Hard Wax, Paul Lincke and Berliner Luft
In Berlin, Kurfürstendamm and Unter den Linden are must-go place in any travel guide, attracting the tourists visiting the city. Those seeking a different face of Berlin end up in Kreuzberg, a multicultural and bohemian district that is home of many record shops. When getting out at Kottbusser Tor underground station you are close to a world-famous location for cutting-edge electronic music and shining vinyls.
Paul-Lincke-Ufer 44A is the headquarters of Hard Wax – the address found at the store’s mail order invoices signifies in real life an inner-yard apartment house. Not a posh place decorated with graffiti and surrounded by small institutions closely or remotely related to the Berlin music scene. Also noticed a door sign for iCrates, a small firm doings apps for crate diggers. And there was a car repair shop or similar.
It was end of September in 2005 when I visited Hard Wax first time. I was short of time and when arriving at Paul-Lincke-Ufer I had about one hour before the shop had to close. The street was pretty dark and initial search for this holy address was fruitless. On the second attempt, behind an arch, found the yard and the building, climbed the stairs and there it was. A special shop in a special location.
But who is Paul Lincke? He was a German composer and conductor in the first half of the 20th century. Author of “Berliner Luft”, merry orchestral piece that is said to be unofficial anthem of German metropolis.