Two Cardboard Boxes

When I left Berlin at the end of the year 2013, I had to leave some of my possessions behind. One day…I thought, but I did not know when that day would arrive. Most of my belongings were cassettes.  They waited patiently for my return. The cassettes were stored in boxes on an attic not far from Südkreuz. I went to Calabria, and after I went to Poland. When in Poland, Berlin suddenly was only a bus ride away. The bus arrived and departed from Südkreuz. At every arrival and departure I knew that my tapes in those boxes on the attic still thought of me.

And then I returned to live in Berlin. I went to visit the attic two times already. After every visit I returned home with a backpack full of tapes and other small things I had forgotten about, like this young blond lady who smiles so friendly from her flower garden.

An other dear souvenir is featured on the same picture: the label sticker. I didn’t know where this roll was. I had two, brought them all the way from Seattle, where I had received them as a gift. The white one is in a box in Warsaw.

One sign that a neighbourhood is in favor of your arrival is the presents it puts at the door of the apartments. I found books. I found fabric. I lifted the fabric and I found tapes.

Schlagers. Fifteen in total. All the music I hated to listen to.

Among the tapes that I brought back from the attic was a release I had completely forgotten about. It had a dark title that I didn’t want to use again. I listened. I liked the order and choice of strange, not so strange, domestic, commercial and location recordings. I thought it would be a good idea to use the found schlager tapes for a small release, since I had a couple of live shows coming up. I might sell a tape or two.

But.

Be it terrible music or not, these tapes are documents of a period in German völkisch culture. One tape dates back to the year 1970. The lay-out of the label information on the cassette is simply beautiful. The picture of the artists and the song titles tell a story. I felt sorry for the tape, and decided to leave the artwork intact. Well, nearly. Some of these tapes look like museum pieces. For a museum that still doesn’t exist.

Imagine a picture of this tape on the wall in said museum: two meters by two meters and sixty centimeters.

You can get the new release ‘Luft ist Leben’ for five euro.

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