Michael Rother 1973 - small-new

Addendum: On the occasion of Michael Rother’s 70th birthday! Alles Gute zum Geburtstag Herr Rother! (originally published 2016).

“SONG FOR EWE” is the feature where artists & music people beloved by VELVET SHEEP choose an obscure song they’ve been listening to that day.

Legend is an over-used term, but rarely is it more deserved than for today’s esteemed guest. A real musical alchemist, electronic pioneer, mould-breaking engineer. He sounded new then and he sounds new now, a one time member of Kraftwerk, but more importantly the founder of kosmiche forefathers NEU! (without whom there would have been no Negativland) he’s also recorded with the much underlooked but recently re-released Cluster under the name Harmonia, with Eno at the controls.

Not only that, he’s played in an epic onstage jam with the Red Hot Chili Peppers and played in a band with Steve Shelley from Sonic Youth and Tall Firs guitarist Aaron Mullan.

And if that wasn’t enough when Iggy Pop was off touring his new one recently, our man sat in  for Iggy’s Friday night radio show on BBC 6 Music, and his selections were an audiophile feast. It’s a great uncle of drone, strum und drang, beats and bleeps, and my pleasure to wilkommen aus Velvet Sheep and introduce his royal highness / Herr Michael Rother! It’s a new or should I say NEU “song for ewe”. Or a “song for NEU”?!

Michael Rother 1 - small

I was so chuffed I had a “song for ewe” from Michael, I had to tell some bezzies straight away, but been delayed in getting it up here. When I asked Michael what he was up to, here’s a snapshot from that day:

“Today, my musicians Hans Lampe and Franz Bargmann are coming to Forst. We´ll do some rehearsals for the concert at Incubate Festival in Tilburg NL on Saturday, May 14th.

I´m currently discussing several music projects for the summer and tours (UK, Japan, China, Latin America) for 2016/17. Busy times….”

But what of Michael’s song selection – funny enough, there must be something in the ether (plus the fears for his choice’s health) as it’s the second Little Richard in short succession…so without further ado, it’s over to Michael…

My choice would be Little Richard´s “Whole Lotta Shakin´ Going On”.

I´m always electrified by the positive energy of Little Richard´s song that was released in 1959.

Watch the video of his performance in a TV show in 1963 and notice how when he starts hammering the chords on the piano and belting away the vocals it takes only 2 seconds for everyone in the room to go wild.

The song makes me want to jump around and enjoy music and freedom, just like the teenagers did when they listened to Little Richard back then. Forever inspiring!