If a musician was omnipresent in the German pop scene, it was Paul Kuhn. This is least reflected in his record success, even though two pieces were enough to keep him in his memory forever: The man at the piano and there's no beer in Hawaii. His dominant role was explained by his activities as orchestra leader in the recording studios, from countless television appearances and later from his position as head of the big band of the broadcaster Freies Berlin. He was therefore also associated with Berlin by many, and was born in Wiesbaden on 12 March 1928. This origin proved to be decisive for his musical development later on. The soloist beginnings of'Paulchen' date back to the 1930s, when the six-year-old played Silent Night on the accordion for his parents at Christmas. His father, trained as a hairdresser and croupier in recognizing opportunities, sent the precocious musician to a Wiesbaden competition in 1936, and Paulchen played his way forward. As'Gausieger Hessen' he was invited to the radio exhibition, which took place in Berlin in the same year, and performed with his accordion in front of one of the then still rare television cameras. Even if only a few could see it, for Paul Kuhn this meant a surge in popularity. He met jazz for the first time at the'Musisches Gymnasium' in Frankfurt through his classmates, which was secretly replaced by shellac records. This inspired him to write his first arrangement for a piece that was already considered jazz at the time: You're beautiful with me. At 16 he was detached to the'Fronttheater' and played the piano in Paris in front of anti-aircraft soldiers.
He was able to escape the Reichsarbeitsdienst at home in Wiesbaden by fleeing, and the fact that Americans discovered him in his hiding place shaped his further path. He hired himself as musical troop advisor to the occupying forces and founded his own combo as early as 1946, which was firmly engaged by the AFN. Contacts with Willy Berking, Adalbert Luczkowski and Kurt Edelhagen as well as Helmut Zacharias led him to Freddie Brocksieper's'Star Quintet', after which he ended up at NWDR in Cologne. He had different expectations of his record contract with Electrola in 1953 than his producer Nils Nobach, who eventually led him to record Der Mann am Klavier. Concession of Electrola to the jazz pianist: Instead of his name'Paulchen am Klavier' was written on the record label. Overwhelmed by the success of the piece, Paul Kuhn gave in and subsequently recorded a series of hits based mainly on American models. His role as an entertainer at the piano, however, the humorous "In my account, the comma is too far to the left.
The Dixieland intro was to his taste, and the text finally had a contemporary reference that satirized the time of the economic miracle. Because if the comma had been further to the right, Paulchen was sure: "They would see me every day like Ali Kahn, with the Lollo and with Sophia Loren". With the Marty Robbins piece A White Sport Coat, he even joined the musical trend that made popular country stars in Germany heard. The colour of love, however, lacks the originality of the original. Text author Ralph Maria Siegel delivered a conventional hit with his colour advice: instead of white wear red! Marty Robbins, on the other hand, described the misfortune of a boy who was abandoned for a prom and is now standing there in his fashionable outfit. Paul Kuhn, however, has no choice but to explore the palette of colours and the traditional passions associated with them - love, hope, loyalty, jealousy. "Wear blue instead of green, that is the colour of fidelity" - Carl Perkins' blue suede shoe did not really fit the'man at the piano'. It had to be a hit like There's no beer in Hawaii for Paul Kuhn to return to the charts in 1963. After numerous film appearances, a failed attempt to qualify for the Eurovision Grand Prix, he finally took over the management of the SFB Big Band in 1968. He performed until December 31, 1980, when the station dissolved the band for cost reasons. From then on Kuhn accompanied pop stars like Peter Alexander with his own orchestra and in the 90s he again became active as a jazz musician with a trio. He toured the Republic constantly. Recently he has travelled with Max Greger and Hugo Strasser as'Swing legends'. With this he returned to his early musical love, which also gave his memories of life the title:'Swinging Years'.