Hubert von Goisern - Federn Live

Hubert von Goisern: "I'm taking a two year break'"

LT1 12th November 2016

The blues is dark blue

Abendzeitung 26th October 2016 | Text: Arno Frank Eser | Photo: © imago
Hubert von Goisern

Hubert von Goisern fills the twice sold out Circus Krone with alpine rock

It's not an every day occurrence that a singer-songwriter completely fills the Circus Krone two days in a row. Hubert von Goisern achieved it though. The Austrian with the squeezebox delighted the audience with his songs - and along the way explained the difference between the blues and depression to his fans.

Before there's a creative and stage break in the house of von Goisern, there were two concerts at the Circus Krone in Munich, both sold out of course. And although the programme didn't differ much from what was offered at the Königsplatz last summer, the fans' enthusiasm could barely be contained.

"The blues is different from depression"

Ultimately it was once more about the musical essence of a journey through Louisiana, about Cajun, country, rock, a bit of jazz and, above all else, the blues. And that goes simply wonderfully with what we call alpine rock today.

"The blues is different from depression", Hubert von Goisern explains, "while depression is completely black, the blues is dark blue and lets through a little light and hope." And then he set to work, on his various accordions, on the guitar, on harmonicas, keyboard and flugelhorn and finally on the an alphorn, made in Germany by the way.

One feels his blues mostly intensely in the dialogue between the accordion and electric guitar, or pedal steel guitar. As if the Louisiana blues have always been at home in the alpine region. With deliberate restraint, open spaces are created - they belong to the soul alone.

"We'll manage!"

Nonetheless there's Styrian wildness from time to time too, like Schnaps for example, a musical warning about high percentages. "Never forget: schnapps is a beast!" The musician no doubt knows of what he speaks. The song Snowdown really gets going too. It is dedicated to all those around the world, who dare to open their mouths and speak the truth out loud when necessary. Without consideration of their own welfare. And the with Brenna tuats guat, the hit, the fans can really go for it and flip out.

Romance then towards the end of a long concert evening: with Weit weit weg and Heast as nit everyone sings along reverently, appreciatively and almost in celebration. "We live in exciting times, and now we must decide whether everything will turn out well or not. I know that there are some of you who don't agree with what I'm saying. But I think was Mrs Merkel said was good: "We'll manage!"  

Hubert von Goisern - Federn Tour

Ka-News 21st October 2016 | Photo: © bernadette
Hubert von Goisern und Helmut Schartlmüller

More photos at

Cajun and blues from Upper Austria

Badische Neueste Nachrichten 22nd October 2016 | Text & Photo: Thomas Zimmer

Combining the apparently uncombinable: Hubert von Goisern at the Tollhaus

Hubert von GoisernThe people over in Louisiana are actually just like his fellow compatriots: "They're self-sufficient", Hubert von Goisern determines with a look at his USA study trip from a few years ago. But he had positive experiences there too: finding for example that his own Upper Austrian musical roots are not far from what's hot over there - country, Cajun and Zydeco. The faithful fans know this already, after all von Goisern had already presented his album Federn in 2014, six months before it was released. An audience that is open for such an experiment is one that comes again when the material is in their consciousness. Combining the apparently uncombinable in such a way that the listener believes they've always gone together is a skill that the singer has always mastered beautifully.

The huge plus of this world musician is his ability to absorb influences and spit them out again in such a way that doesn't sound semi-skilled, or artificial. Instead it becomes a natural part of his own musical universe. That's also down to the fact that the band doesn't deny their own powerful - and in case of doubt, tending towards meaty rock - style of playing, because they also have enough sensibility to hold back in order, for example, to let pedal steel guitarist Bob Bernstein (who can be heard with his instrument in the film Brokeback Mountain) shine. Von Goisern - an entertaining storyteller during this concert too - offers him political asylum, in case the election in the USA "nonetheless goes wrong". Only to then recall that there's an election coming up in Austria that could also go wrong.

The band (guitarist Severin Trogbacher, drummer Alexander Pohn and bassist Helmut Schartlmüller) seem even more homogenous now, playing with instinctive sureness: be it the indestructible hit Susanna, or the connection between yodelling and cracking rock in Stoansteirisch: everything is like a second skin to these musicians. With brute elegance, they plough through the unusual protracted groove of Schnapps, in which a careless dancer could easily trip up. Then the boss takes up his Stratocaster and sings "Es san dieselb'n Stroß'n, die die hamführ'n oda furt" ("It's the same road that leads you home or away") and in the listeners' minds a road movie plays to the sound of a sugar-free rock ballad. The instrumental Benni, an oldie from the Alpinkatzen era, piggy backs the country Hupfauf dance onto a metallic guitar riff and ultimately sounds American again too: you can well imagine a cowboy being thrown from him horse at the rodeo. The musicians drive the most solid, powerful blues through Snowdown. A furious, nerve-shredding sweeping blow across all the world's crises, sources of conflict and catastrophes. You can sing placards at times too. And the danceable first encore Brenna tuat's gut is then like a release.

Hubert von Goisern on tour

LT1 21st October 2016

Hubert von Goisern is in the middle of his Federn Tour. He gives as good as no interviews, preferring to concentrate on his shows. But for us, his "home", as he says, he made an exception! Petra Stumpf heard his impressions from his tour at the Posthof in Linz.

Longing burns likes schnapps

Frankfurter Neue Presse 21st October 2016 | Text: Joachim Schreiner | Photo: © Sven-Sebastian Sajak

Hubert von Goisern makes a stop on his "Federn" tour at the Frankfurt Jahrhunderthalle. Brilliant!

Hubert von Goisern

On stage stands an artist from a German-speaking nation, but a translation aid wouldn't be a bad thing. For example what could "Stoansteirisch" mean?

It's a very particular idiom that the 63-year-old who lives in Upper Austria and tours constantly is cultivating. ÜUOÖ (Über-Unter-Ober-Österreicher), is the overture for a concert that gets rid of all "alpine rock" clichés, instead taking a tonal journey around the world and processes every possible influence along the way.

It was the American South that attracted him this time, the archaic music from the "Old America", as rock critic Greil Marcus once put it. And what seemed uncompatible at first actually worked beautifully: ethnic Austrian juchitzers and yodels, muggy interludes of Mississippi, rock, country, blues, Cajun and R & B.

Alongside his familiar witty and original chats, Hubert von Goisern brings enthralling, root-saturated music to the stage of the Kuppelsaal. Nur alle 100 Jahr is a natural phenomenon of sound, Es is wahr the Germanicised version of the evergreen Jambalaya, to which the diatonic accordion squeals and the lapsteel guitars weep. With Bob Bernstein, the multi-instrumentalist, composer and singer von Goisern has once again added an original from the States to the band, one who can create all the tonal colours that belong to an American-spiced menu of sound from pedal steel guitar, dobro and lapsteel.

And to all the fans of the early days, who still mourn Goisern's old band, the Alpinkatzen, take it from me: the new formation is in no way inferior. Alex Pohn on drums and Helmut Schartlmüller (bass) are the punchiest rhythm team in Austria, while Severin Trogbacher is a tremendously versatile guitarist, who feels at home in every style.

Am hellichten Tag is a slow, raw blues with a gruelling, wailing harmonica, while So a Segn serves as a successful paraphrasing of the American hymn Amazing Grace. Singa gang guat, a take on the famous American folk song Oh Susanna, gallops past as a fast ska. And time and again, in every variation, the blues - played with passion and ardor.

I bin ganz alloan, I hab den Blues and Mir hat träumt conjure up the American dream, which is best washed down with a little schnapps. Yes, and then after a long musical journey, you head home again with Wieder hoam and enjoy Wie der Wind (how the wind) has turned in the meantime.

Language barriers between von Goisern, poaching from every American style, and the Hessian fans, who were asked about their religious views ("What are you guys?"), are now only marginal, meaning that this scorching concert functions as a duet between artist and audience too. At the end of the evening that took no break, they are of course rewarded with the classics: Brenna tuats guat, the anti-capitalism anthem with its deep, dark lyrics, Heast as nit, the sound meditation about the passage of time, and Weit, weit weg, the song for every lover, or new singleton, depending on your point of view. A brilliant evening.

Servus Schaan, servus Liechtenstein

Vaterland 18th October 2016 | Text: agr | Photo: © sdb

The concert had been sold out for weeks, the audience's anticipation was great, the joy after the concert even greater. For two hours Hubert von Goisern and his band thrilled the listeners with his programme "Federn".

Alex Pohn and Hubert von GoisernSCHAAN.  He is a Jack of all trades, can sing and yodel, plays many instruments perfectly, knows the folk music of foreign lands just as well as he knows that of his own homeland (Upper) Austria. Hubert von Goisern has lived in South Africa, Canada and in the Philippines, has travelled around Tanzania and Tibet, toured through West Africa and the USA and played concerts all over Europe. From each of his journeys, he absorbed the original local folk music and incorporated it into his own repertoire. Whatever he does - he remains authentic. That's just one reason he was declared Artist of the Year last April at the Volkstheater in Vienna. This win was his sixth Amadeus Austrian Music Award in a row.

Country and Western songs in Austrian

Thus on Sunday he made a guest appearance before an expectant audience. He appeared punctually at 8pm, smoke wafted across the stage, Severin Trogbacher let his guitar whine, Helmut Schartlmüller tuned his bass, Alexander Pohn gently (for the moment) stroked across his drums and Bob Bernstein stood quietly at his pedal steel. Hubert von Goisern fastened his accordion, calling out: "Servus Schaan, servus Liechtenstein" to the auditorium, chatted a little about his experiences in the USA and went straight into playing his interpretation of Hank William's country classic Jambalaya in the bayou.

In Goisern's version, it's: "Es is wahr, jedes Jahr geht was weiter, aber leider wird a nit a jeder automatisch g'scheiter, nur mit'n schmäh wird's nit gehen sag i da oida, früahra oder später kimmt a jeder dran und dann zahlt er." ("It's true, every year something changes, but unfortunately not everyone grows any wiser, I'm telling you, your tricks alone won't work, sooner or later it's someone's turn and then they pay"). The first fans sang along and as the song bin koan steirerbua then rang out, there was dancing too.

Of soul and blues and other conditions

Later followed Amazing Grace, unloved in Catholic Louisiana as a "Protestant song", as Hubert von Goisern explained. He interpreted it as an intimate ballad with a lot of soul feeling. Soul, he has it in his blood, and he has the blues within him too. Or does the blues have him? He longingly sang of the night, when his thoughts become pictures and he wants to "finally go home". Sometimes von Goisern sounded beautifully and dreamily sad, such as with his ballad Weit, weit weg, in which he longingly tells of a time from the past and memories of a lost love. It wouldn't have taken much more for all the mobile phones in the hall to have been lit up.

When truth needs asylum and it isn't granted

The singer was as fascinating with his slow love songs, as he was as a politically-engaged singer-songwriter. This became clear with the song Snowdown, in which truth seeks asylum, but it is not granted. The song refers to the refugee situation among other things. With everything Hubert von Goisern sang on this evening, he embodied his conviction. He castigated the financial world and the lunacy of making fuel from wheat, while millions of people are starving. Brenna tuats guat - it burn wells, the money, so it goes with Goisern, who sang and yodelled, effortlessly changing his instruments, from accordion to guitar, to Jews' harp, clarinet and harmonica. At the end he even took up the alphorn and rocked the Schaan SAL auditorium with it. This was at the end of being on stage for two hours without a break. He's simply burning, not just for the music.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Salzburg - 17th October 2016

19th October 2016 | Photos: © Sarah Marchant

Hubert von Goisern brings "Feathers" to Vienna

Heute 13th October 2016

Upper Austrian world musician Hubert von Goisern brought his Federn tour to the Museumsquartier in Vienna on Wednesday evening. There the nearly 64-year-old multi-instrumentalist once more impressively proved that he and his band are among the very best that Austria has to offer in live entertainment.

The focus of the two and a half hour concert lay on the current album Federn, released in May 2015, on which American country and blue music have found their way into Hubert von Goisern's creativity.

As before on the previous Brenna Tuats Tour the singer banks on guitarist Severin Trogbacher, bassist Helmut Schartlmüller and drummer Alex Pohn. The well-honed band runs like clockwork, augmented by the American Bob Bernstein on slide guitar.

Alongside many numbers from the Federn album, of course there a few classics on the setlist too. Thus two songs from the previous album Entwederundoder were put into action: Nit lang her and Brenna tuats guat. In the encore block there were two surefire goosebump songs in the shape of Wieder Hoam and the huge hit Heast as nit.

"We live in exciting times"

The 63-year-old Upper Austrian, who shows no signs of aging, has relaxed and in between the songs tells witty anecdotes from his life and his many travels. He spoke politically only briefly before the end of the concert. Austrians are living "in exciting times" at the moment and hold in their hands the chance to choose the future path. One leads into a good future, the other into the abyss.

Of course he didn't need to mention which path is which. He credits the German Chancellor with having more balls than many of her male colleagues and congratulated her for her courageous "We'll manage" mentality. He worries sometimes too, but one should still be looking forward to the next day. Because those who start the new day afraid, can't expect it to turn out well, was the thought he shared with the audience in the sold out Hall E at the MQ to think about on the way home.

The Federn Tour will be taking the band through Italy, Liechtenstein and Salzburg to Germany until the end of October.

Inaction contributes to breakdown

Allgemeine Zeitung 11th October 2016 | Text: Alfred Balz

Hubert von Goisern presents transatlantic folk music of blues, country, waltz and polka with a political aspiration

MAINZ - When you think that Hubert von Goisern's music career didn't start until he was 35 years old, it has experienced a notable dynamic with numerous breaks and changes. So once again the Rheingoldhalle in Mainz is well-attended and the mostly older audience are in the best of moods. Those who know the mighty folk musician from the Salzkammergut know that in spite of the language barrier, he always has a powerful, touching concert to offer.

At the beginning there was work and the study of music in South Africa and Canada. After Hubert Achleitner, as the man from Bad Goisern is called, learned trumpet in the local brass band and taught himself to play guitar, he didn't pick up his grandfather's Styrian accordion until one time he was drunk in his mid-30s. In 1986 there was a duo with Wolfgang Staribacher, 1988 Alpinkatzen, 1991 the band with Sabine Kapfinger, who taught him to yodel. Since then almost 30 CDs and just as many tours. The most recent album, Federn, was released in 2014 with American folk music from Nashville to New Orleans and the Mississippi Delta.

An unmistakeable mix

Hubert performs the quick and catchy swamp classics in his darkly humorous dialect with a compact, rocking band (slide and rhythm guitar, bass and drums) in an unmistakeable mix of styles: Hank Williams' Jambalaya (Es ist wahr) as a country ear worm, the spiritual Amazing Grace (So a Segn) playfully and folksily relaxed. Old pieces of his own he now plays as country waltzes, Cajun country dances or Zydeco polka. In contrast, there's the contemporary anthem for Snowden, the NSA and eavesdropping madness as gloomy heavy metal.

Schnaps ("straight into free fall into hell") is recommended as medicine in speech song among enumeration of the various distillations and brandies and their effect as truth serum and fire accelerants.

A long, psychedelic blues with a distorted harmonica and an alphorn meditation show the Goiserer in an unusual light. Achleitner saves his Ausseer dance and alpine verses for the concert finale.

Most personal at the end

Faced with turbulent atmosphere in the country, he sends defeatists on their way with this: "You have to look forward to the next day, then it'll turn out better." And he calls for the involvement of waverers, whose inaction contributes to breakdown. Accordingly Achleitner plays his classic Weit, weit weg and the wistful Wie die Zeit vergeht as a communal singalong. After many in the audience have already left the hall, he comes to the edge of the stage with his guitar and sings his most personal songs.

Like a sword in the glacial ice

Onetz 11th October 2016 | Text & Photo: HOU

This is how he is: straightforward, always looking for new musical paths and simply ingenious at his shows. Loud and quiet, sensitive and then with a thundering voice. A poet, who can harmonise words and sounds like almost no other: Hubert von Goisern.

Hubert von GoisernWhen others begin to yodel, people turn away with a shudder and hope that these career mountain vagabonds and dullijöh-dummies will soon cease their tour through Musikantenstadel. When it comes to Hubert Achleitner from Bad Goisern, every juchzer sounds like a sword cutting through the glacial ice. He'll soon be 64 years old. But there's still a man on stage who combines a multitude of unique features. It makes him a monument.

More than 2000 people at the Nuremberg Meistersingerhalle. When Hubert von Goisern and his band, who know every musical trick in the book, serve up the two hour show, a menu with numerous ingredients is laid on. A firework from the very first minute, uniting word and chord in an unbelievably perfect symbiosis. Who else but him would dare to harmonise the American pedal steel guitar with the accordion? It works unbelievably well.

Stunningly good numbers

Achleitner and his four colleagues play the blues from the swamps of Louisiana, making a simply stunningly good number out of the popular Western song Oh Susanna. The frontmann from the province of Salzburg plays harmonica, takes to the keyboard, picks up the guitar and shines with lyrics that no-one else can write the way he does. Music and language that pulls you from your seat and then presses everyone listening reverently back into their chairs.

"I tu mi hoart mit der Lederhosnmusik dort", ("I have a hard time with the lederhosen music over there") he rhymes, with a sideswipe at erratic sounds that are best suited to being played when people in rural traditional Tracht feel obliged to get up on their benches and tables. Hubert von Goisern delivers Amazing Grace and then this American traditional about Susanna. He asks her: "Wos is jetzt mit uns zwoa?" ("What's going on with the two of us?") US-country and lyrics from Austria - you'd boo anyone else and send them packing. But with him, Achleitner, it's an experience.

The old master from Goisern denounces the misery of our days. But also says that after all the unspeakable things of the brown past, we now have the chance to overcome new hurdles. He describes the schnapps at his neighbour Franz's place, Fats Domino's Jambalaya rock is transferred to the Salzkammergut. Achleitner needs no microphone bedecked with deer antlers and gives away no red checked handkerchiefs. He is who he is. Unchangeable, a one-off. Not a lumbering alpine fellow. Much more a protagonist, who consistently resists the trend of our time.

Master on the alphorn

Hits at the end. The maize is burned, the anthem against avarice and narrow-mindedness crashes through the hall like cannon fire. Brenna tuats guat - and everyone knows the lyrics. Afterwards Weit weit weg and Heast as net, wia die Zeit vogeht breathed into the microphone. For the finale a few notes from the alphorn.

Even on this instrument he turns out to be a master. Then Hubert von Goisern leaves. Every night has its end. It's like being woken from a beautiful dream and not having to go back into a world that rains musically perfidious nonsense upon us every day.