Political songs had a major forum in Eastern Germany: The “Festival des politischen Liedes”, a festival for political songs that took place every year between 1970 and 1990 in East Berlin.

The festival was founded and until 1980 also organised by the FDJ, the Eastern German official youth association.  Each year between 50 and 80 bands and musicians from about 30 different countries came to present political songs as well as folk and world music with a political touch.

It was one of the few “windows” to the big wide world, a chance to see many international bands and musicians, to get a bit of the flair of cultures from foreign countries where normal Eatern German folk was not allowed to go to, of internationalism.

For young people this festival was a highlight of the year: “The festival broke with the every day life of the GDR. Nights without closing times. Political Carnival. Exceptional situations. Conjugal crisises. Moments of falling in love. New unexpected lyrics and melodies. Different views of the world. Different people that you would otherwise never had met.” This is how Hans-Eckart Wenzel remembers the festivals. He reminds that tickets for the festival were always short, and a lot of people had to stay outside.

Here´s the album with recordings form the 11th “Festival des politischen Liedes” in the year 1981, with artists like Schmetterline, Battlefield Band, Türkischer Arbeiterchor Westberlin, Singegruppe des ANC, Los Jaivas and others.

VA – 11. Festival des politischen Liedes (1981)
(192 kbps, cover art included)