Hubert von Goisern


TOUR 2014 >> Concert Reviews: 1 2

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Vienna - 10th November 2014

24th November 2014 | Photos: © Servus TV / Philip Felbermayr

Hubert von Goisern @ Posthof Linz

Subtext 20th November 2014 | Photo: © Christoph Thorwartl /
Hubert von Goisern

More photos at

Falter's Zoo - People of the week

Falter 47/14

HvGBack from a journey to Nashville, Tennessee and New Orleans, Hubert von Goisern filled Halle E at the MQ again after a two year break and brought back from his trip a load of folk, blues, country - and Steve Fishell. The American with the hat and pedal steel guitar was, according to Hubert von Goisern, the only useful thing to be found in the States. The musician changed squeezeboxes like Lady Gaga changes outfits, yodelled, played the harmonica, trumpet, guitar, piano and when the crowd, finally clapping along with exhilaration during Brenna tuats guat, still didn't want to let him go after two hours, von Goisern blasted the astoundingly lederhosen-free and almost entirely dirndl-free audience out of the hall with an alphorn.

A great surprise with intense alpine blues

Nürnberger Nachrichten 15th November 2014
Hubert von Goisern

Stylish and unpretentious: Austrian singer-songwriter Hubert von Goisern delights his audience in Fürth

Hubert von Goisern being a busy bee is nothing new. Most recently the Upper Austrian has been working in the world of film and exhibitions. But then suddenly everything was completely different at the sold out little Fürth Stadthalle.

Two albums have been released by Hubert von Goisern this year. One is the soundtrack to the new film from Joseph Vilsmaier (Österreich: Oben und Unten, in cinemas in January 2015), for which he has newly arranged some favourites of his own songs for an orchestra. Then there's the compilation Steilklänge, on which a selection of alpine music from the last 150 years is to be found, collected by Goisern for the Alpenliebe-exhibition he curated on Großglockner. Plenty of material for another tour from the ambassador of sound, who is beloved beyond the borders of his homeland, one might think. On the contrary.

In Fürth there was neither film music nor rediscovered material from the archives, instead there was the blues. Mississippi delta, swamps, heat, alligators - and Steve. Just Steve. Lap steel guitarist from New Orleans, whose solos converge so wonderfully with the master's accordion, as if the combination had been tried and tested for centuries.

In condensed band format with bass, drums and electric guitar, it sounds as intense as if von Goisern had never done anything else; and opens another chapter in his already wide open world music spectrum. With all due respect to his previous creations: the new alpine blues numbers, which can't be bought yet, are among the best songs he's ever written.

In the second part comes the Hubert that everyone knows: popular tunes and power ballads that sink a little in comparision to what was experienced in the first half. But with Brenna tuats guat, the beautiful Heast as nit or the final three-voice yodel, for which the 61-year-old unpacks the alphorn and makes eardrums flutter, fans old and new get their money's worth.

What the well-travelled communicator of tradition and deconstructer of folk music seems to so effortlessly serve up in musical crossover, is so stylish and unpretentious and genuine is just simply amazing. A life's work that is far from complete, it seems. Two and a quarter hours fly by and the audience streams out into the cool Franconian autumn night with happy faces. The new record is something to look forward to - as is the reunion in the summer at Burg Abenberg.

Hubert von Goisern in Erfurt

Alive Erfurt 15th November 2014 | Photo: © [a]live: promotion / Maik Gaede
Hubert von Goisern

More photos at

Travel bag from the wild west

Nürnberger Zeitung 15th November 2014

There is no helping people who still associate Hubert von Goisern solely with "folk music" and therefore turn him down with disinterest. Those who took it upon themselves to make their way last Thursday up the stony path to the Fürth Stadthalle for exactly this reason, dressed in dirndls and kederhosen as a homeage to their hero are a bit smarter.

They probably got exactly what they were hoping for: a world music surprise, in which you never really know what will be coming this time. But you can be sure that it will be good.

Hubert von Goisern is a musician of calibre. He wants to build bridges, travel countries and worlds, at times by ship on the Danube, so as to learn, play, see what happens wherever he drops anchor or sets camp. For more than 20 years the most wonderful compositions have come from this. Whether samba or funk, polka or rock - what stays is at least an accordion and yodelling. And the stigma Hiatamadl that sits in the heads of those who haven't taken a closer look at his music.

But because more recently a wonderful twist of fate meant that Brenna tuats guat, furnished like most of von Goisern's pieces with strong sociocritical lyrics, turned out to be just the right tune for dancing on the tables in beer tents, people come to the Fürth Stadthalle in anticipation of holleradulliöh.

Wrong again though - von Goisern and band have been around the wild west and brought back to Styria everything that could be considered musical culture in their travel bag - including Steve Fishell, who accompanies the band on the pedal steel.

A little ska, a little reggae and above all country and blues turn up, Louisiana, New Orleans, Tennessee, an excitedly flustered dirndl can quickly deflate and just look on in confusion. Allowances must be made for the fact that von Goisern is "only playing new songs from the new album" - which hasn't even been released yet.

And it's deliberate: "Because now none of you can sing along, and sometimes that's a good thing," the 61-year-old teases happily at the microphone, as he tells a number of hilarious anecdotes from his life as a globetrotter.

It is exactly this mix of accordion and blues beat, the dulcimer in country step, that is so much fun, and then Amazing Grace strays into the repertoire of this "USA" evening, at which point the guest sings along with relief. Finally something they know. And because the tension (and possibly the psychological strain) seems to be so great for many people, there is an eruption of ecstatic applause when the big festival hit comes after quieter sounds.

With exhaustion and gratitude you then forgive the following and final wonderful performances of older pieces, the melancholic sound and sad lyrics and the alphorn, this fantastic instrument that is so changeable between delicate and roaring. "Can't you hear how the time flies?" No, not after two hours. Not at all.

Cheers for the yodeller

Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung 14th November 2014 | Text: Arndt Krödel | Photo: © Rothe

Hubert von Goisern makes a guest appearance at the Heidelberg Stadthalle with his "New Folk Music"
- and brought along southern blues too

HvG & BandA few pretty dirndls and sturdy lederhosen are to be found among the audience members, who are as numerous as they are eager at the Heidelberg Stadthalle: outfits with which one person or another pays homage to the star of the evening.

But make no mistake - there's no threat of Musikantenstadl or folk music festival. When Hubert von Goisern comes on stage, he brings accordion and yodelling with him, but integrated in a musical style that thrills with his passionate creativity and doesn't invite hollow clapping along. With his original synthesis of rock music and traditional elements of alpine folk music, he is one of Austria's most successful musicians.

He withdrew from the public eye for a while, not taking to the stage for the last two years. The artist from Bad Goisern in the Austrian Salzkammergut region - hence the name - has been travelling the wide world once more, this time in the southern states of the USA, searching for new experiences and inspiration. It's noticeable in many of the pieces he played in Heidelberg: the blues brings a different rhythm to his programme, relocating a piece of the southern states to Austria - or vice versa. The 61-year-old protagonist of "new folk music" brought along an interesting musician for his band: pedal steel guitarist Steve Fishell, who showed his musical ability back in 1979 at Knebworth Festival, when he played support for legendary band Led Zeppelin.

From the blues and other rather serene, melodic pieces, it moves without a break to the rock numbers with furiously fast beats, hot, electrifying. The accordion, of which Hubert von Goisern employs a whole collection according to key, stands its ground in this powerful sound, moreover forming its guiding voice and is the instrumental star of the evening, without wishing to disparage the others. The Austrian lyrics offer sophisticated content - if you understand them. The Austrian artist also included the familiar, such as Amazing Grace, one of the most-loved and oft-performed hymns in the world, which he presented in a rhythmically mature version. Hank Williams' southern state Jambalaya is given its very special accent with yodelling. And of course a piece such as Heast as nit is not absent from the programme.

The audience of all ages is thrilled: thunderous applause time and again for the "alpine rocker" and world musician Hubert von Goisern and his band, consisting of the previously mentioned Steve Fishell, as well as Alexander Pohn (drums), Helmut Schartlmüller (bass) and Severin Trogbacher (guitar). As an encore the master proved that he can also elicit wonderfully powerful sounds from the alphorn.

Servas Heidelberg, hello!

Heidelberg24 13th November 2014 | Text & Photo: Christian Roth
Hubert von Goisern

Heidelberg - Hubert von Goisern hadn't been to Heidelberg for a long time. Ten years to be exact. He's done a lot in the meantime. Musically-speaking in particular.

He plays folk music, even if not just the alpine kind any more. He is well-travelled, he left people in no doubt about that on Wednesday at the Stadthalle: he doesn't just enjoy telling stories about it, he lets his guests hear too, empathise. And to be absolutely certain, he also had a musician from America with him: Steve Fishell on the pedal steel guitar, with its unmistakeable souther sound.

The blues alone make a trip to New Orleans worthwhile, because "over there everyone is a master of his instrument", the world musician said respectfully, "you don't let on that you're a musician. I said I was a baker, because they know nothing about baking...". The evening was accordingly heavy on the blues. But with the squeezebox Hubert von Goisern still sounded like "HvG" and sometimes wonderfully heavy at that.

Of course he had stories to tell from his homeland too, or rather of what Steve experienced when he arrived, beset with jetlag. In brief: jetlagged Steve was so taken with the snow and roast pork and schnapps at the Holleralm, that after the kids had been through on their Krampus march, which was something he wasn't familiar with either, a song just had to be written: Schnaps.

But of course Hubert von Goisern played the classics too: Brennen duats guat and the wonderful Heast as nit at the end.

Thank you for coming, thank you for listening and thank you for a wonderful evening, said "HvG". We hope he won't leave it another ten years before he returns.

Feathers, schnaps & blues: Hubert von Goisern visits Vienna

Salzburger Nachrichten / APA 11th November 2014 | Photo: © APA/Herbert Pfarrhofer
Hubert von Goisern & Band

Hubert von Goisern's been far, far away in the last two years, doing film music in Austria, an exhibition on Großglockner and broadening horizons in the USA. On Monday he brought with him to the jam-packed Halle E at the MuseumsQuartier in Vienna many new songs, compact and spirited, with a great deal of storytelling wit. An almost brilliant concert.

He didn't intend going on stage for the next few years, von Goisern posted after the end of his last tour in 2012. It wasn't the first time he'd said such a thing and it sounded like a long abstinence, such as the one after the end of his Alpinkatzen in 1994, when he disappeared for almost six years. He travelled to Tanzania, Tibet and India among other places - delivered world music albums, but there wasn't a proper "HvG" album until 2000 (Fön).

Even when he disappears from the screen, he's no slacker. This time he used the break to write a new soundtrack for a Joseph Vilsmaier film (Österreich - Oben und Unten opens in January; the CD Filmmusik is already out), to choose the music for this year's Alpenliebe exhibition on Großglockner (CD Steilklänge already released) and to travel. This time he left the narrow and confining alpine region and went out into the vastness of the southern states of the US, "to find friends, to build bridges". He hadn't counted on the narrow-mindedness there being greater than at home.

Roast pork, schnapps and kids' krampus marches

"I didn't think we'd be back so soon", von Goisern answered the suspicion of his having planned a longer absence. But the experiences in Tennessee and Louisiana, where he set off on a search for musicians, drove him back to work. People over there weren't especially taken with him. So he packed two colleagues onto the plane back to Austria. Perhaps something would happen. But nothing did. Even HvG's conciliatory playing of Amazing Grace didn't help. They were Catholics and don't play any Protestant hymns, or anything composed by a black person. The experiment failed, in spite of a number of attempts, even though there were "awfully good musicians" over there, that von Goisern started lying about his own profession, saying that he was a baker, "because they know nothing about bread."

But he did bring one musician with him: Steve Fishell, who has shared the stage with Led Zeppelin and is a Grammy winner, he is a pedal steel and lap steel guitarist - the lap guitar that produces the steel/rubber swirling sound reminiscent of Hawaii. And the rest of the band? The three perfectly relentless Upper Austrians, who formed the supporting team on the last three tours - even though "HvG" usually changes his musicians like other people change their underwear (that is, every three or four years). Fishell, terribly afflicted by jetlag, was incidentally recalibrated straight after he arrived in Austria, with roast pork, schnapps and cheery children in Krampus costumes in freshly snow-covered Hallstatt.

Songs from the unreleased album

For 80 minutes von Goisern performed a marketing hara-kiri, playing only material from his new album Federn, which won't be released until next spring (!). But: each song was better than the last! Unknown hits, including the "whining" cover Corrina, Corrina, in which the blues of all colours (okay, mainly blue) shine through and the discipline of rock could not be any sharper. Fantastic! But then the remaining 50 minutes: a slowdown.

The acoustic Omunduntn still sounded very promising, Brenna tuat's guat - a gift, Heast as nit - the secret anthem for everyone and then that was it. Lots of unknown from the department of romance, balladesque delicacy, a little redressed material and a finale on the alphorn with a skewed yodel. A little change in the setlist and the attribute "almost brilliant" would lose the "almost".

The blues of the accordion

Kurier 12th November 2014 | | Photo: © APA/Herbert Pfarrhoffer

HvGThere's no current hit, no new studio album to be promoted, and thus no motto for the current show: just a matter-of-fact "Tour 2014" on the ticket for Hubert von Goisern's Vienna concert.

So it was just about the music at the Museumsquartier on Monday evening. For the 61-year-old still eludes current market structures like no other, going his own way with the fusion of Austrian folk music and the musical traditions of other countries (once Tibet and Tanzania) with consistency and integrity.

After the super hit Brenna tuat's guat in 2011, von Goisern was on the search for musical friends in the USA – "although I wanted to take three or four years to think about what I could do next".

From America he brought over the pedal steel guitarist Steve Fishell. And a programme of new songs, shaped largely by blues and Cajun, which will be on the album on which he is currently working.

The audience, made up of every kind of fan, who have come to the Museumsquartier in dirndls, pinstripe suits and Metallica T-shirts, evidently took a moment to acclimatise. At least this time it takes a while until Goisern and his four-member band are able to seize their audience. Although there's not much to criticise in terms of what was on offer.


Yes, the bass is much too loud, a soundless vibration that you feel more than hear. But von Goisern sings as passionately as ever. And songs such as Snowdown (about refugees, wars and disasters) or Am helllichten Tag once again show how insightfully he is able to combine different music styles, making a true symbiosis from them, rather than just imposing one upon the other. His blues is richly varied, at times angry, at times sad, quiet here, contemplative and joyful there, when he sings of freedom and fulfilled love.

In between von Goisern tells stories of his experiences in the USA. Of the disappointment of realising that there are just as many stubborn musicians over there as live in the alpine valleys. That it wasn't a joke when some refused to play songs written by black people. Nonetheless the audience only seems to wake up when the Upper Austrian plays familiar songs such as Heast as nit during the encore.

Then they don't want to let him leave the stage. The second encore (after the first one lasted half an hour) is an alphorn yodel brought effortlessly into the present day, which gives all 1600 Viennese listeners - no matter whether in dirndls or pinstripes - shivering goosebumps.

Hubert von Goisern in Vienna

Schnappen 11th November 2014| Photo: © Annemarie Prinz
Hubert von Goisern

More photos at

Goisern does America

Kleine Zeitung 11th November 2014 | Text: Bernd Melichar

A brilliant concert at the Graz Orpheum

Graz. Once upon a time, a long, long time ago. Hiatamadl. At that point Hubert von Goisern could have continued and poured forth into the mainstream. But he didn't. Instead he chose the labrynthine path, the broad horizon and the wide world. In short: he chose musical truth.

After stops on the African continent, in Tibet and a journey along the Danube, the fusion grandmaster has now arrived in the southern states of America. He spent a couple of months there in the swamps of Louisiana, looking for the common ground between Cajun and (genuine) Austrian folk music. He struck gold, as a brilliant show at the Graz Orpheum on Sunday evening showed.

In the first part of the show Goisern solely presented material from the new CD, which won't be released until next year. New Orleans harmonises with Aussee, Nashville with Hallstatt. Amazing Grace is played on the accordion, Oh! Susanna fits into an alpine concept with no kitsch or commerce. Fresh, powerful new compositions fit seamlessly into a passionate adventure without frontiers.

Heast as net? Goisern sang at the end. Indeed, we heard well. The finest world music from a citizen of the world with heart and mind and accordion.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Karlsruhe - 31st October 2014

12th November 2014 | Photos: © Winfried Reinhardt

Almost like home

Allgäuer Zeitung 10th November 2014 | Text: Markus Noichl | Photo: Matthias Becker

Hubert von Goisern - the Austrian musician feels happy in the Allgäu, he revealed at his concert in Kempten.
He has a big fan base here: 3500 people wanted to hear him.

HvG and HelmutImmenstadt. He hasn't re-invented himself. Even after a two and a half year break Hubert von Goisern brings what the fans want to the Big Box in Kempten: rocking alpine sounds, folk music and yodelling - not from a museum, but as a reflection of our time. Deeply rooted like a Swiss pine in a steep rock face, but looking out from there too, far and wide into the world. Homeland and wanderlust.

This wanderlust is personified in the new Goisern band member, Steve Fishell from Nashville, Tennessee. He has played steel guitar with various country greats. A kind of zither, on which you can pluck passionately, or draw sounds with fantastic schmaltz along the length of the strings. He sits wearing a cowboy hat, solid as a rock, between Hubert and his Viennese guys, his companions of many years. Helmut Schartlmüller gets going on the electric bass, Severin Trogbacher on the electric guitar, Alex Pohn on drums. Multi-instrumentalists all. The most striking being the dulcimer in its original form as a Persian santur.

Hubert von Goisern himself changes squeezebox after nearly every song. He has his own assistant, who gives him the various models. In between times he howls blues into the harmonica, or plucks the guitar.

Hubert is ready with anecdotes that show that it's not quite as easy in world music and crossover as one perhaps thinks. When he oriented himself towards the USA, on the search for the blank areas on the music map of this planet, which he had not yet travelled, he met Cajun musicians from the swamps of Louisiana. But as a good Catholic, they didn't want to play Amazing Grace with him; it's a Protestant hymn.

His next idea was refused too, because the song had been written by a black person. "You think this kind of thing doesn't exist", Hubert comments on the collision with the mentality of stick in the muds. "Jeds Johr gehds weida, aba net jeda weard gscheida" (Every year passes, but not everyone gets any wiser), it goes in one of Hubert's lyrics; it fits well with his experiences in the USA. Standing by his heritage, to his background - that's part of it for him. But therefore appearing to be something better? Not that. He feels "at home" in the Allgäu, he says at the beginning of the concert. As the cheers of the 3500 people in the hall surge towards him, he adds a cool, "That's just the way it is, you don't need to feel smug about it."

The fact that Bob Dylan only covered the folk song Corrina, which Hubert is now playing too, and didn't write is, is of importance to him. A journalist got it wrong and it's now doing the rounds. "You see how they rewrite things. If a journalist is here, pay attention." We paid attention. You should continue to feel at home in the Allgäu, Hubert.

Hubert von Goisern at the bigBOX Kempten

Allgäuer Zeitung 10th November 2014 | Photo: © Matthias Becker
Hubert von Goisern

More photos at

The one who reinvents himself

Schwäbische Zeitung 9th November 2014 | Text: Dirk Augustin | Photo: Roland Rasemann

Hubert von Goisern thrills with bluesy alpine rock country music

Hubert von GoisernKempten sz "It all sounds a bit different", promised Hubert Achleitner, better known as Hubert von Goisern, promised the audience at the BigBox in Kempten on Saturday evening - and he keeps his word. Because blues and country haven't been part of the alpine rocker's music until now. The 61-year-old is surprising his fans once more, because he remains the same at the core, but does things differently on the outside.

Thus the concert evening has two parts: in the first hour the audience listens. Singing along doesn't work, because nobody knows these songs. The CD isn't ready, he's working on it in the studio. But on this tour, which started two weeks ago, von Goisern is presenting what's finished. And he explains where the influences come from.

The 61-year-old spent 50 days in the USA. He wanted to meet musicians in the home of blues and country, jam with them and take one or the other back to Europe with him for the new album and the tour. In fact, on the first day he met Steve Fishell, who now gives the familiar alpine rock a breath of campfire and cowboy life with his pedal steel guitar.

After that though, in 49 days in Louisiana and Nashville von Goisern didn't meet anyone else with whom he could or wanted to do this. Instead he came to the realisation that stubborn-headed people are not just to be found in the deep alpine valleys. They can be found in the wide steppes and swamps. Between songs von Goisern tells of what he experienced in the southern states. Hoped-for sessions with good musicians are impossible, if they refuse. A couple turn out to be Catholic and don't play a note of Amazing Grace, because it's supposedly a Protestant song. The whites don't want to play black songs and vice versa. For von Goisern, it's one more reason to put exactly these songs into his repertoire.

So it all sounds a bit new, but not as much as he actually intended. Hubert von Goisern has added Steve Fishell to the trio with which he has worked for years: Severin Trogbacher (guitar), Helmut Schartlmüller (bass) and Alexander Pohn (drums) don't need to prove to anyone what excellent musicians they are.

New album out in May

He feels "Frei wia der Wind" (free as the wind), von Goisern sings and proves it in multiple ways. Clearly the elements of blues, country and folk go well with the rocking folk music, which von Goisern enriched with sounds from Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe years ago. He regularly takes breaks, travels and learns from other musicians and still remains the "Styrian guy". It's impressive, how he absorbs it all and fuses it all together.

The fans can look forward to May, when the new album will be released, in particular to Corinna, Corinna, Oh Susanna or Schnaps. Since the story to schnapps won't be on the CD: when Fishell arrived in Goisern on the 4th December last year, he fought his jetlag with roast pork and good schnapps. When the children of the village suddenly appeared dressed in Krampus costumes, the American no longer knew what was reality and what was intoxication. In any case, he took a bottle of the good stuff.

Fans can also look forward to Snowdown, in which von Goisern considers refugees and the mood that unfortunately reigns here in the face of all the wars and catastrophes: "Just not here, not there, not in my back yard". Since he is political, von Goisern falls through the usual grate of folk music. Musicians of the people always used to bawdy be direct, and insubordinate.

After a good hour, von Goisern and his four musicians leave the simple stage and return after a quick rejig of the stage. And then off they go with his classics. Even if Hiatamadl was missing, the audience sang along and cheered Brenna tuats guad and Heast es nit. Although it is clear that in a few years, the currently unknown songs will be Hubert von Goisern classics too. The delighted audience's verdict was unanimous: "It was wonderful!"

The Alps meet Nashville

Kölner Stadt Anzeiger 7th November 2014 | Text: Alexandra Spürck | Photo: Christoph Hennes

Hubert von Goisern at the E-Werk

HvGCotton fields on alpine escarpments. Agriculturally that's still utopia, but Hubert von Goisern has the music for it. The founder of alpine rock - a diligent composer of film music too - has a new band member. Together with Steve Fishell from Nashville and the other musicians, Hubert von Goisern played to the well-filled E-Werk. The meeting of Styrian accordion and steel guitar drew a crowd of 1600 people.

Fishell, who has played in Emmylou Harris's band, glides the bottleneck over the strings, while von Goisern plays the accordion. No question, the new guy harmonises well with the band. Von Goisern picked him out in his homeland, the southern states of the USA. Von Goisern, a farmer's son from the Austrian Salzkammergut, is a well-travelled man and has already used numerous influences from world music in his creations. After Tanzania and Tibet von Goisern has now found America and is driving understanding between nations with folk music: from Amazing Grace he makes the equally contemplative So a Segn and yodels to Hank Williams' southern state anthem Jambalaya.

Steve Fishell seems to decelerate the band; slow-paced blues compositions are on the programme. Is alpine rocker von Goisern, who will be 62 in a few days, getting comfortable? He always remains uncomfortable. When Fishell takes a break, von Goisern quickens the tempo: with Alexander Pohn on drums, the bass player Helmut Schartlmüller and guitarist Severin Trogbacher he strikes up Brenna tuats guat, with the anticapitalism lyrics that talk of burning money and - the irony of fate - was a big hit in 2012 at the biggest and most commercial of all folk festivals, Oktoberfest.

At the E-Werk intercultural misunderstandings are absent; after more than two hours of concert von Goisern blasts a grateful encore on the alphorn.

Home again

Abendzeitung 5. November 2014 | Text: Arno Frank Eser

At the Circus Krone Hubert von Goisern tells tale of America, where he discovered the blues

The land of unbounded possibility is in truth quite constrained and constricted, in terms of music too. "They all live and work in their straightforward little biotope", Hubert von Goisern told his fans in Circus Krone.

And when a free spirit like him comes along, the musicians in the USA don't know what to do with him at first. At least not the ones he met. A firsthand travel report. Not bitter, not frustrated, but with a wink. Because ultimately the multi-instrumentalist brought home a very valuable souvenir: the blues!

And in this case it of course sounds very characteristic of Hubert von Goisern, not just down to the lyrics and dialect, but because of the accordion, the guitar, harmonica and above the style of singing. Just as it was once considered to be: a vent to release the sadness before it can get hold of you. You can feel the influences of the Louisiana blues, but you feel the alpine roots too.

And apart from that, it's not the case that the entire USA trip was lost to futile attempts at collaboration. Right on the first day there was a meeting with Steve Fishell on the steel guitar - and he was brought over. It's impressive, how the whining guitar harmonises with the bluesy accordion, and how drums, bass and guitar skilfully hold back in such magic moments.

An unusual programme: barely anything familiar, instead the blues and American standards like Jambalaya, Amazing Grace and a skewed version of Corinna, Corinna. Added to the mix, witty stories about the journey, to make you smile and think

At the end comes the hit Brenna tuats guat and the classic Heast es net, wie die Zeit vergeht. As final encore then a soulful yodel from the team and a powerful alphorn - and Hubert von Goisern and his band are back home again.

Complete devotion

Münchner Merkur 5th November 2014 | Text: Zoran Gojic | Photo: © Oliver Bodmer
Hubert von Goisern

Hubert von Goisern has travelled the south of the USA
- now he presents the musical impressions of this journey in Munich

Hubert von Goisern is musical frontier runner, who integrates influences from across the world in his work. He has now travelled the southern states of the USA. And although there weren't sparks everywhere, von Goisern returned to his sound studio with many musical impressions.

Some musicians didn't want to play "Amazing Grace"

Since the beginning of time Hubert von Goisern has tried with music to make possible the impossible, to cross boundaries and to build bridges. It worked wonderfully in various African countries, in the Indian highlands and the countries bordering the Danube. But in the motherland of pop music of all places, the USA, it was hopeless. That is the story he told in the sold out Circus Krone, where he presented the complete, but as yet unreleased album, which he recorded after his USA trip.

Even if things didn't really spark with the American colleagues - as always von Goisern has absorbed influences, sounds and tunes and let them take their effect. And because he was in the southern USA, he is now playing stamping blues, country, bluegrass and zydeco, all wonderfully mixed and with the unmistakeable Goisern sound.

The idea of an Upper Austrian, incorporating traditional southern music with yodelling and the accordion is admittedly confusing at first glance. But after the first bar doubts evaporate, because von Goisern never pretends, but instead gives himself to the experiment with complete devotion. It sounds unusual, but good. Just as with all of his excursions into new musical worlds thus far. Von Goisern also benefits from the fact that country music was shaped significantly by central European immigrants. So in truth this music isn't so far away and von Goisern uses this adeptly to find the balance between his own music and American tunes.

Thus when it comes to von Goisern, a blues standard like Corrina, Corrina, it sounds as though it has always been played in dialect and alpine sounds. And Amazing Grace, which the musician plays completely alone on the accordion; you've never heard anything like it. With this song he found that that Americans, at least those in the south, are just as stubborn as his compatriots in Goisern, and that sobered him somewhat, he explained at the Circus Krone: the musicians there refused to play with von Goisern. They were Catholics and Amazing Grace is a Protestant hymn. At first he took it as their strange sense of humour, "like Helge Schneider". But they were being serious. Not all white musicians in Nashville play songs composed by black people either - all this left the globetrotter von Goisern feeling pretty taken aback. Nonetheless, the free spirit still likes the music, despite all these strange experiences during his USA trip. After all the music can't help it.

It is this decisive devotion to everything he tackles that not least makes von Goisern a live sensation, even at the age of 61. The verve with which he plays as yet completely unfamiliar pieces and occasionally downright grabs the audience's attention wrests your greatest respect.

He ends the first part of the concert with the unreleased pieces with a quiet ballad, a miniature, and earns thunderous applause. Sincere applause, not the rhythmic clapping that often sets in when more well-known songs are played. They take their turn too and are accordingly cheered - but Hubert von Goisern has worked hard for the status of a musician, with whom every single concert is worth it, with shows such as the one he put on in the first half of the Munich concert. He takes a risk and puts his trust in the audience too. As an encore then comes the alphorn and spherical yodelling, you have to dare to do that too.

The America album will be out in May next year. At the same time the documentary film Brenna tuats schon lang by Marcus H. Rosenmüller (Wer früher stirbt ist länger tot) will hit the cinemas; the concert at the Circus Krone was used as a filming opportunity. Both productions are hotly anticipated.

The fön from Louisiana

Süddeutsche Zeitung 5th November 2014 | Text: Michael Zirnstein

Hubert von Goisern surprise with southern blues at the Circus Krone

Munich – Is that all? Didn't Hubert von Goisern's manager announce his "most present year ever"? Doesn't one expect the alpine music king to present all his current deeds to the vassals in the Circus Krone? Excerpts from the Rosenmüller film of his life; the orchestra with which he has newly recorded his hits for Vilsmaier's resplendent portrait of Austria and with the CD Steilklänge he could have at least had the yodelling choir from Wattwill in Switzerland turn up.

He didn't. Just four guys follow the 62-year-old onto the sparse stage. Three Upper Austrians like him, but half his age, and a scrawny dude in a hat. This man, introduced as Steve Fishell from Nashville, is von Goisern's only souvenir. As he humorously explains, he was over in America for 50 days, to build bridges to this country from which he felt alienated. But none of the talented colleagues there wanted to get involved with Goisern's search for fusion. Only the pedal steel guitarist in the hat, who was promptly introduced to Krampus rituals and the drinking of hazelnut schnapps. You can imagine what these five guys have worked out together for the new album: Men's music. Folksy, beefy and not afraid of Indians: "Die Wahrheit sucht Asyl, aber kriagn tuat se's nie, weil ma z'feig san dafür" ("Truth searches for asylum, but never finds it, because we're too cowardly") from the apocalyptic piece Snowdown is one of the great new lyrics.

Rock was never foreign to the Goiserer, but now he dives deep into its primal swamp: Jambalaya, country, Neil Young orgies, strokes of Lambchop, Cajun, "and when you bring back a blues, then you do so from Louisiana". Fishell's slide strings weave together with Goisern's accordion, Severin Trogbacher on electric and western guitar duels with the yodelling, drummer Alex Pohn and bass player Helmut Schartlmüller look for more than just rhythm: tonal breadth. America has seldom been closer.

Between schnapps and Corinna

tz 5th November 2014 | Text: Matthias Bieber | Photo: © Bodmer

HvGGoisern goes to the United States for 50 days and establishes pretty quickly: The Yanks and the Goiserers have a lot in common - for example the fact that they think that there's beyond their own lives. Fortunately, even at the age of 61 Hubert von Goisern is different: he absorbs, he is curious, he wants to try rather than study. Once more the fans in the packed Circus Krone were able to see just how great, intense and varied the results are: Goisern mixes southern state sound with rock and folk music. Providing the blues feeling is the Nashville import Steve Fishell, whom Goisern met over there. As the only musician with the heart and vision to travel through Goisern's marvellous world of sounds, and moreover: to allow his own very personal pedal steel notes to flow in to the music. And thus two hours fly by. Goisern, jack-of-all-trades in sound and multi-instrumentalist, flits with his band like a will-o'-the-wisp between hard and tender in his stylistic mismatches. He sings of Schnaps and Corinna, lets things burn well of course and once more makes clear: Styrian celebration is unique. No-one can hold a candle to him. Precisely because his appropriation of the most varied styles and influences never currys favour, never goes over the top, but instead is deeply felt. Goisern is understanding between nations personified. Cheering and finally the famous alphorn. So goes culture.