Büxensteinlied (Im Januar, um Mitternacht...)

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Eeafanas
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Büxensteinlied (Im Januar, um Mitternacht...)

Post by Eeafanas » 10 Jan 2024 13:19

From the beginning of the Spartacist uprising on 5 January 1919, the buildings of Berlin's leading newspapers were occupied by armed workers and revolutionary soldiers. Six days later, under the leadership of Gustav Noske, Social Democrat and Reich Minister of Defence, a counter-offensive by the government forces began. Annemarie Lange writes:
During the night the troops with heavy artillery advanced towards the city centre. On 11 January Noske defiantly entered the government and newspaper districts with his Kiel Brigade and the Guards Rifle Cavalry Division. Barricades made of rolls of printing paper were erected at the main entrances. The first to attack the printing house of the newspaper „Vorwärts“ under cover of fire of four mortars moved squads of grenadiers, At eleven o'clock everything was over. 300 workers were taken prisoner. The same story happened in the printing houses of Mosset, Ulstein and Büxenstein: the defenders had no chance [to stand] against the grenadiers and mortars. Only a few of them managed to save themselves by escaping through the roofs.
The „Büxenstein-Lied“ recounts the January 1919 battles for the Berlin newspaper district, in particular the defence and capture of the Bücksenstein newspaper printing house. It is one of the songs that was included in the 1920 KAPD songbooks. It is also the earliest Communist version of the soldier's song „Argonnerwald“ („Argonnerwald, um Mitternacht...“). In 1925, „Büxenstein-Lied“ was added to the repertoire of various KPD songbooks, including those of the Red Front Fighters' League. Thus, the RFB songbook „Rot Front!“ says:
We have included in the appendix some songs which have no special artistic value, but which have won their right to life in the mouths of the revolutionary proletariat.
In 1929, a verse translation into Russian of „Büxenstein-Lied“ was composed by Alexander Adolfovich Blumenau, with musical recording and arrangement by Alexander Vasilyevich Alexandrov.
This version, which was called „Бюксенштейн“ in the USSR, was published in the third issue of the materials of the Red Army Song Ensemble of the Central House of the Red Army (Центральный дом Красной армии / ЦДКА) „The Bavarian Red Army in Songs“ („Баварская Красная Армия в Песнях“). In these materials there were directions to the production and notes. They stated:
...The song is imbued with deep lyricism. In the tone of the reciter should sound deep sadness about the brutal murder of Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg.
This song is sung in a moderate slow tempo. Its peculiarity is that at the beginning of the song the melody is in the 1st bass. It should be emphasised.
During the performance of this song the standard bearer bows the banner.

...3) Büxenstein - the name of the quarter in Berlin, where the battles of Spartacists with reactionaries took place.
Before singing the song, the reciter was to say the following words:
On the 9th of November, the German Empire collapses.
The war is over.
The monarchy is overthrown.
Long live the republic!
The November coup in Germany brings to power the Social Democrats, traitors to the proletariat.
Their slogan is the defence of capital against the Proletarian Revolution and a ruthless struggle against the Spartacists, the bearers of Bolshevik ideas in Germany.
The bloody Noske armed the white officers and set them against the workers.
On the 15th of January the leaders of the young German Communist Party, Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, are brutally murdered. In memory of these bloody days, a song about the heroic struggle of the slain Spartacus was formed.
The text (except for the verse Russian translation) is adapted for the performances in the videos attached below.

German text:
Im Januar um Mitternacht
Ein Spartakist stand auf der Wacht.
Er stand mit Stolz, er stand mit Recht,
Stand kämpfend gegen ein Tyranngeschlecht.
Er stand mit Stolz, er stand mit Recht,
Stand kämpfend gegen ein Tyranngeschlecht.

Und mit der Knarre in der Hand
Er hinterm Zeitungsballen stand.
Die Kugeln pfeifen um ihn rum;
Der Spartakist, er kümmert sich nicht drum.
Die Kugeln pfeifen um ihn rum;
Der Spartakist, er kümmert sich nicht drum.
Translation:
At midnight in January
The Spartacist stood on guard.
He stood with pride, he stood with right,
Standing, fighting against a tyrant's kind.
He stood with pride, he stood with right,
Standing, fighting against a tyrant's kind.

And with rifle in hand
He stood behind a pile of newspapers.
Bullets whizzing around him;
The Spartacist doesn't care.
Bullets whistling around him;
The Spartacist doesn't care.
Verse translation from the materials of the Red Army Song Ensemble of the Central House of the Red Army „The Bavarian Red Army in Songs“ (Выпуск III, Государственное издательство МУЗЫКАЛЬНЫЙ СЕКТОР. Москва, 1929 год).
Translation - Alexander Adolfovich Blumenau.
Recording and musical processing - Alexander Vasilievich Alexandrov.
Стояла зимняя пора,
Враг наступал на Спартака.
За правду пролетарскую
Боролись мы и лили кровь свою.
За правду пролетарскую
Боролись мы и лили кровь свою.

Винтовка лишь у Спартака —
Грохочут пушки у врага,
Снаряды сыплются кругом.
Наш Бюксенштейн штурмуется врагом.
Снаряды сыплются кругом.
Наш Бюксенштейн штурмуется врагом.

В мозолях руки, верен шаг,
Он крепко держит алый стяг,
Ему Советская Звезда
Укажет путь в республику труда.
Ему Советская Звезда
Укажет путь в республику труда.
Bp8XS_w2JzY.jpg
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GZVjO6gBQio.jpg

Recording of a performance by the Schalmei-Kapelle of the 15th Abteilung (battalion) of the RFB, Berlin-Oberschöneweide district. Conductor - Anton Kopczyk. Vocals - Louis van de Sande. Berlin, December 1927.



Recording of a performance by the Schalmei-Kapelle of the 15th Abteilung of the RFB, Berlin-Oberschöneweide district. Conductor - Anton Kopczyk. Berlin, February 1928.



Recording of a performance by the Schalmei-Kapelle of the 1st Abteilung of the RFB, Berlin-Mitte district. Conductor - Gustav Konath. Vocals - Louis van de Sande. Berlin, February 1928.



Sources of information and audio documents:
1. Dass Nichts Bleibt, Wie Es War! Teil 2 1919-1928 (https://vk.com/album-213006326_295638219);
2. Arbeiterliedarchiv Lancken (http://musik-von-unten.de/Im%20Januar%2 ... rnacht.htm);
3. Баварская Красная Армия в Песнях (https://vk.com/doc357915674_668996373);
4. FreiDok plus Universitätsbibliothek Freiburg / S 0194 Sammlung Klaus-Jürgen Hohn (https://freidok.uni-freiburg.de/data/174434).
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Ivan Ž.
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Re: Büxensteinlied (Im Januar, um Mitternacht...)

Post by Ivan Ž. » 20 Feb 2024 01:30

Hello again, Eeafanas, and thank you for your efforts and this very nice presentation.

A note regarding the recording dates: it's always important to quote sources properly; you forgot to add "ca." before date, as was written in your source (ca. = circa = approximately); for example, "ca. 12.1927" means that the date could also be Nov. 1927 or Jan. 1928, or even some other month. According to my files, all tracks originate from 1928; but since the original recording lists are missing, these are all just estimates.

Cheers,
Ivan

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Eeafanas
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Re: Büxensteinlied (Im Januar, um Mitternacht...)

Post by Eeafanas » 25 Feb 2024 22:17

Thank you so much for your appreciation of my labour!

I took the dates from the archival list of the Freiburg Archive of Phono and Music Documents, so I thought it would be better to give the date in the format as there. Next time I will try to write the dates with the name of the month for better understanding of the dating (I was surprised to find out that the dating formats are different between us in Russia and you).

A little announcement.

On 23 February, in honour of the founding of the Workers' and Peasants' Red Army, I wanted to prepare a new post about the „Song about the Red Army“ (Das lied von der roten Armee / Песня №8 О Красной армии / Песнь о Красной армии), but my friend and I changed the plan a bit and decided to do it next year.

On 1-3 March there will be a post about the song of our, Russian working class and later German working class - „Brüder, zur Sonne, zur Freiheit“ (Смело, товарищи, в ногу!).

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Ivan Ž.
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Re: Büxensteinlied (Im Januar, um Mitternacht...)

Post by Ivan Ž. » 26 Feb 2024 00:34

Hello again, Eeafanas

I was referring to the dating from your first-listed source:
Dass nichts bleibt wie es war II S-28.jpg

It's not about a date format but about the meaning of the abbreviation "ca." When adding it, you state that the date is just an estimate. Without it, you claim that the date is precise. But again, without original recording lists or another reliable period source, the majority of these old recording dates are just estimates anyway.

A note about honouring the Red or any army: when dealing with political music, it's best to avoid honouring anything. Just focus on the research and keep it apolitical as much as humanly possible. It's a sensitive topic and we currently live in particularly sensitive times.

As for "Brüder, zur Sonne, zur Freiheit", it was already discussed here, to an extent though.

Cheers,
Ivan
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Re: Büxensteinlied (Im Januar, um Mitternacht...)

Post by Eeafanas » 11 Mar 2024 13:43

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