Zehn kleine Jägermeister by the punk band Die Toten Hosen, which led the German charts in 1996, is a children’s counting song musically and textually referring to the British-derived Zehn kleine Negerlein and the U.S. Ten little Indians, in which the original set of ten members disappears one at a time through mishaps that are either their own fault or purely accidental.
The ten glasses of Jägermeister, a popular German liqueur, disappear in the obvious and banal fashion; ultimately, the song evokes a meeting between death and the picture of an infantile typical German whose behavior is driven purely by greed, and seems to sound the possibility that the German people could vanish altogether.
This according to “Doitsu no hittokyoku o yomu: Zehn kleine Jägermeister no baai” by Okamura Saburō (Goken fōramu VII [October 1997] pp. 1–23). Below, Die Toten Hosen brings it.
BONUS: The official music video from 1996:
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Related article: Patti Smith and Rimbaud
Patti Smith’s direct assimilation of Arthur Rimbaud’s work into hers presents a case of cultural cross-fertilization in which the poetry of a foreign high-cultural figure enters into and influences a popular and countercultural discourse, illustrating how a nonacademic reading of a canonical text can help to produce a musical style that disseminates a message of social deviance.
Smith has foregrounded her debt to Rimbaud in several ways, explicitly referring to him as her major poetic influence and participating in a hermeneutic activity as she transformed his texts into her own. The poet has served as Smith’s most credible archetype of subversive behavior, and his work has provided the richest source for the development of her innovative aesthetic practices.
This according to “Rimbaud and Patti Smith: Style as social deviance” by Carrie Jaurès Noland (Critical inquiry XXI/3 [Spring 1995] pp. 581–610). Below, Smith performs Rock n roll nigger, one of the songs analyzed by Noland, in 2011; listen for Rimbaud’s name around 3:20.
Related article: Punk & post-punk