PRAGUE — Jiri Cerny, a legendary Czech music critic who launched Western music to generations of listeners behind the Iron Curtain and have become one of many voices of the 1989 anti-communist Velvet Revolution, has died. He was 87.
Cerny died on Thursday in a hospital in Prague, his colleague Jan Rejzek introduced on Czech public tv. No particulars got.
Born Feb. 25, 1936 in Prague, Cerny began writing about rock’n’roll in a weekly journal for younger folks within the early Sixties in Czechoslovakia, the place such a novelty was seen with suspicion by the communist authorities.
He was fired in 1965, a 12 months after he launched the primary radio hit parade, “Twelve on a Swing,” within the nation.
Cerny was in command of the present along with his first spouse, Miroslava, till 1969. He was fired after he performed a tune ridiculing the Soviet troops who invaded Czechoslovakia in 1968 to crush the Prague Spring, the transient interval of liberal reforms meant to result in the democratization of the nation.
Additionally with Miroslava, he revealed a e book in regards to the Beatles in 1966, a novel publication within the communist world on the time.
In 1971, missing alternatives for work underneath the hard-line communist regime that took over after the invasion, he started to tour the nation with a bag stuffed with information, performing in a present often called an anti-discotheque.
In addition to Western music, he performed banned Czech musicians to audiences who on the time might hardly hearken to them anyplace else, an exercise he continued until 2022.
In 1989, he discovered himself on the middle of political turmoil.
Cerny was one of many founding members of the Civic Discussion board, a newly created opposition group led by the late Vaclav Havel that was instrumental within the transition to democracy.
Cerny grew to become its impromptu spokesperson.
He launched Havel and different audio system to the large rallies at Prague’s Wenceslas Sq., the place he learn out the calls for for political change that resulted ultimately of the communist period.
Cerny declined a proposal to develop into tradition minister within the first post-communist Czech authorities and centered on what he knew the very best, music. As editor-in-chef, he established the Rock & Pop journal in 1990, returned to current music on the radio, and revealed quite a few articles and books.
In 2013, he obtained a Czech Tradition Ministry award for his contribution to music.