One day after the Sven Hammond Soul gig in Groningen and an afternoon clearing out the forest near Oudemolen as a team-outing from work I was tired, worn and also already back to the next gig. This time in Borger, back to Vanslag.
In the Netherlands concerts are usually held inside, but every once in a while -when the weather is good- you can find those magical open air places with just the perfect music for the location. On the first of June -when the weather was exceptionally well- the good folks of Roots on the Road and Coco Maria held a concert outside. With a setting sun, great music and a beautiful location the scene for a super concert was set!
It’s been a while since I visited Vanslag, but with Lynne Hanson and Suzanne Jarvie there, bringing B.J Baartmans was a great reason to drive to Borger again.
As I drive into Groningen, I could see the huge Ferris Wheel of the May Fair on the Vismarkt popping out over the buildings, the sun was slowly setting and with the first official summer-temperature day of 2015, it was a lovely evening. But I wasn’t in Groningen for that… I had completely missed the announcement of Daniel Norgrens gig in Vera until a friend pointed me to that. Quickly checked it out and it sounded great, so onwards to Groningen!
About a year and a half ago Luke Winlow-King and band played Vanslag and it must have been really good as the buzz afterwards was really good and the build up to the concert last week was pretty big too. Playing the popular Dutch TV show De Wereld Draait Door a day earlier helped too of course.
Last Friday the Canadians of Elliot Brood came to Borger, a band that I’ve last seen a long long time ago. The first time in 2005 in a very small setting in a small, intimate café in Assen (De Witte Bal, where many of my musical roots lay) and then in 2008 at the Take Roots festival. Quite a few years have passed and a day after the guys played at the former church Paradiso in Amsterdam they now came to the Church-turned-venue of Borger: Vanslag, together with Swedish singer-songwriter Peter Thisell.
Last Thursday I decided to test my newly repaired roadbike wheel and had to pick up the pace as the round got a bit bigger then I had planned. Did a good round, rushed to the shower and then quickly drove to Groningen for Danny Vera’s gig in -appropriately- Vera.
I could have sworn I had seen Steve Earle before. However I found no mentioning of him in my concert-database and looking at older concertdates in the Netherlands revealed that it must have been in either 2000 at Take Root or in 2004 with the Jeruzalem tour. In 2000 I didn’t really visit gigs yet so it’s probably 2004 however I can’t find any photos in my archives. Still pretty sure I saw him though. Anyhow, he was back in the Netherlands last week and I made sure not to miss him this time!
A day after Mark Lanegan I was back in De Oosterpoort again for a musician that I also hadn’t seen in years. Back in 2005 Damien opened for Dolorean and I hardly saw anything of him at all then as I came rushing in after a John Hiatt gig in De Oosterpoort. He played solo then, now he’s back, with a band. Time to find out what I missed back then.
It’s been only four years since Vanessa Peters first toured the Netherlands. A suitcase, a backpack and a guitar and racing all over the Netherlands in public transport with Alex Akela supporting on bass, mandolin and violin. That was also the year that inspired ‘Drowning in Amsterdam’ as it rained for the whole duration she was here.