Germany: Rap It Up

Having fled over the Wall in 1976, Nina Hagen discovered the brave new world of punk music. Hagen, 35, learned her craft by singing along to tapes of Tina Turner and Janis Joplin, "although I couldn't speak a word of English." She got started in East Berlin's jazz circuit and has since emerged as an international rock star. Meantime, she has made more changes than Madonna, festooning herself with chains and wearing metal bras, wild wigs and ghoulish makeup. On her latest album, Hagen pounds out a number titled Gorbachev Rap. After all, she explains, it's important to encourage Mikhail.


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