Glossen Sonderausgabe/Special Issue: 15/2002
Identity Formation in German Schlager-Hits
The Schlager, as a German-language musical genre, hails from the popular arias of opera and operetta in the second half of the nineteenth century. In the Weimar Republic and the Third Reich, the variety, cabaret, and revue shows, also featured in the new medium film, became the new home of the Schlager. As a mass-cultural product aimed at effortless consumer recognition,
a Schlager generally consists of two to four verses (A,B,C,D etc.) with the title chorus or hook-line (X) interspersed between each of them. Sometimes, a Schlager will instead begin with a hook-line or the title chorus itself, which is then frequently repeated through a fade-out or the final chorus: (X) A X B X (C X D) Xn. Schlager survived the 1968 spring and subsequent anti-establishment cultural politics as well as the short-lived yet highly influential appearance of New German Wave in the early 1980s, largely because of their all-appropriating and highly adaptable musical characteristics. Their melodies can be ballad-like, can be melodramatic or farcical, can possess jazz, techno, hip-hop or pop-rock elements, even operatic pathos.1
From the contemporary Schlager's postwar beginnings to its current renaissance, Italian singers like Caterina Valente and Vico Torriani, the Tunisian Roberto Blanco, the Greek stars Costa Cordalis and Vicky Leandros have largely determined the voice and face of German-language pop music. This is even more astonishing when considering that the German Schlager as such was viewed by the political left as a thinly disguised attempt to resurrect Volkstümelei, ethnically based nationalistic and patriotic sentiments considered taboo for the postwar and post-Holocaust German citizen. Led by postcolonial critiques of multiculturalism and by cultural studies methodology, I started to investigate what kind of identity formation process, what type of nationalistic discourse we are actually witnessing in popular hits by German and foreign-born nationals, and whether there is a difference between them. By analyzing individual song lyrics and compositions from the late 1970s selected from a broader investigation of the narrative and musical themes of a wide variety of German Schlager, before and after 1989, I hope to awaken an appreciation for the complex socio-cultural and political implications of this phenomenon for the debate on the search for a post-Holocaust and post-1989 German identity. I am especially interested in the "reverse discourse" phenomenon, by which ethnic minorities in Germany project an image of their home countries through the German imaginary.
I. Schlager and German Cultural Studies
Since the 1970s, the Schlager has been an easy target for German-based, Marxist-schooled literary sociologists interested in "trivial literature." Exemplary for their motivation to deal with the Schlager was first of all an attempt to break down the taboo on mass-produced cultural products still prevalent within German academia at that time. Secondly, merging literary reception theories with Freudian psychology and Marxist sociology, their interest was fueled by the previously disregarded "collective desires of millions," especially crucial considering the fascist German past (see Annamaria Rucktäschel, 1976). Straight from the sound-text of a Schlager, so the theory went, one could read off the collective desires of the "lonely masses." Due to its manageable size and shape, the Schlager allowed insight into a capitalist-driven desirous structure that was forever short-changed and thus created eternal demand for short-lived Ersatzbefriedigung (David Riesmann, 1958). When these critics addressed gender, race, and place-based identification strategies in Schlager texts, their analyses pointed to the psychological chain of "reality-estranged" generalities offering "total identification" to listeners and therefore producing the "escape from reality" that became the catch word of the decade (Rucktäschel, 1976, 382-383). Even lyrics which included a critique of concrete social problems, for example Udo Jürgens' 1975 hit "Greek Wine," were interpreted to confirm to this pattern, precisely because they used and distorted bits from whatever stood for an unproblematized concept of "real life" in the critics' imagination.
Even though the 1980s brought the German-French debate on postmodernism, and the 1990s have seen a shift towards cultural, gender and, slowly but surely, postcolonial studies as well, the Schlager has recently become one of the foci of nostalgia-prone Zeitgeist-analyses, that hope to resuscitate the aura of the pre-unified Germanies. While their authors have become critical of the straightforward mirror-function of Schlager for postwar consumer society, their project is still preeminently involved in hunting down that ever elusive "nerve of a generation" ("Nerv einer Generation") or the "consciousness of an era" ("Zeitbewußtsein," Max und Moritz, 14).2 When there is room for a discussion of place as a constituting element of this belabored "consciousness," contemporary critics zoom in on "Italy [or the South Sea] as utopia, as ideal-typical Nowhere, which one creates as soon as certain trigger words fall" (Pfarr,1997, 146). For Christian Pfarr, for example, Mina's "Hot Sand" (1962) about Morroco, Costa Cordalis' "Anita" (1976) about Mexico, Bernhard Brink's "And then they fly to Ibiza" (1988), or the recent Mallorca-hymn "Hell/Madness" exude exactly the same Zeitgeist as Rudi Schuricke's "Capri-Fisher" (1943/44). As a result, the different faraway-so-close locales serenaded by Schlager after Schlager are interpreted as copies of a static German imaginary, in short, just like their native inhabitants, they are theoretically and phenomenologically located beyond historical change (Pfarr, 146-147).
II. Turn that off!
Coming at Schlager from poststructuralist inquiries into discursivity and postcolonial investigations of colonialist imagery, I thus hoped to sound-out the systemic instabilities of a seemingly hermetically sealed textual archive. For what I believed at the beginning to be my first time, my first interaction with Schlager, actually proved to unravel part of my own conception of the formations of contemporary German history, memory, and identity. As one of the ironic twists of history, the majority of current German projects on the Schlager, my own included, are being undertaken either by dedicated fans or by representatives of a part of the population that, during the 70s and 80s, professedly did not listen to Schlager at all. In my case, that meant, yes, I heard Schlager, as Max and Moritz attest "their omnipresence in radio and on TV left no ear dry or free of Schmalz" (13), but would I have voluntarily listened to or even rushed out to buy them - an absolute, emphatic no. Until the renaissance of the Schlager after German unification in 1989, German language Schlager were decidedly un-cool. With their too-close-for comfort German lyrics, they spelt out a part of being German that liberals associated with that conservative mind-set still sore over losing WWII and with it the right to display German patriotism. For many liberal young Germans, just the thought of simple-minded rhyming titles such as "Schöne Maid, hast du heut' für mich Zeit?" ("Pretty Gal, do you have time for me today?," Tony Marshall, 1971) with its sexist Nazi-style vocabulary was enough to flee the room in horror. However, nobody would have raised an eyebrow had someone put "Pretty Woman" on the record player. It was after all not just a matter of content, although the Schlager's limited vocabulary and simplistic lyrics are often construed as the educated German's reason for despising them. The aspiring intellectuals' hatred of Schlager was most likely based on a combination of feeling internally invaded by a Germanness one so desperately wanted to shed, and from which one wanted to distance oneself: from a seemingly institutionalized conformist and confining petite bourgeois lifestyle in the well-to-do republic, from an everyday matter-of-fact regulatory positivistic attitude that left no mysteries to be solved, from anything that would entice Germans to gather in crowds and clap or bark verses out in unison, from the kind of switch-on happiness also occurring during German carnivals, and, of course, from reducing Europe's multiple complex problems (German terrorist wave in 1970s, Brokdorf, Pershing II rockets, Berufsverbote etc.) to Liebeskummer.3 And why indeed would you have wanted to listen to a genre of music that was, in the 1970s, restricted to an audience comprised of the previous generations? Listening to quota-mixed state-controlled radio, and being dragged to older relatives' birthday parties were the only incidents, when one could not escape Schlager. This young/old, public/private divide changed only after the New German Wave hit the air in the early 1980s, and when German-language Rock became popular with Nina Hagen on one end, and Klaus Lage and Nena on the other end of a wide spectrum.
What this boiled down to, whether I liked it or not, was that Schlager had a way of sneaking past my internalized censorship and actually depositing not only recallable melodies but also entire sets of lyrics in my memory. Due to the partly taught, partly self-enforced denial, the Schlager, and with it a specifically German socio-political topography itself, seem like an uncharted terrain, one can invade as the oh-so-objective ethnographer at a time, when every frontier has been encountered and crossed between popular culture and academia. The danger in repeating in style what Schlager perform in their image-repertoire is therefore great. In theorizing these questions and providing the necessary self-criticism during the process, Laura Mark's notion of "radioactive memory" has become vital for my research. Upon excavating intertextual layers of memory residues, she argues, one is most attracted to those that send readily decipherable messages, decipherable because of an affinity based on a cultural and theoretical apparatus of shared meanings and their confirmation. This does not mean, however, that other memories, to whom one's ear is unaccustomed or whose signature melody one previously denied to receive, are not "causing inert presences on the most recent layer of history themselves to set off chains of associations that had been forgotten" (Marks 91). And further, as the term "radioactive" implies, these messages are not unearthed without a certain risk. As Marks contends, "the danger is in realizing that there exist histories that are contradictory to those one knows, cultural knowledges that shake the security of one's own cultural position in the world. This is an unsettling, de-composing experience, and it is certainly destructive of firmly ethnocentric views (...)" (91). For example, when my family protested my scholarly impulse to investigate Schlager, their unvoiced assumption was that Schlager might entice me to join the "dark side," that is corrode our community-enforced politics, our sense of aesthetics, as well as trained habitual resistance. On the other hand, listening to Schlager and not expecting confirmation of one's liberal agenda has created an unlikely new audience among specific groups of post-colonial intellectuals, gays, and ethnic minorities, which while tackling with their own preconceptions, nevertheless have had the beneficial effect of un-settling a seemingly already mineralized Schlager repertoire and have helped to hybridize nationalist folklore, in effect turning it into postmodern camp. Taking both of these effects together, they point to the disavowed fluid intersections between emotional, physical, ethnic, political and intellectual positioning.
While Schlager Stars have included representatives as Germanic as Heidi Brühl and Heintje in the 60s or little Nicole in 1982, their ranks have also incorporated Schlager-Stars from different national, ethnic and/or racial backgrounds.4 To complicate matters further, many German-born stars adopted a non-German identity and even affected an accent to boost their record sales.5 In order to sound out this neo-colonialist reverse discourse phenomenon, I am going to compare three Schlager by Roberto Blanco (Roberto Zerquera, Tunisia), Costa Cordalis (Greece) and Heino (Germany).
In "Der Puppenspieler von Mexico" (Siegel/Shuman, 1972), Roberto Blanco depicts a Mexican puppeteer's ability to enthrall the marketplace crowd in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The song lyrics and accompanying Mexican-style orchestra thus represent the border-situation of outsider as insider that he himself embodies. Read together with "Viva Maria" and his Schlager-Hymn "Ein bißchen Spass muss sein," both featuring stereotypical Mexican rhythms and instruments, Blanco and his songwriters achieved a Mexicanization-effect, that equips him with a hybrid national and ethnic identity tied not to his homeland, i.e. Tunisia, but specifically to his performance as Schlager-Star. His performance is thus built on and invokes the cultural hybridity that is the cornerstone of race-discourse in postwar Germany. Just as the pseudonym "Blanco" whites out Roberto's Tunisian descent, Mexico is made to stand for the exotic variant of all too familiar Mallorca. While the cultural displacement from Germany or Tunisia to the Southern U.S. replaces his racial and national identity by another, this hybridity itself overwrites his national with his racial identity, which is always already coded as hybrid. In the dialectic between "Fremdheit" and "Vertrautheit," Blanco occupies a mediating middle position that thus performs the split of "Eigenes" from "Fremdes."6
What is striking in the lyrics of "Der Puppenspieler von Mexico" is that they endow the puppeteer with the power to turn the listeners into marionettes themselves - "manche fingen an zu tanzen, andere tranken viel zu viel, sie waren oft selbst wie Marionetten aus dem alten Puppenspiel." This has the effect of conferring the puppeteer's power onto Blanco by proxy, on the other hand of reinvoking the racist stereotype of the zombie-doctor. The shift from Lokalkolorit-Entertainer to figure of power goes hand in hand with a loss of control for members of his audience. The puppeteer's performance throws their individual national and racial identities into ambiguity, making them respond like hysterics. Here, the very process of identity formation seems structurally tied to racial dichotomies. The same discursive structure that allows the performer to transgress national boundaries and adopt a fluid national identity via his own racial Otherness and the supposed "universal language of music" typecasts him through the racialized power dialectic that the text evokes, and which his star-iconography makes manifest for spectators and listeners. In the 1970s, the power of politics pervaded everyone's lives again after a period of postwar denial, and comparisons between Nazis and terrorists as well as Nazis and anti-terrorist campaigners abounded in the media. If the German fans felt like marionettes of higher powers in these times, this Schlager allows them to code that feeling in mythical racial terms, that form intricate ethnographic memory-layers with the stuff of legends, Der Rattenfänger von Hameln, and the all too real Holocaust.
The puppeteer/musician trope, a very common one for the Schlager theme repertoire, has quite a different effect in the case of Bernd Clüver's "Der Junge mit der Mundharmonica" or when Udo Jürgens commands the gypsy musician Zigan to play in "Spiel, Zigan, spiel!" (1971). The interpreters' whiteness here assures the German fan of the entertainment value that the Otherness of the musicians provides because their power over German souls and emotions remains contained within the songs' diegesis. In addition, the gypsies' genre-determined lack of national identity strengthens the singers' own. In Blanco's case, this dichotomy helps to racialize his own and his alter-ego's national identities precisely because of its structural elasticity. For the non-German Schlager star, national identity becomes a performance, a performance that is always already coded as racial drag and that highlights structural problems of identity formation in the process of European integration.
A different problem articulates itself in Costa Cordalis' hit "Spiel Bouzouki," in which his national and ethnic identities match those of the lyrical I in the song. "So allein durch diese Stadt zu geh'n, Ich war fremd und konnte kein Wort versteh'n.." With the "vertraute Klang" of the bouzouki, which suddenly appear from the inside of a small bar, the alter-ego is able to create a dream-like summer-day in Athens, a national enclave within the strange, cold German night, complete with red wine and a girl, who "understands his dream." The sound-waves of the music revive him and literally carry him home. The reverse nationalism exhibited in these hits forms a counterpart to the longing for better food, better weather, better sex expressed by German singers like Udo Jürgens, Bernhard Brink or Rex Gildo. In their songs, the German homeland is cold, competitive, and lonely. The identification-process that these songs offer to German fans, and perhaps to expatriate Greek fans as well, thus relies on an authenticated image of a self-identical Greece that is a reliable Other to a Germany portrayed as undergoing alienating changes. Further, while Germans could serenade the beauty of Greece in a spirit of substitute patriotism, the 1970s were not the decade to publicize pride in being German.
Despite the fact that in many Schlager-lyrics, small bars and cafés engender a cross-cultural meeting place, with few exceptions, this meeting ground does not question but rather solidify already existing class and race hierarchies: In most cases, Germans pay the foreign performers for "outing" their deepest, supposedly most repressed, desires, for providing them with a carnevalesque moment. Cordalis, in that sense, functions like the bouzouki in his song, except that he engages a sense of longing within the German listener, a sense of belonging - not elsewhere, but in a position where recourse to a collective ethnic nostalgia would be permissible without a sense of guilt. The formation of identity in this process, here as much as before, still takes its route through the discourse of racial and ethnic dichotomy. In the case of "Spiel Bouzouki," the German listener infers, that only Greece can be home for the Greek subject of the song, which leaves Germany safely to the Germans, no matter how cold and alienating it may be. Despite the obvious example of Costa Cordalis himself, there is no threat that the Greek in "Spiel Bouzouki!" can or even wants to make Germany his home, or to instigate a multi-cultural transition by allowing for cross-cultural permeation.
Among all this Euro(re)visionist ethnography, there is also a Heino. Even if it is hard to believe from our current post stonewall vantage point, the combination of his sonorous baritone, bleached head of hair and dark shades practically stands for German heterosexual maleness. While there is a sizeable gay fan community of Heino, when asked about gay fan letters, Heino has repeatedly stated that he has his secretary sort them out, because if he read them, they would give him "eine Gänsehaut" (Stern interview, 1996). Countless stories of female fans being seduced by him, one of which, by his current wife Hannelore, Heino actually included in his 1996 autobiography, have built up to a legacy of Heino as the women-swooning king of German Schlager. As the German version of Elvis, Heino has become a fetishized cultural icon. His popularity is based on his reliable self-same performance that includes his serious macho demeanor, his blond toupee, his sunglasses, and his "irrefutable belief in everything he sings and says" (Gerhard Henschel, 238).7
In "Karambo, Karacho, ein Whiskey" and other drinking songs, Heino's "snow-white" image insists that problems afflicting German men and German masculinity are represented as inherently Other, not just by dislocating the source of the problems to elsewhere, but by insisting on their occurrence and subsequent containment in shape of racial and ethnic Otherness. Even if the use of the Spanish word Karacho, which links folklore directly to concentration camp history (Karacho-Weg in Buchenwald, Weimar), escapes most listeners at first glance, the racial dynamics of Heino's repertoire prove radioactive nevertheless in that they employ the racist stereotype of the emasculated, oversexed, weak-willed alcoholic Latino, whose attempts at re-masculinizing himself via commando-like shouts fail him.
That white boys don't cry, can hold their liquor, and get the girl is the scenario Heino belabors in contrast to Frank Zander's "Ich trink auf dein Wohl, Marie" (1976) in his "Black Barbara" in 1975. In this Schlager, based on a Volkslied by M. Kummer, Heino starts with the chorus praising the beauty and wonders of "Black Barbara." In the first verse, the narrator arrives at nightfall in a forest bar called "Zum Kürassier," which used to be a heavily armed rider from a regiment prior to WWI. Immediately, this trigger word sends one back to the turn of the last century and hooks into memories of the operetta the "Wirtshaus im Spessart" and countless versions of Försters Liesel-type narratives. Already in the second verse, Barbara lets the narrator, now singing in first person singular and imbibing heavily the hard liquor her father pours, come up to her chamber, or so it seems at first. The woods, the night, and the narrator's easy identification with his historic counterpart, the Kürassier-soldier, legitimate his behavior. Barbara's licentious sexuality combined with her dark hair marks her as truly "black," racializes her as a gypsy despite her blue eyes and her standard-issue red lips.8 That she is the eternally self-same Other in Heino's imaginary is evidenced by his blond blue-blood wife Hannelore and his documented preference for "normal" German women, which he specifically terms "the secretary type" (Stern interview, 1996). When out there in Germany "the wind blows so cold," Barbara's chamber becomes the paradisiacal, primitive island in the sun, where in general Schlager topography the civilization-weary Germans seek their repressed wish-fulfillment (Rex Gildo's "Fiesta Mexicana," Tony Holiday's "Tanze Samba mit mir" etc.). In the image-map of Heino's Schlager, female sexuality is co-constitutive of race, and both merge in the colonialist fantasy of the imaginary Orient, which in this case is located both spatially and temporally in the mythical pre-WWI German forest, when Germany still was a colonial empire. As ur-German as that forest scenario with its militaristic dedication to virile German manliness seems to be, its hybridization is already built-in.
Listening more closely, it appears first familiar, since this is also what happens in the earlier song and is easily dismissible as a clichéd setting, and then it strikes one progressively as odd that the narrator actually spends his entire time talking to "rough Johann," the bartender, rather than to Barbara. Barbara has all but disappeared to the chorus, to our collective memory. All of a sudden, the repeated ambiguous line addressed to Johann stands out: "had it not been for your daughter, you would have never known me." Could it be that not Barbara, but actually the bartender and his expertly poured Schnapps are to blame for "robbing the narrator of his rationality"? Furthermore, what do we actually get to witness other than that Johann is the one noisily locking the gate at midnight, upon which the narrator, still inside, climbs the stairs and addresses someone directly with "you" ("Are you letting me into your chamber?"). But the only person he had previously addressed as "you" was Johann, whereas Barbara, even in the chorus, is always referred to as "she" ("sie"). Further, the sound echo and gestures produced by "rattling" and "quietly" closing doors pairs up the two men rather than muted Barbara and the soldier. While I am not suggesting that a homosexual encounter was "intended" by the writer, I am nevertheless suggesting that this Schlager literalizes Judith Butler's theory of sexuality as being formed, codified, and naturalized through consistent reiterative and performative acts, because it proves that the repetitious chorus (with which the Schlager envelopes itself), is absolutely necessary in establishing a pseudo-normative heterosexual framework.9 While unmanly emotionality was extracted from German masculinity in form of racial Otherness in "Karamba, Karacho," here the potential for homoeroticism is transfigured as "Black Barbara" in form of racialized sexuality and sexualized race, a theory that Robert Young explores in Colonial Desire (1995): "The identification of racial with sexual degeneracy was clearly always over-determined in those whose subversive bronzed bodies bore witness to a transgressive act of perverse desire" (26). Both race and sex become a form of drag, in that Blackness and Woman are reduced to costume parts: a black wig, sky-blue eyes and red lips. In that the song relies too much on the cross-fertilizing dualistic nature of identity markers of the white Heino-black Barbara combination to deafen any radio-active discords, it actually leaks out more than is possible in, e.g. Frank Zander's "Ich trink' auf dein Wohl, Marie". Consequently, the white heterosexual maleness that Heino supposedly represents (as evidenced in his mega-hit "Blauer Enzian," 1971) is queered. Maybe these intra- and inter-textual ambiguities, by no means a solitary occurrence in German Schlager at large, in addition to the camp-status of some of the stars and their compositions (Marianne Rosenberg's "Fremder Mann" or "Er gehört zu mir" anyone?), are two of the reasons that previously silent and muted audiences have outed themselves visa-vis the Schlager in the retro-oriented 1990s. It is not by coincidence that the last winner of the Grand Prix'd Eurovision was transgender.
1For more general information on the Schlager as a popular music genre, see my article "Der Vord're Orient: Colonialist Imagery in Popular Postwar German Schlager," Journal of Popular Culture, 34.3 (Winter 2000): 87-108.
2 See Christian Pfarr's Kleine deutsche Schlagergeschichte titled Ein Festival im Kornfeld and Max and Moritz's Schlager, die wir nie vergessen, 1997. "While occasionally, the Schlager lets itself be petted by the Zeitgeist, it neither represents the Zeitgeist completely nor exclusively (to say nothing of 'forming it')" ("der Schlager lässt sich vom Zeigeist zwar gelegentlich betätscheln, aber er repräsentiert ihn weder ausschliesslich noch erschöpfend (von 'formen' ganz zu schweigen!", Pfarr, 18)
3 In 1960, the first German teenage magazine Bravo already sold 600 000 copies, and 200 million DM were spent on records by German youths in the same year. Peter Kemper, "Wiesbadens Wilder Westen," Schlager, die wir nie vergessen 126.
4 See "Der vord're Orient," 96-97. "Roberto Blanco was born Roberto Zerquera in Tunis; Nana Mouskouri, Costa Cordalis, and Vicky Leandros are Greeks; Mina was born as Anna Maria Mazzini in Italy; Bata Ilic and Dunja Raijter were born in Yugoslavia; Daliah Lavi came to Germany from Israel; Wencke Myhre stemmed from Norway."
5 Ibid. "Ludwig Alexander Hutreiter from Munich became the latinized Rex Gildo ("Fiesta Mexicana"), Gerhard Höllerich from Straßberg near Augsburg turned himself into the velvet-voiced Roy Black ("O Sole Mio," Buena Sera," and "La Paloma"), Doris Wegener from Berlin became known as Manuela ("Gran Canaria"), Marianne Rosemarie Schudl from Bingen decided to anglicize herself as Mary Roos ("Arizona Man")."
6 Bernard Waldenfels interprets Schleiermacher and Gadamer's positions vis-à-vis the foreign as producing the alternative between mediating middle and irrevocable separation. Topographie des Fremden (Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp, 1997) 17.
7 Even his rap-version duett of "Blue Enzian" (1971, 1990s) with Nina Hagen (Germany's punk-rock mama) did not alter his immaculate folksy image. Surplus simply gets incorporated into the fetish and strengthens it.
8 See also Heino's "Blauer Enzian," "Polnisches Mädel" etc.
9 Judith Butler, Gender Trouble. Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (New York : Routledge, 1990)14
Butler, Judith. Gender Trouble. Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. New York: Routledge, 1990.
Henschel, Gerhard. Der blaue Enzian als Sieger der Geschichte. Schlager, die wir nie vergessen. Eds. Max and Moritz. Leipzig: Reclam, 1997. 237-239.
Kemper, Peter. "Wiesbadens Wilder Westen. Schlager, die wir nie vergessen. Eds. Max and Moritz. Leipzig: Reclam, 1997. 125-130.
Marks, Laura. The Skin of the Film. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2000.
Max and Moritz. Eds. Schlager, die wir nie vergessen. Leipzig: Reclam, 1997.
Pfarr, Christian. Ein Festival im Kornfeld. Kleine deutsche Schlagergeschichte. Leipzig: Reclam, 1997.
Riesman, David. The Lonely Crowd; A Study of the Changing American Character. New Haven, Yale University Press, 1953. (Hamburg 1958)
Rucktäschel, Annamaria. Die Schlager des Jahres. Analysen erfolgreicher Schlagertexte. Trivialliteratur. Eds. Annamaria Rucktäschel and Hans Dieter Zimmermann. München: Fink, 1976. 377-401.
Simon, Sunka. Der Vordre Orient: Colonialist Imagery in Popular Postwar German Schlager. Journal of Popular Culture 34. 3 (Winter 2000): 87-108.
Waldenfels, Bernard. Topographie des Fremden. Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp, 1997.
Young, Robert. Colonial Desire. Hybridity in Theory, Culture, and Race. New York: Routledge, 1995.
Blanco, Roberto. Der Puppenspieler von Mexico(1972)
Ein bißchen Spass muss sein
Brink, Bernhard. "Und dann fahren sie nach Ibiza" (1988)
Clüver, Bernd. Der Junge mit der Mundharmonica
Cordalis, Costa. "Anita" (1976)
Gildo, Rex. "Fiesta Mexicana" (1972)
Heino. Blauer Enzian" (1971)
Karambo, Karacho, ein Whiskey
"Schwarze Barbara" (1975)"
Holiday, Tony. "Tanze Samba mit mir" (1977)
Jürgens, Udo. "Griechischer Wein" (1975)
Spiel, Zigan, spiel! (1971)
Marshall, Tony. "Schöne Maid, hast du heut' für mich Zeit?" (1971)
Mina, "Heisser Sand" (1962)
Rosenberg, Marianne. "Er gehört zu mir"
"Fremder Mann" (1971)
Schuricke, Rudi. "Capri-Fisher" (1943/44)
Zander, Frank. Ich trink auf dein Wohl, Marie (1976)