ICH HAB KEIN AUTO, ICH HAB KEIN RITTERGUT by AUSTIN EGEN

GERMAN POP LYRICS: The 1930s Part 6

Austin Egen was an Austrian singer and composer in the field of light music. He spent a large part of his youth in the USA, which presumably accounts for the strong jazz flavour in his work. Egen was particularly active as a recording artist in the late 1920s and early 1930s, and this charming little number dates from 1930.

ICH HAB KEIN AUTO, ICH HAB KEIN RITTERGUT

Ich hab kein Auto, ich hab kein Rittergut;
Das Einzige, was ich hab: ich hab dich lieb.
Ich bin kein Rothschild, bin nicht von blauem Blut;
Das Einzige, was ich bin: ich bin dir gut.

Ich kann nicht Englisch, auch Boxen kann ich nicht;
Das Einzige, was ich kann: ich kann nicht leben ohne dich.
Ich hab kein Auto, ich hab kein Rittergut;
Das Einzige, was ich hab: ich hab dich lieb.
I DON'T HAVE A CAR, I DON'T HAVE A MANOR

I don't have a car, I don't have a manor
The only thing that I have: I have love for you
I'm not a Rothschild, I don't have blue blood
The only thing that I am: I'm good for you

I can't speak English, I can't box either
The only thing that I can do: I can't live without you
I don't have a car, I don't have a manor
The only thing that I have: I have love for you
Advertisements

WAS WOLLEN WIR TRINKEN by BOTS

GERMAN POP LYRICS: From France to Germany via the Netherlands

Bots is a Dutch folk-rock band. In 1976 they wrote the song “Zeven Dagen Lang” which was based on the Breton folk song “Son ar Chistr” popularised by Alan Stivell. Sadly the references to cider in the original version were lost in translation!

In 1980 Bots recorded “Aufstehen”, a German language album, which included a German version of this song. The album was a success and “Sieben Tage lang” has become a popular sing-a-long in pubs and folk sessions, though it is generally known as “Was wollen wir trinken” these days.

In 1998 the German group Scooter had a European hit with “How Much Is The Fish?” which samples this song.

WAS WOLLEN WIR TRINKEN
 
Was wollen wir trinken, sieben Tage lang?
Was wollen wir trinken, so ein Durst?

Es wird genug für alle sein
Wir trinken zusammen, roll’ das Fass mal rein
Wir trinken zusammen, nicht allein

Dann wollen wir schaffen, sieben Tage lang
Dann wollen wir schaffen, komm fass’ an

Und das wird keine Plackerei
Wir schaffen zusammen, sieben Tage lang
Wir schaffen zusammen, nicht allein

Jetzt müssen wir streiten, keiner weiß wie lang
Ja, für ein Leben ohne Zwang

Dann kriegt der Frust uns nicht mehr klein
Wir halten zusammen, keiner kämpft allein
Wir gehen zusammen, nicht allein
WHAT DO WE WANT TO DRINK

What do we want to drink, seven days long?
What do we want to drink, such a thirst?

There will be enough for everyone
We’ll drink together, roll the barrel in here
We’ll drink together, not alone
 
Then we want to work, seven days long
Then we want to work, come give a hand
 
And it won’t be drudgery
We’ll work together, seven days long
We’ll work together, not alone
 
Now we have to fight, who knows for how long
Yes, for a life without bondage
 
Then frustration will never make us small
We’ll keep together, no one fights alone
We’ll go together, not alone

“Schaffen” (in the second verse) usually means to manage to do something, but it can also mean to work, especially in southern Germany. In the context of the song work seems to make more sense.
The band clearly sing “streiten” (to fight) in the third verse, but I have heard another version where people sing “streiken” (to strike).

HABEN SIE DEN NEUEN HUT VON FRÄULEIN MOLLY SCHON GESEHEN? by ROSITA SERRANO

SPANISH & GERMAN POP LYRICS: The 1930s Part 5

This song is in Spanish, so why does it have a German title? The answer is that it appears in the German movie “Es leuchten die Sterne” (1938). Rosita Serrano was from Chile but she had her biggest success in Nazi Germany, singing in both Spanish and German. Like many performers connected to the Nazi regime she found it hard to pursue her career after the war.

In the film and on some recordings (but not in the clip above) there is a spoken German introduction which helps put the song into context. I have included part of this in the translation below (in italics).

Thanks to the folks at Lyrics Translate for transcribing the lyrics of this song. However, I am not sure they are 100% accurate.

HABEN SIE DEN NEUEN HUT 
VON FRÄULEIN MOLLY SCHON GESEHEN?

Haben sie den neuen Hut 
von Fräulein Molly schon gesehen? 
Ach, ist der chic. Ach, ist der schön. 
Aber das ist kein Hut, das ist ein Chapeau. 
Den gibt’s nur in Paris – und sonst nirgendwo.

Plata Molly
Vaya la rumba
Con un sombrero sí
 
Se lo compró ayer en Paris
Volvió la manía
Por tu manía ,tu manía,tu manía…
 
Plata Molly
No, no, no piensa más de amores
 
De su tierra esa goma
El cielo ví la flor
No, no, no, no piensa l'amor
No piensa en amor
HAVE YOU SEEN MISS MOLLY'S 
NEW HAT YET?

Have you seen Miss Molly's 
new hat yet?
Oh, it's so chic. Oh, it's so beautiful.
But it's not a hat, it's a chapeau.
It's only available in Paris - and nowhere else.

Silver Molly
Wow, the rumba
With a hat, yes
 
She bought it yesterday in Paris
The mania returned
Because of your mania, your mania, your mania...
 
Silver Molly
No, no, don’t think about love anymore
 
From her land that rubber
Heaven saw the flower
No, no, no, don’t think about l'amor
Don’t think about love

WENN ALLE BRÜNNLEIN FLIESSEN

GERMAN POP LYRICS

This is a German folk song which dates back to the sixteenth century. Here it is performed by the group Bube Dame König (Jack Queen King).

WENN ALLE BRÜNNLEIN FLIESSEN

Wenn alle Brünnlein fließen
So muss man trinken
Wenn ich mein' Schatz nicht rufen darf
Tu ich ihm winken
Wenn ich mein' Schatz nicht rufen darf
Ju ja, rufen darf
Tu ich ihm winken
 
Ja, winken mit den Äugelein
Und treten auf den Fuß
's ist eine in der Stube drin
Die meine werden muss
's ist eine in der Stube drin
Ju ja, Stube drin
Die meine werden muss
 
Warum sollt sie's nicht werden?
Ich hab' sie ja so gern
Sie hat zwei blaue Äugelein
Die leuchten wie zwei Stern'
Sie hat zwei blaue Äugelein
Ju ja, Äugelein
Die leuchten wie zwei Stern'
 
Sie hat zwei rote Wängelein
Sind röter als der Wein
Ein solches Mädchen findest du nicht
Wohl unterm Sonnenschein
Ein solches Mädchen findest du nicht
Ju ja, findest du nicht
Wohl unterm Sonnenschein

ERSTE STROPHE WIEDERHOLEN
WHEN ALL THE FOUNTAINS ARE FLOWING

When all the fountains are flowing
A man must drink
If I’m not allowed to call my darling
Ooh, I'll wave at her
If I’m not allowed to call my darling
Ju ja, (not) allowed to call
Ooh, I'll wave at her

Yes, a little wink of the eye
And a little tread on the foot
There’s (some)one in the parlour
Who must become mine
There’s (some)one in the parlour
Ju ja, (in the) parlour
Who must become mine

Why shouldn't she become mine?
I’m so fond of her
She has two little blue eyes
That shine like two stars
She has two little blue eyes
Ju ja, little eyes
That shine like two stars

She has two little red cheeks
They are redder than the wine
Such a girl you won't find
Anywhere under the sunshine
Such a girl you won't find
Ju ja, you won’t find
Anywhere under the sunshine

REPEAT FIRST VERSE

GERMAN GRAMMER: DIMINUTIVES.

When you start learning German one of the first crazy things to confront you is “Das Mädchen” – how can a girl be neuter rather than feminine?! The reason is that words ending with –chen or –lein are diminutives. These are always neuter and also they are the same in the plural.

Das Mädchen – The girl / Die Mädchen – The girls

Normally the diminutives are applied to nouns (das Mädchen is literally a little maid).

Das Brot – The bread / Das Brötchen – The bread roll
Der Tisch – The table / Das Tischlein – The little table

As in Spanish the meaning of diminutive can be to indicate affection or cuteness rather than literal smallness. However, Germans tend not to use them as much as Spaniards!
The song contains a lot of diminutives and I have tried to translate them as best I can.

MEIN LIEBER SCHATZ, BIST DU AUS SPANIEN? by THE COMEDIAN HARMONISTS

GERMAN POP LYRICS: The 1930s Part 4

The Comedian Harmonists were one of the most popular groups around Europe during the first half of the 1930s. Their name sums them up perfectly: a superb combination of comedy and five part vocal harmonies. They sometimes sang light classical material, but I think they sound best on the popular songs of their day. This track is from 1931.

MEIN LIEBER SCHATZ, BIST DU AUS SPANIEN?

Es glüht in dir ein heimliches Fieber
Seit einem halben Jahr, mein liebes Kind
Ja, ich merk ganz besonders, 
Wenn der Abend beginnt,
Wie leidenschaftlich deine Augen sind

Dein Wesen war einst treudeutsch und germanisch 
Auf einmal ist es ausgesprochen spanisch
Und du nimmst mich beim Tanzen 
Und beim Küssen schrecklich mit,
Vielleicht war deine Mutter aus Madrid?
Gott sei Dank, wie schlank gebaut du bist!
Wenn ich nur aus deiner Jugend etwas wüsst!
 
REFRAIN:
Mein lieber Schatz, bist du aus Spanien?
In deinen Küssen brennt die Sonne von Spanien
Und deine Augen sind so wie Kastanien
Auch alles andere kommt mir mehr als spanisch vor

Ich sag' Ah! Ich sag' Oh!
Und ich sage: Einfach fabelhaft,
Deine wundervolle, tolle Leidenschaft!

REFRAIN
MY DEAR DARLING, ARE YOU FROM SPAIN?

A secret fever has been burning in you
For half a year, my dear child
Yes, I notice it especially 
When the evening begins
The way your eyes are so passionate

Your character was once truly Germanic
And suddenly it's more Spanish
And you affect me while dancing
And while kissing terribly
Maybe your mother was from Madrid?
Thank God that you have such a slender build!
If only I knew something about your youth!
 
CHORUS:
My dear darling, are you from Spain?
The Spanish sun burns in your kisses
And your eyes are like chestnuts
And everything else is double Dutch to me*

I say ah! I say oh!
And I say: Simply marvelous
Your wonderful, fantastic passion!

CHORUS 

* Das kommt mir spanisch vor – This is a German expression. The English equivalent is “It’s all Greek (or double Dutch) to me”. Of course in translation it loses the wit of the original.

HAVANNA LIED by LOTTE LENYA

GERMAN POP LYRICS: The 1930s Part 3

“Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny” (“Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny”) is a satirical opera by Kurt Weill with lyrics by Bertolt Brecht. It includes the much covered “Alabama Song”, one of only two numbers sung in English.

Lotte Lenya was arguably the greatest performer of Weill’s music and here she sings “Havanna Lied”. The opera was first performed in 1930 but this recording dates from the classic 1955 album “Lotte Lenya Sings Kurt Weill”.

HAVANNA LIED

Das wäre Ihr Mädchen, Herr Jakob Schmidt
Wenn ihre Hüfte keinen Schwung hat,
dann sind Ihre fünfzig Dollar Dreck aus Wellblech
 
(Dreißig Dollar?)
 
Dreißig Dollar
 
Ach, bedenken sie, Herr Jakob Schmidt
Ach, bedenken sie was man für dreißig Dollar kriegt
Zehn paar Strümpfe und sonst nichts
 
Ich bin aus Havana
Meine Mutter war eine Weiße
Sie sagte oft zu mir:
Mein Kind, verkauf dich nicht
für ein paar Dollarnoten so wie ich es tat
Schau dir an, was aus mir geworden ist
 
Ach, bedenken sie, Herr Jakob Schmidt
Ach, bedenken sie, Herr Jakob Schmidt
HAVANA SONG

That could be your girl, Mr. Jakob Schmidt
If her hips don’t swing
then your fifty dollars are waste paper
 
(Thirty dollars?)
 
Thirty dollars
 
Oh, think about it, Mr. Jakob Schmidt
Oh, think about what you can get for thirty dollars
Ten pairs of stockings and nothing more
 
I’m from Havana
My mother was a white woman
She often said to me:
My child, don’t sell yourself
for a couple of dollar bills like I did
Look what has become of me
 
Oh, think about it, Mr. Jakob Schmidt
Oh, think about it, Mr. Jakob Schmidt

FIRE by GUY SKORNIK

FRENCH POP LYRICS


Guy Skornik was just 19 when he released his debut EP “Les Quatre Saisons De L’Amour” which includes this song. “Fire” is a great slice of pop-psychedelia, perfect for 1967, though it wasn’t a hit. A couple of years later he wrote “Six Huit” for the actress Michèle Mercier. Also in 1969 he was one of the main members of the extraordinary Popera Cosmic project. All great stuff, but I don’t think any of it has been officially re-issued! Skornik went on to a solo career, and his albums from the Seventies have won critical acclaim.

Translation by Paraphera at Lyrics Translate, though I have made some tiny changes.

FIRE

Empire State Building,
Tunnel sous la Manche,
J'aurais voulu vivre,
Sur cette vieille Terre,
Où le ciel n'est pas de cuivre.
 
Fusée pour la Terre... BANG !
 
Pleine de Formica
Une fusée là-bas,
Un chien atomique,
Et une vieille dame avec un cœur électrique.
 
Des maisons de verre,
Des vues sur la terre,
Du silence partout,
Et des filles habillées d'argent jusqu'au coup.
 
Fusée pour la Terre... BANG !
 
Y'a plus de nation,
Plus de religion,
Tous les hommes sont frères,
Mais dans leurs cœurs, il n'y a plus de passion.
 
Leurs yeux sont éteins,
Le soleil est mort,
Et si Dieu existe,
Il a dû retourner sur la terre de ses fils.
 
Fusée pour la Terre... BANG !
 
Ici tout est blanc,
Même l'amour s'apprend,
Les enfants la nuit,
Relisent leurs cours sur des livres phosphorescent.
 
Y'a trop d'autoroutes,
Il n'y a plus d'arbres,
Mais l'herbe est brûlante,
Notre soleil, c'est devenue la république.
FIRE

Empire State Building
The Channel Tunnel
I wanted to live
Upon this old Earth
Where the sky isn't copper
 
Rocket to the Earth... BANG!
 
Full of Formica
A rocket over there
An atomic dog
And an old lady with an electric heart
 
The houses of glass
The sights on the earth
Silence everywhere
And the girls dressed in silver up to the neck
 
Rocket to the Earth... BANG!
 
There are too many nations
Too many religions
All men are brothers
But in their hearts, there is no more passion
 
Their eyes are switched off
The sun is dead
And if God exists
He had to return to land of his sons
 
Rocket to the Earth... BANG!
 
Here everything is white
Even love is learnt
Children the night
Re-read their lessons in phosphorescent books
 
There are too many highways
There aren’t enough trees
But the grass is burning
Our sun has become the republic

ANIMALES VERTEBRADOS by CHRISTINA ROSENVINGE


This song is from “Tu Labio Superior”, the album which ten years ago established Rosenvinge as a Spanish language singer-songwriter of the top rank.

ANIMALES VERTEBRADOS

Ella te pregunta dónde estás
tú le respondes aún detrás
hace rato que has perdido el compás
de la conversacion
 
Quieres irte pero no te vas
la última noche duele mas
de lo que pensabas y es quizás
porque no es tu decisión
 
Ha salido el sol
arrogante y español
y en tu corazón
llueve a todas horas...
 
Tu caso está en los libros
se te puede clasificar
en tu ansia, tu tormento
no hay nada original
 
Piensas que en tu manga aún queda un as
que si hace falta sacarás
y el mundo rodará hacia atrás
por orden superior
 
Ha salido el sol
arrogante y español
y en tu corazón
llueve a todas horas...
VERTEBRATES

She asks you where you are
You reply, still behind
A while ago you lost track
Of the conversation
 
You want to leave but don't go
The last night hurt more
Than you thought, and perhaps
Because it's not your decision
 
The sun has risen
Arrogant and Spanish
And in your heart
It's raining all the time...
 
Your case is in the books
That you can classify
In your anxiety, your torment
There is nothing original
 
You think you still have an ace up your sleeve
If you need to take it out
And the world will roll back
By higher order
 
The sun has risen
Arrogant and Spanish
And in your heart
It's raining all the time...

OB BLOND, OB BRAUN, ICH LIEBE ALLE FRAU’N by JAN KIEPURA

GERMAN POP LYRICS: The 1930s Part 2

In the 1930s there was clearly less of a distinction made between light classical music and ‘pop’ than there is these days. In particular many classically trained tenors released big selling records. The Polish singer Jan Kiepura became a star around Europe in the 1930s and he appeared in many films. This song from 1935 was one of his biggest German hits. It appears in the film “Ich liebe alle Frauen” (see below) which is described on IMDB as ‘a refreshing example of European operetta’. About a year later Kiepura, who was Jewish as well as Polish, fled Europe and settled in the USA.

The title of this song is referenced in the intro of the album version of “Rosemarie” by Hubert Kah, a song that has featured previously on this blog.

It is also referenced at the end of Nina Hagen’s song “Auf’m Bahnhof Zoo”.

OB BLOND, OB BRAUN, ICH LIEBE ALLE FRAU'N

REFRAIN:
Ob blond, ob braun, ich liebe alle Frau’n, 
mein Herz ist groß.
Doch was ich tu, ich denke immerzu 
an eine bloß.
Denn diese Eine, diese Kleine, 
die hat Beine
Und einen Mund hat die Kleine
Ja, das eine ist mir sonnenklar:
 
Ob blond, ob braun, ich liebe alle Frau’n, 
mein Herz ist groß.
Und doch gehört's nur einer offenbar;
Denn die eine, die ich meine, 
küsst ja famos!
 
Ein Ideal hat jede Frau, jeder Mann,
Und jeder Mann hat seinen Liebesroman.
Aber ich, aber ich, habe zehn bis zwölf
Und mehr beinah,
Denn für mich, ja für mich
Sind die Mädels nur zum Küssen da.
 
REFRAIN
 
[Zwischenspiel]
 
Ob blond, ob braun, ich liebe alle Frau’n, 
mein Herz ist groß.
Und doch gehört's nur einer offenbar;
Denn die eine, die ich meine, 
küsst ja famos!
WHETHER BLOND OR BRUNETTE, I LOVE ALL WOMEN

CHORUS:
Whether blond or brunette, I love all women
my heart is big
But what do I do, I always think 
about only one
Because this one, this little one
she’s got legs
And the little one has got a mouth
Yes, one thing is crystal clear:
 
Whether blond or brunette, I love all women
my heart is big
But clearly it only belongs to one person;
Because the one that I mean, 
kisses fantastically!
 
Every woman, every man, has an ideal
And every man has his romances
But me, but me, I have ten to twelve
And nearly more,
Because for me, yes for me
Girls are only there to kiss
 
CHORUS
 
[Interlude]
 
Whether blond or brunette, I love all women
my heart is big
But clearly it only belongs to one person;
Because the one that I mean, 
kisses fantastically!

JONNY by MARLENE DIETRICH

GERMAN POP LYRICS: The 1930s Part 1

After my series on German pop in the 1960s and 1970s it seems natural to move onto… the 1930s! The songs of this decade featured a memorable mix of pop, jazz, cabaret and light classical music. Love was the main lyrical subject, but it was often treated with a sense of humour or (as here) frank sexuality. The rise of the Nazis cast an increasingly dark shadow over the musical landscape as the decade progressed, but in this series I will focus the charm of the music rather than the political backdrop.

Marlene Dietrich had been around for a few years when she got her big playing the role of Lola in “The Blue Angel” in 1930. ‘Talkies’ were changing cinema, and Dietrich’s voice was as important as her looks. The fact that she could speak English helped her get the role, as German and English versions were filmed simultaneously. The success of the film enabled her to launch herself as a Hollywood star, but she continued to make records for the German market. This saucy little number is from 1931.

JONNY

Jonny, wenn du Geburtstag hast
Bin ich bei dir zu Gast
Die ganze Nacht
Jonny, ich träum' so viel von dir
Ach, komm doch mal zu mir
Nachmittags um halb vier

Jonny, wenn du Geburtstag hast
Und mich dein Arm umfasst
Die ganze Nacht
Jonny, dann denk' ich noch zuletzt
Wenn du doch jeden Tag Geburtstag hätt'st
JOHNNY

Johnny, if it’s your birthday
I’ll be your guest
The whole night
Johnny, I dream about you so much
Oh, why don’t you come to me
At half three in the afternoon

Johnny, if it’s your birthday
And your arm embraces me
The whole night
Johnny, then I think at the end
If only you had a birthday every day