Cultured Pearls is a German band that play a mix of soul, rock jazz and funk.
Founders Bela Brauckmann and Tex Super became friends in 1992 while studying at the College for Music and Theatre in Hamburg, Germany. Their taste for pop flavoured soul grooves was the main reason for the recording of first demos on an eight track mixer. Tex, who was actually a flute and trumpet player, played bass and Bela drums. A short time later Astrid North joined them as singer and texter. She had previously played in her school band “Colorful Dimension”
The trio christened themselves “Cultured Pearls” and landed a major deal with WEA in 1995. At the end of the same year they released their debut album “Sing De La Sing” which was a mixture of funk, R&B and jazzpop. The LP reached # 92 in the German album charts. The single from the LP “Tic Toc” climbed to number 65 in the single charts, and along with a tour through the clubs as support for Big Light, they gained a cult following in the German scene.
In the spring of 1997 a second album “Spaceage Honeymoon” was released which reached number 54 i n the German longplay charts, the single release “Sugar Sugar Honey” (arguably Cultured Pearls most well known song) entered the single charts in 1998, peaking at number 72. A second single “Silverball” reached number 99.
Liquified Days was the first LP by the band to enter the Top Twenty, peaking at 20, and featured the band’s last hit in the single charts (Kissing The Sheets). Differences in opinion as to the musical direction of the band led to long break, during which the musicians pursued their own ideas
In 2001 Astrid North became a mother. Bela Brauckmann was at this time busy releasing a book teaching kids how to play the piano, while Tex Super amongst other things was writing scripts for TV plays, film soundtracks and the like. He also arranged music for artists such as Mousse T. and Tom Jones
Life On A Tuesday, produced by Jon Kelly (Chris Rea) was then released in 2002. however the sales of this album were also unsatisfactory – it reached only number 74 in the German Charts – and after the release of a best of album (Pearls Of A Decade) a year later, the band went on hiatus, but never officially split.
Astrid North has since released a single album “North” (2012) and has kept herself busy with other solo projects. Bela Brauckmann joined the reformed Rainbirds with Katharina Franck in 2014