The twelfth issue of YHO was another special edition devoted to the vintage pop music of the Communist-era Eastern Europe. The title was borrowed from one of the great Vic Godard songs. And the cover was a still from one of the dislocated clips from old Soviet films that are available on YouTube. What I love about this shot is the way the blonde girl could easily be out on the floor at Wigan Casino in its heyday.
This edition concentrated on the music of the old Soviet Union, but it starts with Ewa Demarczyk and her remarkable sung Polish poetry. These words strike me as particularly apt: “In many ways the lack of readily available information about Ewa and all the artists that have recently made my own odd little world so much more interesting adds to the appeal. It is the stumbling and fumbling in the dark that can be such fun. The not having a pre-existing route to follow is exciting, but that joy can be tempered by a seething resentment at all the custodians of pop history who have perpetuated the lie that there was little of cultural interest in terms of pop music to emerge from the Eastern Europe of the Communist era. This is now so patently untrue. And there are so many stories surely to tell, theories to explore, and recordings to hear.”
The contents of this edition of YHO also included:
Ø Vladimir Vysotsky and Nik Cohn
Ø Marju Kuut
Ø Muslim Magomaev
Ø Raimonds Pauls
Ø Imants Kalnins