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Opium or philosophy? A Tyrolean meditation on the lyrics of DJ Ötzi´s schlager hits

By David Prieth

Dj Ötzi, detalj från cd-omslag-
Dj Ötzi, detalj från cd-omslag.

Cheerio, Nanana, Nanana
Cheerio, Nanana, Nanana
I’ll keep my promise
Tiroler are true
(DJ Ötzi – Cheerio)

Both singles with the longest periods of chart success in Austria are cover versions of older songs. They were both sung by the same Tyrolean and do both belong to a musical genre which Theodor W. Adorno once described as “opium of the people”. And as if this wasn’t enough, the author of this text recently witnessed a conversation between a foreign visitor and a local in the city of Innsbruck, which started with the apparently harmless question: “What do people in your country associate with Austria?”, but was in return answered with: “Hitler, skiing and DJ Ötzi”. The first two facts can, due to historical, geographical and economic importance, easily be understood. However, the fame of Tyrolean Schlager/Pop-mus