Boots, The

Band members               Related acts

- Bob Bresser -- bass (1965-67)

- Ingo Crammer - lead guitar (replaced Jurge 'Jockel'

  Schultz-Eckel) (1966-67)

- Jacques Eckhard -- vocals (replaced Werner Krabbe)


- Uri Grun (RIP 2004) - keyboards, rhythm guitar bass


- Heintz Hoff (RIP 1998) -- drums, percussion (1964-67)

- Werner Krabbe -- vocals bass (1965-66)

- Armando "Blacky" Lindinger -- vocals, guitar (1964-65)

- Jurge 'Jockel' Schultz-Eckel -- lead guitar bass (1964-66)

- Earl Woodham -- vocals (replaced Jacques Eckhard)





- Artpop Outfit (Jacques Eckhard)

- The Hound Dogs (Uri Grun and Werner Krabbe)

- Ihre Kinder (Uri Grun and Hientz Hoff)

- The Jeckills (Bob Bresser)

- Jumbo 76 (Ingo Cramer)





Genre: garage

Rating: 4 stars ****

Title:  Here Are The Boots

Company: Merseyside's Greatest/Telefuken

Catalog: 79052001

Year: 1979

Country/State: Berlin, Germany

Grade (cover/record): VG / VG

Comments: 3 LP boxed set; German pressing

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 5203

Price: $100.00


Outside of a small group of hardcore collectors very few American's have any awareness, let alone insight into mid-1960s West German beat and rock and roll.  That's unfortunate since there were literally hundreds of German bands who managed to record at least a couple of 45s.  Many of them were quite good, inspired by US blues and R&B and English rock, though virtually none of them attracted any attention outside of Germany and the Benelux countries.  Try finding a write up on The Boots, The Blizzards, The Boomerangs, Die Mustangs, The Rattles, The Rivets,  The Rocking Stars, The Team-Beats, or another German beat/rock band in one of the standard rock references ... you'll probably find something on Pat Boone, but nothing on these guys.  Shame.


In terms of US recognition Berlin's The Boots weren't much different than the rest of their German contemporaries, though some thirty years after they called it quits they enjoyed a small slice of posthumous recognition when one of their songs (a cover of The English Cops 'n' Robbers 'But You'll Never Do It Babe' was included in the "Nuggets II" compilation.  Hardly a career maker, but better than the other 99.9% of the genre.


Showcasing a line up consisting of bassist Bob Bresser, keyboardist Uri Grun, drummer Heintz Hoff, singer Werner Krabbe, and lead guitarist Jurge 'Jockel' Schultz-Eckel, The Boots managed to record a pair of mid-1960s LPs and a handful of singles before calling it quits.


Released by the Hannover-based Merseyside's Greatest label the three LP, 38 track boxed set, "Here Are the Boots" served to compile both of the group's studio albums (1966's "Here Are the Boots" and 1967's "Beat with the Boots"), along with a third album which pulled together German singles and various obscurities.  Technically the second LP was actually a compilation with The Standard Alexander Beat showcased on five tracks (see the track listing annotations below).  Rooted in American R&B and mid-1960s soul, with the addition of healthy doses of US garage and second generation UK-influenced R&B (shades of The Animals and The Yardbirds), the results were simply great stuff.   Krabbe had a gruff voice that was perfectly suited for the band's mix of genres and his sense of enthusiasm made it easy to overlook some of the band's more obvious covers (Them's 'Gloria', John Lee Hooker's 'Dimples', Willie Dixon's 'Spoonful').  That sense of enthusiasm also made it easy to overlook Krabbe's modestly accented delivery ('When I Loved You').  To my ears he was easily as talented as Eric Burden (whom he actually resembled on tracks like the organ-propelled 'Crazy Enough for Me').  Schultz-Eckel repeatedly showed himself to be a clever and innovative lead guitarist (known for using beer bottles, and various tools as slide implements), keyboard player Grun added a classy touch to his fills, while bassist Besser and drummer Hoff comprised a rhythm section most bands would have killed for.  While both albums were good, the debut set got the nod since it featured all Boots material and was a little more garage oriented, though the James Brown covers on the second release were actually quite good.  The Standford Alexander Beat tracks like 'Searching Days', 'I Can't Not Believe' [note the double negative] and 'It was a Private Affair' were also enjoyable, but featured more elaborate productions including occasional horns that recalled something out of the mid-1960s Tom Jones catalog.  As for highlights, there were only a handful of clunkers (the weird instrumental cover of 'Enchanted Sea' and the only German lyric song which was actually a cover of an Oscar Brown Jr. obscurity 'Aber Ich Blieb Kuhl' (translated as 'But I'll Stay Cool') came to mind) so virtually everything here was worth hearing.  Personal favorites were abundant but included the lead off cover of The Sir Doug Quintet's 'She's About a Mover' (erroneously credited to 'Doug'),.an weird Animals-styled cover of Gershwin's 'It Ain't Necessarily So', a live 'In the Midnight Hour', a tougher, but somewhat clumsy cover of Booker T. and the MGs 'Green Onions', the garage/psych rocker 'Gaby' which was apparently the closest they ever got to a hit, a live 'Watch Your Step' (featuring some great guitar from Schultz-Eckel), and the blazing 'What You Gonna Do About It'.  Given the original LPs would cost you and arm and a leg, if you could find them, this is  the way to go.


left to right: Werner Krabbe - Heintz Hoff - Bob Bresser

Jurge 'Jockel' Schultz-Eckel - Uri Grun



"Here Are The Boots" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) She's About a Mover   (Doug [Sahm])

2.) Keep Your Big Mouth Shut   (Bo Diddley) 

3.) Gloria    (Van Morrison) 

4.) It Ain't Necessarily So   (Gershwin) 

5.) Got Love If You Want It   (Moore)

6.) But You Never Do It Babe   (Rotter)

7.) Enchanted Sea (instrumental) 


(side 2)
1.) Baby, Please Don't Go

2.) What You Gonna Do About It   (Rotter) - 

3.) When I Loved You   (Orgent)

4.) Jump Back Babe   (Rufus Thomas)

5.) Dimples   (John Lee Hooker)

6.) Boogie, Children, Boogie   (Hayes)

7.) Walkin In the Sand (Remember)   (Shadow Morton)


(side 3)

1.) Searching Days   (Standford Alexander Band) - 

2.) It's a Man's, Man's World   (James Brown) - 

3.) I Feel Good   (James Brown)

4.) It was a Private Affair   (Standford Alexander Band) - 

5.) I Can't Not Believe   (Standford Alexander Band) - 

6.) Barefootin'   (Robert Parker Jr.) - 

7.) Green Onions (instrumental)   (Booker T. Jones - Steve Cropper - Al Jackson - Steinberg) - 


(side 4)
1.) Alexander   (Standford Alexander Bandr - Ferrer)

2.) Do You Really Know   (Standford Alexander Band) - 

3.) Get Out of My Life Woman   (Allen Toussaint) - 

4.) Don't Fight It   (Wilson Pickett - Steve Cropper) - 

5.) I Don't Want To Go On Without You   (Bert Berns - Jerry Wexler) - 

6.) Comin' Home (instrumental)   (Tucker - Dorough) - 

7.) Out of Sight   (Wright)


(side 5)

1.) In the Midnight Hour   (Wilson Pickett - Steve Cropper) - 

2.) Gaby   (Werner Krabbe - Bob Bresser) - 

3.) Another Tear Falls   (Burt Bacharach - Hal David) - 

4.) One More Time   (Van Morrison) - 

5.) I Wish You Would   (Arnold) - 


(side 6)
1.) Spoonful   (Willie Dixon) - 

2.) Crazy Enough for Me   (Mark) - 

3.) Aber Ich Blieb Kuhl   (Oscar Brown Jr. - Podehl) - 

4.) Watch Your Step   (Robert Parker Jr.) -


There's a nice Boots website, though it's in German located at:


I tracked down a couple of YouTube clips of the band on German television.  They're in black and white and not particularly good quality, but serve to show how good these guys were.


There's also a 2005 reunion clip filmed at Berlin's Quasimoto Club that showed the band (except for drummer Hoff who died in 1998 and keyboardist Grun who died after a long illness in April 2004) a little older, a little less hair, and a little less frenetic, but still in good form.  Schultz-Eckel turned in a great 'beer bottle' slide solo on a cover of 'Gloria'.





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