All about incredible punk diva Nina Hagen

We talk about the "mother of German punk" Nina Hagen. Did she really have a four-octave vocal range, believed in UFOs, and did charity work? In this article, we will answer these and other questions.

Nina Hagen - biography of the singer, travel, music, theater, cinema, social activities

Nina Hagen one of the most controversial punk singers of our time, which people either loveor passionately hate. Actor and musician Tim Holmes in "Rolling Stone wrote about her:

«Nina Hagen at the same time the most outlandish of rock performers and the most intensive and purposeful punk diva ever since Patti Smith".

Nina Haggen at one of the concerts
Nina Hagen (Nina Hagen) at one of the concerts

On stage as well as in public Hagen always looked shockingly. When Roman Kozak from Billboard came to New York to take from her Interview, Hagen took him to her kitchen in dressing gown, the black bra and leather cap, which hid what was left of her cropped red hair.

Hagen's career was cycle ups and downs. But eccentric style that emphasized her belief in personal freedom, UFO and divinity people, has not changed much even now.

creative way

Nina Hagen was born in March 1955. Her parents, screenwriter Hans Hagen and actress Eva Maria Hagen divorced when the girl was only two years old. Nina lived with mother and was under strong influencem of her theatrical work. At the age of nine, the girl began attending classes in vocals, learned to play guitar and piano. Hagen sang in the theater chore, and then was in the musical group.

Mother was constantly busy work, so I did not pay education girls due attention. As a result, Nina excluded from a youth organization threw school after tenth grade. As a seventeen-year-old girl, Nina tried to enter the Berlin academy acting skills, but failed entrance test.

Nina Hagen (Nina Haggen) in her youth
Nina Hagen (Nina Hagen) in her youth

Hagen studied sound engineering in a one-year intensive course at a music studio in Berlin, then she performed with several groups at various jazz events and toured across Germany. Meanwhile, her mother has a new relationship with a prominent singer-songwriter. Wolf Biermann, and she, along with him and her twenty-year-old daughter moved from Berlin to Hamburg.

Biermann helped Hagen in building his musical careers: he arranged for her imprisonment contract for recording with TV and radio network CBS. After studying London reggae and punk-performers girl created Nina Hagen Band, and in 1977 the group gave three concert, all tickets for which were sold out. Two years later, the band released their first self-titled album, which included cover versions songs of the band "The Tubes" "White Punks on Dope" and "Spirit in the Sky" singer Norman Greenbaum. In their arrangements, the group used musical elements reminiscent of the style Patti Smith and blondie.

However, on the way to becoming an international star, Hagen had to dissolve your group. The decision was based on the fact that in the foreground she was not standing wonderful voice, but guitarists with your solos. In any case, she had to add second album with a group to complete obligations to the record company. "Unbehagen", released in 1980was successful throughout Europe. Meanwhile Hagen was covered in the media not as a musician, but as a girl with scandalous way and inadequate behavior.

A year later, Hagen moved to United Stateswhere she released her first international album "Nunsexmonkrock", recorded in New York and released in 1982 on the label Columbia. Hagen toured with her team of three England, Canada and United States summer 1982.

Next album Hagen "Fearless" was an incredible success. Her "New York, New York" entered top ten hits dance chart. Hagen sounded like a professional vocalist. She went to the world tour in 1984. A year later, the next album was released, the title track of which "Prima Nina in Ekstasy" was about the singer's love for herself. It was in it that she called herself queen of punk rock. This was followed by a series of performances. One of the eyewitnesses spoke about one of them:

"Never do not you knowwhat to expect from Nina Hagen, except interesting show. In addition to this, in her speeches there are many spiritual, social and political conversationswoven around songs. IN rock and roll part of the show, Hagen moved around the stage in a lighted bra, which looked spectacular, especially when the rest of the scene was in darkness. Sometimes Nina sang and spoke in French and in German in addition to English. In addition, Hagen has a dizzying range voice".

Later albums Hagen sold mainly in Germany. Her work began to affect more political themes, since the singer herself did not remain indifferent, for example, to those in need from Africa and homeless animals. "Don't Kill The Animals" became a hit in 1986. Nina Hagen, a rock and roll oriented record, was released in 1989.

title "Gorbachev Rap" album in 1989, Nina Hagen expressed her OK political reforms, which at that time was undergoing Soviet Union. In the spring of 1990, Hagen performed at the Women's Festival in Moscow and went to "Street Party Tour" for European cities. In the summer of 1991, her concert in the city of Halle failedwhen only 1,200 of the 10,000 expected fans showed up.

Nina Haggen on stage
Nina Hagen on stage

In addition to her solo shows, Hagen starred in the director's comedy Marianne Rosenbaum "Lilies in the Bank". She also participated in her own weekly 30-minute talk show on a German TV channel "RTL Plus".

In 1998, Nina participated in charitable program to combat AIDS in New York where she sang her classical "New York, New York" along with several new songs. American writer Evelyn McDonnell from "Village Voice" This is how Nina's work was assessed:

"This connection punk, funk, reggae and rock. Sounds strange, but interesting, unusual. Nina returned us the future."

She also wrote about how Hagen looked in concert in 1998:

“With her long dark hair, she looked like an extraterrestrial devil child".

German director Peter Sempel filmed a documentary for two years Nina Hagen - Punk and Glory, which was presented at the Berlin International film festival in February 1999.

Since 2013, together with the theater of the Berlin Ensemble, the singer began to hold evenings dedicated to the playwright Bertolt Brecht. Nina's mother and daughter often took part in these events.

Nina Haggen (Nina Haggen) at a photo shoot
Nina Hagen (Nina Hagen) at a photo shoot

In the life of the singer there were several husbands, mostly also associated with art. At one time, her boyfriend was even Anthony Kiedis from "Red Hot Chili Peppers". Since 2009, Hagen has been celibate.

Nina still combines active social work and creative life.

Indeed, Hagen can be considered mother of german punk, because she breathed into this direction a new a life and created a huge number of works, which to this day listen people all over the world. She also has an amazing vocal range in four octaves, which allows her to perform songs in a very low case.

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