II
Annette & Inga Humpe
(Neonbabies / Ideal / DÖF /2raumwohnung /
Ich + Ich)
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About:

- Annette Humpe: 28 October 1950
- Inga Humpe: 13 January 1956

The sisters Humpe have been a mayor influence on the German pop scene. The sisters grew up in the city of Herdecke. Annette started to study at the RWTH in Aachen but switched to the FU in Berlin a year later. She then studied piano at the Cologne conservatory. In 1978 Annette and Inga started the band the Neonbabies under the pseudonyms Inga DiLemma and Anita Spinetti. In early 1980 Annette Humpe starts a new project called Ideal together with  Ernst Ulrich Deuker, Frank Jürgen 'Eff Jott' Krüger and Hans-Joachim 'Hansi' Behrendt. Ideal released their first single on Eitel-Imperial - their own record label - entitled 'Wir stehn auf Berlin' / 'Männer gibt's wie Sand am Meer', which soon sold out. Her place in the Neonbabies is taken by singer Petra Mikolaijczak, in short Miko.

The British rock band Barclay James Harvest - who was particularly successful in Germany - performed a free open air concert on August 8, 1980 in front of the Reichstag building. The 150,000 visitors also saw Ideal, as they were booked as an opening act; this was a large step toward mainstream popularity. In November, Ideal released their a self-titled LP on the 'Innovative communication label'. The follow up album was made with the help of producer Conny Plank: 'Der Ernst des Lebens', which was released in October of 1981. In the fall of 1982, Ideal produced their third album, 'Bi Nuu', under the direction of Micki Meuser. It entered the chart in December of 1982, but only peaked at 20th place; these sales did not meet the expectations of the record label and a planned tour was cancelled. On March 31st, 1983, Ideal sent an announcement to the media that the group would stop.

After this Annette teamed up with her sister again and they disband the Neonbabies leaving singer Miko to pursue a solo career (she would make two solo albums: 'The voice & the beat' (1983) and 'Visionen von Schönheit' (1986)). Next they entered the one off project DÖF (Deutsch-Österreichisches Feingefühl) with Austrian comedians Joesi Prokopetz and Manfred O. 'Fredi' Tauchen. The project was meant for fun but unexpectedly delivered the sisters their first and biggest European hit with the song Codo ("Ich düse, düse im Sauseschritt"). The 1983 LP 'DÖF', sold over 500 000 copies in the German linguistic region.

After this the sisters went on as the duo Humpe & Humpe. The first album is in German but they switch to English for the follow-up. The duo has reasonable success but Annette is more successful as a producer for Rio Reiser, Udo Lindenberg and Die Prinzen, amongst others. Hit success is there for the project Lucilectric (single ''Mädchen') in 1994 and Sin with Sebastian (single 'Shut up (and sleep with me)' in 1995. In 1995 the sisters also deliver their last duo project under the name BAMBY.

Inga Humpe starts the band 2raumwohnung with musician Tommi Eckart. They compose 'Wir trafen uns in einem Garten' ('We met in a garden') for use in an advertisement for the East German cigarette producer Cabinet. When the track broke into the top 100 on the German pop charts a follow up full-length album was produced: 'Kommt zusammen' ('Come together'). Their single '2 von Millionen von Sternen' ('Two out of millions of Stars') was used in a 2000 - 2001 advertising campaign by HypoVereinsbank introducing the Euro. In 2003, their second release, 'In wirklich' ('In reality') won the German Dance Award for best album. The third album, 'Melancholisch schön' ('Melancholically beautiful'), was released in June 2005 and the fourth, '36Grad' ('36 degrees'), followed in February 2007.

After years of producing Annette also starts a new musical project in 2004 with Adel Tawil under the name Ich + Ich. The self named debut album and the single 'Du erinnerst mich an Liebe' are a success. This doesn’t trigger Annette to come up quickly with a follow up album. The second album 'Vom selben Stern' has to wait until 2007. It enters at number 2 in the charts in the week of the release. Tawil decides to do live concerts with Ich + Ich, but without Annette who reacts that she said goodbye to the stage a long time ago:”Ich habe mich von der Bühne verabschiedet, bevor irgendjemand fragt: Was macht denn die Alte da auf der Bühne?”. In 2008 she works with Udo Lindenberg for his album 'Stark wie Zwei' and in 2009 a new Ich + Ich album is released.. Inga and musical partner Tommi deliver a new album 'Lasso' in 2009. In 2010 Annette turned 60. The event is commamorated with a special compilation (Zeit geschichte). On CD 2 there is a collection of interpretations of her songs. Here we find Adel Tawil, Peter und der Ulf (Peter Platte from Rosenstolz), Unheilig, 2raumwohnung, The BossHoss, Selig, Klee and Casper performing a song from the Humpe catalogue. Inga and Tommi move to Los Angeles in 2012 and start recording on 'Achtung Fertig'.

On the web:

- Ich+Ich website: http://www.ich-und-ich.de
- 2raumwohnung website: http://www.2raumwohnung.de

If you like this, you probably like.. / european counterparts:

For their early eighties stuff:

Maanam (Poland)

For their 2Raumwohnung and Ich+Ich period:

Zazie (France)

What do we think:

DB: The Humpe sisters had such a strange career that from outside of Germany it has been hard to follow. I had albums of several of their projects but somehow never put two and two together. Untill I read an article in a Berlin magazine about Inga Humpe with a discography. Then, suddenly, you see the Humpe sisters pop up in the German pop scene everywhere from 1980 untill now. To call them influential is maybe a bit too much since they focussed their entire careers on their own projects and on each other. They give the impression that they didn't give a damn of what other people thought or even if their music is marketable. They just make what they think is right (or fun). Whatever it is the output was and is always interesting.

PR: Sometimes arty, sometimes commercially interesting and sometimes downright mad. But they always know how to surprise you. These sisters have earned their spot on the Europopmusic scene, even it was only for the classic track 'Codo' (with DÖF). Buth their other creative output is also worth discovering.

Recommended albums:

Ideal:

♪♪♪ - Ideal - 1980

♪♪♪- Der Ernst des Lebens - 1981

♪♪ - Bi Nuu - 1982

Neonbabies:

♪♪♪ - Neonbabies - 1981

♪♪♪♪ - Harmlos - 1982

♪♪♪ - 1983 - 1983

DÖF:

♪♪ - DÖF - 1983

Inga & Anette Humpe:

♪♪ - Humpe & Humpe - 1985

Annette Humpe:

♪♪♪- Solo - 1990

Inga Humpe:

♪ - Planet Oz - 1990

2raumwohnung:

♪♪ - Kommt zusammen - 2001

♪♪♪♪- In wirklich - 2002

♪♪♪ - Es wird Morgen - 2004

? - Melancholisch schön (remix album) - 2005

♪♪♪♪ - 36 Grad - 2007

♪♪♪ - Lasso - 2009

♪♪♪ - Achtung Fertig - 2013

Ich+Ich:

♪♪♪ - Ich+Ich - 2005

♪♪♪ - Vom selben Stern - 2007

♪♪♪ - Gute Reise - 2009

Further listening:

Ideal - Zugabe - 1983; Neonbabies - 1983; Humpe & Humpe - Swimming With Sharks - 1987; Humpe & Humpe - Wall Of Sugar (unter dem Pseudonym BAMBY) - 1995

------------------------------------------------------------------------
♪♪♪♪♪ = outstanding album, an absolute must-have
♪♪♪♪ = great album, highly recomended
♪♪♪ = nice album
♪♪ = be careful, requires listening before buying
♪ = best to be avoided


 

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