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Frequently Asked Questions

We have collected some questions about ASH RA TEMPEL, ASHRA and Manuel Göttsching here which have been asked in the past again and again. If you have a question which isn't answered here, you can mail it to us. If it is a question of general interest, we will put it into this FAQ.




Who is Manuel Göttsching?

How do you pronounce the name "Göttsching"?

What about the other members of ASHRA and ASH RA TEMPEL? Do they have their own websites too?

How does album X sound like?

Where can I buy albums by ASHRA/ASH RA TEMPEL/Manuel?

Where and when has ASH RA TEMPEL been formed?

Who are the current members of ASHRA?

Where is ex-ASH RA TEMPEL member Hartmut Enke today?

Is Klaus Schulze a current member of ASH RA TEMPEL or ASHRA?

Where was the first ASH RA TEMPEL album recorded?

Where were the other ASH RA TEMPEL albums recorded?

Does Manuel have his own recording studio?

Was there any loop machine on Inventions of Electric Guitar?

Does Manuel still own the guitar he played on Inventions? And what kind of guitar was it?

How many kinds of guitars Manuel has in his studio? Does he have a favorite one?

Which was Manuel's first synthesizer? And what is his favorite keyboard/synthesizer today?

Does the title New Age of Earth have any meaning?

Has Manuel Göttsching created New Age music?

How did the idea came to Manuel to use synthesizers on New Age of Earth after creating Inventions which was all guitar based?

Who provided the vocals on Belle Alliance's Wudu and Screamer?

Why has the name been changed to ASHRA?

Where did Manuel and Ashra disappear in the 80's?

Will some of the out-of-print Virgin albums be published again?

Where did the samples featured on the track 12 Samples come from (on the album Walkin' The Desert) ?

Will the Private Tapes 6 CD set be released again in some form?

Will there be more unpublished music released in the future?

I read on the Internet Manuel is the forefather of trance music, what does that mean?

What does the album title E2-E4 mean?

Has Manuel released any other solo albums besides E2-E4?

Did Manuel release any collaboration albums?

Did Manuel make any music for films?

Will there be videos released with events and concerts? How about DVD format?

Did Manuel perform on electronics or machines besides playing the guitar on the album Early Water with Michael Hoenig?

Has Manuel/ASHRA composed the music for Die Dominas, Geile Tiere, Klaus Krüger?

Which track is Manuel playing on Klaus Schulze's Tonwelle?

Is it true that Manuel composed and recorded a guitar part to Klaus Schulze's album Moondawn?

Is it true that Manuel was featured on a musical film documentary in 1999?

How did it happen that there was a one time reunion of ASH RA TEMPEL for its London concert at the Royal Festival Hall April 2000?

There are different kinds of guitars I hear on Friendship and Gin Rosé, what kinds of guitars did Manuel play

Is Friendship an "invention" of the Year 2000?

Does the CD album "Open Air Burg Herzberg, Vol. II" contains an unreleased live track from ASHRA's Twelve Samples during their performance on Burg Herzberg 1997?

I like Manuel's guitar playing on Friendship and Gin Rosé, are there other albums that sounds like that from him?



Who is Manuel Göttsching?
Manuel Göttsching is a music composer, arranger, performer and producer living in Berlin, Germany. With Edgar Froese and Klaus Schulze, he represents the famous Berlin School of Electronic Music. Manuel has been composing and releasing music for the past three decades in styles such as blues, progressive free-form rock, cosmic, electronic, and through the years developed probably the most ground-breaking of all, his unique style of "minimal" music, for which it has gained him a reputation as the forefather of trance music.

Manuel is multi-instrumentalist, he plays keyboards and synthesizers, percussion, and above all, guitars. Manuel is considered one in a dozen of the world's most renowned guitar players and performers of our time.

Manuel is founder of the group ASH RA TEMPEL, formed in 1970 with Hartmut Enke and Klaus Schulze. In 1977 Manuel shortened the band's name to ASHRA and continued to perform and record with current members Lutz Ulbrich, Harald Grosskopf, and Steve Baltes.


How do you pronounce the name "Göttsching"?
"Gut" from Guts, "shing" from Hashing. The sound of the German letter "ö" - of the first syllable of his name would probably remind more of the word "Bourbon" (the brand of Whisky - although Manuel actually prefers Scottish or Irish brands).


What about the other members of ASHRA and ASH RA TEMPEL? Do they have their own websites too?
Meanwhile all of them have got their own websites. You will find them all in our link page.


How does album X sound like?
There are some MP3 audio files available on this site which let you preview the music.

Fans seem to divide the music into four periods (more or less):

  • 1970-1973. The progressive free-form rock period in line with the Berlin School of Music tradition. Instruments: Guitars, bass guitar, harp, vibraphone, drums, percussion, and organ.

  • 1974-1977 Solo period: Minimal serene music based on guitars combined with synthesizers, sequencers and drum machines.

  • 1978-1980 The pop-rock-electronic period but retaining the serene feel: Guitars, keyboards, drums, percussion, synthesizers, and sequencers.

  • 1981- today: Music not categorized in any definable way, every album has a unique style. Instruments: guitars, keyboards, synthesizers, samplers, drum machines, sequencers, turntables, answering machines


Where can I buy albums by ASHRA/ASH RA TEMPEL/Manuel?
You can buy the most recently released CDs directly from us in our shop.


Where and when has ASH RA TEMPEL been formed?
ASH RA TEMPEL was founded on 24 August 1970 in Berlin: Hartmut Enke returned from a trip to London where he was lucky enough to buy some outrageous equipment second-hand from Pink Floyd for his and Manuel's band Steeple Chase Blues Band. Right on that day, Hartmut and Manuel went to set up the new equipment - especially those huge speaker cabinets, which were the biggest in Berlin town at the time - in their rehearsal studio in the Pfalzburgerstraße. By chance Klaus Schulze dropped by with the news that he'd just quit Tangerine Dream. When he saw the loudspeakers his eyes got bigger and bigger. He got so enthusiastic that he proposed Hartmut and Manuel to form a new band together. No doubts, no fears, no rules: without a moment's hesitation all three went to a nearby pub and half an hour later ASH RA TEMPEL was ready for take off.


Who are the current members of ASHRA?
Manuel Göttsching, Lutz Ulbrich, Harald Grosskopf and Steve Baltes.


Where is ex-ASH RA TEMPEL member Hartmut Enke today?
Hartmut quit the music business for good in 1973. He lived in Berlin, but he never lost contact to Manuel, writing him regularly postcards and visiting him from time to time to chat about the good old days, music, god and the world. Hartmut died on December 27, 2005. Manuel dedicated to him his solo concert at La Géode, Paris on June 2, 2010.


Is Klaus Schulze a current member of ASH RA TEMPEL or ASHRA?
No, Klaus officially left the band in September 1971 after their tour in Switzerland to pursue a solo career. However, in 1972 ASH RA TEMPEL teamed up again with Klaus during the recording of Walter Wegmüller's Tarot album, and after one of the recording sessions, ASH RA TEMPEL members: Enke, Göttsching and Rosi, together with Klaus decided to "play it again" in a late night session. This recording led to the birth of the Join Inn album, as well as two legendary concerts in February 1973 in Paris and Cologne. In 2000, for the 30th year anniversary of the formation of ASH RA TEMPEL, the two founding members Manuel and Klaus joined again under the ASH RA TEMPEL name for a one-off concert in London (concert CD released as Gin Rosé), and also released a studio collaboration album Friendship. Hartmut Enke, the third founding member of ASH RA TEMPEL was asked to join for this one time reunion concert, but he was not interested.


Where was the first ASH RA TEMPEL album recorded?
March 1971 at the Studio der Star-Musikproduktion, Hamburg, with the late genius engineer Conny Plank. ("The producer was a James McRiff - we used to call him James McKiff").


Where were the other ASH RA TEMPEL albums recorded?
With the exception of Seven Up, which was recorded in Sinus Studio, Berne/Switzerland in summer 1972 (due to the fact that Timothy Leary was on the run, having achieved a temporary political asylum in Switzerland, and always being aware that if he would just move one step out of this territory the CIA would catch him immediately and bring him back to the U.S. for imprisonment again - which was what actually happened six months later!), all of the ASH RA TEMPEL albums (1972-1973) as well as the Cosmic Jokers sessions (Tarot etc.) were recorded in Studio Dierks in Stommeln near Cologne. In 1974 Manuel built up his own studio, Studio Roma, to record Inventions for Electric Guitar and nearly all of the further albums.


Does Manuel have his own recording studio?
Yes, in 1974 he set up his own Studio Roma. Inventions for Electric Guitar was the first album to come from Studio Roma. Check the studio page.


Was there any loop machine on Inventions of Electric Guitar?
No, not at all! Manuel was actually playing all guitar patterns throughout the entire length of the pieces (with a big stopwatch in front of him!!), whereas the simultaneously recorded tape-echo served as a kind of metronome to keep the timing. But he used tape effects like double- and half-speed recording for low bass or high pitched melodies.


Does Manuel still own the guitar he played on Inventions? And what kind of guitar was it?
Yes. he stills owns it, loves it, and plays it on certain occasions! (GIBSON SG. Les Paul, Special Edition 1961, No ??? Please check this website's studio page for more details.)


How many kinds of guitars Manuel has in his studio? Does he have a favorite one?
His favourite guitar is still the one mentioned above. Besides he plays a Fender Telecaster, an old Roland Synthi Guitar GR 500/GS 500, a Hawaiin Guitar and two Classic Guitars (for more details check this website's studio page). At the time he also plays the Hohner Revelation that he used for Friendship and Gin Rosé.


Which was Manuel's first synthesizer? And what is his favorite keyboard/synthesizer today?
His first synthesizer was an EMS Synthi A (a must for serious beginners), his first drum-machine was an EKO Computerhythm (custom build, a legend on its own), first keyboards were a Farfisa Compact organ and a Farfisa Synthorchestra, followed by various renowned stuff (ARP, MOOG, Sequential Circuits, and - the lesser known - Publison). Today he plays an old Korg Wavestation, Roland and Akai Samplers, and the pretty MC 303 (apart from his million guitars, the Tunisian flute and the legendary Hohner Blues Harp in D - a reminiscence to the good old days of the Steeple Chase Blues Band.)


Does the title New Age of Earth have any meaning?
Rosi proposed the original title in German language: "Neuzeit der Erde". But as Manuel knew that many of his friends and fans are from all over the world, he just translated this title to English. As the music was no longer guitar based (like Inventions for Electric Guitar), but composed for keyboards and synthesizers, the title in a way symbolizes another approach, a new experience for Manuel in creating music. It was also the start of his more profound international career, as he left his former German OHR label and released this album first in France and later worldwide on Virgin Records.


Has Manuel Göttsching created New Age music?
No, in fact Manuel has nothing to do with it. With Inventions for Electric Guitar Manuel started the period of Minimal Music and his very own style of it based on guitar and electronics.


How did the idea came to Manuel to use synthesizers on New Age of Earth after creating Inventions which was all guitar based?
He felt that he had done enough with the guitar for the moment, and he was attracted by the new dimension of composing his music with keyboards and synthesizers, unlike his previous compositions (not just Inventions) that worked out from a basic idea on the guitar, a chord, a melody or just some tone/sound.

By the way, there were still no sequencers used on New Age of Earth, everything is played live throughout by hand, like on Inventions.


Who provided the vocals on Belle Alliance's Wudu and Screamer?
Lutz Ulbrich.


Why has the name been changed to ASHRA?
Manuel wanted to break up for new grounds with his second solo-album New Age Of Earth. He had left his old record company OHR in Germany, and he felt the good old days with ASH RA TEMPEL were definitely over and it was time for a change. But he also wanted to keep a reminiscence on the name and its history, so he shortened the name to ASHRA (which anyway had been the familiar abbreviation for ASH RA TEMPEL over the early years), and to preserve it for a future upcoming band, which eventually took shape in 1977 with joining of Lutz Ulbrich and Harald Grosskopf and continuing till this day, and even growing in 1997 with the addition of new member Steve Baltes.


Where did Manuel and Ashra disappear in the 80's?
After Belle Alliance Manuel quit Virgin Records. In 1981 ASHRA (Manuel. Lutz and Harald) did a show on Spanish TV, and Lutz and Harald began to produce solo albums on their own.

Manuel produced Die Dominas (a group consisting of his girlfriend Rosi and the fashion designer Claudia Skoda) and Die Geilen Tiere (the famous artists couple Salomé & Luciano Castelli). He also continued to compose and perform music for fashion shows, for the Berlin and New York based avant-garde designer Claudia Skoda (for the years 1978, 1979, 1982, 1983) and for Joop! (1986). Further he made music for theatrical pieces such as Burning Patience by Skarmeta and for Stan Broker's Dracula.

In the studio, he composed two yet unreleased works Tonight chez Wagner and Guitar fou.

In 1985 ASHRA reunited again for a concert in Sheffield (UK Electronica) and produced the basic material for the later released album Tropical Heat (1991). In 1988, Manuel and Lutz (just the two) performed at the Berlin Planetarium for the international event Berlin - Europe's Cultural Metropole 1987 and released an album based on this music Walkin' The Desert.

And not to forget, in 1984 Manuel released for the first time under his own name the masterpiece E2-E4!


Will some of the out-of-print Virgin albums be published again?
New Age of Earth is available on CD, Blackouts is available on Virgin's Ambient 3 CD set, the other albums are planned to be re-released soon.


Where did the samples featured on the track 12 Samples come from (on the album Walkin' The Desert) ?
They are taken from Arabic traditional music and from Muezin chants.


Will the Private Tapes 6 CD set be released again in some form?
No, this was considered a strictly limited edition. But Manuel is thinking of some Private Tapes 7-12, which will surely be released one sunny day....


Will there be more unpublished music released in the future?
Of course, there are still many original recordings left in the dark corners of Manuel's archives, and The Private Tapes were only covering the period of the seventies. But sometimes Manuel also likes to rework on old schemes, structures, and ideas that were never finished, because it was not the right moment (don't forget Tim Leary: "We are not in Space, we are in Time").


I read on the Internet Manuel is the forefather of trance music, what does that mean?
It is because of the minimal style, which is typical for Manuel's music since his beginnings, listen to Traummaschine on the first ASH RA TEMPEL album (1971) or Jenseits on Join Inn (1972/73), and more obviously on his first solo albums Inventions for Electric Guitar (1974) and New Age of Earth (1976). That was long before genres such as Trance, Ambient, Dance etc. were discovered by the music business, and these ground-breaking albums inspired many of those who have done it much later.


What does the album title E2-E4 mean?
There are three coincidences for the title:

  • When the title came to Manuel's mind (1978) there was not yet a specific composition planed for it. He has watched the film Star Wars, in which there was acting a little robot with the name R2D2. This name has inspired him in fact.

  • At the same time he was exploring his first Apple computer, trying to write his own programs and learning about computer languages which deal in their simplest form only with letters and numbers (hexcode, assembler).

  • Finally, the title reminds on a common opening chess move, although the correct writing would be in small letters. And for Manuel this meant his "opening move" to release his first album under his name (no ASHRA, no ASH RA TEMPEL)


Has Manuel released any other solo albums besides E2-E4?
Yes. In fact Inventions for Electric Guitar, New Age Of Earth and Blackouts are all solo albums but released under his group name ASH RA TEMPEL or ASHRA. Then there are Dream & Desire and E2-E4 both released under the name Manuel Göttsching. There are also several solo tracks on The Private Tapes and The Best Of The Private Tapes.


Did Manuel release any collaboration albums?
Yes, many. Check the discography section. The most recent album, produced in February 2001, is one with dance charts celebrity the Italian DJ Santos. Intimate was released in April 2001.


Did Manuel make any music for films?
Yes, he made the music for SFB Berlin TV feature Winter (1975), with ASH RA TEMPEL, further the music for Philippe Garrel's Le Berceau de Cristal (1975), and for Kurt Gerron's Karussell (1999) he composed the music for German shooting star Ben Becker to Walter Mehrings famous Ode to Berlin.


Will there be videos released with events and concerts? How about DVD format?
There have been released two videos in 2001: Live At The Open Air Festival Herzberg 1997 and Manuel's solo performance Die Mulde to an art mirror installation by Mercedes Engelhardt in Höfgen, near Leipzig, 1997. DVDs will come when they are more popular.


Did Manuel perform on electronics or machines besides playing the guitar on the album Early Water with Michael Hoenig?
Manuel played his favourite Gibson guitar, the Farfisa Organs (Farfisa Compact), ARP (Odyssey) and ARP Sequencer.


Has Manuel/ASHRA composed the music for Die Dominas, Geile Tiere, Klaus Krüger?
Neither Manuel nor ASHRA have composed the music for Die Dominas, Geile Tiere or Klaus Krüger. However, for Die Dominas and Geile Tiere Manuel was the producer and arranger. On the Klaus Krüger album Manuel was performing as special guest.


Which track is Manuel playing on Klaus Schulze's Tonwelle?
This is a mystery until today, the pressing plant (Pallas) mixed up side A and side B, so were the label stickers on the vinyl, and in the end nobody knew which title is on which side. To complete the confusion, the LP was cut for playing speed 45 RPM, but everybody was playing it with 33 1/3 RPM, like a normal long player.

But of course, Manuel knows what he played, and everybody who knows his style would recognize his guitar immediately. (Maybe a question for an upcoming contest?)


Is it true that Manuel composed and recorded a guitar part to Klaus Schulze's album Moondawn?
It is true indeed. When Schulze released Moondawn in 1976 he had sent a MC copy to Manuel. The track Floating, where also Harald Grosskopf played drums, inspired Manuel spontaneously, and he added a guitar and returned the tape the very next day. Schulze was nicely surprised, but, of course, it was only for fun, as a kind of musical talk between the two, and never released.


Is it true that Manuel was featured on a musical film documentary in 1999?
Yes, Manuel is shown performing on a grand piano to an interpretation from Walter Mehring's Ode an Berlin which was performed by German movie star Ben Becker. Incidentally Manuel composed this musical piece and produced the music for the film and the soundtrack CD Kurt Gerrons Karussell (same title as the film). The film and soundtrack CD can be obtained from Ashra's office at this e-mail address tvfilmvent@aol.com, the CD also at EastWest Records, Hamburg (German Warner Bros.)


How did it happen that there was a one time reunion of ASH RA TEMPEL for its London concert at the Royal Festival Hall April 2000?
One day Julian Cope phoned Manuel inviting him to perform for his Cornucopea festival, which would took place at the Royal Festival Hall. He said that it did not matter, how Manuel will perform: alone, with ASHRA or other people. Julian simply wanted Manuel to show up, if even to say hello to the crowd if for some reason didn't feel to play. Julian, since long time declared to love Manuel's music, especially his guitars. So, Manuel had the idea to invite Klaus Schulze to join him and to make the show as a one time re-union of ART for its 30th anniversary.

Unfortunately Hartmut Enke did not want to join them...


There are different kinds of guitars I hear on Friendship and Gin Rosé, what kinds of guitars did Manuel play
On Friendship he uses his Hawaiian Guitar, his Classic Guitar, a Hohner Les Paul and a Czech made Hohner Revelation as well.

On Gin Rosé he played the same Hawaiian guitar, Lutz Ulbrich's Washburn nylon-electric guitar and the two electric guitars mentioned on Friendship.


Is Friendship an "invention" of the Year 2000?
No, actually the style you hear on Friendship can be found in Manuel's earlier works. For example the solo piece Bois du Soleil in 1979 (available on The Private Tapes) has the same concept with the blend of electronics and guitar. KDM wrote about this track in the CD booklet: "That's the style I like most from Manuel: An elegiac theme ŕ la "Bois du Soleil" and his beautiful guitar on top of it. (I should produce a complete album with him, just using this formula!)." - Eventually, it was not KDM who produced an album with Manuel using this formula for a first-time collaboration, but Klaus Schulze on his In Blue album (1995), which Manuel is playing this kind of guitar on the track Return Of The Tempel while Klaus taking part of the machines.

For Bois du Soleil, the origin of this formula, Manuel played both the guitar and machines.


Does the CD album "Open Air Burg Herzberg, Vol. II" contains an unreleased live track from ASHRA's Twelve Samples during their performance on Burg Herzberg 1997?
This album is an unauthorized CD release by "Think Progressive", and the track Twelve Samples is not taken from the ASHRA concert at Burg Herzberg 1997. It is a version that has been recorded during ASHRA's Japan tour in February 1997 and released on the @shra CD 1998. Manuel feels very sorry for this rip-off by Kalle Becker!


I like Manuel's guitar playing on Friendship and Gin Rosé, are there other albums that sounds like that from him?
Manuel's typical solo/chords playing guitar-style has never changed throughout the years and you can always recognize it on all of his releases. Most comparative recordings (including with Klaus Schulze) are probably on the Private Tapes, the early live-recordings from 1971/73, as well as on Vol. 1 Bois du Soleil and Bois de la Lune (1979, solo), but also on Richard Wahnfried Tonwelle (1981) and on the track Return of the Tempel from Klaus Schulze's In Blue (1995), where Manuel plays as a guest a quite big part of the album.

On Inventions for Electric Guitar from 1975 there is a different style, but also typical for Manuel; one of his most renown solos he played on Blackouts (1978, title track), not to forget the very floating but dominating guitar in the second half of his solo E2-E4 (1984). If you like the great guitar solos with a catchy and energetic electronics, you should certainly try @shra and Sauce Hollandaise (both released in 1997).




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