Several versions of the “Ode to Joy”

You would have been hearing a lot of national anthems recently; for  a ready reference you can turn to this:

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2015/02/13/national-anthems-of-wc-2015/

But you would not hear the European Union’s anthem “Ode to Joy” at this World Cup or at any other sporting event. Here is one of the more popular renditions in German:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87qT5BOl2XU

It has versions in other languages, such as this one in English:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mtvxwsiRge4

Oddly enough, this was sung by a choir in Georgia, USA far from Europe.

And then there is Rowan Atkinson’s version, which is something else again. You need to know a bit about Germany and the German language to get all the jokes:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oWGZdYNpaSo

Someone at Youtube has kindly provided explanatory notes:

“Berlin [capital], Hamburg [city], Schumacher [Toni Schumacher = German goalkeeper]

Baden-Baden [city], Lederhosen [leather pants/trousers, traditional garb in South-Germany and Austria], schnell schnell schnell [quickly quickly quickly]

ja ja [yes yes], nein nein [no no], Apfelstrudel [apple strudel, strudel is a type of layered pastry with filling that is usually sweet], Hoffmeister [German beer type], und [and], Holsten-Pils [German beer type]

Achtung [attention], Liebfrauenmilch im Porsche [Liebfrauenmilch in the Porsche, Liebfrauenmilch = German sort of wine, Porsche = German make of car], umpa [oom-pah], Vorsprung durch Technik [advantage through technology, slogan of the German make of car Audi]

Donner und Blitze(n) [literally: thunder and lightnings – referring to Santas reindeers Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen], britischer Architekt [british architect, that was the pay-off line for a TV advert for the Rover 800 in 1988, the advert depicted sleek British-made cars purring past the “Neue Staatsgalerie” in Stuttgart, designed by James Stirling], tomorrow belongs to me [that’s an allusion to the song “Tomorrow Belongs to Me”, a song from the American movie as well as the Broadway-Musical called “Cabaret” which thematise Berlin 1931 and the rise and takeover of the Nazis]

Schwein [pig] und [and]/ Schweinehund [skunk], Dummkopf [fool], ein Bier bitte [a beer please], Jürgen Klinsmann ist kaputt [Jürgen Klinsmann is broken, German soccer-player in the past and now a soccer-coach]

Boris Becker [German tennis player in the past and now something else], Himmel [heaven], Bum Bum [German ice sort originated in 1986 which is based on the form of a tennis racket, in reference to the moniker of Boris Becker “Bum Bum Boris” when he surprisingly won Wimbledon in 1985], Ich bin ein Berliner [I am a “Berliner”, it’s a quotation from a speech by U.S. President John F. Kennedy in 1963. With that he was underlining the support and solidarity of the USA for West Germany 22 months after Soviet-supported East Germany erected the Berlin Wall to prevent mass emigration to the West]

?holen [?fetch], Kindergarten [kindy/nursery school, originally a German word which became as well common in the English language], Glühwein [mulled wine, a traditional drink in Central Europe which is especially popular in the Advent season on Christmas markets], wo ist sein Skipass (where is his ski pass)

Edelweiß singt Captain von Trapp [Edelweiß sings Captain von Trapp, edelweiß literal translated = noble white, but actually here it means a song from a Musical called “The Sound of Music”], dankeschön [thank you], auf Wiedersehen Pet [literaly translated = See you soon/Goodbye Pet, but actually it means the British comedy-drama TV progamme about seven British migrant construction workers who live in the first series on a building site in the German city Düsseldorf] ”

This is more of a subtle leg-pull of the average Brit whose idea of Germany is limited to stereotyped names and phrases.
It was commented that Mr Atkinson’s German pronunciation was better than that of most Brits.
Anyway here is something more conventional from him, this time playing the role of a waiter in an Indian restaurant in Britain. It is, of course, the Brits and not the Indians whose legs are pulled:
Notice the reference to an obscure Beatles song at the end.
Advertisements

National anthems of WC 2015

So the festivities have begun. Since the practice of singing the national anthems seems to have picked up in recent tournaments, here is a quick run through the anthems which you are likely to hear over the next month:

AFGHANISTAN: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gs9y-P0FdOo

AUSTRALIA: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8tswkr25A0

BANGLADESH: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zVjbVPFeo2o

ENGLAND: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MKRHWT6xdEU

INDIA: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8yMvU73Wr7Q

IRELAND: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GVoWUnKA18k

NEW ZEALAND: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BT9k_7_jP8A

PAKISTAN: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d41Ld1-8Mbo

SCOTLAND: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0MklIdTiaU

SOUTH AFRICA: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gr0414FrN7g

SRI LANKA: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H1f4VYi9uE8

U. A. E.: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8ArIT7u4Fg

WEST INDIES: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UbcbsmeRYC8 

(also see http://www.angelfire.com/ks/davincy/windies.html)

ZIMBABWE : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKJOZ44Ec9k

This has a lot of disclaimers and peculiarities, as we will see. There is no country called the West Indies, so this “anthem” is purely used for cricket. I have been able to get the English lyrics or English translations for all the anthems.

As usual in such matters, the United Kingdom is on its own trip. “God Save The Queen” : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppIomb3r_3Q is the national anthem of the United Kingdom. Scotland has a separate song which is not an official anthem, but is played at sporting events. That is given above. England sticks with the U.K. anthem for soccer but uses another song called “Jerusalem” for cricket, which is what you hear above. Ireland here includes Northern Ireland (which comes under the U.K.) and the Irish Republic (which is another country whose anthem is given here).

Several countries have versions of their anthems in different languages: New Zealand’s includes Maori followed by English in the same anthem. South Africa’s has five languages, one after another: Xhosa, Zulu, Sesotho, Afrikaans and English. Sri Lanka’s has Sinhala and Tamil versions, but the former is more commonly used. Zimbabwe’s has versions in three languages: Shona, Ndebele and English. Similarly Ireland has it in Gaelic and English. Scotland’s unofficial anthem also has  Scots and  Scots-Gaelic versions, though it is unclear if these are unofficial or even un-unofficial.

The UAE anthem might remind Brits of the term “Blighty”, said to be derived from Urdu: According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word derives from “bilayati”, a regional variant of the Urdu word “vilayati”, meaning “foreign”, “British”, “English” or “European.”

Parting shot: Supporters of one of India’s main political parties might find the Sri Lankan anthem particularly inspiring 🙂