A GI’s Germany

Here’s some ‘nostalgia’ for those who served in Germany… A GI’s Germany – Volume #1

A GI's Germany

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EXCERPTS FROM VOLUME #1 TEXT (from pages included inside the album) A trip down memory lane…


  INTRODUCTION: IN SOUND & MUSIC! Here is Germany as the American servicemen hears it and lives it!Here is the brassy beer hall music, the crashing “Prost!” of 1000 voices from Munich’s Hofbrauhaus, the ever-changing sounds of modern Germany and the never-changing sounds of its bells, beer halls, cuckoo clocks and cobblestone-clattering honey wagons.Here is the Germany that GI’s write home about. Land of Heninger, Hofbrau, and a thousand other beers; homeland of Gemeutlichkeit,lederhosen and schnitzel a la holstein; and slangland of “mox nix!”, “clicks”, and “You bedder belief it, GI!”And we haven’t let it go at just the sounds.Pages of text inside round up any stray memories which may have eluded our microphones. Hilariously illustrated by cartoonist Dennis Renault (USAREUR, 1956-57), it’s done in the prose form every EUCOM GI understands …. the letter home. Letters to the Folks, the Local Board, the faithless sender of that “Dear John” letter, and all the rest.So, place this record on a player, settle back with the text, and listen. You’ll have the best seat in the beer hall and the noisiest foxhole in Grafenwoehr. You’ll be back again in the bahnhof, entangled again in the madness of the autobahn, in Munich for Oktoberfest, and back in the kaserne in time for the alert bell to jar some more memories awake. You’ll relive the moment your neighbor’s radio a foot locker away blared out the familiar, twangy introduction to AFN’s Hillbilly Reveille, but you’ll hear the music of Germany, too. Favorite beerhall music and songs recorded in walloping stereo in live performance, played by some of Germany’s best (and certainly beeriest) Bavarian bands, and with hundreds of Germans — and maybe you — singing along. For that’s what the makers of this record were after. Not the antiseptic sounds and music of a Germany manufactured in a sound studio, but the real Germany you knew, recorded on-the-spot. The search for those sounds led through Germany’s biggest cities and smallest villages, through its most famed beer halls and most rugged maneuver areas, and through seven weeks of recording and over 15 miles of recording tape. This album represents, too, a first hand acquaintanceship with the subject matter. Producer-editor George Casey served with the Army in Germany in 1955 and ’56, narrator John Hart in 1956 and ’57, cartoonist Renault in 1956 and ’57, chief recorder (an ex-Airman) Jerry Vogler in 1957 and ’58, and editorial advisor Bill Churchill in 1955 and ’56. Here then, in sound, text, and cartoon are the highlights of your tour from the troopship arrival in Bremerhaven to the plane departure for home. May this album help explain things to the folks back home. May it insure your memories of Germany against the wear and breakage of the years of readjustment to civilian or Stateside life. But, most importantly, may it return you to your own personal Germany whenever you like.

TABLE OF CONTENTS: SIDE ONE INTRODUCTION BREMERHAVEN SEQUENCE: troopship arrival, dockside sounds, welcoming Army band, troopship PA, debarking, train departure. SOUND SECTION: church bells, cuckoo clock, music box, police car alarm, German toilet, brewery, beer pouring. BEER HALL MUSIC SEQUENCE: Ein Heller und ein Batzen, Lili Marlene,Instrumental, Westerwald-Lied, Erika, Schwarzhrawn ist die Haselnuss, Wenn die Soldaten durch die Stadt Marchieren, DOS Schle-sier-Lied, Ein Kleines Edelweiss, Lore, Die Voegelein im Walde, Ein Prosit der Gemeutlichkeit. LANGUAGE SECTION: Introduction, GI-German slang, European radio excerpts, AFN radio excerpts. BAVARIAN MUSIC EXCERPTS: Hobhackerbaum March, zither, Schuplattler dance, Glockenspielers, yodeler, Bavarian band (Guten Abend, Gute Nacht). SIDE TWO INTRODUCTION MILITARY SECTION: Army readiness alert (alarm, assembly, tank intercom, armor rolls through German village), Air Force scramble (scramble bell, warm up F-105 with intercom clearance, take offs), training sounds (Grafenwohr siren, tank firing, missile launch, infantry company in attack), marching West German soldiers sing Lola. INSIDE MUNICH’S HOFBRAUHAUS: In Muen-chen Steht ein Hofbrauhaus, Ein Prosit der Gemeutlichkeit. TRANSPORTATION SEQUENCE: air terminal PA, Strassenbahn, inside the Bahnhof, Autobahn sounds. MUSS I DENN (Sung by Men’s Chorus of Pegnitz, Germany) DU KANNST NICHT TREU SEIN DEPARTURE SEQUENCE: processing out, jet warm up and take-off, 7th Army Symphonic Band plays Auf Wiederseh’n.


CREDITS: Narrated by JOHN HART Edited and produced by GEORGE CASEY Illustrated by DENNIS RENAULT Editorial assistance by BILL CHURCHILL Sound direction by JERRY VOGLER


If you enjoyed this album and would like to hear more, Volume #2 of A GI’s Germany can be found here – www.sembachmissileers.org/a-gis-germany-volume-2/