German (Austrian) Video of the Week: Lederhosen and Elvis Dancing

Sometimes, German-speaking artists tend to tackle the spread of American culture by blending it with traditional culture. Andreas Gabalier is an Austrian singer who blends a ’50s rockabilly style with Alps folk culture. He’s pretty successful in both Austria and Germany, but I only discovered his music a few weeks ago.

I got the whole idea for “German Video of the Week” while I was watching a music program on ARD that was hosted by Mr. Gabalier. He was wearing Lederhosen and a leather jacket and had a group of background dancers in Dirndls and leather jackets. The program featured various German musicians (most of them were Schlager musicians) singing ’50s rock hits and incorporating ’50s aesthetics or musical influences in with their own music. It was oddly catchy and I couldn’t stop watching, even when my boyfriend walked in the room and critically asked me, “Why are you still watching this?” At one point, Gabalier did a hip shaking contest with another, older singer (I wasn’t paying 100% attention, so I can’t remember which one). The whole Elvis dancing in Lederhosen thing was one of the craziest things I’d ever seen and I really wanted to share it. I couldn’t find a video, but a friend found this performance for me. It’s pretty representative of the program I saw on TV, Elvis dancing, Lederhosen, and all. Thus, “German Video of the Week” was born.

Because Gabalier is Austrian, I didn’t want to confuse people by posting this video as my first “German” video of the week. So, I’m posting it today. If you don’t want to watch all 8+ minutes of the video, you can find the Elvis dancing about 4:40 minutes in.

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