Biography – Jacky Dreksler
Jacky Dreksler (born on March 1, 1946 in Paris) grew up as an orphan in France, the USA and Germany. In 1964, he had to leave high school because of sheer laziness. He began his career at Bayer, as a young unskilled worker, and then did an apprenticeship as a chemistry lab assistant while at the same time going to night school to complete his high school diploma. On Saturdays, he earned money to pay for his schooling as a sales assistant in a clothing store, and on Sundays by washing bottles in a bottling plant. Starting in 1968, he studied education, philosophy and sociology and completed a degree in education (Diplom-Pädagoge).
From 1972, he taught education theory and sociology at the Gymnasium Köln-Höhenhaus secondary school. At thirty, he left the teaching track to accept a doctoral fellowship (planning on pursuing an academic career) and earned money to pay the rent and purchase birth-control pills and beer as a sailing instructor and as university lecturer in sociology, philosophy and education, at institutions including the Bundeswehr University and the University of Bonn.
In 1978, Jacky began writing the occasional article, and then worked as a freelance journalist on the staff of the Kölner Stadtanzeiger newspaper, eventually entrusted with covering his own city district. He also published various articles in other newspapers and did photography for young people’s and music magazines. Music school: Jacky founded a private music school (guitar, piano, flute, early music education), which he directed for five years.
Along with a few scientific papers, Jacky has published 400 comics and two books with Bastei as well as three books for the Eichborn publishing house. He has also written eight textbooks on pop and classical guitar and piano/keyboard (some of which were also published in English) and an electronics encyclopedia. Arranger: Jacky has written arrangements for numerous well-known folk, pop and jazz songs for songbooks and music magazines.
In 1982, he made his first contact with radio, finally put his languishing doctoral dissertation out of its misery, and began working almost exclusively in this fascinating media field. Her started out as actor, author and host at German radio station SWF3, where he wrote and played roles including the regularly featured radio comedy characters Matthias Müsli and Prof. Dr. Müller-Chaos. He wrote, produced and hosted 12 episodes of the four-hour Sunday morning show SWF3-Flohmarkt. In addition, Jacky wrote, spoke, played and produced some 500 sketches, gag songs and features for radio stations such as SWF3, WDR 2, Radio FFN, Radio 2000, NDR and RIAS. From 1983-1988, he was a full-time studio gag writer for the RTL Radio show Guten Morgen Deutschland. During this period, he produced around 800 sketches/gags/songs for the station as author/speaker/singer.
ZDF entertainment head Wolfgang Penk lured Jacky away from radio to work in television in 1984. Jacky became the most prolific show author and hosting coach in German television (around 650 TV shows, with a total of over 70 different titles). For example: Bananas, Carolin Reiber’s Volkstümliche Hitparade, Dieter Thomas Heck’s Ihr Einsatz, bitte (ZDF), Mike Krüger’s Vier gegen Willy (ARD), Hugo Egon Balder’s Alles nichts, oder (RTL), Tele-As with Peter Rapp and Carolin Reiber, Fort Boyard (SAT.1) and the ARD-Wunschkonzert with Dagmar Berghoff and Max Schautzer. Jacky wrote Sabine Sauer’s Showfenster and her Kino-Hitparade as well as additional shows and series with hosts including Frank Elstner, Freddy Quinn, Harald Juhnke, Heino, Ramona Leis, Wolfgang Lippert, Jochen Schröder, Eddie Ahrendt, Michael Schanze, Wencke Myrrhe, Uwe Hübner, Hans-Jürgen Bäumler, Wolfgang Völz, Carlo von Thiedemann, Tony Marshall, Patrick Lindner, Petra Schürmann, Peter Rapp, Karl Moik and Birgit Schrowange. He also developed the ZDF sitcom Bistro-Bistro.
Composer and lyricist
During these years, Jacky also wrote the music and lyrics for songs performed by artists including Costa Cordalis, Heino, Milva, Mike Krüger, The Flippers, Nicole, Tony Marshall, Marlene Charrell and for his friend Hugo Egon Balder. He wrote the songs for three Roland Kaiser LPs and one LP with 10 chansons for Charles Aznavour. For the NDR, he composed and produced a jingle concept consisting of ten jingles. Singer: In the meantime, producer Jack White had offered Jacky a career as an international music star. Together with Hugo Egon Balder, he composed, wrote lyrics for and produced two Reggae songs. He unfortunately ruined any chance of success by singing the songs himself, under the pseudonym Adja Lion. A further attempt at vocal stardom with his fifties retro group Milkshake (Title song: Shoobedo-A, B side: Shoobedo-B), ended, after an appearance on Wim Thoelke’s Der Große Preis, with the sale of at least 140 records. Since then, Jacky has been more considerate to listeners and confines his singing efforts to his own four walls. Industry presentations: Starting in 1988, Jacky worked as author and consultant for major industry events and trade show presentations, including jobs for Agfa, Citroen, Ford, Grundig, Mannesmann, Melitta, Siemens and Mercedes. Audio books for children: With Roland Kaiser, he developed and wrote the children’s audio cassette series Pad Panda.
In 1991, Jacky switched to the producers’ camp with 130 episodes of an NDR game show (as managing director and producer in his own companies, Atlantic Media, with Roland Kaiser, and Pacific Productions with his wife Babs.) He produced music videos, created and produced the show Schreinemakers Live for two years and, in the course of five years, over 150 episodes of RTL Samstag Nacht, in collaboration with Hugo Egon Balder. Jacky discovered Markus Maria Profitlich as new television talent and produced his first show. He produced the series Karls Kneipe with Karl Dall, the children’s comedy series Alles Klar for Nickelodeon and a further 400 or so comedy shows, game shows and late-night shows for television stations RTL, SAT1, HR, ZDF and NDR. In 1995 he produced the awards show for the Bayerischer Fernsehpreis and the programming press conference for RTL. Likewise in 1995, Jacky founded the profit center Feedback (with RTL as partner), became its managing director and produced the late night show RTL Nachtshow, hosted by Thomas Koschwitz. In conjunction with the Canadian company Rozon, he co-produced Just Kidding, a candid camera show with Mirco Nontschew, a Special with Michel Courtemanche and Just For Laughs (for the Comedy Festival in Montreal).
Man of independent means
In 1998, Jacky elected to take an extremely early retirement, devoting all his attention to his wife (physician and co-owner of Pacific Productions) and his two daughters (11 and 16), his guitar and keyboards and his books (favourite themes: epistemology, social psychology and evolutionary biology).
Since 2001, Jacky has been called back from the grave once a year to act as jury member for the Deutscher Comedy Preis. In 2003, he also let himself be resuscitated for consulting tasks in connection with Hit-Giganten, a music show series produced by his friend Hugo Egon Balder.
In January 2004, Hugo Egon Balder’s producer, Marc Schubert, approached Jacky and offered him a post as independent executive producer for his company, Hurricane. Jacky had rediscovered his interest in producing during his retirement years and developed and produced for RTL the improv show Frei Schnauze with Mike Krüger, Mirko Nontschew, Barbara Schöneberger, Martin Schneider and others. The first episodes, broadcast in January 2005, were a hit. With Hugo Egon Balder, he co-produced the music show Taratata for SAT.1 in autumn 2004.
In January 2005, a Cologne business made an offer to become a shareholder in Pacific Productions. Jacky was already well on his way to becoming addicted again – he accepted the offer and resurrected Pacific on February 1, 2005. Hurricane and Jacky separated on amicable terms and, ever since then, he’s been “back in town” – at least as long as it’s still fun. Starting in autumn 2005, Jacky produced the 60-minute show RTL-Comedy-Nacht and, together with Hugo Egon Balder, the political parody Talk im Tudio for SAT.1. For WDR, he joined Christoph Wittig to produce the show Heimspiel. New start-ups: Hugo Egon Balder and Jacky founded the TV production company Mint Media in 2005, while Jacky and Hella von Sinnen have founded Aloha Films, with Pacific as 50% partner.
As of 2013 Babs and Jacky concentrate on building a Pacific publishing branch.