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Václav Zahradník Big Band – Euro Jazz (Repost)

Supraphon, CSSR, 1974 (Discogs)

A1 You Stepped Out Of A Dream (5:00), Written By Nacio Herb Brown , Gus Kahn
A2 Body And Soul (7:10), Written By Edward Heyman , Johnny Green
A3 Round Midnight (8:30), Written By Thelonious Monk
B1 Hello, Tony! (7:25), Written By Václav Zahradník
B2 Yesterdays (9:00), Written By Jerome Kern
B3 When The Saints Go Marching In (4:05), Traditional

(play all) 

Arranged By – Václav Zahradník
Arranged By, Trombone – Slide Hampton
Artwork By – Josef Zich , Miloslav Žáček
Bass – Klaus Koch
Drums – Billy Brooks
French Horn – Emanuel Hrdina , Vladěna Bouchalová
Guitar – Rudolf Dašek
Photography – Pavel Vácha
Piano – Vince Benedetti
Producer, Recorded By – František Řebíček*
Recorded By – Jan Spálený , Tony Matzner
Saxophone – Ernst-Ludwig Petrowsky , Johnny Griffin , Mihály Ráduly , Ozren Depolo , Ronnie Ross
Trombone – Erich Kleinschuster , Jan Hynčica , Lumir Zrucký , Zdeněk Pulec
Trumpet – Dizzy Reece , Jaroslav Lautner , Jiří Izera , Miloslav Bureš
Tuba – Petr Fleischer
Vibraphone – Karel Velebný

Recorded at the Supraphon Studio in Dejvice, Prague, from 18th to 20th october, 1972

Frontside of Václav Zahradník Big Band - Euro JazzBackside of Václav Zahradník Big Band - Euro Jazz
Label Side A of Václav Zahradník Big Band - Euro JazzLabel Side B of Václav Zahradník Big Band - Euro Jazz

The third and final Zahradník-Record I own. This has been posted here before, but I just do it again with more pics and tracks. Slide Hampton came back to the CSSR in 1972 to work with Zahradník on this record and again brought some friends with him, this time Johny Griffin, Ronnie Ross, Dizzy Reece and others. The concept changed abit for this record, no more soloing but a more “balanced BigBand-Sound” the linernotes say. Abit of a downer for me, compared to the other two records this one is abit weaker, but still a great one (and if you have three records one has got to be the “worst”, even if it’s actually great. You get my drift).
Also there is only one track written by Zahradník on this record, B1 “Hello, Tony!”, which is actually the one I like most. But the rest is great too, most notably A1 “You Stepped Out Of A Dream” and A3 “Round Midnight”.

The usual links :

Vaclav Zahradnik – Euro Jazz :
Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm | discogs | google

Vaclav Zahradnik :
Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm | discogs | google

That’s it for my Zahradník records altough I know of atleast one more I would like to have, “Jazz goes Beat“. Let’s hope this one crosses my way sometime in the future.

And in other news, I set up an Eastern-Crates on Myspace-Account, it’s not finished yet, but if you want to be friends with this page then just send me a friendship-request. Would be nice to see who is reading this.

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Slide Hampton & Václav Zahradník Big Band – B&S

Supraphon, CSSR, 1971 (Discogs)

A1 The End Of Love (4:40), Written By Slide Hampton , Václav Zahradník
A2 B&S (Suite In 3 Parts) (7:35), Written By Slide Hampton
A3 Gardener’s Waltz (7:00), Written By Slide Hampton
B1 Jeanette (10:40), Written By Václav Zahradník
B2 Fashank In Blues (8:35), Written By Rudolf Dašek

(play all)

Artwork By – Miloslav Žáček
Bass – Barre Phillips
Clarinet, Saxophone – Dušan Húščava , Jan Václavík , Jaoslav Hájek (tracks: B1, B2) , Miroslav Krýsl , Rudolf Ticháček (tracks: A1 to A3)
Drums – Stu Martin
Flute – Jiří Stivín , Jiří Válek
Guitar – Rudolf Dašek
Photography – Vilém Sochůrek
Piano, Electric Piano – Laco Gerhardt
Recorded By – František Řebíček , Tony Matzner
Saxophone – John Surman
Trombone – Jan Hynčica , Josef Petržilka , Miroslav Koželuh , Slide Hampton , Zdeněk Pulec
Trumpet – Jan Čapoun (tracks: A1 to A3) , Jiří Hlava , Jiří Jelínek (tracks: B1, B2) , Miloslav Bureš , Nikola Janev (tracks: A1 to A3) , Nikola Janev (tracks: B1, B2)
Tuba – Petr Fleischer
Vibraphone – Karel Velebný

Recorded at the Supraphon Studios Prague on March 31, April 1 and 2 1972.

Cover of Slide Hampton & Václav Zahradník Big Band - B&SBackside of Slide Hampton & Václav Zahradník Big Band - B&S
Label Side A of Slide Hampton & Václav Zahradník Big Band - B&SLabel Side B of Slide Hampton & Václav Zahradník Big Band - B&S
Another record by Václav Zahradník, this time with Slide Hampton. Zahradník and Hampton had been performing together at the International Jazz Festival Prague in 1969 and Hampton was so impressed by Zahradník that he came back in March 1971 with a few friends. Most known might be Stu Martin who was the drummer for Duke Ellington and Quincy Jones for some time. And the drumming is one of the best parts of this record.

This record is definately in my Overall-Top5. The unique approach of Zahradník I refered to earlier is extremely well done on this record, it is amazing how he manages to combine BigBand-Sound with raw Jazz. Especially noteworthy is A2 – B&S (Suite in 3 parts), an absolute masterpiece in my book. Have fun with this. Also noteworthy is that Tony Matzner obviously experimented with Cutting-Tape-Technics, B2 – “Fashank in Blues” contains a rather audible cut at 7:36, probably done with the Master-Tape (no computers back then, remember).
A funny sidenote is also that A3 – Gardener’s Waltz (written by Slide Hampton) is actually a hommage to Václav Zahradník because “Zahradník” means “Gardener” in czech.

The usual links :

Vaclav Zahradnik and Slide Hampton – B&S :
Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm | discogs | google

Vaclav Zahradnik :
Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm | discogs | google

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Václav Zahradník And His East All Star Band – Interjazz

Supraphon, CSSR, 1971 (Discogs)

A1 Blow I (7:15), Written By Rudolf Dašek
A2 Jaumeau (12:45), Written By Václav Zahradník
B1 Intima (5:05), Written By Milienko Prohaska
B2 Ritual (5:20) Written By Andrei Tovmosian
B3 Autumn Sun (9:35) Written By Milcho Leviev

(play all)

Arranged By – Václav Zahradník
Bass – Klaus Koch
Drums – Andrzej Dabrowski
Flute, Saxophone – Simeon Shtierev
Guitar, Sitar – Rudolf Dašek
Percussion – Petr Šprunk
Piano – Laco Gerhardt
Produced By, Recorded By – Tony Matzner
Recorded By – František Řebíček , Jan Chalupský
Saxophone – Dan Mindrila , Mihály Ráduly , Ozren Depolo , Raimond Raubischko , Václav Maňas
Trombone – Andrzej Brzeski , Hubert Katzenbeier , Zdeněk Pulec
Trumpet – Jiří Izera , Miloslav Bureš , Václav Týfa
Tuba – Petr Fleischer

Recorded At The Supraphon Studios Prague In October 1970

Frontside of Václav Zahradník And His East All Star Band - InterjazzBackside of Václav Zahradník And His East All Star Band - Interjazz
Label Side A of Václav Zahradník And His East All Star Band - InterjazzLabel Side B of Václav Zahradník And His East All Star Band - Interjazz

I couldn’t get too much info together. Václav Zahradník was born 1942 and died 2001 in Prague. During his short life (61 years, really a shame) he had alot of different orchestras (or more probably always the same one with different personell and names) apart from an acting career in movies and television. I personally own three records from him that I consider to be true gems in my collection.

The great thing on all these records is that he managed to mix the typical BigBand-Sound with a more freejazz-inspired, raw approach. Imagine a musician soloing off accompanied by a huge band playing the rhythmical/tonal background. Check the tunes to get what I mean.

This record features exclusively musicians from eastern countries (as the title says) aswell as only compositions from eastern composers/jazzers. It was a present from a very dear friend, thanx again for that !

The usual links :

Vaclav Zahradnik – Interjazz :
Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm | discogs | google

Vaclav Zahradnik :
Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm | discogs | google

BTW, I got myself a discogs-account to add the info from this site onto discogs or vice versa. You can check my discogs-userpage here.

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Syrius – Szettört Almok

(Broken Dreams), Pepita, Hungary, 1976 (Discogs)

A1 Hajnali enek (Song at dawn)
A2 Hol az az ember (Where is the man)
A3 Mint aprilis (Like april)
A4 A laz (The Fever)
A5 Szettört almok (Broken Dreams)

B1 Kinyujtom kezem (Stretching out my arms)
B2 Hova mehetnek? (Where could I go ?)
B3 Igen, szep volt (Yeah, that was nice)
B4 Szeparcu idegen (The Stranger of nice face)

(play all)

with Zsolt Baronits, Akos Molanr, Endre Sipos, Karoly Friedrich, Otto Schöck, Andras Veszelinov, Tibor Tatrai, Tamas Turai, Rudolf Tomsits, Laszlo Gööz, Miklos Siliga, Laszlo Des. Conducted by Lajos Bolba, Musical Producer Zoltan Hezser, Recording Engineer Ferenc Dobo (same as on the Neoton Family record), Sleeve design Andras Alapfy.

Cover of Syrius - Szettört AlmokBackside of hajnali enek
Label Side A of Syrius - Szettört AlmokLabel Side B of Syrius - Szettört Almok

This record aswell as the band is abit mysterious. While getting info from the net I stumbled over alot of contradicting information (like this record being from 1995, which is definately not true, my copy got published in 1976). But what seems to be fact is that this band did start in hungary and in one time of its career either completely moved or atleast recorded an album in australia (which seems rather unlikely, shouldn’t it be austria (the country neighbouring hungary) ?). And although I got three copies of this record from a library sale they all have a sticker at exact the same spot, making it hard to read the linernotes. (You gotta love these people working at a library … the backside has plenty of room for a sticker, but they put it on the text. Thanx alot.) Maybe a reader can give more info on this in the comments.

But no matter what, this record is really dope, in fact one of those that gave me a hard time deciding what tracks to put up here… Also this is a nice showoff moment for me, “look what great stuff I digged and can sample”. Hah ! It’s filled with loads of breaks, percussion loops, drumloops, stabs, hits … and a blast to just listen to (once you get accustomed to the hungarian language).

Track B1 Kinyujtom kezem (Stretching out my arms) has already been featured on the “Non Stop Beat”-mixset, A1 Hajnali enek (Song at dawn) begins with these great drums, full horn-section, a small guitar-solo with strings (something I don’t mind unlike other people who are immediately disgusted by even the smallest rock-reference in such music…), nice track. Track A2 Hol az az ember (Where is the man) has even more electric guitar, but also this amazing base groove of drums, bass, keys and guitar spiced up with a few horn-hits. B2 Hova mehetnek? (Where could I go ?) leaves a lot of space for that trumpet (?), a nice bass solo, fresh drums to sample … And as I said the rest of this record is as nice as these tracks, only one real ballad (which is not even bad either). I am glad I found this record especially because I made the mistake of ignoring Pepita-records for a few years because I thought it was all stadium-rock like the first few records I digged of that label (Fonogram, Dynamit etc.).

Discogs Entry for this record.

This record has obviously been re-released as a CD but is not widely avaible, you can still try getting it (or the vinyl on gemm, as always).

Syirus – Szettört Almok: Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm
Syrius – Broken Dreams: Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm

Or just search on google for Szettört Almok or Broken Dreams.

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New Mixset !

Cover Looza in the mix - beat non stopLooza in the mix – Non Stop Beat, 70 minutes with (partly jazzed-up) original funk and disco tracks from the GDR, Poland, the CSSR and the USSR.

01 vaclav neckar and bacily – planetarium – 1977 – cssr
02 Walter Kubiczeck – rotidor – gdr – 1984
03 orchestra of the polish radio – na opak – poland – 1975
04 walter kubiczeck – tentakel – gdr – 1979
05 uschi brüning – hochzeitsnacht – gdr – 1975
06 veronika fischer band – halte an – gdr – 1975
07 ensemble melodiya – devil’s wheel – ussr – 1974
08 interlude – sounds of the sputnik
09 raymond pauls – ardievas vasarai – ussr – no date
10 orchestra adolf wonneberg – esos tiernos ojos – gdr – 1969
11 alojz bouda – prisiel som – cssr – 1976
12 jazz cellula – preteky na kolonade – cssr – 1977
13 syrius – kinyujtom kezem – hungary – 1976
14 orchestra volkmar schmidt – popcorn – gdr – no date
15 uschi brüning – welch ein zufall – gdr – 1976
16 manfred krug – wenns draußen grün wird – gdr – 1972
17 günther fischer – lila und rot – gdr – 1984
18 neoton family – diskocece – hungary – 1980
19 locomotiv gt – forbidden fruit – hungary – 1976
20 interlude – steps on different stairs
21 manfred krug – ende der platte – gdr – 1971

Interludes from an AMIGA-Record containig soundeffects for home-made movies from 1980. Cover from an AMIGA-Compilation from 1976.

(Because the question popped up on pouet.net : All these song are original, no covers from western songs, except for “Popcorn” ofcourse and maybe for that track from Alojz Bouda which reminds me of some other track that I can’t really name.)

Sorry for the bad scratching and the small mistakes (especially the levels), I got stoned while doing this. Have fun though. And lots of thanx to efka for letting me use his studio and the two turntables and providing me with polish apple-lemonade.

Download or stream, get the playlist to keep here and the cover above. Or get more from the Download-Page.

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Manfred Krug – Du bist heute wie neu (No.4)

(You seem like someone else today), Amiga 8 55 451, GDR, recorded 1975, released 1976

A1 Du bist heute wie neu (You seem like someone else today)
A2 Alles vorbei (All over)
A3 Verdammt (Damn it)
A4 Sie (You)

B1 Als der Opa von uns ging (When Grandpa passed away)
B2 Damals, weißt du noch (Back then, do you remember)
B3 Wenn der Urlaub kommt (When Holiday is coming)
B4 In einem Regen (In a rain)
B5 Das geht mir ans Herz (That’s moving my hard)

(play all tracks)

with Manfred Krug, Günther Fischer (he is the left one on the cover, btw), Christiane Wunder, the Gerd-Michaelis-Choir, Gerhard Pabst, Friedrich Schlegel, Heinz Becker, Joachim Graswurm, Hubert Katzenbeier, Freddy Lehmann, Horst Schmidt, Götz Geitner, Werner Schmidt, Helmut Wenzel, Klaus Smesny, the string-orchestra Otto-Karl Beck

Cover of Manfred Krug - Du bist heute wie neu (No.4)Backside of Manfred Krug - Du bist heute wie neu (No.4)
Label Side A of Manfred Krug - Du bist heute wie neu (No.4)Label Side B of Manfred Krug - Du bist heute wie neu (No.4)

Okay, so let’s have the last one and I can call it a night. :)

This is the fourth and final record of Manfred Krug and Günther Fischer, one year after the release of this record Manfred Krug left the GDR for good.

The music on this one is (ofcourse) great and again (as on most other Günther Fischer records) greatly due to one man : Wolfgang “Zicke” Schneider. He was the drummer in (as far as I know) every Günther-Fischer-Band and his drumstyle is really amazing and if you are into making music you probably even know him although you never heard his name because his drumming got sampled quite some time. More on that later.

As I wrote he was the drummer on most Günther Fischer records (for example also on both Uschi Brüning records (1, 2) I posted so far) and he got recognized for it up to a point that beat-diggers actually started collecting specifically his records. Which is probably the reason why he got his own Discogs-Page. And actually he his still playing in a band called “Jazzin the Blues”, you can try to make some sense of this automatic translation of his bio on their webpage.

And one final funny sidenote on all records: the labels say “lyrics written by Clemens Kerber” which is actually a pseudonym for Manfred Krug himself. As is “Isa Karfunkelstein”, the interviewer on the backside of this record.

But off to the tracks :

A1 Du bist heute wie neu (You seem like someone else today) is yet another bomb. Say what you want, but Günther Fischer got the concept of a great opener nailed. The song is about a guy not realizing that it’s the anniversary day with his wife, despite all her efforts. The buildup of the song is great, an amazing mix of disco, funk and pop. Also it is a great example of the progress Krug made, compare that to the first record, he actually got a tight rhythm and really starts to express his voice. And that amazing sax-solo by Günther Fischer in the middlepart just fits.

A4 Sie (You) is a song about him helping a woman with her lovesickness, and no, not that way. Great ballad, but really listen to the drumming, blows me away totally.

B3 Wenn der Urlaub kommt (When Holiday is coming) contains the drumloop which is for example part of the dnbmassive collection and a few commercial sample-cds possibly known to some people. The song is about the problem planning a holiday (with the special problems of east-germans regarding that matter) with the conclusion of just staying at home. The music is just a wild ride, again with a sax-solo (they were coming back in popular music in the late 70s).

B4 In einem Regen (In a rain) is a song about him and his wife which he first met in a rain long ago and about them still loving to go for a walk when it rains. Just listen to that guitar funking off at the side, the amazing drumming or his vocals. Great track aswell.

Check this records discogs-entry here.

And again the links to the CD-ReIssues: This record (together with the unposted third LP) is avaiable on CD at Amazon.de, Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com, the other CD with the first and second LP here : Amazon.de, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com. Or try gemm for the vinyl.

This concludes the series of Manfred Krug as I don’t have any other vinyl from him. But I do have one other, last gem that will appear some time later.
But there is more Günther Fischer in my crates, although the next records will most probably be some hungarian funk or some czech or russian jazz.

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Manfred Krug – Ein Hauch von Frühling (No.2)

(A breeze of spring), Amiga 8 55 279, GDR, 1972

A1 Wenn’s draußen grün wird (When it gets green outside)
A2 Laß mich nicht gehn (Don’t let me go)
A3 Komm und spiel mit mir (Come and play with me)
A4 Schau nicht hin (Don’t look there)

B1 Jeder Mann, der dich sah (Every man that saw you)
B2 Kalt und weiß (Cold and white)
B3 Sonntag (Sunday)
B4 Danke für den Abend (Thank you for the Evening)
B5 Baden gehn (Going for a swim)

(play all tracks)

with Manfred Krug, Günther Fischer, Reinhard Lakomy, Fred Baumert, Wolfgang “Eddie” Greiser, Wolfgang “Zicke” Schneider, Wolfgang “Büchse” Winkler, Matthias Schmidt, Hermann Wolfframm, Reinhard-Lakomy-Choir, String-Ensemble Otto-Karl Beck

Cover of Manfred Krug - Ein Hauch von Frühling (No.2)Backside of Manfred Krug - Ein Hauch von Frühling (No.2)
Label Side A of Manfred Krug - Ein Hauch von Frühling (No.2)Label Side B of Manfred Krug - Ein Hauch von Frühling (No.2)

Back with the second album of Manfred Krug. Nearly the same personell as on the first record with one big exception : Reinhard Lakomy on the organ.
Reinhard Lakomy was another great composer and singer who did stay in the GDR until it’s end. He started with doing pop music, later in the 80s he mainly did really great records for kids because he was fed up with pop, aswell as some amazing electronic records with a modular moog he bought from Tangerine Dream in the 80s and still owns (one of three worldwide). Records from him will pop up here eventually.
Anyway, as said both had a “professional” relationship in the beginning, later started becoming something like rivals (altough Lakomy states in his autobiography that he was simply not “interested in him”) and after Krug left the GDR Lakomy outright hated him and even went so far to avoid him during a meeting in the 90s (after Germany got united and they could have met again.)

But let’s put those things aside and let’s concentrate on the music, written again by Günther Fischer. The tracks :

A1 Wenn’s draußen grün wird (When it gets green outside) is simply the bomb. An intro which sounds like Love Unlimited Orchestras “Bring it on up” but was actually released three years earlier than “Music Maestro Please” instantly grabs your attention and paves the floor for a real smasher about the coming of spring and love. This is a track I play in about every single one of my sets, no matter what season it is.

B2 Kalt und weiß (Cold and white) a song about the search for a specific woman again (this record is mainly about women and seasons) that starts rather folky (?!) but picks up tempo after a while. Great again the conversation in the song, he meets the woman he dreams about finally in a shop where she is buying a dress with another guy for their wedding. Tough luck.

B3 Sonntag (Sunday) is a song about the first Sunday after the end of winter, just a great “easy-going” song about the time when winter is gone and spring finally arrives.

B5 Baden gehn (Going for a swim) is another great “easy-going” song about going to the beach and all the things you can do and see there… I guess you know what.

One more link for today, someone made a “Manfred Krug”-tributeprofile on myspace, so you can be friends with him. I am ofcourse.

Again the links to his two CD-ReIssues : Amazon.de, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com for the CD containing this and the first record from and you can get the second ReIssue of the third and fourth LP also on Amazon.de, Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com. Or try gemm for the vinyl.

As a note, I won’t post about his third record. The reason is not that it’s bad or not worth it, but rather that it’s filled with jazzed/funked and easy-listening covers of songs like “Greensleeves” or “Que sera”. It’s good aswell, but the idea of this page is to inform you about really original music which means I am not going to post any of the countless eastern records with cover-versions of western songs. So the fourth one from him will be next.

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Manfred Krug – Das war nur ein Moment (No.1)

(it was only a moment), Amiga 8 55 216, GDR, 1971

A1 Du sagtest leider nur “Gut Nacht” (You only said “good night”, unfortunately)
A2 Frag mich, warum (Ask me why)
A3 Der Tag beginnt (The day begins)
A4 Gestern war der Ball (Yesterday was a dance)
A5 Unser Abend war wunderbar (Our evening was great)
A6 Das war nur ein Moment (It was just a moment)

B1 Hör auf! (Stop it!)
B2 Du gehst (You leave)
B3 Nacht, ich träumte düster (At night, I had nightmares)
B4 Als ich rief nach dir (When I called for you)
B5 Ende der Platte (End of Record)

(play all tracks)

with Manfred Krug, Günther Fischer, Ulrich Gumpert, Fred Baumert, Günter Dobrowolsky, Wolfgang “Eddie” Greiser, Wolfgang “Zicke” Schneider, Gerhard Pabst, Wolfgang Domschke, Hans-Joachim Graswurm, Heinz Becker, Horst Schmidt, Götz Geithner, Hubert Katzenbeier, Fredi Lehmann, Michaelis Choir, String Ensemble Kurt Beck

Cover of Manfred Krug - Das war nur ein Moment (No.1)Backside of Manfred Krug - Das war nur ein Moment (No.1)
Label Side A of Manfred Krug - Das war nur ein Moment (No.1)label side B of Manfred Krug - Das war nur ein Moment (No.1)

Manfred Krug is a real icon in Germany. He actually grew up in Westgermany but his father moved to Eastgermany in 1949 when he was ten. Soon after becoming an adult he started acting in theatres and in the movies. Later he also started singing, mostly jazz and recorded quite a few records.
Due to alot of political troubles (which seem to be hard to judge from my informations, Reinhard Lakomy for example wrote a few harsh words about Krug and those troubles in his autobigraphy and I tend to believe him) he left the GDR in 1977 and went to Westgermany where he continued acting and recording music.
For some strange reason though his acting career excelled there (he played in a few very successful and long-seasoned TV-Series) while his musical career came to a grinding halt which actually leads to the funny situation that people from west-germany are very astonished if they hear the music he made back in the GDR, because to people from western germany he is mainly known as “the singing detective” from “Tatort”. The fact that he is a real icon is backed up by the simple fact that he actually got his own english wikipedia page.

But back to this record. It’s called “No.1″ and is actually the first of four he made with the help of Günther Fischer, but it’s not his real first, he had a few singles, tracks on compilations and even a full LP on Amiga before that one. The first LP called “Manfred Krug und die Modern Jazz Big Band” (1965) which is a recording of a live-gig and is amazingly raw, jazzy, great and extremely rare. I have seen that LP physically about three times in the past years, two times in shops for 80 and 120 Euro and one time a completely banged up version in a library.

But as I said, this is the first one with Günther Fischer and this is nearly all you need to know. It’s filled with fast funky tracks and slow jazzy ballads and there are the best instrumentalists of the GDR from that time on this one, it is just amazing.
On this first record the singing of Manfred Krug is not yet completey “tight”, but his sloppy style of hitting the notes and rhythm does actually add a lot of character to this record. It’s filled with songs about love and it is one of those rare records that you can listen trough from start to end.

About the tracks :

A1 Du sagtest leider nur “Gut Nacht” (You only said “good night”, unfortunately) is a story about him unsuccessfully trying to seduce a woman he brought home (yeah, he was a real playboy although his songs are quite romantic), most funny thing is a small reference to the cathedral in cologne (a city in western germany). Also all the small breaks troughout the song are very notable.

A3 Der Tag beginnt (The day begins) is a song about him falling in love with a girl he is seeing every morning on the train and him trying to gather the courage to talk to her. Especially noteworthy is the arrangement and the way this song builds up over time aswell the phaser-effect instead of a proper first chorus, sounds great.

A6 Das war nur ein Moment (It was just a moment) is a song about searching for love, starts very ballad-like, breaks down to a small amazing middlepart (wait for this, some downtempo-acts would make an entire tune out of this sample) and gets balladesk again. Very notably is also the doubling of his voice, he is basically singing his own background.

B3 Nacht, ich träumte düster (At night, I had nightmares) is a song about him losing his wife to a friend of his (and getting over it) and this song actually means alot to me because I experienced exactly the same thing some years ago. The whole arrangement of this song is amazing, a storyteller (him) is talking to the singer (him too), commenting on and asking about the lyrics. Also the song breaks down a few times, not unlike modern dancetracks. Best quote is the rather untranslatable “So mancher Freund ist nur ein Busenfreund”, meaning something like “sometimes a friend is just a friend of breasts” (though much more stylish in german).

And I do have some amazing news : This record (and the three follow-ups which will be posted later here) are actually avaiable worldwide as CD-ReIssues for an insanely low price (two records on one CD, used prices at under 3 Euro, Pounds and Dollar). The easiest way to get some of the best and original eastern funk. Check Amazon.de, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com for the CD containing this and the second record from Manfred Krug/Günther Fischer. If you don’t want to wait for the eastern-crates.com posts about the other records you can get the second ReIssue of the third and fourth LP also on Amazon.de, Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com. But ofcourse you can also hit gemm for the vinyl.

As always, you can also have a google search for Manfred Krug or Günther Fischer.

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Shopping-Recommendations

Finally I got around something I wanted to do for a long time : Recommendations for Compilations and ReIssues featuring eastern european jazz and funk that are easily avaiable for people who don’t want to digg themselves, pay alot of money or don’t even own a turntable.

I compiled a list with records avaiable on amazon.de, amazon.co.uk and amazon.com, feel free to browse and see if you like something. Naturally, the selection gets smaller the further away you get from eastern europe, but I even digged some stuff up on amazon.com. (Well, actually they can get all those nice CD-ReIssues of “Polish Jazz”-Records that are not avaiable in europe…)

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Jerzy Milian – Muzyka taneczna

(Music for Dancing), Polskie Nagrania Muza, 1969

Tracklist :

A1 – O cyzm marza zakochani (what the lovers dream of)
A2 – Walc katarynek (barrel-organ waltz)
A3 – Gdzie szumiace topole (two rustling poplars)
A4 – Listki brzozy polnej (leaves of a birch-tree)
A5 – Jada wozy kolorow (painted wagons are coming)

B1 – Zapiszemy nasza milosc (we shall write down our love)
B2 – Nie zmogla go kula (bullet couldn’t fell him)
B3 – Dialog o polnocy (midnight dialogue)
B4 – Kwiat jedney nocy (flower of one night)
B5 – Plasy pod pegazem (dancing in the pegasus bar)

(play all tracks)

with Janusz Hojan, Waclaw Lesicki, Jan Kuzio and “Zespol Instrumentalny Jerzego Miliana” (his band, presumably), songs by Jerzy Milian, Pjotr Figiel, Wladimir Nahorny, S. Rembowski, Katarzyna Gärtner, J. Loranc

Cover of Jerzy Milian - Muzyka tanecznaBackside of Jerzy Milian - Muzyka taneczna
Label Side A of Jerzy Milian - Muzyka tanecznaLabel Side B of Jerzy Milian - Muzyka taneczna

Anyone looking into polish jazz will very soon stumble over Jerzy Milian. His amazing style playing the vibraphone (vibes) and the fact the he recorded loads of records (classics like “Bazaar”, “Ashkabad Girl” or his record with the Katowiche Orchestra) made him one of the most known jazz-musicians from poland, even back in times of the cold war.

This record is a very rare one which I didn’t even know about until I found it at the closing-sale of a local record-shop. The great thing is that this record is extremely versatile, you get anything from slow, easy songs to incredibly fast and energetic bursts of music, but each song containing the amazing vibes (or xylophone) from Jerzy Milian.

There is a (home-?) page for Jerzy Milian in polish which contains an extensive discography, but as always you can also search on google.

Links :
Jerzy Milian – Amazon.de | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | gemm | discogs

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