Gunter Glieben Glauchen Globen: The Origin of a Famous Rock Phrase

Def Leppard 1983

During the summer of 1983, I was fourteen at the time. The apartments I lived in contained residents of various races and ethnicities.  This various mix exposed me to different varieties of music. This was how I was exposed to a famous phrase.

One afternoon, my buddy Matt went, “Gunter glieben glauchen globen.”

Matt owned brown hair and was a year younger than me. Sometimes, he and I would build forts in the nearby woods.

I thought nothing of what Matt was saying.  Then, I heard the same phrase on the radio. It was the beginning of Def Leppard’s “Rock of Ages”.

More than a decade later, I would hear that same phrase again. It was at the beginning of Offspring’s “Pretty Fly for a White Guy.”

Now, here it is 2016. For some reason or another, a question recently started nagging me. What the fuck does that phrase mean?

Personally, I always thought the phrase was either German or Dutch.

Weil. I searched the Internet for an answer. What does  gunter glieben glauchen globen mean? It doesn’t mean shit.

Borrowing from Wikipedia, I’ll let Def Leppard‘s website tell it:

These four words that you hear at the start of “Rock of Ages”, mean nothing, though the band sometimes jokingly claims it means “running through the forest silently”. It’s actually just German sounding gibberish, said by producer Mutt Lange during one of the later takes of the song. Lange was a perfectionist and would often do dozens & dozens of takes, and after repeatedly beginning so many with the standard count, “One, two, three, four” he simply started saying nonsense words instead, the band liking this one so much that they included it on the album.”

The mystery is now solved.

As I still live here in Central Florida, Matt moved to Seattle.   Some years back, we found each other on Facebook.  When I post this blog on Facebook, I’m dedicating it to my buddy Matt Mizer.

Gunter glieben glauchen globen.

About Patrick Scott Barnes

Most of Central Florida knows Stone Crazy (Patrick Scott Barnes) as a poet. Yet, he also photographs, DJ and blogs. The rest of the time, he's guzzling booze in a Central Florida bar.
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2 Responses to Gunter Glieben Glauchen Globen: The Origin of a Famous Rock Phrase

  1. matt mizer says:

    Patrick Scott Barnes, this was a really cool little article. Gotta admit I was a little taken aback by it, I guess honored as well. Although I do recall the specific incident, it does sound like me, you see another friend of ours (Marty Restis) had turned me on to the band recently and they were my new favorite. I was quickly buying up everything I could find by them. And yeah I do remember those days tromping through the woods and trying to build a cooler, bigger and more secret fort than the other kids like Tony Brown, Michael Lee, Peter Hartwick , Marty Restis and Cornell and Greg Rigby. Those days are long gone but not forgotten by a long shot. Keep up your writing, photography and all your hobbies because you ARE on to something . Matt Mizer.

    Like

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