Hubert von Goisern
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LINZ EUROPE TOUR 2007 - 2009

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Hubert von Goisern: Live in Passau - 1st July 2007

13th July 2007 | Photos: © Elli Christl

The almost perfect evening

Passauer Neue Presse 2nd July 2007 | Text: Raimund Meisenberger | Photo: Geisler

Hubert von Goisern cheered on stage by thousands on Passau's Rathausplatz last Saturday and Sunday - Thrilling: Claudia Koreck

Hubert von GoisernThis is more or less how the perfect moment would look. The sound of the accordion flows into the heart, and during the encore, Hubert von Goisern breathes the lyrics of "Hörst as ned? Wia die Zeit vergeht" more than sings them.

With his massive stage ship, he spent two days docked by Passau's town hall square, with many thousands flocking to see him, crowds of gatecrashers thronging down closed-off streets for a free view. The smell of roasted almonds fills the air. Up on the hill the Veste Oberhaus castle sits, lit by starlight and a full moon. It could hardly be more romantic.

It is difficult to describe in words the effect that this man has when he steps onto the stage with his deep set, tired eyes and always with a look of great sternness at the corners of his mouth. One almost feels honoured when such a serious person smiles.

An innovator of folk music, a child of nature with the spirit of the earth at his fingertips, an alpine sex symbol - there are many ways to look at the musician from Bad Goisern, on the very outer reaches of the region of Upper Austria. Goisern belongs to that group of artists who have pursued their careers in such a versatile and unpredictable way that they have attracted at least three different groups of fans: one group loves the alpine rocker, who expertly uses all modern methods to play his traditional repertoire; the next group appreciates the world musician, who has discovered whole new worlds of sound on his travels; and the third group love to listen to the folk musician who has breathed new life into folk music with moving interpretation on his Trad albums. For his Linz Europe Tour, which will see him travel up to Rotterdam and down to the Black Sea as ambassador for the European Capital of Culture 2009, he has chosen his most lavish side - the powerful entertainer.

With a sense of folk music and the power of rock he raps on a polka. The accordion and distorted electric guitar are spurred on and the violin instigates a high speed duel. A juchitzer yell cuts through the beating of the drums, the Schottische style song blends into mouth organ punk, and the "country dance" bears no relation to a peaceful village festival here - but rather more to James Brown's sweat-drenched funk. Then come more heart-rending yodels in the synthesiser bed, with a dash of relaxing easy listening in between. Goisern's vocal talents are as broad as his instrumental skills on accordion, guitar, horn and mouth organ; he only needs his rich voice to rough things up a little before switching over to the blues. He lets his voice softly vibrate and become romantic, he lets his falsetto swirl and become mystic, his yodels intensify to resemble hymns. Many before him have failed while trying to score points with a young audience by straying into the field of hip hop. Goisern's speech songs sound as though they embody traditional folk music.

It is an amazing show that Hubert von Goisern and his exceptionally strong band deliver, with drums, bass, guitar, keyboards, violins, percussion and three background singers.

One of the most emotional moments of the evening came when Goisern sang his old classic Weit weit weg again after almost 14 years. 21-year old Claudia Koreck from Traunstein was cheered on stage for her duet with Hubert. She had given a thrilling concert with her band during the support programme.

The song, in Goisern's terms, is comparatively sentimental, especially when circling seagulls and a sunset are projected onto the video wall. If you can cope with this overload, the sensation is one of pure joy. Sensitive souls in the audience quietly complain, asking whether this luxuriance is really necessary: the background choir, the violins, the continuous video footage of edelweiss, violins, flowers and psychedelic patterns. If you just watch it for long enough, this perfect production in the style of a colossal music video suddenly seems to absorb reality.

Only once does the artist touch on the topic of Europe: "It is immediately noticeable in Bavaria", he comments on the huge police presence. "Are you all such wild beasts?" he asks, "or has nobody told them that this is no longer the EU border?", to enthusiastic applause.

Perfect moments are shy, and flee when one consciously tries to create them. Instead what remained here was an enthralling concert. The thousands on the Rathausplatz did not hesitate for a second to give a standing ovation.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Passau - 30th June 2007

11th July 2007 | Photos: © Elli Christl

It was great!

Cityoffers Regensburg July 2007 | Text: SB

Yes, it was great, as Hubert von Goisern alias Hubert Achleitner himself said of the double concert event on the 29th June. But not only that - Hubert von Goisern and Haindling, whom the musical world citizen had taken on board his floating stage at the Regensburg stop of his Linz Europe Tour in the Osthafen, thrilled the audience with a very special show.

And all this despite the "stormy" opening concert at the Donauinselfest in Vienna, where various parts of the stage ship were damaged and fell victim to the water, as well as a weak tugboat that had to be summarily swapped on the way to Regensburg.

After the charming Austrian with the somewhat weatherbeaten - but no less attractive - appearance had welcomed the countless fans who were waiting impatiently, Haindling opened the concert with a number whose sounds from various horns were reminiscent of the ambient sounds of a mountain pasture. If the audience were a little confused by this unexpected sound experience, it didn't last long before the Bavarian music cosmopolitan had them completely on his side. The Haindling classics also played their part, such as Paula, I hob di lang scho nimma g'sehn, Du Depp, Spinn i and In der Umlaufbahn. The ninety minutes passed much too quickly and with the encore of Irgendwie und sowieso Haindling dotted the i of his show.

The fans were completely enraptured and beautifully prepared for the following concert from Hubert von Goisern, who during the set from Haindling had been on stage for just a short joint number - which was honoured with thunderous applause. The long break for setting up, which lasted nearly an hour, hit the fans' mood somewhat and so the "host" didn't have a very easy start.

Finally he clearly showed his musical versatility with his jazzy and funky songs and instrumental pieces. Versatility that he has successfully proved more than once since the famous Hiatamadl, which he has left far behind him. After a short period of adjustment, the fans then really let themselves go and would not stop clapping at the end of the official playing time - 11pm. Hubert von Goisern then didn't deny them the encore and after a short announcement, "they can't take our power, because we've brought our own!", delighted the audience with a wonderful version of his classic Heast as ned. With an ultimate cool "Bye everyone. It was great with you guys!" Hubert von Goisern finally dismissed the content and happy Regensburg audience.

The concert-goers were less happy faced with the provided shuttle buses though, which were meant to commute between the Osthafen and the Donauarena. Only one stood at the exit of the open air arena, which meant a fight for the few seats. Had the concert been able to take place between Wurstkuchel and Jahninsel, as Hubert von Goisern had wanted, this problem would not have occurred. He couldn't resist a sideswipe at the city administration, who had stipulated that the concert should end at 11pm, "when only foxes and rabbits are out and about". It remains to be seen what hurdles will stand in Hubert von Goisern's way on his ship tour towards the Black Sea delta - he will certainly overcome them though, for his music and his audience.

Hubert von Goisern and Haindling in Regensburg

Hubert von Goisern and Haindling

Playing against original sin

Süddeutsche Zeitung 2nd July 2007 | Text & Photo: Rolf Thym

Hubert von Goisern's plea for a free Danube

Hubert von GoisernOn this Friday evening in the Osthafen in Regensburg, 5000 people are waiting for him with happy expectation. But, hidden from the view of his fans, Hubert Achleitner was still sitting behind a wall of sleeping containers on a leather sofa on the deck of a convoy that will be his floating living area, rehearsal space, studio and stage until 2009. Around him, everything is in the open air: a bath next to the satellite dish, artificial grass, a potted palm, a long wooden dining table, a nice canteen and a huge piece of rock. Those are the accessories for what has to be the craziest undertaking so far by the 54-year-old Austrian folk and rock musician who has already had an eventful life and whom the world knows as Hubert von Goisern.

With a crew of 25 musicians, technicians and ship's personnel, he will be travelling the rivers of Europe and, wherever possible, dock, raise the large stage and give concerts together with local artists. The tour should serve understanding between nations and also the city of Linz, which will be the European Capital of Culture in 2009 and which is strongly supporting the Goisern project.

The musical river journey had barely begun in Vienna when it nearly came to an abrupt end in a heavy rainstorm. But the ship managed the journey to Regensburg without problem.

The music boat was anchored opposite warehouses and a feed mixer, from which rose a sour smell of silage. Illuminated video walls sent into the night the message that the Danube - which in Lower Bavaria is being threatened by a new weir for shipping - must remain a free waterway. The League of Conservation and the Regional League for the Protection of Birds have begun an international petition campaign to save the Danube - with Goisern's support, the two organisations maintain. The musician thinks the scheme is very good, because as far as he is concerned further destruction of the river is equivalent to an "original sin".

But in the end it was a beautiful evening in the Osthafen: first of all Hans Jürgen Buchner (Haindling) cleaned up and then Goisern energetically proved once more with his new band that yodelling works wonderfully with fast rock riffs, merry arrangements from the Caribbean and even a hounding of jazzy syncopes. Two concerts in Passau followed on Saturday and Sunday with Claudia Koreck Band.

Rathausplatz as concert hall - Hubert von Goisern makes a stop in Passau

TRP1 3rd July 2007 | Text: Elena Fechter | Photo: TRP1

Hubert von GoisernHubert von Goisern's grand musical adventure has begun. The alpine rocker made a stop on his Linz Europe Tour at the Rathausplatz in Passau. He dropped anchor on his converted cargo ship for two days in Passau.

As alpine rocker Hubert von Goisern broke musical traditions, as a globetrotter he crossed borders. Now the 54-year-old Austrian will be travelling on a cargo ship for two years. As ambassador for the Capital of Culture Linz Hubert von Goisern has ventured forth on an unprecedented large-scale project. With a ship converted to a stage the musician is on a river tour through Europe and also docked in front of the Rathaus in Passau.

On his tour Hubert von Goisern will be appearing with artists from 10 Danube countries. In Passau the Bavarian newcomer Claudia Koreck was on stage.

Over two days the alpine rocker, who is travelling with a new band, thrilled 6000 spectators and gave the Rathausplatz a successful premiere as a concert setting. A unique atmosphere prevailed, Mediterranean flair and the finest open air feeling.

"Can’t you hear how the time flies?"

Mittelbayerische Zeitung 3rd July 2007 | Text: Beate Lutz-Maß | Photo: altrofoto.de

It was great: Hubert von Goisern & Haindling open air in Regensburg

Hubert von Goisern in RegensburgREGENSBURG. They have roots and they have wings and the combination of both composes their music - Hubert Achleitner alias Hubert von Goisern and Hans Jürgen Buchner alias Haindling. The Upper Austrian world musician made a stop in the Osthafen with his floating concert stage and took the world musician from Lower Bavaria on board for a dialectal, musical double open air event of the first order.

"We have our own power!"

A loudspeaker may have failed from time to time in the second part of the concert: but at the end, already past the police-ordered musical closing hour, the Goiserer still pulled out all the stops: "They can't turn off our power. We have our own!" And so the audience had the pleasure of a "classic" - "Heast as net, wia die Zeit vageht". Out came the lighters. Hubert von Goisern fans reminisced and pined.

After the first concert in Vienna on the 24th June and the second in Melk on the 26th, the show in Regensburg was the third of the Linz Europe Tour, which will take Hubert von Goisern and his new band by ship along the beautiful, previously blue - and here so tidily canalised Danube to the coast of the Black Sea. Through nine countries and back again, with concert stops in both directions, 22 in total. For most of them Hubert von Goisern will be taking musicians from each of the areas on board his converted cargo ship. And in Osijek, Vukovar, Belgrade, Novi Sad and all the other stops, the concerts will be free. Wonderful. It is about more than commerce. It is to be a musical trip of encounters.

And Hubert von Goisern found just the right person for his meeting in Regensburg. His counterpart from Lower Bavaria in a way. The fact that both of them have made their hometowns part of their stage names (who knew that Hans Jürgen Buchner was actually born in Bernau near Berlin? You can't hear it...) is more than a coincidence, it is routine. For all the ironic distance kept from the narrow-minded Bavarian and Austrian natures respectively, neither musician denies his origins. Love is there, sometimes wrath too certainly, and there is always a good and proper bit of joy in experimentation, creativity, that feeds from every possible source. Hubert von Goisern - founder of "alpine rock", the yodelling critic of folksiness. Haindling and the alphorn-jungle-sounds, the Afro-Bavarian. Two musical adventurers with a fixed base.

It is 15 years since Hubert von Goisern and the Alpinkatzen stormed the charts with Koa Hiatamadl. Hubert von Goisern's music was played in beer tents - and he does not like to remember that. So the calls for Hiatamadl from the Regensburg audience were totally in vain. That piece won't be played again live, says Hubert. Shame, says the fan. But instead there are other wonderful things - Om und unt for example, or the Juchitzer, which Maria Craffonara got almost as well as Sabine Kapfinger did way back then, she who once taught Hubert how to yodel.

"It was cool with you guys"

It has been 25 years since Buchner's first LP with the simple title Haindling came onto the market and had great success. For that reason the band is currently on an anniversary tour. An almost nostalgic atmosphere arose in the Osthafen: "Paula, oh Paula, mia fanga jed'n Dog vo vorn o..." Who wouldn't want to sing along? The repertoire went right back to the beginning: Du Depp, I hob di lang scho nimma g'seng (he even forgot a few of the lyrics…). Oh yes, it was great. Or, as Hubert von Goisern remarked as taking his leave: "It was cool with you guys."

Thanks Peter

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Regensburg - 29th June 2007

3rd July 2007 | Photos: © Elli Christl

Pure poetry from Hubert von Goisern for 3000 guests

Passauer Neue Presse 2nd July 2007 | Text: Christine Pierach | Photos: Robert Geisler

Visitors, law enforcement, residents and landlords happy with the concert in front of the Rathaus

Claudia Koreck and Hubert von GoisernThe Rathaus had a fabulous premiere as a concert arena on Saturday with Hubert von Goisern. 2500 concert-goers, together with 500 onlookers from Römerplatz and Milchgasse and Schrottgasse were hushed by the alpine world music.

And once more Eulenspiegel's Till Hofmann has delivered a brilliant coup despite the misgivings of the city, residents and landlords of the old town. The man from Passau knows what he has in Passau and vice versa: "I want to record the poetry of its squares. That is worth every effort. That stays. You carry it with you for ever." And it was pure poetry: at the premiere the musician looked across over 3000 people in front of the Rathaus on the summer night. The Georgsberg enchanted the audience, as did the illuminated Oberhaus above the stage ship, flanked by two video walls. Police, 20 stewards and 13 medics were all agreed that it was a "pleasant service" in the manageable arena with good entrances and exits. Certainly in the afternoon the discontinuation of the Rathausplatz's everyday role as a traffic turntable brought about some chaotic moments and heated disputes between stubborn drivers. The Freudenhain exam celebrations in the Rathaussaal also sharpened the situation. From 3pm the helpers stoically dismantled the Ratskeller beer garden around the amazed guests and put out more than 1900 folding chairs. Landlord Kurt Strigler - family and friends had free tickets for both evenings - looked with resignation at the scene from the Logenplatz sitting room window: "I like culture and I support it. But we have high water at the Rathausplatz often enough. That's enough of a spectacle. If we were to have a great flood the Goisern ship could anchor at the Domplatz. That's where I think culture should be."

Scharfrichter landlord Walter Landshuter takes his hat off to Till Hoffmann: "A great idea! I think it's great that the city struggled through to give permission after 20 years of chronic doubts ". City councillor Erika Träger conformed: "We really should use Passau's beautiful squares more often. I respect Till for having such creative ideas and for seeing them through." Landshuter's criticism: "It's not good that the landlords of the old town are not included, especially over at the Ratskeller."

As if on cue, Till Hoffman strolled past and proposed that the Scharfrichter landlord put his tables out up to the barrier. No sooner said than done. Jodlerwirt owner and Goisern-fan Sepp Eichinger was in his element in the pulsating Schrottgasse. He found it "excellent when life comes into the old town, when something stirs." As doing the art evening the night before, he gave out glasses of sparkling wine. Whether restaurant guests or not, about 500 onlookers happily waited around the concert fences until the last encore yodel at 11pm.

Hubert von Goisern in Passau

Hubert von Goisern's uniting Danube tour drops anchor in Regensburg

Mittelbayerische Zeitung 30th June 2007 | Photo: altrofoto.de

HvG & HaindlingHubert von Goisern dropped anchor for the first time in Germany on his uniting boat tour along the Danube with a concert in front of more than 3000 people at the Osthafen in Regensburg. After the appearance by the Bavarian group Haindling Hubert von Goisern and his musicians played their mixture of modern rock and traditional and classical elements, which they will be performing in the coming months on the banks of the river in ten central and eastern European countries.

Von Goisern is travelling as ambassador for the European Capital of Culture Linz 2009. The Regensburg show was also used as a petition event against the expansion of the Danube. Together with about 20 members of band and crew the musician will be travelling through the summer with a convoy of ships. Aside from the barracks ship, the troupe has a ship with a large stage equipped with light and sound. Von Goisern will be giving concerts from this floating stage together with local bands. Two more concerts are planned in Bavaria with Claudia Koreck Band in Passau (30th June and 1st July). Then the tour goes to south east Europe, down to the Ukraine.

Hubert von Goisern: Concert in Melk - 26th June 2007

29th June 2007 | Photos: © Elli Christl

Playing down the Danube

Süddeutsche Zeitung 28th June 2007

"The possibility for failure is great" - what attracts Hubert von Goisern to his European river expedition

It is his hitherto largest project: for two years Hubert von Goisern will be travelling the Danube with his companions. This summer alone he will be playing 25 "best of" concerts with musical guests on board for the Capital of Culture Linz (2009). In the foreground are the meetings and thus the Austrian, born 1952, will meeting Haindling in Regensburg harbour (29th June) and Claudia Koreck in Passau (30th June, 1st July). Bernhard Blöchl spoke to the artist.

Three ships, hundreds of kilometres, many ideas. What is driving you?

I could of course lead my life a little more comfortably and play a traditional tour. But is that better? I think that life makes sense for me when I am collecting experiences. I am a curious and adventurous person. And as you get older you venture to try greater things. So this project is so exciting because there is so much opportunity for failure. There are many things over which we have no influence. You have to believe in a miracle. The project is like a test of self-belief.

Apparently the idea came to you while fishing on the Danube ...

Yes, but the original idea came about in Africa. I wanted - and still want - to do a similar tour along the banks of the Tanganyika Lake. I have had this vision for ten years. But that's more complicated.

So the Linz Europe Tour can be seen as a kind of preliminary stage?

Yes, although things will have to work very differently there. But in so far as this shows that something like it is possible, then it can be seen as a preliminary stage. I am more or less at home here. In Africa you need a integration figure to carry it. It would be the wrong signal for another European to come along, à la Geldof: We'll help you, we'll do it for you! I am a strong advocate of helping yourself.

This is about the European discourse and the cultural eastwards expansion. What role does music play?

The central role. For the language with which the people on board will communicate will be music. Music is a language in which you cannot lie. You can't fool someone with music. It's always clear how someone feels when they start to sing and play. Music is something in which very many people can involve themselves. Music is a point of crystallisation for a great feeling of collaboration.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Melk - 26th June 2007

28th June 2007 | Photos: © Presseservice Donauarena

The very different musical ship

Abendzeitung 27th June 2007 | Text: Arno Frank Eser

Hubert von Goisern tours up and down the Danube on a ship

The beautiful blue Danube is not at all beautiful today. And it has never been blue either. Dangerous eddies and white surf form on its waves. No, not again! Only the evening before had it whirled through the stage construction on the ship belonging to Hubert von Goisern and his team - and today should be the opening concert at the Donauinselfest in Vienna for the large-scale Linz Europe Tour 2007 - 2009!

"At last we're off," Hubert von Goisern is pleased. "If we had known how complex and multifaceted all the problems would be, perhaps we wouldn't have started the project at all. It's good not to know everything." The project: for the next two years Goisern will be on tour with his band, travelling through half of Europe.

When the king of alpine rock talks about problems, he is not just talking about the adverse nature of the weather, but many stumbling blocks, large and small, such as logistics, permission from the authorities, nautical and the sound engineering too. "And nevertheless: you can't plan everything. There are many things that we must let come to us. Whether we want them or not." But nobody could have suspected the fact that the art of improvisation was already in need at the opening concert. But at the debut in Vienna that had been postponed by two days the fans said thank you with calls of "encore, encore".

This year the Linz Europe Tour 2007 - 2009 leads through eastern Europe to the Black Sea, next year it goes north to Rotterdam; and in 2009 the whole thing will culminate in Linz, which will then be the European Capital of Culture. All the artists that Hubert von Goisern meets on his adventure along the rivers of Europe will gather for this event.

The convoy of ships around the MS Wallsee consists of a tugboat, a barracks ship and takes a barge with a floating stage along with it, from where music will be made. With local musicians, who will appear with the Goisern band. The convoy will be stopping at about 50 places. Now it is first going from Austria to Germany, then to Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, through Slovakia and the Ukraine.

Hage Hein, from Munich, Goisern's friend and manager for many years, is nervous from the day after casting off: "The whole thing is going far too slowly, I must speak to the captain, otherwise we won't make the schedule!"

A total of 25 people are permanently on board, including crew and guests. They are all hungry, several times a day. A challenge for chef Holger Alt, who performs magic from the smallest room. "In the beginning I was still under the illusion that I could wander through the markets and cook regional food. But that probably won't be enough. Nonetheless I always try to put some local colour into the menu." Sailors' songs from Hans Albers sound out from Holger's cassette recorder.

No sooner has the convoy cast off from Wallsee, the self-proclaimed "Florida of the Mostviertel", the first whispers go around: "Does everyone have enough mosquito repellant? The further east we go, the more the mozzies will eat you!" The mosquitoes are the flying bugbears on our floating village. Until finally Petra Hinterberger, responsible for the electronic image processing, puts an end to the whole thing: "Yes, yes, I know, mosquitoes as big as birds and as hungry as vampires! We'll see...!"

There is a lot of music on board as soon as the first evening. The singers Marlene Schuen, Maria Moling and Maria Craffonara, all members of the new Goisern band, astound with Romanian folk songs. And just about laugh themselves silly as one of the sofas keeps coming apart. "That's why I brought them along," says the boss from Bad Goisern, "because they're so funny!"

The ship with the open air common room is fondly put together, from the green artificial lawn to the bright pot plants, all with great attention to detail and tasteful. "Hubert had a hand in it himself," says manager Hage Hein.

It is clear that you can have a good time in such an environment. Straight after the first breakfast Hubert rehearses with his vocalists and his friend Willi Resetarits, formerly a great figure on the Viennese scene under the name "Ostbahn Kurti". Willi is proud to be a part of this project and he isn't missing the Viennese sarcasm: "I would love to say something very meaningful. But words fail me."

It is plain to all on board that this is about more than just a boy scout expedition. The new EU countries are to be explored; and there is the desire to leave traces, not just musical. At the centre, according to Goisern, "should be the people on the banks and their wishes, hopes and problems."

Hage Hein sums it up: "This project is bigger than all those taking part!" And with that he does not just mean the four million Euros for the project, but the spirit behind it.

But life on the ship soon takes hold of him again: "What? Really only five drinking water stations between here and the Black Sea?" Tour manager Jonas Steckel suggests: "Tell everyone straightaway that showering is a luxury and that a morning bath in the Danube just as good!"

And what other rules of are there on board? "Clear up your own mess. I can't say more than that," says Jonas, "after all it's all still new to us too. So we have to work everything out. We'll be smarter at the end of the tour!"

But what is plain from the beginning of the tour: we have to separate the rubbish! Red sack, yellow sack, blue sack. Because you don't throw your good environmental intentions overboard. Well, we don't!

The brightly painted and inscribed ship attracts attention. People stand all along the banks and wave. Word of the project has spread. A fan manages to send down a big box of breakfast rolls on a rope from a bridge.

There is happy excitement as the first guest musicians come on board, the ethno rock group Zdob și Zdub from Moldova. Manager Igor Buzurniuk has a nasty sunburn on his heavily tattooed back and is helped as far as is possible with creams and friendly words. Aside from that people are talking in English, German, Italian and with their hands and feet. Somehow it works. You just have to want it to. Igor is over the moon. "Wonderful! Grand idea!". He knows too that any idea is only as good as its execution. Hage Hein: "It'll be exciting right to the very end!" Many expeditions have failed due to disagreements on board.

Hubert von Goisern has not let the first concert at the Donauinselfest in Vienna that was delayed by the weather weigh upon him. He is looking forward to everything that is coming to him: "I hope that we will all return healthy and with many exciting stories to tell." And when he receives the news by telephone that his son Niko has passed his exams, he is really happy.