Ulla Meinecke Bookmark and Share


14 August 1953

Born in the small town of Hessen she moves to Frankfurt am Main in 1966 to go to high school. At that time she becomes interested in poetry and starts writing songs. An encounter with Udo Lindenberg in 1976 encouraged her to pursue a musical career and she moved to Hamburg. Under the watchful eye of Udo she records her first album ‘Von toten Tigern und nassen Katzen’ (About dead tigers and wet cats) in 1977. After a second album she moves to Berlin where she meets Herwig Mitteregger, who at that time was part of the Nina Hagen Band. The NH band was in dispute with their flamboyant leader at the time and where on the verge of becoming Spliff. The two start working together and throughout the eighties there is a cross breed between Spliff and the Meinecke band.

Her first two albums of the eighties, ‘Überdosis Großstadt’ and ‘Nächtelang’ were produced by Mitteregger who also composed the bulk of the songs. Keyboard player Reinhold Heil introduced her to his girlfriend Rosa Precht who became a steady member of Ulla’s entourage. Meinecke also pursued her to write and record songs herself which ended up as Cosa Rosa. Her 1983 album saw a broadening of co-writers with Edo Zanki and Rio Reiser. Although hardly known outside Germany Ulla’s albums were very successful through the decade and she won the Golden Europe and other awards, including the German Cabaret Award.

The successful tours at the height of her popularity have been documented on the double live album ‘Kurz vor 8’ in 1986. Then the musical output started to dry up. She releases a cover album ‘Löwen’ in 1991 but also starts to write and give public readings indicating her new career as a writer and public reader. One more studio album and an extensive live-tour follows in the nineties.

In the new millennium the contract with her former record company ends and Ulla releases the album ‘Die Luft ist rein’ (‘the air is clean’) on her own label. But the writing aspiration finally got fulfilled when under the direction of Günter Amendt she released an adaptation of ‘Die Abenteuer von Tom Sawyer’ (‘The Adventures of Tom Sawyer’) as an audio book set to the music by Ingo York, where she talked all the roles herself. This earned her first contact with the theatre. Although a new pop-album was released in 2005 Ulla quickly picked up on a second audio-book project with York. ‘Willkommen in Teufels Küche - Vom Glanz und Elend der Chaotiker’ was released later that year with photographs by Jim Rakete.

Early 2008 Ulla Meinecke played the role of Eunice Hubbel in Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire’ at the Berlin Theatre before setting out again on a reading tour with Ingo York. In April 2008 Ulla produced with Radio Jena, under the title ‘Willkommen in der Höhle der Löwin’, a 3-part radio feature in the form of a retrospective of her career so far. In 2009 she features on stage again in the play ‘Männerbeschaffungsmaßnahmen’

On the web:

- Ulla's official website: http://www.ulla-meinecke.de

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

Anne Linnet (Denmark)

Ina Deter (Germany)

What do we think:

DB:Ulla Meinecke seems to be the centre point of the Berlin scene at the start of the eighties. Many Berlin musicians play along on her albums and tours and in return she has a maternal influence on them. Outside Germany she is hardly known but next to schlager influenced acts like Juliane Werding and Nicole (who did get international recognition) Meinecke delivers much better albums. She falls into the segment that Cologne-based Ina Deter and BAP also fill. Good and well crafted German-languaged pop-albums.


♪♪♪ - Von toten Tigern und nassen Katzen – 1977

♪♪♪♪♪ - Überdosis Großstadt – 1980

♪♪♪♪ - Wenn schon nicht für immer, dann wenigstens für ewig – 1983

♪♪♪ - Der Stolz italienischer Frauen – 1985

♪♪♪ - Erst mal gucken - dann mal sehen – 1988

♪♪♪ - An! – 1994

Further listening: ; Meinecke Fuchs – 1978; Nächtelang – 1981; Kurz vor 8 (live) – 1986; Löwen – 1991; Die Luft ist rein – 2002; Im Augenblick - 2005

♪♪♪♪♪ = 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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