Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Simply '70s: Lady Gaga, meinen Arsch

How sad is American culture today?

Let's take a look at the score sheet: Marxist East Germany (1974) gives us Nina Hagen und Automobil. Capitalist America (2008) gives us a pale imitation, Lady Gaga und blecch.

Advantage, communism.

OF COURSE, the totalitarian state had its limits. Thus, the First Fraulein of Punk (der punken?) was not perfected until she fled the dictatorship of the proletariat for West Germany, and then spent time in pre-Thatcherite England amid the emergence of The Clash and the Sex Pistols.

Advantage, democratic socialism.

Above, we see Hagen during a 1979 TV appearance.

CALL ME when Lady Gaga has the guts to do this one.

Of course, back when I worked in Catholic radio, the sight of Nina Hagen singing a punk version of "Ave Maria" would have been cause for an epidemic of the vapors. Trust me, the good God-fearin' folk would be going all Rick Perry on the sacrilegious Kraut faster than Mother Angelica could say
“Remember to keep us between your gas and electric bill.”

This is why I'm glad the good Lord got me out of there before I lost the rest of my faith. Trust me, it was close.
(As always, your mileage may vary.)

But then you take a look at the translation of the German lyrics Hagen put to Franz Schubert's famous melody:
Ave Maria, Maria of whom I sing
We are asking you for mercy
For people who have already been waiting so long
Totally without hope
Totally without hope

See there, their unhappy lives
It hungers deep, from fear of death
Millions live here on the earth
Still yet, in greatest need

Ave Maria
Ave Maria, Saint Maria
Hear my prayers Maria
Where much suffering has already occurred
Why always does more hurt follow more hurt
Let the people have faith again
Let them understand and forgive
Then all peoples could become friends
And all the races could be brothers
Ave Maria
LIKE I SAID, let's see Gaga have the gu-guts to go onstage and belt out that one.

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