There was a time when you could almost only hear pop music from singles, those little black discs. You collected them in albums, according to the taste of the time, fast printed, little plastic discs, which could record about 20 of these records, but until an album was really full, it was usually a long way. This world of pop singles, increasingly aimed at a youthful audience, was at least in the Federal Republic of Germany a world disconnected from the mainstream and that meant at that time especially from radio. The radio held the supposedly cultural good in honour. There were classical music wish concerts, cooking recipes, church services live, alternating between Catholic and Protestant. Classical Music Master Concerts, conversations with writers chewing and sucking their pipes in a thoughtful and noisy manner, assuming a certain age. and there was always a world of politics to be considered with great seriousness. An “Evening for Young Listeners” was dedicated to the youth, who carefully stalked age-specific problems, but above all could boast that it brought young voices to the radio, but still far from admitting them unfiltered. It was very good entertainment, on the verge of boredom, at least I could never find a deeper interest for the show. The fact that the makers of the show must nevertheless be regarded as pioneers is a dramatic indication of the narrow-mindedness of the cultural actors of the time. Sorry, back to the actual story. There were still times of price fixing for products of cultural life, such as books (until today), but also records. This had the advantage that one got a certain record in the whole Federal Republic at the same price. The same was also true, even if very probably stepped, for the purchase of the goods retailers. Thus there was the perspective of making a living with a small record shop. Often it was in the corner of a larger shop where the coveted good was offered and sold geographically decentralized and largely area-wide in our republic. A shop according to this organizational model was the shop “Elektro Zengerling” (today bands lick their fingers after such an imaginated band name) in Leverkusen Schlebusch, the former residence of my family, selling lamps and small electrical appliances. Fate meant it in any case well, because in this shop stood it, the record, which embodied everything which was important in my life at that time: The first longplaying record of the Rolling Stones – and I could hope that it would stand there also still longer. Lp’s were at that time still no everyday consumer article. They cost 18 DM, that was a hell of a price. You got something like that for Christmas or a birthday present. Often without being asked and then it was a terrible waste like the Non Stop Dancing Number 2 by James Last (that’s how it happened to me). But I wanted to take my fate into my own hands. My pocket money amounted to at that time at most 5 marks a week, but one had also so his expenditures. At the weekend I could wash 2 cars in good weather and mow the lawn once, that was an additional 3 Marks. But I just couldn’t live like a monk. One had also thirst and hunger, so in between. I did not come with the saving somehow from the place. But I was filled with such a hot desire for this record that I was willing to do anything for it. I would surrender myself for 18 DM, I would even enslave myself. So it occurred to me to make my mother an offer that she could hardly refuse. The summer holidays had begun and our garden, adjacent to a larger meadow, which alternately housed cows or horses or sheep, had been lying in the radiant summer sun for days. At the edge of the property there was a bed about 20 m long and almost one metre wide, in which the strawberries with the weeds, which were strategically supported by the pasture, faced an almost hopeless cut-throat competition. Therefore I made an offer to my mother, who normally took care of the garden. I would fight on the strawberry side and the prospects seemed tempting to her that she agreed although I had hardly made a name for myself as a gardener. But the megawage I demanded, she conceded sympathetically, was quite proportionate to the work to be done. It became a long, long day. The sweat stuck the shirt to my body, the numerous brakes blew again and again to attack, bees and flies and mosquitoes hummed around me, work gloves were rather unknown to private gardeners, softening was still a topic, but the vision drove me, encouraged me again and again, gave me confidence and when the sun slowly lost its power (summer time was still an unknown phenomenon at that time), the work was actually done and every strawberry plant lolls in its new freedom on the dark crumbs of the bed, which I have freshly watered again at the end. Then I hurried to my mother, got my pay as agreed, and, only rudimentarily cleaned of the traces of my work, swung myself onto my bicycle, entered the salesroom five minutes before closing time, strove straight ahead, a not really authorized shortcut, through a jungle of hanging ceiling lamps to the counter, there she stood still in her place, my Rolling Stones LP. My maltreated hands proudly handed over the money I had counted since my start from home and the “Frollein Ruth”, as the shopkeeper always called her, smiled and handed me the record of my dreams. I think we both knew that this was the moment when a special relationship began, because I would often stand at this counter with counted money and share with her the strangely never-expressed enthusiasm for this new music. I never had a feeling for how much older she was compared to me, but still in the nineties she was standing at the record counter and we recognized each other and exchanged a few words about the decline of the record business.That’s actually my story. But I’d like to add something more. So then, back to the story …..to be continued.