80’s/90’s German Music Idea, Hamburger Schule

80’s/90’s German Music Idea, Hamburger Schule

The Hamburger Schule was a German music idea that flourished in the 1980s and early 1990s. It's still alive and well with several current bands and artists. This movement helped propel German influence into mainstream music at it incorporates punk, grunge, and experimental pop elements, as well as thought-provoking lyrics starting in the large German city of Hamburg. This movement was held and advanced by multiple German bands like Selig, Die Sterne, Ostzonensuppenwürfelmachenkrebs, Cpt. Kirk, and more, while other Hamburger bands and artists continue making music Tocotronic, Blumfeld, Tomte, and many more bands.

 

In the late 1980s, a new musical scene in Hamburg was forming, with a number of bands singing in German but without record agreements. Carol von Rautenkranz and Pascal Fuhlbrügge founded the record label L'Age D'Or in October 1988 to address this issue and offer the new style a platform. They worked with a lot of bands and released a lot of CDs. Carol von Rautenkranz's brother, Chris von Rautenkranz, produced several of the recordings at the Soundgarden recording facility in Hamburg. Alfred Hilsberg's What's So Funny About? label, which released the first recordings by Blumfeld, Cpt. Kirk&., and Die Erde, was another influential label in the developing genre.

 

The Hamburger Schule, on the other hand, was not limited to Hamburg for long. In particular, in the small town of Bad Salzuflen in Eastern Westphalia, a local scene of germanophone bands had emerged, based on the label Fast Weltweit. Frank Werner, Frank Spilker (of the band Die Sterne), Michael Girke, Bernadette La Hengst, and Jochen Distelmeyer were among the founding members. They were acquainted with the Hamburg scene through Bernd Begemann, a resident of Bad Salzuflen who relocated to Hamburg and founded the band Die Antwort. This resulted in many performances in Hamburg for bands from the Fast Weltweit label, leading to the relocation of many additional musicians. Die Regierung, another first-generation Hamburger Schule band, was located in Hamburg for a long period of time, though coming from Essen.

 

Blumfeld, Die Sterne, and Tocotronic had all achieved commercial success by the mid-1990s. The Hamburger Schule rose to prominence as the pinnacle of German indie pop. However, when other German guitar bands with various styles of music and lyrics were able to profit from their popularity, a new countrywide Indie pop scene arose. The Hamburger Schule began to fade into obscurity.

 

 Milch, Rocko Schamoni, and the 'Mobylettes' are among the other artists associated with the Hamburger Schule. However, as time progressed, the word came to include such a vast range of musical material that it could no longer be connected with a specific musical genre. It has starting to lose whatever meaning it once had as numerous bands have began to sing in foreign languages.

By the end of the 1990s, a new generation of German guitarists with intellectual ambitions had developed. Astra Kid, Modus Noa, Tomte, Marr, Kettcar, Spillsbury, Justin Balk, and numerous more artists are examples of this new generation of artists who clearly tie in with the Hamburger Schule herit

Back to blog