Contents of the German Magazine: Der Gitarrefreund (1900-31) – Masami Kimura, 2005

Published by Robert Coldwell on

Dedicated to Mr. Jiro Nakano (1902-2000) and Mr. Hiroshi Kawai (1904-1987)

[Editor] The following is an unpublished article written by Masami Kimura in 2005. The text is from the Preface of the article. I have not included the rest of the article as it detailed the contents of Der Gitarrefreund which are now available on my site. Masami translated into English and German from his original Japanese text. I have not included these but can make them available to anyone interested.


A long time after I came back from Germany,[1]I stayed in the little town of Staufen, Germany and in Vienna from October 1974 until June 1975. My stay was divided into three parts: in the beginning and end I learned German at the Goethe … Continue reading I decided to obtain the German guitar magazine Der Gitarrefreund(1900-31), in the summer of 1982 related to a project of Gendai Guitar to publish a Mertz[2]Joseph Kaspar Mertz (1806-56) was born in Preßburg (at present in Bratislava) and active in Vienna as a guitarist and composer, and died in the same city. Works Collection, which I had collected in Vienna and were in the possession of the Nakano Guitar and Mandolin Music Collection.[3]This was the private collection of the late Mr. Jiro Nakano, Nagoya, and it is at present in possession of the library at Doshisha University in Kyoto. Mr. Nakano was always provided the best … Continue reading I needed to research the Mertz biography and a work list for this publishing plan. In the autumn of the same year, I ordered the first five volumes of Der Gitarrefreund in microfilm from the Bavarian State Library[4]I am grateful to Dr. Robert Münster at the Bavarian State Library for the microfilm, which contained two issues missing from Japanese collections. in Munich, which contained two issues with a Mertz biography by his widow.[5]“Johann [sic] Kaspar Mertz” by his widow, Der Gitarrefreund, Jahrgang 2, Heft 12 December 1901, p.83-85 and Jahrgang 3, Heft 1 February 1902, p.9-12. This article was comprised … Continue reading Though the Mertz collection project by Gendai Guitar was cancelled due to the publishing announcement of ten volumes of Mertz by Simon Wynberg[6]Simon Wynberg, JOHANN KASPAR MERTZ (1806-1856) Guitar Works, Vol.1-10, Heidelberg: Chanterelle, 1985. the following year, my Mertz biography investigation continued with more cooperation from the Nakano Guitar and Mandolin Music Collection.

Several years later I published two articles[7]Masami Kimura, “Johann K. oder Josef (ph) K. Mertz,” nova giulianiad, Bd.3. Nr.9/10, October 1986: a Japanese translation by the author was in Gendai Guitar, June 1987. “Joseph K. … Continue reading in two German magazines in 1986 and 1992 as the result of my Mertz biography investigation. In them, in addition to the main topic that the name of Mertz was not Johann Kaspar but Joseph Kaspar,[8]Mertz has been known by the name Johann Kaspar in recent guitar history. This was derived from the title “Johann Kaspar Mertz” which an editor attached to the article in Der … Continue reading I was able to supplement several facts to the doctoral dissertation of A. Stempnik,[9]Astrid Stempnik, Caspar Joseph Mertz, Leben und Werk des letzten Gitarristen im österreichischen Biedermeier/ Eine Studie über den Niedergang der Gitarre in Wien um 1850, Frankfurt am Main: Peter … Continue reading concluded from a short Mertz biography in the form of a letter from Mertz’s widow[10]For this letter, refer to my detailed German article “Joseph K. Mertz/ Drei Biographien seiner Witwe,” in Note 7. and translated into English. Jiro Nakano of Nagoya introduced me to Mr. Kawai of Tokyo when I was researching the original source of the Mertz portrait.[11]The Mertz portrait is found on the cover of a Mertz work collection published by Erwin Schwarz-Reiflingen in Germany in 1920. Unfortunately there is no information about the source of this Mertz … Continue reading Since then I received great cooperation from Mr. Kawai during my investigation. Here particularly, I want to describe what happened at Mr. Kawai’s house on December 20, 1986 before he passed away. That day I showed him the above-mentioned German magazine with my first article,[12]I was very sorry that I couldn’t show Mr. Kawai my second German article due to his death in 1987. which clearly delighted him, so he gave me all his issues of four guitar magazines[13]Der Gitarrefreund, München, Die Gitarre, Berlin, Österreichische Gitarre-Zeitschrift, Wien and Musik im Haus, Wien. and two books[14] The first was Dr. Hugo Botstiber, Musikbuch aus Österreich, Wien 1907 and the second was the first doctor’s thesis presented to Vienna University on guitar history research: Josef … Continue reading which were published in German in the first half of the 20th century, together with the warm words: “Make use of them for your future research!” This was the most emotional day of my life.

Mr. Kawai, who was born in same city of Nagoya as Mr. Nakano and graduated from the Tokyo University in the old education system before World War II, was an international lawyer who spoke wonderful English and was a friend of the German guitarist Siegfried Behrend (1933-1990).[15]Mrs. Kawai and I met Mr. Behrend at a Japanese restaurant at a hotel in Tokyo when he came with Michael Tröster for a concert tour to Japan as a Guitar Duo, in the spring of 1987 after Mr. Kawai had … Continue reading I believe that Mr. Kawai, when he was young, had already been a guitar scholar in the middle of the 1920’s, because he ordered not only the subscription of these magazines, but also any back issues[16]Specifically as for Der Gitarrefreund, its back issues included three interesting numbers.: the first is Jg. 02, No. 12, December 1901 which carried the first half of the Mertz biography by his … Continue reading that he could get. However, he lacked 10 back issues of Der Gitarrefreund, so I for 20 years I worked to fill in the missing issues from the Nakano Guitar and Mandolin Music Collection, the Bavarian State Library, the private collection of the guitarist Sukenori Kyomoto (1925-2019), Tokyo, and the guitar music critic Yuichi Adachi (1921-), Tokyo. The collections in Japan lacked only two issues,[17]Of the two missing issues in Japanese collections, the first is the very first issue Jg. 1, No. 1 May 1900, and the second is Jg. 3, H. 1, February 1902, which contains the second half of the Mertz … Continue reading and I was surprised that all the other issues were present in the four personal collections. It was very lucky that I could collect everything. In the spring of 2003 my urgent and biggest task became the cataloging of the entire contents of Der Gitarrefreund. I must mention a great collaborator, Jörg Sommermeyer, Freiburg, who is a guitar magazine editor and lawyer, and proofread all of my German in the present article.

I would like to list again the names of those who cooperated with me, and express my thanks to them. I express deeply gratitude to the late Jiro Nakano, the late Hiroshi Kawai, Yuichi Adachi, Sukenori Kyomoto, Jörg Sommermeyer and the Bavarian State Library.

In Oamishirasato, Chiba-Ken, in the autumn of 2005.

Masami Kimura

References

References
1 I stayed in the little town of Staufen, Germany and in Vienna from October 1974 until June 1975. My stay was divided into three parts: in the beginning and end I learned German at the Goethe Institute in Staufen, and then, in the middle I took a German language course at the University Vienna, all while collecting information about guitar history literature at Viennese libraries. The doctoral dissertation by Thomas Heck, The Birth of the classic guitar and its cultivation in Vienna, reflected in the career and compositions of Mauro Giuliani (d.1829), I had obtained in February 1972 was my great guidebook during my collecting of German guitar literature collection in Vienna. I had been expecting more from its new edition: Mauro Giuliani: Virtuoso Guitarist and Composer, published by Editions Orphée in Columbus, Ohio 1995.
2 Joseph Kaspar Mertz (1806-56) was born in Preßburg (at present in Bratislava) and active in Vienna as a guitarist and composer, and died in the same city.
3 This was the private collection of the late Mr. Jiro Nakano, Nagoya, and it is at present in possession of the library at Doshisha University in Kyoto. Mr. Nakano was always provided the best cooperator throughout my Mertz biography investigation.
4 I am grateful to Dr. Robert Münster at the Bavarian State Library for the microfilm, which contained two issues missing from Japanese collections.
5 “Johann [sic] Kaspar Mertz” by his widow, Der Gitarrefreund, Jahrgang 2, Heft 12 December 1901, p.83-85 and Jahrgang 3, Heft 1 February 1902, p.9-12. This article was comprised of a Mertz biography by his widow and the editor’s biographical introduction. The first name of Mertz is listed as Josef (ph) in the text, but Johann was used in the title.
6 Simon Wynberg, JOHANN KASPAR MERTZ (1806-1856) Guitar Works, Vol.1-10, Heidelberg: Chanterelle, 1985.
7 Masami Kimura, “Johann K. oder Josef (ph) K. Mertz,” nova giulianiad, Bd.3. Nr.9/10, October 1986: a Japanese translation by the author was in Gendai Guitar, June 1987. “Joseph K. Mertz / Drei Biographien seiner Witwe,” in Gitarre + Laute, Jan.-Feb. 1/1992: a Japanese translation by the author was in Gendai Guitar, December 1996, January 1997 and February 1997.
8 Mertz has been known by the name Johann Kaspar in recent guitar history. This was derived from the title “Johann Kaspar Mertz” which an editor attached to the article in Der Gitarrefreund. However, a clue to Mertz using Joseph Kaspar is its appearance in the Mertz biography text by his widow and the editor’s biographical introduction, as well as a short Mertz biography in the form of a letter from Mertz’s widow. Refer to my two German articles for the details. Incidentally, as for the real name of Mertz, refer to Note 9 and the following articles by Astrid Stempnik: “Nachträge zum ‘Johann K. oder Josef  K. Mertz’ von Masami Kimura,” nova giulianiad, Bd.3, Nr.9/10, 1986 and  nova giulianiad, Bd.3, Nr.11/12, 1988.
9 Astrid Stempnik, Caspar Joseph Mertz, Leben und Werk des letzten Gitarristen im österreichischen Biedermeier/ Eine Studie über den Niedergang der Gitarre in Wien um 1850, Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang,1990. I will add some candid advice here regarding the title of this dissertation by Stempnik. First, she should have written “Joseph Kaspar Mertz” as the main title, and “Caspar Joseph” as his real name in the subtitle.
10 For this letter, refer to my detailed German article “Joseph K. Mertz/ Drei Biographien seiner Witwe,” in Note 7.
11 The Mertz portrait is found on the cover of a Mertz work collection published by Erwin Schwarz-Reiflingen in Germany in 1920. Unfortunately there is no information about the source of this Mertz portrait included in the book. Erwin Schwarz-Reiflingen, Altmeister der Gitarre, JOHANN KASPAR MERTZ, Magdebung: Heinrichshofen’s Verlag, 1920.
12 I was very sorry that I couldn’t show Mr. Kawai my second German article due to his death in 1987.
13 Der Gitarrefreund, München, Die Gitarre, Berlin, Österreichische Gitarre-Zeitschrift, Wien and Musik im Haus, Wien.
14  The first was Dr. Hugo Botstiber, Musikbuch aus Österreich, Wien 1907 and the second was the first doctor’s thesis presented to Vienna University on guitar history research: Josef Zuth, Simon Molitor und Wiener Gitarristik (um 1800), Wien 1919.
15 Mrs. Kawai and I met Mr. Behrend at a Japanese restaurant at a hotel in Tokyo when he came with Michael Tröster for a concert tour to Japan as a Guitar Duo, in the spring of 1987 after Mr. Kawai had passed away.
16 Specifically as for Der Gitarrefreund, its back issues included three interesting numbers.: the first is Jg. 02, No. 12, December 1901 which carried the first half of the Mertz biography by his widow, the second is Jg.01, No.2, June 1900 and the third is Jg. 1, No. 3/4, July 1900.
17 Of the two missing issues in Japanese collections, the first is the very first issue Jg. 1, No. 1 May 1900, and the second is Jg. 3, H. 1, February 1902, which contains the second half of the Mertz biography by his widow. I wish to thank Mr. Matthias Herrmann of the Bavarian State Library, who kindly answered my inquiries related to all issues of Der Gitarrefreund in some letters during the second half of 2003. Incidentally, all the issues are in the possession of this library.
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