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Wilfried Bangkok of Penn has written a minimalist German songbook

Bennen – Understand? May be. Speak? Rather not. Low German, which was still common in the region a few decades ago, is gradually dying. “It would be a shame if this cultural treasure was forgotten,” says Wilfried Bangkok. So Benon has published a special book. This is a songbook designed to keep the language alive.

Earlier last year, Wilfried Bangkok discovered the treasure at the Ulmkes MuseumScotton, the club’s home, and created a songbook from it with Heimtwerin Nordinger, Walkinghausen and Freelinghouse. At that time, when spread out on a large table, there was a sheet of paper on which to read low German lyric texts. “I read in the newspaper that the wife of the late District President Heinrich Thomas was made available to the Society. I’m interested in that, ”said Wilfried Bangkok. He had a meeting with the president of the club, Johannes Ulmke.

Big Grandpa only spoke flatly

The Low German language has always had a special meaning for the leaders of various singers, flute groups and trombone singers. “My grandfather only spoke Low German. My parents and grandparents, on the other hand, always tried to speak standard German with me. They were afraid that I would otherwise get into trouble at school, ”Benan recalled.

Still, he never forgot the sound of his childhood. While studying German, Bangkok Lo continued to speak German. However, his father led the Low German Round in Fleurich for many years, so he always had enough contact person. “For a long time I organized a low German reading competition at school,” said a former teacher at the Ursuline Grammar School in Werl.

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Its own language

Low German or Low German is its own language. It is spoken everywhere in the Low German area, viz North of the “Benrat Line”. However, south of this linguistic boundary, Upper German (Upper German) can be heard. Almost Each village spoke of its “own flat”Thus numerous dialects developed. Is according to an estimate One to two million native speakers today, Or persons who claim to have the “best” command of the Low German language. It is spoken Not just in Germany, But also in the Netherlands and Denmark. In Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Canada, the United States, Mexico, Belize, Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay, low German usage is mainly caused by immigrants from Germany.

In the 1980s, the head of an ecumenical choir received an inquiry from the home of a senior citizen in Dortmund. “We were asked if we could sing low German songs there.” So, the interested musician, who had studied church music before studying as an author, searched for suitable pieces and rearranged the singer and woodwinds.

Last year he similarly continued with Hymtwerin’s lyrics. To deal with it peacefully, Bangkok first took her home. In Benon they were carefully spotted and sorted. The 76-year-old explains that “the songbook is a true corona product.” He usually works with his bands three to four evenings a week at Benen, Ham, Verl and Mehnes. Of course he prepares these training garlands accordingly, which also takes a lot of time.

Songs and spiritual songs

But singing and composing in groups has been banned since the outbreak. So Bangkok had time to seriously deal with the pile of old songs. There are popular spiritual songs like the Westphalia song, “Power of the Door” – “Stealth Loss de Port”, sociable songs like “About the Day and the Year” and “Not Beautiful”. Land “-” The Land of Giann Schneider. Most are very old, but some are from the 1950s and 1960s. They were published in the lyrics of Wenstpallian Hymtband, kept by Heinrich Thomas in his drawer.

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For the past few months they have been recalling melodies at the Wilfried Bangkok desk or piano. “Some of them sang any melody with them, others I already knew,” he said. Wilfried Bangkok was at a loss for only three or four songs. He received help from two senior citizens from Nordinger, who is over 90 years old. The pieces in question they sang to him without further ado. Benon created the notes and arranged the perfect melody at home.

The musical part, however, is only one page that the singer master has to deal with. Getting the texts right is another. “It’s a lot of work. It’s not like standard German, you just have to look twice to see if you can pronounce it correctly,” he explains. As it stands, there are countless dialects.Bonner carefully copied the line.In the end he can only estimate how many hours it would take to edit 60 or more songs.There would have been hundreds in the spring, summer, and fall.

Photos complete the job

To complete the work, Manfred Hayden of Heimatverine provided some photos, with President Johannes Ulke writing the foreword. Printer Ulrich Scholarman and his daughter, media designer Christine Scholarman, turned the collection into a book.

The “Low German Song Book” was given to the neighbors – in a small setting due to the corona. “Of course we’d love to introduce it with music,” says Wilfried Bangkok. He hopes to be able to catch this in the summer, outside and with a little brass singers.

If you want to confirm the text within that time, you can get the bound book for six euros from Heimatverin Nordinker, Johannes Ulmke, phone number 0 23 88/28 42.

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