Who was/is Gunter Gabriel ? - CDs, Vinyl LPs, DVD and more
Geb. 11.6. 1942 in Bünde - Westfalen
Record Labels: Hansa, Polydor, Bear Family Records
Erster Hit: Er Ist Ein Kerl (1974)
Erster Top Ten Hit: Hey Boss, Ich Brauch` Mehr Geld (1974)
Gunter Gabriel - Freiheit ist ein Abenteuer.
The man singer with the guitar. Just a moment ago the big Gunter GabrielBlonde had to sign an autograph between a salad plate and an apple juice spritzer. On a white paper napkin. At noon Gunter Gabriel often eats here, at Klaus', in a snack bar somewhere in the labyrinth of Harburg harbour. Klaus, the innkeeper, always has good things on his menu, home cooking and fried food and his prices are cheap, says the lunch guest in the washed-out black jeans and the pointed cowboy boots. He likes it. Everybody in this pinte knows him, at least from TV. Everybody calls him by his first name: "Hey, Gunter, what's going on?"
Gunter Gabriel is prominent, but therefore far from unapproachable. He's an anti-star. One who has nothing to fall into his lap, who has had to bite his way through his whole life, he says, while he lets himself be inspired by Klaus' homemade herb. Above all, Gunter Gabriel is one of them, the Malochern. Even though his last big hits may have been a while ago and he may have relegated from the Bundesliga to the Kreisklasse in the meantime, as he puts it, Gunter Gabriel has never been out of the window, and many fans have remained loyal to him for years.
For despite all the success that rolled over him, when Gunter Gabriel began in the early 70s to capture the state of mind of the so-called "little people down there" and process it into songs, he remained a buddy; one who understands how to express what many think; one who speaks the language of the people and to whom, in return, one pats the shoulder without inhibitions.
"My heroes are the women and men everywhere in the land who do the work day by day, quiet and unrecognized. My heroes are all those who often overlook. And yet basically making sure that the wheels turn" (from: Meine Helden, M+T: Gabriel, 1977) When a new CD would finally come, asks one of Klaus' regular eaters in the orange overall from the next table over. "I'm in the process of recording new footage. Just got out of the studio. But it will take a little longer," answers Gunter Gabriel. A pop singer? No, he doesn't rhyme 'heart' with 'pain', but 'differential' with 'works council election' or 'whole man' with 'highway'.
Gunter Gabriel's songs are like a warm, firm handshake.
A songwriter? Yes, but he doesn't let himself be nailed down politically (and he's closer to rock 'n' roll than to chanson). But he never kept his perspective on things to himself: He sang about radiation sludge from the nuclear laboratory (Der Mann hinterm Pflug, 1982) and the steelmakers' fear of impending unemployment (Rheinhausen, 1988), about German soldiers in ex-Yugoslavia (Es steht ein Haus im Kosovo, 1999) or the farewell to the D-Mark (Bye Bye Deutsche Mark, 2002). Gunter Gabriel reveals himself in the songs, his music often bears his biographical stamp. Not everyone feels addressed by it, but his followers like the honesty and passion of his everyday and asphalt poetry.
The toughest boys are always the ones who cry secretly and can be incredibly romantic. In Gunter Gabriel's deep trucker voice you can hear the loving, the irretrievably nostalgic and romantic, the unswerving belief in goodness and love at every tone.
Elke Heidenreich, Cologne, January 2011