Donnerstag, 31. Oktober 2013


Tonight's Halloween, the old ceremony of the Christianized feast initially influenced by Celtic harvest festivals, pagan roots and Gaelic Samhain dedicated to remembering the dead. It is the night of costumeparties, carved pumpkins with lanterns inside, bonfires, visiting haunted attractions, telling scary stories or watching horror movies.

Me I will go out tonight with my mate Ed to watch the Rocky Horror Picture Show once again and hang out at the after show party with music from some DJ's. I found a mix by Mr. Weatherall (and I am sure Mr. Adam will know it) that fits just right to this evening. It's a crazy mixture of crazy scary sounds added with raw and mean Rock/Rockabilly.

Enjoy the mix (and sorry that I wasn't able to create a correct link to mixcloud)

Andrew Weatherall - Mulltover Halloween Mix 2011

Mittwoch, 30. Oktober 2013

The Touch Of Your Lips

Today's track is by a wonderful voice from Greece. Nana Mouskouri began to sing at the age of 12 listening to radio broadcasts of singers such as Frank Sinatra, Edith Piaf, Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald. In the early 1950s she studied classical music at the Conservatoire learning to be able singing operas. At the end of the decade she started singing Jazz in nightclubs with a great repertoire of songs by Ella Fitzgerald. In 1962, she met Quincy Jones, who persuaded to her to travel to NYC to record an album of American jazz standards. This track is from this album 'The Girl from Greece Sings', a superb record that shows what a great voice could be able to when she gets the right producer and a perfect bunch of musicians to play with. A timeless piece of music for later in the evening.

Nana Mouskouri - The Touch of your Lips

Dienstag, 29. Oktober 2013

Twanging Tuesday # 2

Back in the summer of 1984 the hottest thing form Great Britain was King Kurt. A band that played a combination of psychobilly and classical rock - suitable for lots of folks. Released on Stiff records and produced by Dave Edmunds, their single 'Destination Zululand' was in this year the common sense of a lot of folks I knew.

Montag, 28. Oktober 2013

Happy Birthday

Congratulations once again to you Martin to your Saturday's birthday. I think you and your family are on a good way to please yourself. Therefore I would like to give you to you some gems from years gone by. Hope you like it and you can recall your memories you had at this time.

Love and all the best wishes to you:

Sonntag, 27. Oktober 2013

Lou Reed 1942 - 2013

In the news I heard that Lou Reed died today. A half year ago he had a liver transplantation and I suppose that he didn't get well since them. I don't think that it is necessary to tell you about him, his life and work. For me he was a person that accompanied me for decades. I loved to hear his distinctive deadpan voice and the development of the so called Ostrich guitar. One more great artist left us forever.

R.I.P. Lou

Lou Reed - Temporary Thing

Samstag, 26. Oktober 2013

40 Records In 40 Years (13/40 - 1986)

Whilst thinking about this year I recognized that two explosions ruled the headlines. The first one will be known by many readers as the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster from end of January when the shuttle broke apart 73 seconds into it's flight. All seven members of the crew died. The spacecraft disintegrated over the the Atlantic Ocean. I still see the family members of those who died looking unbelievable to this disaster.

The second one happened three month later and nothing was the way it was before. Me and some mates with those I use to play football were off for a weekend in the mountains. We hiked around the hills and did some rafting and had fun at all. We had rented a hut in the mountain sitting together in the evening when we noticed the news on the radio. They told that in Ukraine an accident happened in the Nuclear Power Plant. An explosion and fire released large quantities of radioactive particles into the atmosphere that spread over much of the wester USSR and Europe. Discussing the theme and the what will be the consequences for us made us all being silent at this time. We also realized that the radioactive particles will not stay in the atmosphere and fall down on earth. What does it mean to all our food, the water and so on? The risk of cancer will expand and suddenly we realized that our lives could come to an end quickly. We also realized that we've been cheated by the atomic industry and been lied by our politicians. What we agreed on this weekend was that we will look for ways to get rid of them Nuclear Power Plants.

Over all that negative things we watched the FIFA World Cup in Mexico and the rebirth of a new great German team. We lost in a dramatic final game against Argentina after extra time 3:2. But the main game was the quarter final in Mexico City between Argentina and England (four years after the Falkland war). It was a great game and finally England was beaten by 'The Hand of God' and Diego Maradona with an unbelievable solo run.

Some music and video-clips from 1986:

Falco - The song of the year in Germany by an Austrian!

Pet Shop Boys - West End Girls: Perfect pop song

New Order - Bizarre Love Triangle: Seem  like electronic music takes over the commando

Bruce Hornsby - The way it is: A classical tune

Debbie Harry - French Kissing in the USA: One of her finest songs

The Bangles - Walk like an Egyptian: One hit wonder - but good

Prince - Kiss: How good this song is you can see it's cover versions

Elton John - Nikita: Also a perfect pop song in it's way

Run DMC - Walk this way: That's the way you can make a good song better

When I go back to 1986 there are a few records that I remember very well:

Joe Jackson - Big World: Fantastic live recordings from his best songs

Prince - Parade: One of his best recordings

The Triffids - Born Sandy Devotional: Great record from a hardly underrated band

Hüsker Dü - Candy Apple Grey: It's their legacy to me

Anita Baker - Rapture: The return of soul music and a great voice. Less noticed because most people were focused on Whitney Houston

Peter Gabriel - So: It was his masterpiece after leaving Genesis

The Smiths - The Queen is dead: Listened to it over and over

Sting - Bring on the Night:

Paul Simon - Graceland: Mighty comeback with the best of African music

Elvis Costello - Blood and Chocolate:

Timbuk 3 - Greetings from Timbuk 3: Another little gem that is not on my favorite list

The Housemartins - London 0 Hull 4: As on the back sleeve told 'Take Jesus - take Marx - take hope'

They Might Be Giants - same: Alternative Indie-Folk rock at it's best

The Beastie Boys - Licenced to Ill: Eponymous first album

Miles Davis - Tutu: The man with his horn is back - gigantic!

The Cramps - A date with Elvis: The Kings of Psychobilly returned with an awesome record

The The - Infected: Played in every god location at my place

What remains from this year in recollection:

Brain - the first PC-Virus starts to spread the net; Space Shuttle Challenger disintegrates 73 seconds after launch, killing the whole crew; 'Baby Doc' Jean-Claude Duvalier flees from Haiti - the family rule and terror ends finally after 28 years; Revolution in the Philippines - President Marcos escapes to Hawaii after 20 years of rule and Corazon Aquino becomes the first female president of the Philippines; Swedish prime minister Olof Palme was assassinated; former UN Secretary General Kurt Waldheim was accused to be involved in Nazi war crimes during World War II; Berlin discotheque 'La Belle', a usually hangout for American soldiers is bombed by Lybian terrorists; Chernobyl disaster in the Nuclear Power Plant - radio active fallout all over the northern hemisphere; FIFA World Cup was won by Argentina; Abu Nidal a former member of the PLO gets radical and orders attacks in  20 countries, killing or injuring more than 900 people; Iran-Contra affair in America - Oliver North is the leading person to get illegal money to support the Nicaraguan Contras; Desmond Tutu becomes the first black Anglican Church bishop in South Africa.

Movies from 1986 that you can watch again:

Platoon - Oliver North processes his experiences from Vietnam war

Aliens - Sigourney Weaver's first fight against them

Down and out in Beverly Hills - Nick Nolte and Richard Dreyfuss showed us the other side of Hollywood

Stand by me - Fine movie about coming of age

The Mission - Unbelievable pictures of a Jesuit missionary in South America in the 19th century

Absolute Beginners - Julian Temple's review of life in the 1950s

Blue Velvet - Still distressing after all the years

Highlander - 'There can only be one'

The Name of the Rose - Sean Connery as a monk and the big question 'Is laughing suitable to god?'

Round Midnight - The best movie about the Paris Jazz scene in the 1950s

Sid and Nancy - Tragedy

A year with very very good records made it hard to decide which album was the one that means most to me. My decision to Sting was finally easy because of two facts: First I saw him a year ago on the tour this live recordings were made. And second because it was one of the only records me and my girlfriend could agree. After he released his first solo record Sting went on tour playing a lot of his solo material and added some songs from his former band The Police. 'The Dream of the Blue Turtles' is a good record but didn't was eager to see him live. In the approach of his tour became known who will be the members of his band. The names of so prominent jazz musicians as Branford Marsalis, Darryl Jones, Kenny Kirkland and Omar Hakim made my decision easy to buy some tickets. Arriving in the nearly sold out concert hall we met a lot of other folks we knew from our hometown. Most of them were more into jazz and funk then into rock music and they just came because of the band and not because of Sting. What we had was one of the best live concerts ever. They arranged the songs in a more jazzy style with time enough for improvisations for each member of the band. What made this musicians high class is their ability to play rock songs also as well as jazz tunes. The record shows exactly the sum of the performance. Therefore it is a milestone of crossover music.

Sting - Consider Me Gone
Sting - Driven To Tears
Sting - Burn For You
Sting - Tea In The Sahara

Freitag, 25. Oktober 2013

John Peel Day

Today's John Peel day and I thought by myself what I could do to keep his spirit alive. I thought for several days and searched my archive but I couldn't decide what to post. At least I thought that I should continue the way he did. Be open to new sounds and music. Try to be impartially to nowadays music and remind the best of the past. Therefore I've chosen a track by a new musical collective from Austin, Texas. They first release 'Dope Moons' knocked me off. Between Trance, free performing guitars and long improvisations they made a sound that's really incredible. And that's what made John Peel famous - looking out for new sounds and music. Maybe I am the only one that post any peel session or radio shows - but I think I keep his spirit alive in this way.

So take yourself a drink, put your headphones on, play loud and enjoy the music.

R.I.P. John

The Foreign Correspondent - Stories about German Rock Music # 5

Today's band shows another style German musicians are able too. Seeed is a band founded in 1998 in Berlin consisting of eleven  musicians. The mostly play dub and dancehall in accordance with marching band and a sound system. Starting in their early days with untypical instruments like saxophone and trombone they developed their preferences for heavy bass and computer programmed Riddims. Their first big appearance was in 2001 as the opening act for R.E.M. in front of the Cologne cathedral in front of 70.000 people. That was the day when I first noticed them. Me and a few mates went to Cologne to have a little fun over there. Not knowing that the town would be crowded from people from all over Europe. Reason was that R.E.M. made a tour through Europe playing in front of extraordinary sight - and for free. We saw people who came to the place at lunchtime waiting for more than eight hours until the show start on a very hot Saturday.

From then on they get more famous and their records reached the top of the charts in Austria and Germany. That they are an extraordinary live band is maybe one of the reasons the was invited as the leading act of the opening ceremony of the football world cup 2006 in Munich. The songs I've chosen will speak for themselves and I'll present them as video-clips because they are awesome too.

Enjoy and have a good weekend

This is their version of a song that was known by Black:

And a little bit faster

On Days Like This

I posted this song a few weeks ago, but I agree to this song so much right now. It tells a story that most of us know very well, even it was a couple of days ago. Excuse me - it's late at night and I am a little moody right now. But if you can join to this song and it's meaning - I thank you:

I were since weeks, for this day
and dance with joy, about the asphalt
As if it was rhythm , as if there were a song
Me moves on and on, through the streets
Meet you to fetch you, as agreed
At the same time, in the same meeting place, how last sometimes

By the scrum, the crowd of people
If we make a way the well-known way
Along the lanes, to the Rhine terraces
About the bridges, up to the music
Where everything is according to where everybody is on it, around to spin
Where the other wait to start with us, and come away

On days like this, one wishes infinity
On days like these, we still have forever time
Wish I me infinity

Here this is everlasting, forever for today
We stand not quietly, for a whole night
Come I carry, by the people
Is not afraid, I give Eight on you
We can be done, disappear, swim with the stream
Dreh'n our circles, do not come down any more, are weightless

On days like this, one wishes infinity
On days like these, we still have forever time
At this night of the nights which promises us so much
If we experience the best, no end is by view

Donnerstag, 24. Oktober 2013

What Happened To Pub Rock # 3

One of the finest bands in these era was the Sheffield based Ace. The members were assembled from various other professional bands. Inspired by the sound of Tamla Motown they transformed their musical taste into something new. Handmade music combined with the ability to make great songs made their debut record a masterpiece. It's one of these records that has accompanied me since nearly 40 years and is still worth listen to. The band has resolved after three records. A few members joined Frankie Miller (also a musician of the pub rock era with an extraordinary voice - the legitimate successor of Rod Stewart when he crossed the Atlantic ocean). Only one member is still known today: Paul Carrack collaborated with Roxy Music, was a part time member of Squeeze and the leading person by Mike and the Mechanics. Nowadays he used to play his songs with a local Big Band close to Christmas time in Stuttgart. I would have bought the record already on account of the cover. Great idea to place supporters of the Toffees between the fans in Anfield Road.

Ace - Sniffin' About
Ace - 24 Hours
Ace - Know How It Feels

Mittwoch, 23. Oktober 2013

Drove Up From Pedro

Yesterday I had to take part in a rating workshop with colleges from other institutes. It took place in an academy close to Stuttgart airport. Taking the public transportations it will take me hours to get to and from there. So I decided to take the car. And for the fact that I don't listen to the radio I grabbed me a couple of CD's without selecting. One of them was the 1995 album by Mike Watt 'Ball-Hog Or Tugboat?'. For those who don't know the co-founder of Minutemen and Firehose can get more informations here.

I really forgot how great this record was. It was the perfect further development from the sound of Minutemen. It was his first regular solo album and he collaborated on it with Eddie Vedder, Dave Grohl, J. Masics, Even Dando, Henry Rollins, Mark Lanegan and many other well known musicians from the American independent scene. That might be the reason why this record was more successful than his others. By chancing the personal on every track make the album so different. And Mike Watt shows that he is a fantastic bass player.

The only thing I don't understand is the meaning of the title of this record. I know that ball-hog is a perfect throw in American Football and tugboat is a nickname of a famous wrestler. But I don't understand what it means in combination with wrestling.

Mike Watt - Drove up from Pedro
Mike Watt - Against the 70's

Dienstag, 22. Oktober 2013


Even if it is just Tuesday it could be a day to start with a Rockabilly classic by Eddie Cochran. I love this tune and the sense behind when a guy want to visit his girlfriend and the elevator is out of order, arriving and being too tired to huge and the rest. Eddie Cochran gone to fast but his legacy is great.

Have a good week out there.

Eddie Cochran - Twenty Flight Rock

Montag, 21. Oktober 2013

You Ain't Got The Right

Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show was always close to mine since I saw then on the open air in Roskilde, were they finally played naked for the last three songs. They sung about love gone waste and lover that couldn't get together. Also they made songs about losers and one that didn't made it. Sometimes they give me the feeling of not being the one that lost his basics. I remember Ray Sawyer with his tender and suffering voice that helped me often to keep on  going on. His voice shows me how a man could suffer to  someone he's lost. In his voice I can hear that he's lost his biggest love. Great at all..

Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show - Yout ain't got the right

Sonntag, 20. Oktober 2013

Gone, But Not Forgotten # 1

Inspired by the magnificent post from Andrea over at Conventional Records I grabbed out the featured record by Willy DeVille out of my box and listened again to it. During listening to the old songs and remembering the times I bought this record I thought it will be a good idea to start a new series. Not regular but every now and then I will place a post about people (mostly) that died and their legacy is too important to be forgotten. According to Andrea I will start with Willy DeVille. His full history you can read here, so I will limit myself to the essential one.

The first time I became aware of him was when his first record was discussed in a music magazine. The critic (which I called the German Lester Bangs) cheered at the new album with the words:

Take the best of Jagger from the early Stones-phase, from Lou Reed the best of the early Velvet Underground and from Van Morrison the best of the early Them-Phase. Mix it up with some Spanish/Mexican ingredients and ready is the best R&B-record that was recorded since the named made it.

After reading this I went to my local record store to buy me a copy. And after listening to the record I had to agree to the critic in every word. Mink DeVille's first record 'Cabretta' is filled with a lot of great tunes and he made a perfect combination of nowadays R&B, ballads and cover versions. Songs like 'Cadillac Walk', 'Venus on Avenue D' and 'Can't Do Without It' are real classic. Since then I followed his career and noticed most of the records he released.

Mink DeVille - Cadillac Walk (Live in Montreux)

With his third record he turned more and more in a different style and moving away from the classical R&B turning his mind onto more arrangements with horns and strings. In the late 1980s he he moved to New Orleans and changed his and the bands name into Willy Deville. That was also the time when he found his musical spirit in the sound New Orleans. You can hear this spirit especially on maybe the best record that he made in this era 'Backstreets of Desire'. There's no more words to say - the songs speaks for themselves.

I only saw him live once a time. It was in 2008 on his last tour. Knowing that ha always had huge problems with his health me and a lad have taken the chance to see him live in Stuttgart. The show started and he moved on  the stage with a cigarette in his mouth, a moving help at his hand and sat down on a barstool. Then he started playing his set - and it was awesome. Even if he was drawn by his illness he made a great and intimate performance. We both sat there nearly crying - knowing, that his life will go to the end. In 2009 he was diagnosed with Hepatitis C and later this year the doctors discovered  in the course of his Hepatitis C treatment. He died on August 9, 2009. What will remain is his legacy in music by one of the most underrated musicians ever.

Willy DeVille - All In The Name Of Love
Willy DeVille - Lonely Hunter
Willy DeVille - Hey Joe
Willy DeVille - Voodoo Charm

Samstag, 19. Oktober 2013

40 Records in 40 Years (12/40 - 1985)

What difference it makes to be in a relationship. In former times you could do whatever you want to do at every time. Now you have to take care of the sensitives of the one you're with. Not that I want to complain - but you have to sort your life in another way. You have to tell at this day I want to go playing football and at the other day I want to hit the pub to act like a DJ. From these days I knew that agreements will be the part of the game. Me and Susanne had a lot of good days together this year. We spent our holidays in a longer vacation to Yugoslavia. We was there a few years after the dictator Josip Broz Tito died and the whole Yugoslavian federation was peaceful  and save. We  have perceived that the whole state is stuck in the communist ideologies and no one was able to make a little business of his own. If one has gone in the back country, one has got to know the true people. They served us roasted mutton and some rice and we talked about our life whilst we had some shots of local liquor. What happened to Yugoslavia a few years later makes me sad right now.

The main thing I remember this year was Live Aid, organised by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine. Since 'Do they know it's Christmas', the first charity single I followed Bob Geldof's intentions to create a live project on two continents but forget it till the day it take place. I remember very well this day, because I was asked by my girlfriends sister to built up some shelfs in her room. While I was working, I asked her to switch on the TV so I can watch and listen Live Aid alongside. The more and more the concert in London continued the more we were fascinated by the different appearances of the artist. Most of them played their well known songs but what is still in my head, is the appearance of Elvis Costello. He showed up the stage alone with his guitar and introduced an old northern English folk song: His version of 'All you need is love' was the final aggregation of the whole event. One more example why E.C. is one of the greatest artists on earth.

Here's a small choice of songs that was released in 1985 - some of them I still like, some that was popular this year:

The Jesus and Mary Jane: Great debut - Noise, just like honey

Sting: His first record after Police's split. His political statement to Reagan's star wars plans.

Tom Petty: Back after a long time with a psychedelic sound

The Cure: Also back again - now not as somber as before

The Eurythmics: Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart appears with a fantastic record

Prefab Sprout: Listened so often to this song

The Waterboys: Since then I know Brigadoon

Paul Hardcastle: This year's song against the war

Kate Bush: She gave us a wonderful song and a superb video

And what most of my mates hated (and hate still):

Which records from 1985 are worth it that one remembers them:

The Mekons - Fear and Whiskey: The return of the giants with a perfect combination of punk style and country. Still a monument of a record.

Michael Franks - Skin Dive: One of his best records. Clear voice meets fusion jazz.

Roy Harper - Whatever Happened To Jugula: Roy Harper made one of his best records. 

Chris Isaak - Silvertone: His first record is still a perfect combination of Americana, Rockabilly and Rock'n'Roll

Sisters of Mercy - First and Last and Always: Post punk meets doom rock

Eurythmics - Be Yourself Tonight: A superb mixture of great songs with the awesome voice of Annie

Scritti Politti - Cupid & Psyche 85: Sophisticated pop - only possible to make at this time

Sting - The Dream of the Blue Turtle: Everybody's favorite of the year

Prefab Sprout - Steve McQueen: One of the best records ever

The Waterboys - This is the Sea: Another album full of timeless songs

The Fall - This Nation's Saving Grace: Mostly I grab this record out of my box when I want listen to MES

Tom Waits - Rain Dogs: Now he's able to make songs with hooks

The Jesus and Mary Jane - Psychocandy: Noisy guitars with honey

Once there was a time, when it was impossible to get a movie on DVD. That's what we saw in this year:

Out of Africa: Maybe one of the best love movies that has been made

Year of the Dragon: Mickey Rourke as a cop in Chinatown

Silverado: The return of a classic western movie

Runaway Train: Fantastic escape from an Alaskan prison with Jon Voigt

Pale Rider: Another good western movie with Clint Eastwood

My Beautiful Laundrette: Stephen Frears and Daniel Day Lewis in a melodrama about racism and friendship

Letter to Brezhnew: A touch love story between east and west. 

Kiss of the Spider Woman: William Hurt as it's best. A political imprisoned and a gay man in Brazilian prison recapitulate their life and dreams

The Falcon and the Snowman: Great story and fantastic soundtrack

The Color Purple: Most of us saw this movie from Spielberg with Whoopie Goldberg

What has moved the world and me this year:

From now on you have to pay if you want to use Swiss highways; Mikhail Gorbachev is the new General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union; The Greenpeace vessel Rainbow Warrior is bombed and sunk in Auckland harbour by French DGSE agents; Scientists of the British Antarctic Survey announce discovery of the ozone hole; Schengen-Agreement igned between certain member states of the European Economic Community, creating the Schengen Area, a bloc of (at this time) five states with no internal border controls; Live Aid pop concerts in London and Philadelphia raise over £50 million for famine relief in EthiopiaThe cruise ship Achille Lauro is hijacked in the Mediterranean Sea by 4 heavily armed Palestinian terrorists. One passenger, American Leon Klinghoffer, is killed; a lot of air plane disasters all over the year - and also hijacking, too much to name them all.

There are a bunch of records released in 1985 that would be in a lot of 'Best-of-ever'-charts like the Prefab Sprout's 'Steve McQueen' what's one of my favorite records ever. Or Roy Harper, The Eurhythmics, The Mekons or Tom Waits. But the record from 1985 that grown deeply to my heart is from the Pogues. There second record is filled with a big basked full of great songs and followed me nearly 30 years in what kind of mood or relationship I was in. I think this record is the completest one they have ever made (ok 'If I should fall from grace with god' comes very close to it). The album's title is taken from a quotation often missatributed to Winston Churchill: 'Don't talk to me about naval tradition. It's nothing but rum, sodomy, and the lash'. The artwork is based on the Raft of the Medusa, a painting by Théodore Géricault, with the band members' faces replacing those of the men on the raft. 

On this record Philip Chevron joined the band on guitar and they turned away from covering song to their own material. Although they made some ultimate versions of some well known songs like 'A pair of Brown Eyes', 'And the Band Played Waltzing Mathilda'. All in all this one of the few records I can listen from start to end without it becomes dull.

The Pogues - And The Band Played Waltzing Mathilda
The Pogues - Dirty Old Town
The Pogues - The Sick Bed Of Chuchulainn
The Pogues - The Old Main Drag
The Pogues - Sally Maclennane

Freitag, 18. Oktober 2013

The Foreign Correspondent - Stories about German Rock Music # 4

The idea behind this series is to write about German music. I take the chance to cross the border to Switzerland and may introduce you to one of the best musicians coming from there. Stephan Eicher sings his songs in a variety of languages, including French, German, English, Italian and Swiss-German - sometimes he changes the language in the same piece. After he finished study at an art-school in Bern he released his first record together with his brother Martin as 'Grauzone'. The single 'Eisbär' was one of the most successful singles of the so called New German Wave. A real monument of reduced music - just a few programmed sequences and a guitar with a monotone voice.

His predilection for French chansons a la Serge Gainsbourg and Jaques Dutronc was the main influence for his next record. It has a very melancholic atmosphere what was the general major mood in this time and most of the songs are about loneliness. In the late 1980s he started his collaboration with the Frensh author Philippe Dijan which writes in his novels also a lot about loneliness. In 1991 he reached the top of the Swiss album charts with his album 'Engelberg'. Engelberg is a small village in central Switzerland where Stephan Eicher used to life a part of his live. This and the following record 'Carcassonne' where stamped by a relaxed basic position of all musicians. Most of the songs were recorded live in the studio with less overdubs. Eicher collected for his records a lot of excellent musicians like Pino Palladino on bass, Manu Katché on drums and Sonny Landreth on guitar. He had always the plan to realize projects that looked crazy on the first sight. Also his world tour that led him to Africa and south-east Asia.

Ten years ago he started a project called 'With the taxi from Hamburg to Palermo - a musical journey through the cultures' where he collaborated in one song with Herbert Grönemeyer and Max Gazzé:

While I write this post I listen to his records again and I have to say nothing vanished from his greatness. This are some songs from his record Carcassonne that I like best after all years. Give him a chance, listen and enjoy.

Stephan Eicher - Des hauts, des bas
Stephan Eicher - Hope
Stephan Eicher - La mi los
Stephan Eicher - Ni remords, ni regrets

Donnerstag, 17. Oktober 2013

What Happened To Pub Rock # 2

Last week I released a post where I asked what happened to pub rock. The answer you can read in my post. I take this for a chance to start a little series about bands from this era and what happened to them. This era didn't last for a long time but it was between the old days of that Woodstock inspired music, the overdubbed and soulless artists and the dawning of the punk movement. It was mostly handmade music played in small pubs. Therefore you had to know how to handle your instrument and you also had to have a feeling for good songs that satisfies your audience.

I used to listen to this music from the middle of the 1970s to the end of it. When I listen now to this songs they are often still great but they remind me on times when this kinda songs meant a lot to me. I will start with a band called Ducks Deluxe. They were formed by former members/roadies from Help Yourself, Flaming Groovies and Brinsley Schwarz. Main members were Sean Tyla and Mick Garvey (who later was the leader of The Motors - but this is another story to be told). They were famous for their highly energetic music. They worked and performed as a band for only a short period from 1972 until 1975 when they split. Ironically they had a little success on selling their records after thy split. But the members were found later in bands like Graham Parker's Rumour, The Tyla Gang and The Motors. After their reunion they are still on tour in Europe backed up with Brinsley Schwarz.

Ducks Deluxe - Daddy Put The Bump
Ducks Deluxe - Don't Mind Rockin Tonight
Ducks Deluxe - It's All Over Now

Mittwoch, 16. Oktober 2013


My Brother Martin recommended the first album by London Grammar a few days ago as one of his top records of 2013. Curiously what kind of music they play I searched for the record and was astonished how good they are. It's a perfect symbiosis between ambient and ethereal sound added with a melancholy guitar and the powerful voice of Hannah Reid which reminds me a little bit to Florence Welch. They released their first full record a few weeks ago and entered the top ten in Australia and France. Give them a chance - it will be worth.

London Grammar - Metal And Dust

Montag, 14. Oktober 2013

London Calling

Had a good and relaxed weekend behind me and power enough for another week in business. Last Saturday we my brother, C. and me met for a few beer before she's leaving in our favorite pub. Later we went together to an event. In our town there's a place where younger people where educated as special subject teachers for sports, IT and housekeeping. C. had taken this education for over 25 years ago and knows still a lot of people that came to this event to meet the former class-mates. Once a year a lot of former students meet for a tournament in volleyball and afterwards for a party. These parties has tradition over long long years. In my younger times me and my lads went to these parties to check out the female students. I remember very special evenings there - but this might be another story to be told. Anyway, the evening started with a local band. They use to play two acoustic guitars added with some percussion. The play well known songs in their very own arrangements. Later that night they had some DJ's doing their thing. It's funny because one of them is the son of an old friend from C. I was surprised what kind of music these young kids gave us. Later they gave us 30 minutes of root reggae. Fantastic. So I think we can start the week with a classic tune from The Clash - now in a dub version - I think Joe Strummer would like.

Enjoy and have a good week.

Dub Spencer & Trance Hill - London Calling

Sonntag, 13. Oktober 2013

Yoo Doo Right

This is the last weekend that C. and I can spent together for a longer time. During the last weeks we made plans to found a little company trading with self designed rings and bracelets. We intend to buy the precious stones in Sri Lanka and also allow to produce the objects there. Therefore C. will go down there to get the things started. In the interim I will follow my occupation and live quite on normally.

Todays track is taken from the first Can record 'Monster Movie' and still a classic from the Krautrock era.

Can - Voo Doo Right

Samstag, 12. Oktober 2013

40 Records In 40 Years (11/40 - 1984)

As said we started last year to play football for our favorite pub. We used to meet once or twice a week in the late afternoon to play with other football-mad lads on a public playground for a match. During the weekends we played a lot amateur competitions that took place in near era. Finally there were four teams that dominated these competitions - ours was one of them. Throughout the following years we had a lot of great games at different places. Many times we won the competitions and we used to play the semi-finals as a minimum. I remember the evenings when we celebrated our success in our local pub. One evening I took the chance to move to the turntable to present the audience my musical taste. One hour later another mate from our team wanted to go  on put some records on by his own choice. This was the start of our DJ-circle - long before the DJ-cult started. From this time on we were six lads and we used to play our music alternately on Friday and Saturday. It was a wide spread of music that reached from Funk and Soul over classic rock and rockabilly onto the new and older stuff from Britain and the USA. Every DJ grabbed his own records and played it for five/six hours. One day the owner of the pub mad us an offer that each of us could buy a few records each month on his calculation when we play them in the pub. That's one of reason I my record collection expanded this days.

1984 was also the year I first fell really in love with a girl. After some affairs all over the last years I met Susanne who was a close fried to a female college. She knew me from playing my records in the pub but was to shy to get in contact with me. So she took the way over her girlfriend. We got really quick in contact and fell in love to each other. After a short trip to Italy we decided to life together. A few month later she pulled to me. It was the start of another chapter in  my life. More next.

And here again a small choice of songs that dominated the charts or mean a lot to me::

George Michael - maybe the smoothest song of the year in the charts (or was it Stevie Wonder with I just called to say I love you?)

Frankie Goes To Hollywood - with a big bang and attitude from  Liverpool

Ultravox and their version of the last day on earth

Alphaville from Germany with their second smash hit

Chaka Khan - back in the charts again

Echo and the Bunnymen - some of my all time favorites

The Style Council - music of quality and distinction

Sade - perfect combination from jazzy moods and a great voice

Prefab Sprout - Paddy McAlloon appears

Icicle Works - Also a song I listened these days

Let go over to the records that was released in 1984:

The Smiths - same: Their first record. I'm a fan since then

Joe Jackson - Body and Soul: Perfect mix of pop and jazz - timeless

The Style Council - Café Bleu: Paul Weller arrived at his new sound

R.E.M. - Reckoning: Perfect College Rock from Athens GA

Echo and the Bunnymen - Ocean Rain: Good to have Ian McCulloch back

Nick Cave - From Here To Eternity: Their debut - something big and dark from down under

The Waterboys - A Pagan Place: Not only because of the trumpet solo on the title track

Sade - Diamond Life: This years sound most of could agree to

Minutemen - Double Nickels On The Dime: Their monument. A perfect combination of punk rock, funk, country and jazz. Also statements to the American way of life

Hüsker Dü - Zen Arcade: Another monument of post punk released on SST

The Go-Betweens - Spring Hill Fair: Just good music and great songs

Scott Walker - Climate of Hunter: The man and his voice is back after long years

Cocteau Twins - Treasure: Superb reduced music

What we saw when we went to the cinema:

Amadeus - Milos Forman shows what happened when the great composer Salieri meet the genius of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Birdy - One of the best post Vietnam war movies with a great Matthew Modine and Nicolas Cage

Blood Simple - The Cohn brothers appear with a great movie

The Company of Wolves - British gothic horror and fantasy

The Hotel New Hampshire - Great movie based on a novel by John Irving

Paris, Texas - Arty movie by Wim Wenders

Stop Making Sense - Unforgettable The Talking Heads in Concert

And of course: Ghostbusters, Beverly Hills Cop and Gremlins

What was in the news this year::

Apple places Macintosh personal computer on sale in the United States; the Winter Olympics are held in Sarajevo/Yugoslavia; German minister of defense retires general Kiessling because he was suspected of being assessed homosexual - some month later he was found innocent; Konstantin Tschernenko get the president of the USSR; the former boxer Gustav 'Bubi' Scholz get arrested under suspicion to shot down his wife and killed her under heavy influence of alcohol; Ronald Reagan announces the bombardment of Russia during a microphone test and regrets behind his 'joke`;Assassination of Indira Gandhi by her two Sikh security guards - Anti Sikh riots breaking out and more than 10.000 Sikhs were slaughtered; Band Aid records the charity single 'Do they know it's Christmas'; Bhopal Disaster methyl isocyanate leak from a Union Carbide pesticide plant in BhopalMadhya PradeshIndia, kills more than 8,000 people outright and injures over half a million (with more later dying from their injuries the death toll reaches 23,000+) in the worst industrial disaster in history.

Talk Talk released their second record in 1984 and it was the breakthrough of the band around her founder Mark Hollis. There was a lot of commercial successful singles like 'Dum Dum Girl', 'Such A Shame' and 'It's my life' which are recommended as their best. But I prefer more songs like 'Renée', 'Does Caroline Knew' and 'It's you' for them reduced speed and their arrangements. The best versions of these songs came out a few years later on a live-record called London 1986 released in the last year of the last century. While I write these words I listen to the record once again and I find new little things I didn't realized the last times. It is one of these timeless records you would take to a lonely island.

Talk Talk - Renée
Talk Talk - Does Caroline Know
Talk Talk - It's You
Talk Talk - Tomorrow Started

Freitag, 11. Oktober 2013

The Foreign Correspondent - Stories About German Rock Music # 3

In the first posts I recommended you some bands which was formed in the era of German punk in the late 1970s / early 1980s. Their musical influence was based on the ideas of punk and new wave. Their greatest achievement was, that could now be sung in German, without having a bad conscience. The band was founded in 1985 by Sven Regener in a time when the so called NDW had passed its zenith and was threatening to be a vacuum of interesting new German music. There was a small band that tried to make a little bit their own music. Influenced by several genres they started to make a kind of melancholic chanson-, pop- and rockmusic with guitar, bass, drums and voice/trumpet.

On their first records the songs were sung in English. First time I recognized Element of Crime was in 1987 when they released their album 'Try to be Mensch'. I was in my favorite record shop looking through the new entries when I saw a record that cover reminds me on one of my favorite records. (guess you know which one it is). By reading the credits I was astonished, that this was a German band. And much more astonished as I saw that this record was produced by the great John Cale. Thinking that he can't fail I bought this record and was surprised what great songs they are able to write.

From this time on I followed the band and saw them four or five times live. Wherever I saw them playing they have managed to create an intimate family atmosphere. In the late 1980s they made some less successful experiment of interpreting the songs of Kurt Weil and after a period with only a few income they decided to sing their songs in their mother language. In 1991 they released their first album with full songs in German. It was very successful and I remember that this was the band a lot of people could arrange. There songs turned more and more into an austere and fragile sound with less instruments but setting some highlights with a slide guitar or a trombone. They still very successful in Germany and their last record from 2009 'Immer da wo du bist bin ich nie' (Always there where you are I'm never).

In addition to his band, Sven Regener has turned to writing. He made some novels about living in Berlin in the arty scene during the time when the wall came down. It was amazing because all the people he described could be the ones I knew in this time at my place. It is also a movie movie made based on the novel called 'Herr Lehmann'. It has also a very good soundtrack with acts like 'Fat Gadet' and more.

Element of Crime - Nervous & Blue
Element of Crime - Blaulicht und Zwielicht
Element of Crime - Damals hinterm Mond
Element of Crime - Vier Stunden vor Elbe 1

Donnerstag, 10. Oktober 2013


Another day off because I have to go to a funeral in the early afternoon. A close girlfriend died last weekend at the age of 50 on pancreatic cancer. The only good is that her suffering has come to an end. Not enough of this, yesterday I have found out that The Pogues guitar player Phil Chevron has died on cancer too. I played this song on my Dad's funeral because I think it's the best way to say good-bye.

RIP Natalina & Phil

Warren Zevon - Keep Me In Your Heart

Mittwoch, 9. Oktober 2013

What Happened To Pub Rock?

The short break is over - I'll have to go back to my desk in the office. I don't wanna know how much mails appeared in the last days that wanted to be answered. Anyway I think I'll answer them step by step. A few days ago I was in contact with Mr. Mondo via twitter. We talked a little bit about Mickey Jupp and his early record 'The Flaming Red Boot'-record. Mickey Jupp played guitar and piano in his band Legend. The released a few records in the early 1970s. They were all very good but too less people bought the records to be successful and the band split. In 1977 he started a career as a solo artist and made some good rhythm and blues records again. A lot of his songs was covered by Elkie Brooks, Joe Cocker, Kursaal Flyers, Nick Lowe and Dave Edmunds. The most success he had when he signed to STIFF-records.
In the days STIFF-records were founded they signed a few bands from the so called pub-rock era as Dr. Feelgood , The Tyla Gang and Nick Lowe. All these bands were hardly trained playing in pubs for local audience. That might be the reason why they know how to handle their instruments and their feeling for good songs. In this background could raise also acts like Elvis Costello and The Pogues.

I remember the days in the early 1980s in my hometown when there were five or six pubs local bands could play. But more and more pubs like these disappeared or changed their style. Well, it might sound sentimentally but sometimes I miss these days when you go out for a beer and listen to some bands.

So enjoy these songs:

Mickey Jupp - Another Guy
Mickey Jupp - Lorraine (Part One)

Dienstag, 8. Oktober 2013

Come With Me

It's the last day reducing my overtime. So I will make another slow and moody day before I start working again. Today's song is from Tania Maria, one of the most famous Brazilian artists. She's all: singer, artist, composer, bandleader and piano player. Her Brazilian-style music is mostly vocal with a little touch of pop and very often jazzy. Her style includes samba and bossa but also a bit of Afro-Latin and Jazz fusion.

This track is from her 1982 record with the same title.
Have also a nice day.

Tania Maria Come With Me