For the 12th year in a row, Uwe Ninow (right) and his Notenhoblers band mates are back for Marco Polo Hongkong Hotel's annual Oktoberfest, beginning this weekend. The German group, with their lederhosen, cheeky jokes and om-pah-pahs, has been as much a part of the bierfest as pretzels and sausages. However, what really gets the local audience on its feet is when Ninow launches into a near-perfect rendition of Sam Hui Koon-kit's Tsim Sha Tsui Susie or Francis Yip Lai-yee's Theme from The Bund. 'It was six or seven years ago that we started with the Chinese songs,' explains Ninow, the trumpeter and vocalist. 'We got them on CDs and then I would listen to them at home and write out the words in my own language. Then I would practise with the hotel's manager in a karaoke room ... We are working on a couple of new Chinese songs but we must practise more.' However, rehearsing might be a bit difficult. The group's luggage hasn't arrived. 'Our instruments might still be in Saigon.'