Hubert von Goisern
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AUSTRIA FOR ASIA

Miscellaneous: 2005

Almost 400,000 Euros for "Austria for Asia"

APA 15th June 2005

Deine Hilfe wird gebrauchtVienna - Deine Hilfe wird gebraucht, the benefit song recorded by more than 70 native musicians for the benefit of the tsunami appeal, has raised 180,000 Euros from sales of the CD alone.

A total of around 390,000 Euros was collected in connection with this project for the support of the indigenous people of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, as André Heller, to whose initiative the song traces back, announced at a press conference on Wednesday.

The "Austria for Asia" initiative was brought to life less than six months ago as a kind of "defence against fainting attacks", Heller says. A broad spectrum of Austrian musicians collaborated, for example STS, Georg Danzer, Rainhard Fendrich, EAV, Christina Stürmer and the Wiener Symphoniker. A number of artists, among them Hubert von Goisern, the Wiener Philharmoniker, the Philharmonia Schrammeln and Rebekka Bakken, have waived their fees.

The wave in the kitchen

Salzburger Nachrichten 22nd January 2005 | Text: Bernhard Flieher

Flieher's Journal

When a pop song, no matter what quality, is played long enough, at some point comes the moment when it released an emotion or brings back a memory which burns itself into the collective memory. The same thing goes for pictures - more than ever in the time of the terrific power of television. The frequently repeated pictures of the attacks on the WTC produced anger and sorrow worldwide (and even a chart hit with Enya's Only Time, which the US broadcaster used for 9/11 reports). In the same way, the flood of pictures of the tsunami in southern Asia demands shock and a - also because the disaster met a tourist region - hitherto unknown zest for donations. Since yesterday, the wave of helpfulness has also been swashing out of the radio. The time had come on all stations on Friday at 8.40am. Austria für Asia sings Deine Hilfe wird gebraucht, the engagement from Austrian pop stars that became a song for the victims of the tsunami.

Help, no matter how it sounds

Now there should be no thought about musical quality (which benefit song, from Austria for Afrika to We Are The World or Band Aid was ever good?) or intensive thought about lyrics such as "Wo ist Gott? Hier regiert nur Tod" ("Where is God? Only death reigns here"). As initiator and lyricist André Heller said: "Everybody should buy this single, even if they don't like it." The thing is good, because they want to do good and because everyone who has a position or name and has ever recorded a son in this country has joined in. But why is Hubert von Goisern, the great traveller among the native musicians, missing? He has indeed made the song Dunkelblau available, but he is not to be heard in the benefit song.

Poorly off in Mali

It was namely dumb that the Goiserer was on a music trip in Mali on just the days of the recordings. There he sat at the ancient PC in the foyer of the Hotel Relais in Bamako and wondered. Daily he was confronted with emails in which he was pushed to find a way to find a means and a way to collaborate on the benefit single via an MP3 file from afar. The blindness in the worldwide benefit race must have blinded them to the realities of the world beyond our prosperity. For we'll tell you: Mali, Bamako, South Sahara - it's not total need and concern for existence that prevail there, but poverty and underdevelopment reign and above all, that's not the ideal place to record an MP3 file transported via email. The word "Hilfe" ("help") from the song title Deine Hilfe wird gebraucht stands in big red letters on the CD cover of the benefit single. You can't say any more, and no more should be hoped for.

Pop stars from Austria sing for tsunami victims

Der Standard 9th January 2005 | Text: APA | Photo: Ingo Pertramer

From Alkbottle to Zabine - Heller initiates project: "I hope the government doubles the proceeds"

ZabineThe tsunami catastrophe in south east Asia has also shocked Austrian pop stars. In the next few days, 65 artists from the most varied branches of music will settle into producer Thomas Rabitsch's studio in Vienna-Hertals, to record a joint song. The single Deine Hilfe wird gebraucht comes onto the market on 24th January. All proceeds will be donated to a project in the crisis region. Today, Sunday, came the starting shot for the recording marathon.

"We are one of the ten richest countries, nevertheless we always give too little. That's why such projects are absolutely necessary," says Andre Heller, who has brought the initiative to life, in the APA interview. "The proceeds will indeed only be a drop on a hot stone. But nevertheless: everyone should buy this single, even if they don't like it."

All involved in the project, musicians, technicians, graphic artists, people from the record company Universal, are waiving their fees. The list of artists reads like a "who's who" of Austropop: from Alkbottle, DJ Ötzi and Opus to Wilfried and Zabine. Heller hopes that the government will double the proceeds: "I hope that this strange finance minister also sees that it would make sense."

The song "won't be any great work of art", Heller realises. "The idea of making such a single isn't original. First and foremost, it's about raising money. It's probably not happened in Austria since 1945 that so many artists from the most varied branches of music record a song." The spectrum really could not be any bigger: the arc reaches from from Hans Krankl to the Nockalm Quintett.

Heller supports the suggestion from the SPÖ chairman Alfred Gusenbauer to cancel the opera ball. "They did that during the first Iraq war - and there weren't hundreds of casualties from Austria then. I don't think that the suggestion of donating the ticket money is absurd." Heller hopes to bring in 100,000 Euros with the single. Discussions with recognised relief organisations over the next few days should decide which concrete project will be supported.