Thursday, August 29, 2013


Sometimes people ask me if I attend a lot of festivals. The answer is quite simple: I only go to Zappanale. Sure, the German Burg-Herzberg Festival sounds like fun (especially the Freakstage concerts!), and the line-up of the Italian Altrock Festival always impresses me, but I just stick with Zappatown Bad Doberan and its Zappanale Festival.

As far as I can remember, the Zappanale festival kicks off with a warm-up party in the centre of Bad Doberan, about 5 kilometers from the actual festival grounds. The warm-up party starts in the late afternoon and has a number of bands playing on a stage in the town’s park.
It’s a fine tradition. You get a lot of the local folks checking out what Zappanale is all about, while the little town welcomes music freaks from all over the world.

As I arrived in Bad Doberan around noon, I had enough time to visit the expo and to take a walk to the Althof park. When I got back to the centre, I ran into Auke, Heidi, Freek and their families. A bit further away, I said hi to Hank and his lovely wife, and to Danny and Paul (who came all the way from Australia). At a local pub (where else?), I dropped across my zappateer buddies Luuk, Audrey, Dave and Nicola.  It’s hard to describe, but seeing all these fine people again always an incredible feeling. It’s like coming home.

This year, four bands made their appearance at the Zappanale warm-up party. Ukulele Overnite was the second band to take the stage. Led by Kiki Smith, Ukulele Overnite wanted to show the world that Zappa’s music can be played on a ukulele. Fun.


Kiki Schmidt - ukulele, lead vocals
Hartmut Schmidt - accordion
Reiner Kümpel - vocals
Wolfgang Schmidt - bass ukulele
Mattes Heimann - drums
plus special guests


Let's Make The Water Turn Black
, Camarillo Brillo, Dirty Love, Bobby Brown, I'm The Slime, Anyway The Wind Blows, WPLJ , Cosmik Debris, Why Does It Hurt When I Pee?, Uncle Remus

Next up was Zappnoise. The Stralsund-based band had performed at the previous two Zappanale warm-up parties, but had undergone quite a change in the line-up. To their advantage, I might add. Especially the horn section (two saxes plus a trumpet) was quite impressive.  Nice.


Jörn Bantow - bass
Agnete Granitzka - keyboard, vocals
Kevin Nestler - trumpet
Andreas Safran - alt sax
Zbyszek Koscianski - tenor sax
Hansi Lüder - drums
Stefan Berg - percussion, drums
Peter Görs - guitar


Weasels Ripped My Flesh (I)
, Heavy Duty Judy, Chunga's Revenge, Watermelon In Easter Hay, Peaches En Regalia, Mr.Greene Genes > Muffin Man, Willie The Pimp Theme + Improvisation, Apostrophe, Eat That Question, Weasels Ripped My Flesh (II), Chunga's Jam

Bad Penny closed the evening. I had never heard of them before,but as Burkhard had told me that he liked them, I made sure to give them a listen.
And fun it was. The guys played an impressive blues rock set. Around that time, I guess about 300 people were enjoying the music, their friends, and the local beverage.
And, yes, people were dancing...

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