Jan Reetze










































Jan Reetze

Germany's Journey from Jazz and Pop
to Krautrock and Beyond

Bremen 2020

ISBN 987-3-9822100-0-1 (Hardcover)
ISBN 978-3-9822100-1-8 (E-Book)



On this Book

This book is a journey – a ride through the depths of Germany's modern musical roots:

At the beginning of the 1970s, experimental and progressive music in Germany developed far from the mainstream. Although few initially noticed it, it is now internationally celebrated as a cult phenomenon called „Krautrock“. Today, bands like Kraftwerk, Can, Amon Düül II, NEU!, Cluster, and Tangerine Dream are considered pioneers of groundbreaking sound experiments.

In order to understand the Krautrock era and its impact, it’s worth delving deeper into the history of German rock music and taking a closer look at the overall picture.

Times & Sounds offers a comprehensive insight into the mechanisms of post-war Germany’s music industry and sheds light upon its diverse musical styles, as well as their mutual influences and connections, which have received little attention until now: From the onset of German Jazz and Swing orchestras to the first Rock'n'Roll bands around Hamburg's Star Club and electronic synthesizer pioneers. From the intact world of Schlager to agitprop and left-wing protest songs. From the avant-garde compositions of Stockhausen and his presumed disciples of Krautrock to the Neue Deutsche Welle.

This book is a journalistic diary tracing Germany's dynamic culture from the late 40s to the early 90s. Those who take this journey experience the ups and downs of five decades, thus developing an understanding deeper than any other of the Krautrock phenomenon.

- Foreword by Hans-Joachim Roedelius (Kluster/Cluster/Harmonia)
- Hardcover with coloured headband and ribbon
- 536 pages including coloured endpaper with infographics



Foreword by Hans-Joachim Roedelius

What’s It All About?


  • Rubble Years
  • Teenager Melody
  • Some Questions of Infrastructure


  • Choo-Choo Trains and Telstar
  • The Star-Club: Where It All Started
  • Beat of the Wirtschaftswunder
  • Musician’s Daily Routines
  • Beat-Club & Co.: Music on German TV
  • The Misleading Magic of Sixty-Eight
  • Munich Riots and the Start of Krautrock
  • Angels of Chaos
  • Confounding the Ghosts


  • Future’s Calling
  • Amateurs and Professionals
  • Being Professional
  • Studios and Producers
  • Conny Plank, Dieter Dierks
  • Kaiser’s Reich
  • Stockhausen, Carlos, Sala & Co.: Electronic Revolution
  • Schoener, Fricke, Moroder: The Munich Moog Pioneers
  • Berlin School
  • Music From the Road of Fairytales
  • Düsseldorf School
  • Hamburg: The Hanseatic Way
  • Agitprop
  • Seventies in Bits and Pieces
  • Turn On, Tune In
  • Liberation


  • New Technology
  • Ice Age
  • Women’s Power
  • Silver & Screen


  • Retrotopia


Notes, Sources, Index



For experts as well as newbies in the Krautrock field, this book does not only open up several new views for the first time, it presents a general overview of the big picture of rock music in Germany.
(Hans-Joachim Roedelius - Kluster/Cluster/Harmonia)

Finally, the whole story at a glance! Excellent!
(Hellmut Hattler - Kraan/Tab Two)

The best book on German music. What makes it special is the way that the cultural and political fabric of Germany are woven into the story of the development of German music from the 1920s onwards. ... Reetze's knowledge, research and a wonderful writing style, laced with humour, make the 530 pages literally fly by.
(Ian Shirley, Record Collector)

Has the best prerequisites to become a standard work.
(Stefan Trapp, Dierks Studios)

A well-grounded pageturner.
(Michael Engelbrecht, Deutschlandfunk)

Jan Reetze is a true capacity among the book authors who devote themselves to the subject. ... A work that is overwhelming in its density of information, has a high level of writing style and comprehensively covers the author's goals, covering a period in recent music history that is also extremely important beyond Germany ... The trophy for the niche book of the year goes to Jan Reetze and Halvmall Publishing for this title, which is also visually great.
(Andreas Schiffmann, musikreviews.de)

Times & Sounds offers an extensive look back at the beginnings of German Pop, Rock and Jazz music as well as the nature of German society and role German music has played culturally over the past 50 years. ... Reetze also gets into the aspect of politics in that era, which in fact had a major influence on the music and big cultural changes in Germany (and elsewhere). ... Times & Sounds by Jan Reetze is amazingly detailed and researched. If you read between the lines, you'll also see how we got to where we are today, and where we may end up tomorrow.
(Archie Patterson, eurock.com)

Explores the Krautrock genre from it's beginnings in the roots of the German jazz scene and the influx of fledgling rock'n'roll to the arrival of pioneering acts.
(Jerry Ewing, Louder)

Pure gold. Rarely has the development of this music and its protagonists (not just the musicians!), its regional characteristics and world-wide influence been presented in such detail, so expertly, so varied and interesting.
(Good Times)

Follows the development of rock music in Germany which finally leads to a completely independent form at the end of the 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s. ... Always keeps an eye on the political and social upheavels that favored this development. The book is a portrait of Germany from the 50s to the 80s and a history of rock music in Germany.
(Florian Schneider, MINT)

Times & Sounds is a prime example of exciting journalism, of critical subjectivity and the communication of partly little-known facts about German history, paired with scientific research and a pinch of irony that makes the kraut soup really tasty.
(Manfred Miersch, info-netz-musik.de)

With this book, written in English, Jan Reetze has written the best book on krautrock to date. ... Highly recommended.