Jürgen Ploog (1935-2020) was a German writer who used to work as an airline pilot for 33 years. Transience and the crossing of borders were integral his existence and writings. Ploog’s early literary output gravitated naturally to the cut-up method that William Burroughs and Brion Gysin popularised in the 1960s. His early experiments at cut-ups were published in the satirical magazine ‘Der Metzger’ and in the German Beat magazine ‘Gasolin 23’, which Ploog founded in 1971 with Carl Weissner and Jörg Fauser. Since then that technique remained an essential component of Ploog’s prose, at first prominently present – like in his hardcore cut-up novels ‘Cola-Hinterland’ (1969) and ‘Die Fickmaschine’ (1970) – and later subdued and overlain by loose episodical structures. ‘Pacific Boulevard’ (1977) and ‘Nächte in Amnesien’ (1980) are examples of those later logbook-like works.
Following the example of William Burroughs, Ploog used a portable tape recorder to record, edit and cut up material, which he collected during his transcontinental flights between 1971 and 1976. The material on the LP ‘Tapes von unterwegs 1971-1976’ that Moloko + and 90% Wasser released in 2015 is a selection of Ploog’s hallucinatory tape cut-ups by Robert Schalinski. The LP has Ploog’s ‘Partitur des Unterwegs’ (2015) printed on the outer and inner sleeve to complete this cut-up adventure into the crevices and manholes of language.