My life in the bush of ghosts

Searching the roots of ambient or so called world music you can’t ignore Brian Eno and David Byrne. While Eno worked mostly as a producer and Byrne was still a member of Talking Heads they got some time to make a record which was quite ahead of the times in 1981. In this time ist was very ambitious and had the usual listening habits put to the test. Listening to this music 30 years later I recognize a lot of ingredients I hear in nowadays Trance and Ambition music. So let’s raise the glass to yesterday’s heroes which was always one step ahead.
Happy Friday and a wonderful weekend

Woman made the devil

Today is a Catholic holiday and we do not operate in southern Germany. Therefore I give a little gem of African music to you all. I don’t know much about Bongos Ikwue than that they are are a band from Nigeria. It is a pity that we listen to some music from the African continent. The local musicians are trying hard to make good and challenging music.I grabbed this tune a few month ago and I play it often for finishing the day. Not really blues, not jazzy or pop. Just a good song to enjoy.

Bongos Ikwue – Woman made the devil

You get what you give

Stumbled yesterday into the blog of Nick Heyward, where he posted his holiday top 10. I took his number one to publish, because it was one of my late 90s favorites. Gregg Alexander is an American singer/songwriter who got famous with the song ‘You get what you give’ and following his record ‘Maybe you got brainwashed too’. Later he stopped making records for producing acts like Ronan Keating. Let’s describe this song with the words of Mr. Heyward: It’s like Todd Rundgren on a quadruple espresso.
Enjoy and have a good time all out there.

If the news make you sad , don’t watch it

Broken Records are a six-piece indie folk band from Edinburgh, Scotland, which formed in December 2006. Their first release was a single ‘If the news make you sad, don’t watch’ it. Originally formed as a three-piece folk band they added after a few gigs three more members to complete their sound with bass, drums, cello and trumpet. It’s a real great tune, worth listen more times than on shuffle. Nice lyrics also.

Go watch the TV
Tell me what you see
All these bleedin’ wounds
And rising seas
They dont mean much to me
From the couch here
I plead apathy

And politicians
They dont speak for me
A wreck’s a wreck
At least that’s what i see
And your faith you keep
Is it dark now? It’s waiting for me.
So stop the bad dreams,
Stop the headaches
And leave a little light
When you say It’s alright
Like when you say its alright
Well i guess it is

And she says,
“I know your doubts
But know this world brought you to me
So just be satisfied
So just be satisfied
Until the morning comes
Just lie here in my arms”

Go watch the TV
Tell me what you see
Any hope and love, any realized dreams?
Thats what i want to see
No more pain no tears, no more grief

So stop the bad dreams, stop the headaches,
And leave a little light
Like when you say it’s alright
Like when you say it’s alright

So sing to me I love it when
You sing to me I love it when
You sing to me I love it when
You sing to me I love it when
You sing

Broken Record – If the news make you sad

His name is Luca

A few week ago Luca answered some random thoughts over at TVV. He’s steady follower of our blogs and a brilliant writer but of many reasons not willing to start a blog on his own. On his shuffle appeared Paolo Conte with Max, a song I love for many years. Luca wondered why most Blogger ignore Italian Music. 
I can’t speak for all people from other countries but in the 80s Italian pop music was very successful in Germany. And when I say pop music I mean pop music. If you was invited to some parties someone suddenly stopped the music to switch onto Drupi, Al Bano & Romina Power and all that stuff. Those who still listen to Steppenwolf and those who had their ears open for new sounds could not identify with this songs. Not only that they don’t understand the language (if we were interested in this, we could have asked one of the Italians who are also present), most of them called it a female music and denied womens expertise in quality music.
 Not that I will call myself an expert in Italian music, there some artists I really like and listen to from time to time. Of course Adriano Celentano – maybe the most popular Italian singer. Many will know him from his 80s trash movies or from songs like ‘Azzurro’. But less people know that he is a critical person against the government. So he used his popularity to stand up together with Roberto Benghini against Berlusconi in a TV show at the prime time. This letter of apology to Berlusconi is impossible in Germany. He also denounced inflation, rising gasoline prices and corrupt politicians in ‘Svalutation’ (in the mid 70s). 
Another one I prefer is Paolo Conte. Not knowing the meaning of his words he comes to me in a sentimental mood – mostly late at night and we share a glass of red wine and listen to his songs about love, desire and restlessness.
Another one I listen to is Lucio Dalla, died last year on stage by an heart attack. One of his most famous songs, Caruso (1986), a tribute to the opera singer Enrico Caruso, has been covered by numerous singers. The versions of Luciano Pavarotti and Andrea Bocelli sold many million copies worldwide. But I prefer this one.
Questo deve bastare per ora. Vi auguro un buon tempo

Cologne’s local hero

Way back in the late 70s a lot of German musicians tried also to go other ways than playing mainstream, progress rock or jazz thing. Influenced by British and American punk and New Wave some of them have managed to combine these influences with their understanding of music. Some of them got well know in Germany riding the wave on the so called New German Wave others will be remembered by some insiders and never got more than local heroes.
One of them is Jürgen Zeltinger (called ‘de plaat’ what meas ‘the bald’). He formed a band with Jaki Liebezeit (former drummer by CAN) and Arno Steffen (guitar, often hired for studio recordings or as a tour guitarist) to play some classic rock and also some standards. They played their first gig round carnival 1979 in a small club where they taped this concert for their first record. A guy in my local record store recommended me this record an I was astonished of this guys. I recognized, that they had really fun playing this concert. Probably the most unusual was that they started singing a classical German folk song that turned at the end into a punk version. 
Then they played ‘Müngersdorfer Stadion’ – the German version of the Ramones Rockaway Beach, sung in typical Cologne dialect so the rest of the nation had problems to understand. At least they covered Lou Reed and his ‘Walk on the wild side’ – also translated into their dialect. While Lou Reed has taken on transsexuality a a them, Zeltinger sings about an old prostitute who waits in vain for the whole evening to a suitor. Saw him live a couple of years later and had real fun on his show.

Open Up Your Door

I’m still impressed about today post from TVV telling us about the story behind one of his favorite records. Rarely have I read such a personal and touching lines in a blog. This was the occasion to look in my collection of songs that suit for me in a similar way to the heart. One of them is from the very underrated musician and producer Richard Hawley. He released more than seven records during the last 12 years – most of them critical praise them, leading many big names such as Coldplay, Radiohead and R.E.M. to enthuse about Hawley’s work. Hope, that someday he will get the success he should have.