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Hans-Joachim Roedelius

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Berlin, Germany (1934 – present)

Hans-Joachim Roedelius (Hans-Joachim Rödelius, born October 26, 1934 in Berlin, Germany) is an German experimental / ambient / electronic musician. He best known as a co-founder of the German krautrock groups Cluster and Harmonia and his work in the ambient jazz trio Aquarello.

As a child he acted in UFA films such as “…reitet für Deutschland” (Riding for Germany) (1941) and “Verklungene Melodie” (Dead Melody) (1938).

In 1968 Roedelius co-founded the music commune known as “Human Being” and co-formed Zodiak Free Arts Lab, the center of Berlin’s Underground Culture at the time, with conceptual artist Conrad Schnitzler. He met Dieter Moebius at the Zodiak. In 1970 Roedelius, Schnitzler and Moebius formed Kluster.

In 1971 Schnitzler left the group to start a long-running solo career and Moebius and Roedelius anglicised the band’s name to Cluster. At first Cluster worked along the same lines as their parent group, signed first to Philips then to Brain. In 1974, they worked with Michael Rother for the first time. Rother was the guitarist for NEU!, another Krautrock group.

Rother co-produced their third album; Zuckerzeit, moving the band’s style further from avant-garde ‘noise’ to a more melodic music, similar to modern day trance. The trio had been touring Germany and the Low Countries since early 1973 and decided to record an album together under the moniker of Harmonia. Musik von Harmonia was released on the back of a huge publicity campaign by Brain.

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