, Topic)
(192 kbps, cover art included)

Dienstag, 10. August 2021

Oku Onuora – I A Tell... Dubwise & Otherwise (1990)

The name of Oku Onuora, Jamaica's best known dub poet, a notorious radical, criminal, and proud subversive, literally translates as fire in the desert and symbolizes the voice of the people.

Considered the father of dubetry, a combination of haunting dub melodies and spoken word, Oku Onora was born Orlando Wong. During his youth, he joined the fight against the racist, oppressive policies of the post-colonialists. A disciple of Negus, young Wong was known for his many wall slogans and his demonstratinons against police violence. Eventually mere protest was not enough for Wong and so he decided that he must use force to help things change. After arming himself with a gun, Onuroa became a "revolutionary adventurer." After receiving a conviction for the armed robbery of a post office (he did this with the intent to use the money to help a struggling alternative school), Wong was sentenced to seven years in Jamaica's General Penitentiary in 1970. But before they could send him there, Wong escaped by leaping out of a second story window. As he fled, he was shot five times in the arms, legs and chest by the police. A few days later he was captured. While in prison, Wong began lobbying for prison reform and thereby earning the label of agitator and security risk. It was there he began writing his poetry, something the prison officials considered subversive. Though they tried to ban his writing, it leaked out and was published in 1977 as "Echo" by Sangster books. The book caused a stir and inspired Wong to change his name to Oku Onura.

His first dub-poetry album, "Reflection in Red" on 56 Hope Road, came out in 1979 and was the first LP of its kind. He followed this up in 1984 with "Pressure Drop", a full-length album that many consider a classic. It would be his last spoken-word album for nine years. In between then and 1993, he concentrated on writing plays and directing a drama company. He also performed live and toured. In 1990, Onura recorded "New Jerusalem Dub" a concept album that he called "poetry without words." It was a slickly produced, high-tech, and somewhat experimental work that sought to expand the bounds of what constitutes reggae music. With 1993's "Bus Out" Onuora returned to dub-poetry. This too was a themed work that decried racism and provided a strong call to immediate action against injustice and oppression. Though for him, it was a personally painful album to make, critics hailed it as revolutionary and one of his finest works. 

This album is a compilation of some of the very first recordings Mr. Onuora, father of Jamaican dub poetry, made upon release from prison.

Most of them are 7" A and B sides from the late seventies and were recorded at Tuff Gong (Bob Marley's home) studios with Bob's own riddim section, Aston & Carlton Barret, "Touter" Hartvey, "China" Smith et al.

Oku's sharp observations on ghetto living and calls to resist the opression of Babylon are amply matched with some of the wickedest, tightest dub and the sheer level of musicianship elevates this collection way above the many similar reissues of reggae music from the same period.

From liner notes:
Oku "Fire" Onuora , originator of the term "dub poetry", is the most charismatic and passionate articulator of the sufferah's grief and outrage – he incants his red-hot declamations while the music pulses with its own emotive intent. A collection of Oku's singles and dub versions, most never released in the U.S.A., from 1979-1983.

1 - Wat A Situashan
2 - I A Tell
3 - Telling Dub
4 - Echo
5 - Echoing Dub
6 - Wi A Come
7 - Dub Di Situashan
8 - Dred Dub
9 - Dub Sketches
10 - Let Wi Go Dub
11 - Reflections In Red
12 - Reflections In Dub

(320 kbps, cover art included)

Montag, 9. August 2021

Captain Sperrmüll - Die Sonne geht auf (Schneeball, 1982)

Captain Sperrmüll was a german band from Saarland. They played solid political rock with some punk, new wave and jazz influences and were a part of the counterculture anarchist scene.

After living some years in Berlin, the songwriter Didi Conrath (1957 - 2019) formed Captain Sperrmüll at Saarwellingen. The band lived together in a commune and released two albums in the 1980s. They played gigs in youth centers and at "Umsonst & Draußen"- festivals. 

After 2000 Didi Conrath went to Landau and worked as a teacher. With new musicians he released three more "Captain Sperrmüll"-albums. He died on 05. January 2019.

The last song "Ghettoflitzers Ausrücklager" is surprising, the only instrumental one and very different to the rest.

"Die Sonne geht auf" was their second album, recorded and mixed in August & September 1982 in Sound Spot Studio in Körprich.

A1 Aufstand der Kälber 2:13
A2 Nummern 3:44
A3 Keimfrei 2:48
A4 Der Untertod 3:41
A5 Die Sonne geht auf 3:04
B1 Kaufen 2:37
B2 Pflastersteine
B3 Ghettoflitzers Ausrücklager 9:58

(320 kbps, cover art included)

Sonntag, 8. August 2021

Hanns Eisler - Die Teppichweber von Kujan - Lenin - Winterschlacht-Suite (NOVA, 1973)


A private pupil of Schoenberg, who described him as one of his most gifted students, Hanns Eisler stands as one of the most fascinating composers of the 20th century – a composer whose left-wing political affiliations saw him forced into exile with the rise of the Nazis, who subsequently settled in the USA and was denounced first by his sister to the FBI and then by Nixon himself as ‘the Karl Marx of communism in the musical field’ (to which Eisler retorted that he was ‘very flattered’ by the comparison), leading to deportation back to Europe in 1948. He was one of Bertolt Brecht’s chief collaborators in political songs, films and stage works (the two resumed contact in Hollywood after Eisler’s move to the US), also working with other notable types such as the singer Ernst Busch and writing politico-intellectual subject matter. After his return to Germany, where he settled in Stalinist East Berlin, he became enormously influential in re-stimulating musical life, teaching at the Berlin College of Music that now bears his name and taking the composition masterclass at the Academy of Arts.

Eisler wrote the stage music to Johannes R. Becher´s piece “Die Winterschlacht” as earlay as 1941 in Soviet Exile – as “Deutsche Tragödie”. The score dates from 1954. Its first performance took place at the Berliner Ensemble on January 12, 1955. The nine-part “Winterschlacht-Suite” comprises the complete stage music score, compiled for concert performance.

The “Lenin Requiem” has a chequered history of composition and performance, corresponding to the fluctuating fortunes of the world for which it was written. Eisler was commissioned to write the work in 1932 by the State Music Publishing House in Moscow. He was with Joris Ivens in Moscow and in Magnitogorsk that year, in May and in September/October, in connection with their joint work on a documentary film called “Youth has its say” (“Heroes' song”) and their involvement in the foundation of the “International Music Bureau” (IMB), intended to unite revolutionary musicians and music associations against fascism. The award of a Soviet commission in 1932 to write a requiem for Lenin undoubtedly signalled exceptional respect and recognition for his musical and political achievements to date. It was to be completed by the 20th anniversary of the October Revolution, that is by 1937.

It was not until December 1935 that Eisler made the preliminary sketches in New York. But this was the very time in which Lenin's legacy was being overturned by dogmatism and the personality cult: August 1936 duly saw the first of the Moscow show trials in which Stalin did away with those revolutionaries who had been close to Lenin. Eisler was with Brecht on the Danish island of Fyn, at Skovbostand near Svendborg, from the end of January to the end of September 1937. Lou Eisler, his life partner and from 1938 his wife, remembers that there was great concern about these events in the USSR. Brecht had clearly expressed his critical distance to Stalin to Walter Benjamin in 1935. (It is no accident that Brecht and Eisler, though committed Communists, had not emigrated to the Soviet Union.) When, after intensive work on the “German Symphony”, the chamber cantatas and many songs, Eisler completed the “Lenin Requiem” on August 5, 1937 under the favourable work conditions prevailing on the island of Fyn, he had met his deadline. However, it was obvious that the work would not be performed in the post‐1932 “Stalinist' USSR. In any case, there was a vast divergence between the requiem's basic statement and the political reality of the time. There was no hope of an “uprising of the masses” either in fascist Germany or Italy or in other capitalist countries. In Spain, it is true, the democratic popular forces supported by the International Brigades (Eisler visited them in January 1937) were defending their young republic against the fascist might of General Franco and his coup. It is the palpable impotence of the time, this stark contradiction between the political reality and the expressive intensity of lament and invocation –in other words the critical appeal to the ideal of the revolution in the person of Lenin‐that represents the particular “realism” of this requiem. So far as I know, the work which the Moscow state publishing house had commissioned was never performed in the Soviet Union. It could not be performed in the early years of the GDR either; the personality cult of Stalin lasted until 1956‐when the crimes of Stalinism were revealed at the 20th Party Congress of the CPSU. In any case this work is almost uniformly composed in twelve‐note technique, a form of composition which had been condemned as “formalist” since 1948 in the Soviet Union and the GDR‐an aberration of musical politics which was officially corrected only as a result of the 20th Party Congress. And when the “Lenin Requiem” was first performed in East Berlin on November 22, 1958, it appeared in a context which could not have been foreseen at the time the composition was commissioned: Lenin was modern again, under the slogan of “return to Leninist standards”.

This requiem is a new element in Eisler's creative work in respect of its subject matter, its form, its content and its compositional technique. Here the great subject of the revolution, the profile of the revolutionary, the mourning for Lenin and the conviction of the organized working class's indomitable power are handled in a way new for Eisler: in the traditional but secularized form of the requiem, with an expressive power unfamiliar till now, a pathos uncustomary for Eisler. As in the “German Symphony” Eisler here brings the style of “Kampfmusik” (battle music) into the dimension of the large‐scale vocal symphonic form, organizing its development in the manner introduced by Schoenberg with twelve notes related only to one another. All melodic and harmonic events are derived from the underlying pattern of a twelve‐note series (E; D sharp; F sharp; B; C sharp; D; G; F; A flat; B flat; A; C) and given shape through rhythmic differentiation‐quasi‐tonal here for the most part. In this way Eisler was able to introduce into this type of structured context the tonally composed “Lob des Revolutionärs” (praise of the revolutionary) from his stage music to Gorki/Brecht's “Die Mutter” (the mother, 1931/32), as No.7 “Lob des Kämpfers” (praise of the fighter), without a break in style.

Eisler wrote the cantata “Die Teppichweber von Kujan‐Bulak” (the carpet‐weavers of Kujan‐Bulak) in June 1957, to a text by Brecht, in honour of the 40th birthday of the USSR. It was premiered in Berlin in February 1958 (that is, before the “Lenin Requiem”). As in the “Requiem”, Lenin is the central point of reference, but now, after the revelations of the 20th Party Congress of the CPSU, in a quite particular direction. The official request to overcome the personality cult surrounding Stalin was translated into the slogan “return to Leninist standards”, but fulfilment of this programme largely transferred the cult attitude to the rediscovered Lenin, a trend to which Eisler critically reacted in this cantata. This is clearly evident from the sentences by Bertolt Brecht which he prefaced to it as a motto: “But it is particularly necessary to take a light‐hearted approach to profound objects and greet authorities with friendly indulgence”. The practice of plaster busts is countered with the unusual form of a memorial in which those showing the honour would serve their own ends with the money collected and had thus understood the person to be honoured. Eisler has here rediscovered his musical “identity”: his commentary on the lyrics is precise, reserved, friendly and light, with small, but highly concentrated means.

Die Teppichweber von Kujan-Bulak (lyrics: Bertolt Brecht)
Lenin-Requiem (lyrics: Bertolt Brecht)
Winterschlacht-Suite (lyrics: Johannes R. Becher)

The album was recorded November 1972 in the German Democratic Republic.

Hanns Eisler - Die Teppichweber von Kujan - Lenin - Winterschlacht-Suite (NOVA, 1973)
(ca. 224 kbps, cover art included)

Samstag, 7. August 2021

Kurt Tucholsky - Opposition! Oppostion! (Hanns Ernst Jäger, 1969)

"Nothing is more difficult and nothing requires more character than to find oneself in open opposition to one's time (and those one loves) and to say loudly: No!” - Kurt Tucholsky

Kurt Tucholsky was a German-Jewish journalist, satirist and writer. He´s regarded as one of the most powerful satirists of the 20th century. He wrote eassays, political and cultural commentaries, drama criticism, book reviews, poems and novels. His ardent criticism was directed at German nationalism and militarism and at the growing nazi movement.

After 1929 Tucholsky lived in Sweden. In 1933 he was deprived of his German citizenship by the nazis and his books were burnt. Possibly in a deep depression over the situation in Germany, he committed suicide in Hindås, a village a few miles from Gotenburg, in 1935. He was buried in Mariefred, a town situated near the medieval castle Gripsholm. Since world war II Tucholsky's works have been widely reprinted in Germany.
Here´s an album with Kurt Tucholsky songs and poems interpreted by Kurt Hanns Ernst Jäger with music by Hanns Eisler and Friedrich Meyer, recorded in August, 1969, accompanied by the Orchester Heinz Hötter.


01 - Was darf die Satire
02 - Publikum
03 - Über Deutschland
04 - Der Mensch
05 - Frauen von Freunden
06 - Ein Wort
07 - Rosen auf den Weg gestreut
08 - Jubiläum
09 - Die brennende Lampe
10 - Über Krieg
11 - Hitler und Goethe
12 - Kritik
13 - Der Geschlechtslose
14 - Rückkehr zur Natur
15 - Sommerlied
16 - Opposition
17 - Über Sozialdemokratie
18 - Kleines Glockenspiel
19 - Wir Negativen
20 - Über Marxismus
21 - Gebet nach dem Schlachten
22 - Über Wirtschaft

Kurt Tucholsky - Opposition! Oppostion! (1969)
(128 kbps, front cover & cover text included)

Frankie Armstrong & Dave Van Ronk - Let No One Deceive You - Songs Of Bertolt Brecht (1989)

British folksinger Frankie Armstrong and American folksinger Dave Van Ronk, recording in Vancouver, Canada, sing songs with lyrics by Bertolt Brecht in English over acoustic guitar and piano accompaniments on this collection.

Van Ronk's voice, which annotator Roy Bailey says has been described as a "blend of rasp-wheeze-growl-slide-and-shout," is a good vehicle for these sometimes harsh statements, starting with his version of "Mack the Knife." Armstrong is less abrasive, but equally versatile, turning in an arch and threatening version of "Pirate Jenny," for instance, but a gentler one of "The Love Market." The two singers perform separately, alternating tracks until the end when they sing a duet on "Tango Ballad" from The Threepenny Opera, which was written for male and female voices.

These are songs that have been translated from the original German many times, and listeners familiar with them will recognize minor variations from, for example, Marc Blitzstein's English adaptations for The Threepenny Opera. It's actually some of the more obscure songs with music by Hanns Eisler (who worked more extensively with Brecht than did Kurt Weill, who composed The Threepenny Opera) that are more interesting, since, while often recorded, they are rarely performed in English. This is also true of the recitations of Brecht's poetry, such as "Lullabies I, II, III."  

The album was originally released in 1989 on the Vancouver non-profit label "Aural Tradition".

  1. Mack the Knife (2.30)
  2. The Love Market (2.40)
  3. We All Make the Bed That We Lie in (3.37)
  4. Lullabies I, II, III / To My Countrymen / Lullaby IV (3.30)
  5. A Man Is a Man (3.20)
  6. The Song of the Little Wind (2.04)
  7. Let No One Deceive You (1.56)
  8. Song of the Moldau (1.16)
  9. The Legend of the Dead Soldier (3.30)
  10. Pirate Jenny(4.03)
  11. Alabama Song (5.10)
  12. What Keeps a Man Alive? (2.47)
  13. Tango Ballad (4.37)
Tracks 1, 10, 12, 13 from Bertolt Brecht / Kurt Weill, The Threepenny Opera;
Track 2 from Bertolt Brecht / Hanns Eisler, Roundbeads & Painted Heads;
Tracks 3, 7, 11 from Bertolt Brecht / Kurt Weill, The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny;
Track 4 Bertolt Brecht / Hanns Eisler;
Tracks 5, 9 Bertolt Brecht;
Tracks 6, 8 from Bertolt Brecht / Hanns Eisler, Schwejk in the Second World War;

Frankie Armstrong & Dave Van Ronk - Let No One Deceive You - Songs Of Bertolt Brecht (1989)
(320 kbps, cover art included)

Oktoberklub - Sing mit - 3 Jahre Oktoberklub (Eterna, 1969)

"Singe-Bewegung" and "Oktoberklub" in East Germany, part 3.
Political song in the GDR did not, contrary to what is often assumed, start and finsih with Wolf Biermann. "Singegruppen" and "Liedermacher" were to play a significant cultural role in society from the early 1960s right up until the "Wende". On the one hand, the political song was a proudly coveted and officially nurtured "Erbe", but on the other, it was viewed with suspicion because of its potential as a means of subversion.

GDR singers, treading a precarious tightrope between prohibition and tolerance, enjoyed an elevated status as bearers of unofficial tidings. Concert halls, student clubs, or informal gatherings were invariably packed, and editions of the records released on the state record label "Amiga" were snapped up immediately.

There was a metamorphosis from the loyal teenagers of the "FDJ-Singeklubs" in the 1960s and 1970s into the critically-minded "Liedermacher" of the 1980s. The beginning of this story lie in the "Hootenanny-Klub". Formed in 1966, it incorporated many of the various influences which had been seeping into East Berlin in the period of political thaw since the building of the Wall in 1961. There was an emergence of beat and jazz music and the resident Canadian Perry Friedman introduced the new culture of folk songs from the American civil rights movement. These influences were incorporated into the repertoires of groups hitherto dominated by Brecht/Eisler and international portest songs and lead to the diverse repertoire of the "Oktoberklub".

In 1969 the Eterna label released the album "Oktoberklub - Sing mit", celebrating the first three years of the Oktoberklub with a recording of a concert at the Kongresshalle Berlin, February 16s, 1969.

Vietnamesisches Siegeslied - Oktoberklub
Träum nicht von den gläsernen Sternen - Gebrüder Conrads
Lutschina - Lutschina-Gruppe Moskau
Meinst du, die Russen wollen Krieg - Hartmut König
...gehört dem Volk - Oktoberklub
Körösporti - Gerilla-Gruppe Budapest
Die Fahrt ins Holz - Singeklub der Lessingschule Hoyerswerda
Gulesta - Singeklub der Lessingschule Hoyerswerda
A la huelga - Joan & José
Streiklied der Fliesenleger - Gebrüder Conrads
Wer-wen - Hartmut König
Treptower Park - Oktoberklub
Russisches Volkslied - Lutschina-Gruppe Moskau
Eine kleine Frage -  Gruppe "pasaremos", Dresden

Zwei Stunden vierzig Minuten - Oktoberklub

Oktoberklub - Sing mit - 3 Jahre Oktoberklub (Eterna, 1969)
(320 kbps, cover art included)

To be continued...

Hanns Eisler - Lieder (Orfeo)

Songs form the greatest part of Hanns Eisler´s work. They range from songs with piano in the late Romantic tradtion to political songs for the masses. For all their stylistic differences, Eisler´s songs have two things in common: for one, they are distinguished by a sovereign mastery of a very rich musical palette of colours, and for the orther, the relationship between text and music is very deliberately organized, at times in mutual conflict.

This album offers songs from two phases in Eisler´s output. The first group comprises works written between 1917 and 1926. They are unpublished songs from Eisler´s apprenticeship plus the first published "Six songs op. 2", which are still indebted to the Viennese School. With the "Zeitungsausschnitte op. 11" and the "Lustige Ecke" Eisler finally distanced himself from his teacher Schönberg.

After an interval of about a decade in which the composer wrote mainly political music, he again turned, after his emigration, to the genre of songs with piano. The songs of this second phase are introverted, diary-like elegies that have as their subjects the situation of alienation in exile and reflections on Germany.

This album was recorded in April and June 1998 at Kleiner Sendesaal in Berlin, with Michaela Kaune (soprano), Dietrich Henschel (baritone) and Axel Bauni (piano).

1 - 4     Frühe Lieder (Rilke, Trakl, Klabund, Kramer)
5 - 10 Galgenlieder
11 - 12 Zwei Lieder (Bethge, Trakl)
13 - 18 Sechs Lieder op. 12 (Claudius, Bethge, Klabund)
19 - 28 Zeitungsausschnitte op. 11
29 - 30 Lustige Ecke
31 - 36 Hölderlin-Fragmente
37 - 41 Anakreontische Fragmente

Hanns Eisler - Lieder (Orfeo)
(256 kbps, cover art included)

Thatcher On Acid - Live at the Brixton Academy, London, 4/18/1987

Thatcher on Acid were an English anarcho-punk band. They formed in Somerset during 1983. Their name is a satirical reference to former UK prime minister Margaret Thatcher. Ben Corrigan, Bob Butler and Andy Tuck also played in Schwartzeneggar with ex-Crass member, Steve Ignorant.

The band opened the anarcho-punk band Conflict's "Gathering of the 5000" show at Brixton Academy, an event which resulted in many arrests and achieved a degree of infamy.

Amongst the hundreds of normal club gigs at venues like the Sir George Robey and Bull And Gate etc, they also supported Conflict at the ‘Feeding Of The Five Thousand’ show piece with Benjamin Zephaniah, in the very immense Brixton Academy. This was by far the biggest gig to date and ended up famously in a mini riot. 

I. Guess Who's Running The Show 
II. New Thing 
III. Riff Raff 
IV. The Cage 
V. The Wind-Up 
VI. Thatcher On Acid 
VII. Another One 
VIII. Daddy 
IX. Is It Art 
XI. Don't Throw The Book At Me 
XII. And I Thought 
XIII. The Taxi 
XIV. How About It 
XV. Bad Eggs

(320 kbps, one track recording)