BRIGITTE MIRA, Die alte Clofrau, 1963

clofrau-frontdie-alte-clofraumit-dem-triebwagen-nach-italienMost people will probably only shrug their shoulders when they hear these songs, but to me this record seems almost unreal. It´s like this record was made for Berlin Beatet Bestes and on so many levels!

1. It is an advertisement record,

2. It was privately pressed for a Berlin car dealer

3. It´s got a cartoon sleeve

4. The two  risqué songs are sung by local Berlin star Brigitte Mira, an actress who frequently worked with Fassbinder

5. The music is in sort of a Dixieland Jazz style

6.  Of course it´s also never been reissued.

What more can I ask for?

In a way these two risqué songs, backed by Heinrich Riethmüller, predate Brigitte Mira´s bold later work. For some unknown reason the Berlin car dealer Bunde had the idea to advertize for his business with some naughty songs. Some sleeves even had “Der kesse Gruss vom Autohaus Bunde” ( Naughty greetings from Autohaus Bunde) stamped on the front. You can see this stamp on a copy that some greedy person is trying to sell on Ebay for the ridiculous amount of 35 Euros.  Of course nobody will ever buy it. Listen to the songs and you´ll see why. Last week I paid less than 50 cents in a thrift store and I think that´s  much more appropriate. Most likely it was the name that got the seller to put a higher price tag on this record.

Brigitte Mira (1910-2005) was most famous for the work she did with Rainer Werner Fassbinder. It was Fassbinder´s genius to cast people like Brigitte Mira for his art films. She had been  a popular German actress since the 1940s, but was mostly known for her comedies. Mira´s personal courage made her steer off the beaten path and towards serious, more challenging roles, like in Ali:Fear Eats The Soul (1974).

By the early 70s Fassbinder regularly worked for German television. “Wie ein Vogel auf dem Draht” was a TV-show directed by Fassbinder for Brigitte Mira. German television never got more campy than this:

Despite her adventurous career, in the eyes of  the majority of the German public,  Brigitte Mira remained „the archetypal funny old Berlinerin with a heart.” (The Guardian). But in the 70s Brigitte Mira basically had two careers, appearing in cutting-edge art films and also starring in funny popular films and on television (most prominently in the series Drei Damen vom Grill).

Finally: the music.

Die alte Clofrau translates to “The Old Toilet Lady”. In the song she tells the story of her life as a bathroom attendant. A blues song about how she flushes the toilet for the very last time…

BRIGITTE MIRA, Die alte Clofrau, 1963

Triebwagen is railcar, but Trieb also means sex drive. Mit dem Triebwagen nach Italien translates to “Travelling to Italy by railcar”.  The lyrics deal with the cliché that Italian men are sexually potent. So horny female German tourists travel to Italy in search of sexual adventures…

BRIGITTE MIRA, Mit dem Triebwagen nach Italien, 1963

The artwork of this record is not signed. I have a vague suspicion who could have done it but so far I can not put a name to it.


MENA MATOS, O Noivo, 1961

Mena Matos is shouting and screaming and then he´s singing softly like a crooner but whatever he did, it did make people go Gargalhadas – burst into laughter.

I like the way he seems to be imitating the teen singers of the 50´s/early 60´s:

MENA MATOS, O Noivo, 1961

MENA MATOS, Retalhos do fado, 1961

MENA MATOS, Totobola, 1961

MENA MATOS, Maneiras de rir, 1961

DUO HUMORISTICO CRISPIM, Os Meninos de agora, 1969

These two gentlemen are making fun of the teenagers who would go to the hair dresser, only to have very little hair actually cut. I think that Duo Humoristico might have had a point there. But what about the polar bear?

Here´s some scraps from a Portuguese magazine I found in a junk shop:

Funny fado songs from a forgotten time…

DUO HUMORISTICO CRISPIM, Os Meninos de agora, 1969

DUO HUMORISTICO CRISPIM, Pais, eu quero broas, 1969

DUO HUMORISTICO CRISPIM, Mais coisas a vista, 1969

DUO HUMORISTICO CRISPIM, Marinheiro d´águas turvas 1969

VITOR ROSADO, As broncos e as alegrias do zé povinho, 1969

Marcos told me that the character this gentleman is impersonating, is a traditional folk figure. Actually he´s one of the first Portuguese cartoon characters. Marcos should know, he works in Bedeteca, Lisbon’s only comics library.

I forgot the name of the character but seeing his bare ass on the cover was an image I just couldn´t pass up….

VITOR ROSADO, As broncos e as alegrias do zé povinho, 1969

VITOR ROSADO, O alfaiate vira-casacas (I PARTE), 1969

VITOR ROSADO, O alfaiate vira-casacas (II PARTE), 1969

VITOR ROSADO, Hamlet, 1969

DOMINGOS PEREIRA (Sr.Peles), Seleccao Nacional, 1970

The sad and sentimental fados might be the most well-known ones, but Sr. Peles soccer songs are definitely fados too. Compared to most German football related songs, these  are in a league of its own. German football songs can be funny but I have yet to hear any, that are of this musical caliber. Now of course Domingos Pereira is a die-hard fan of the Portuguese team, but why must he insist, that the Portuguese team is better than the Brazilian one?

DOMINGOS PEREIRA, Seleccao Nacional, 1970

DOMINGOS PEREIRA, Peles Peles & Peles, 1970

DOMINGOS PEREIRA, Votos em abril, 1970

DOMINGOS PEREIRA, Senhorio fala baixinho, 1970

BERNHARD FRANK, Eingeladen, 1983

Happy Easter everyone! It´s springtime and finally Berlin is nice and sunny. Too bad I have to stay in all the time to work but I´m not complaining. It did not leave too much time to work on this blog though and I hope I´ll do better this month. So far it doesn´t look like it.

Found this 45 in a record store for 1 Euro a couple of weeks ago. It´s a little embarrassing but the fact that I bought it tells a lot about me.  Apart from the much saner image that I might have of myself,  I really do seem to be one of those “completist” collectors. I would buy any record Bernhard Frank made, even if it was really, really bad.

And this is bad. Oh man, Bernhard Frank, what did you think?!! This is a long way from his cool stuff. Then again I really like this record too. Non-German speaking people might miss some of the meaning, but there are some pretty funny lines in Eingeladen (Invited to the party of Dieter and Susi). The b-side Mit anderen Worten ( In other words) is pretty standard German Schlager fare but I still feel that Bernhard Frank can do no wrong. Bernhard Frank only wrote good songs, even if they were bad.

The local Berlin Hansa label was founded in 1964 by Christian Bruhn and the sons of  Will Meisel Thomas and Peter Meisel. In 1973 they started a sub-label to promote artists and music that were a little more off-the-beaten-path than their mainstream material: der andere song (The other song).

The sleeve was designed by popular cartoonist Arne (Arne Leihberg, 1912- 1988), longtime contributer to the biggest Berlin newspaper.

Eingeladen is “bad”,  but very, very catchy, so beware: listen at your own risk. You´ll have a hard time getting the song  out of your ears again…

BERNHARD FRANK, Eingeladen (Auf der Party von Dieter und Susi), 1983

BERNHARD FRANK, Mit anderen Worten, 1983

CARAMBA, Hubba-Hubba-Zoot-Zoot, 1981

Hubba-Hubba-Zoot-Zoot is easily among  the worst songs ever recorded. Pure nonsense.

This is the German realease of this Swedish group´s hit song. The sleeve was illustrated by Berlin cartoonist Ane (Aribert Nesslinger).

The song was also used in the German pop-music/comedy series Bananas:

One more legendary clip from Bananas. The Zeltinger Band from Cologne:

CARAMBA, Hubba-Hubba-Zoot-Zoot, 1981

CARAMBA, Donna Maya, 1981

TED´S ROCK´N´ROLL BAND, Tutti Frutti, 1956

Before I´ll get to this week´s posts I´d like to let you know about a book and DVD of a fellow collector. Ralf Wenzel from Kassel recently finished putting together a pretty impressive and complete overview of the Klingende Post advertisement records.  I posted a bunch of those last January and later helped out Ralf with some high-resolution scans and music files. He also made a nice website:

(Das erste Buch über die Geschichte der Klingende Post Werbeschallplatten, liebevoll geschrieben und zusammengestellt von Ralf Wenzel, ist soeben erschienen. Die dazugehörige Klingende Post Webseite ist ebenfalls sehr gelungen und übersichtlich. Ohne so sympathische Verrückte wie Ralf, die auch an den Rändern der Popmusik wandeln und diese Ränder so wichtig nehmen, wäre die ganze Popmusik nichts. Irgendwann wandert schließlich alles mal an den Rand.

Das Buch gibt es sogar in zwei Versionen: als DVD (Buch im PDF-Format mit Musikteil und klassisch auf  gedrucktem Papier. Einfach mal anschauen: www.die

Ein kleiner Text von mir über die Klingende Post erschien am 18. Februar 2010 in der Wochenzeitung Jungle World, nachzulesen Online hier.)

(Teenager cartoons by Kurt Klamann from Taschen-Eulenspiegel magazine Nr.23, 1961 and Nr.40, 1962 published by Eulenspiegel-Verlag, East-Berlin)

I had a bunch of German rock´n´roll records put together to post before my computer suddenly went kaputt two weeks ago, so here they are now .  I got this record from my grandparents when I was 14 years old in 1980 , I guess it  must have belonged to one of my aunts or uncles.

Tutti Frutti is  probably one of the worst German rock´n´roll cover songs from the 50´s although this budget version recorded for the Opera label, sounds even better than the original version by Peter Kraus , our German Pat Boone. It´s so bad it´s funny, still cracks me up after all these years.

” So geht´s jede Nacht bis morgens um acht, RRRRack´n´RRRRohll hat uns veRRRRRRückt gemacht.”

TED´S ROCK´N´ROLL BAND, Tutti Frutti, 1956


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