Thursday, August 18, 2011

Music Feature: The Auslander

Doing things differently around here today, and bringing you guys a music feature centered on Paul Dowswell's The Auslander! With a book set in Nazi Germany, you know this is going to be a fun post!

In The Auslander, Peter likes to listen to jazz - 'Swing' as it was known in the 30s and 40s. The Nazis hated it because its principal exponents were Americans, and most of them were black or Jewish. 'Identifying with the enemy' was the crime, in the Nazis eyes.

Listen to Duke Ellington’s band doing ‘It don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing’

or ‘Is you is or is you ain’t my baby’ by Louis Jordan and his Tympany Five

and then compare that with what the Nazis wanted young people to listen to.

I know which ones I like best. (Straight outta the fridge, Daddio!)

The Nazis loved Wagner too - and you can hear some of their megalomania in epic pieces like the ‘Ride of the Valkyries’

When Hitler knew the war was lost he vowed to leave the world 'in flames'. I bet he had 'Ride of the Valkyries' coursing through his brain when he said that.

Wow, thank you, Paul, for sharing all that. Definitely makes me see some of these songs in a different way.

The Auslander is out now, so make sure you guys check it out!

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