Jewish Berlin Cabaret: Paul Godwin Orch. & Max Hansen, 1930





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Published on Feb 14, 2008

Paul GODWIN (Pinchas Goldfein) born in Sosnowiec (Upper Silesia, Poland), died 1982 in Driebergen, Holland. He left
Sosnowiec as a teenage boy to go to warsaw, where he studiem violin in Warsaw Conservatory. After completing his studiem in Poland, he went to Berlin where he established his own little orchestra. After a few years, the band became one of most popular dance bands, known as Paul Godwin Jazz-Symphonikern (or: Paul Godwin Tanz-Orchester, Paul Godwin Künstler-Orchester). Under such names he recorded hundreds of sides for the Deutsche Grammophon and Polydor labels. After the Nazis took power in Germany in 1933, he manager to emigrate to Holland, where -- as soon-to-be forgotten Polish-German Jew -- he tried contunuing his performances as a violinist for the Dutch classical and symphony orchestras -- and never returnig to his hot-jazz 1920s repertoire. He died in 1982 in Driebergen, Holland in oblivion.

Max Josef HANSEN was born in Mannheim, Germany, but was raised by his step parents in Munich. His mother was a Danish Actress, Eva Haller, his father's name was von Waldheim. In his school days, he sang at the Opera House, so he earned the nickname "The Little Caruso" Later he studied music and voice and got a job at the „Simplizissimus" cabaret in Munich. From 1914 he played Operettas in Vienna and became a friend of Franz Lehár.
Then, he went to Berlin to perform at the revues in Metropole Theater, where he skon became a superstar of operettas, revues, cabaret and radio. He began acting in silent films from 1926 to 28. His first talkie was „Wien, du Stadt der Lieder" (1930) In 1932 he played with Gitta Alpar in Die, oder keine (1932) ("She, or Nobody"). In 1933 when Nazis took power, he left for Vienna, and later to Switzerland, Amsterdam, Oslo and Helsinki. After the war was ended, Max Hansen tried to return to the mainstream, but -- albeit his attempts to perform with Zarah Leander (sic!)- he never regained hhis pre-war popularity. He died in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1961.

Recording: Paul Godwin Orch., Ges. Max Hansen - Was kann das Sigismund dafür (How Can Sigismund Help He's So Beautiful?) (Sanders/Schwarz/Gilbert) (aus:"Im weissen Rössl"), Grammophon 1930

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