For Labor Day, here is a perennial WFMU favorite of socialist propaganda songs from 1960s West Germany, the compilation "Lehrlinge halten zusammen" ("Apprentices stick together"). Released in 1969 on the Pläne label, it has never been officially reissued, as far as I know. Most of the lyrics are somewhat failed attempts at sarcastic humor, pointing out the exploitation of German apprentices by evil capitalists, and the virtues of organized resistance against the system. The back cover contains a summary of Karl Marx's position on the question of youth in capitalistic societies, in six easily digestable points.
Why hasn't this faded into total obscurity, you ask? First of all, the music and delivery on many of these songs is original, to say the least, and in addition this has been featured on the famous Nurse With Wound list for the contribution of mysterious Lerryn & dadazuzu, Lehrlings-Machtgebeat. Also, who can resist obscurities from Germany or Japan anyway? Here is the whole album for your enjoyment.
01 Die Conrads - Hoch vom Dach (From high up on the roof)
02 Floh de Cologne - Hallo Stift (Hello apprentice)
03 Interpol - Schaffen Sie sich einen Lehrling an (Get yourself an apprentice)
04 Vorschlaghammer - Ballade von den bösen Lehrlingen (Ballad of the evil apprentices)
05 Vorschlaghammer - Armer Anton (Poor Anton)
06 Die Conrads - Nach Dreißig Jahren (After thirty years)
07 Die Conrads & Hannes Stütz - Dick und Doof in der Fabrik (Laurel and Hardy in the factory)
08 Dieter Süverkrüp - Das Lied vom Nutzen (Song of the benefit)
09 Floh de Cologne - Lehrherr unser (Our Employer)
10 Interpol - Ich bin so glücklich (I am so happy)
11 Die Conrads & Dieter Süverkrüp - Was ein Lehrling alles lernt (What an apprentice learns)
12 Die Conrads - Betriebsgeheimnis (Company secret)
13 Lerryn & dadazuzu - Lehrlings-Machtgebeat (also known as Lehrlinks-Machtgebeat. Honestly, I don't know how to translate this, it is a barely sensical play on words. Maybe someone else can help?)
14 Die Conrads & Dieter Süverkrüp - Lehrlingsbilanz (Apprentice's balance sheet)
15 Münchner Songgruppe - Lehrlinge zusammenhalten (Apprentices stick together)
16 Die Conrads & Dieter Süverkrüp - Wer hat den Lehrling gemacht (Who made the apprentice)
17 Floh de Cologne - Wir werden immer mehr (We grow in numbers every day)
As a bonus, here is the only other track I know by Lerryn & dadazuzu, a song against police brutality with killer horns and lots of sexual innuendo: Lerryn & dadazuzu - Gummiknüppelsong (Rubber baton song). Honestly, I have never heard anything like this, and if you know German, you'll be stunned by the sheer weirdness of the lyrics. If you don't know German, just enjoy the great music and imagine a Phil Ochs song with a bunch of penis references thrown in. Or maybe Siegmund Freud and Karl Marx jamming with some German hippies. Really, it is a great song.