Holger Czukay (born Holger Schüring on 24 March 1938) is a German musician, probably best known as a co-founder of the krautrock group Can. Described by critic Jason Ankeny as "successfully bridg[ing] the gap between pop and the avant-garde," Czukay is also notable for creating early important examples of ambient music, for exploring "world music" well before the term was coined, and for being a pioneer of sampling.
Czukay was born in the Free City of Danzig (now Gdańsk, Poland). During World War II, his family was among the millions relocated as refugees. Due to the turmoil of war, Czukay's primary education was limited. However, a pivotal early experience was working in a radio repair shop as a teenager—he became fond of the aural qualities of radio broadcasts (anticipating his use of shortwave radio broadcasts as musical elements) and became familiar with the rudiments of electrical repair and engineering.
Czukay studied music under Karlheinz Stockhausen from 1963 to 1966 and then worked for a while as a music teacher. Initially Czukay had little interest in rock music, but this changed when a student played him The Beatles' 1967 song "I Am the Walrus". This opened his ears to