Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Keeping Up with the Germans

A German feel to the day...  A meeting with Peter Anders, Director of the Goethe Institut, to hear about their 25 years in China celebrations (and finding out that Dusseldorf band Stabil Elite did a gig in Beijing last week, unbeknownst to me); lunch at Backyard Cafe - a particular favourite among local German businessmen; a listen to Stabil Elite's Douze Pouze (which made my missing them in the flesh even more frustrating); and reading a book called Keeping Up with the Germans: a History of Anglo-German Encounters - written by a German who's lived in London for long enough to know the score - which I guess would involve penalties.
As a teenager I was fascinated by Germany: starting with Grimms fairy tales, Porsche and Borussia Monchengladbach, the Olympics & World Cup of 72 & 74, the whole Cold War Berlin vibe, Herzog & Fassbender, and of course Krautrock... Which brings me onto Gunter Korber who died yesterday. He was a behind-the-scenes label hero, first at Brain before starting up Sky Records. Those late 70s / early 80s albums by Rother, Cluster, Roedelius, Tietchens etc played a big part in my music education. We corresponded a bit but I never met him.   
And through German music, I met one of my best and oldest friends, Wolfgang Fenchel. 
So Germany, Zum Wohl! (as Cluster would say). 

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