Swingin’ Groningen

Being a lover of Jazz -both the traditional and the more swinging, funky kind- I look forward to the Swingin’ Groningen festival every year. The festival has been put on hold a few times as it’s a free festival and money is tight, but if they’re on and I have a chance I wil absolutely check out some of the band and so it was I was in Groningen last night.

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The Static Roots Festival pre-fun

A long, long time ago, not far away from here (in the Witte Bal in Assen actually) I was taking photos at a concert by The Long Winters. It was back in 2004 and there I met Dietmar Leibecke and his wife Marion, who came all the way from Germany for that concert. Dietmar and I have kept in contact over the years via the Facebook and so learned about each others musical discoveries and concert-experiences. And now Dietmar has organised a festival of his own: the Static Roots Festival and he was kind enough to invite me.

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Ribs & Blues Monday

Last weekend was Pentecost and as usual that means that Raalte holds it’s annual Ribs&Blues weekend. Three days of music, beer and food. For the kids there’s a good sized funfair so they can have some fun while mommy and daddy are screaming old rock-songs at the top of their lungs…

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The Mississippi Kings on Kingsday in Assen

When it comes to music Assen and Drenthe are almost synonymous to Blues. On big events her in Assen there’s a really good chance you’ll find a bluesband or two playing on a stage. And so yesterday, while we celebrated the Kings Birthday, we had live music on various stages and on one stage nested between terraces and restaurants the Mississippi Kings did their thing.

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Tourist in my own country

Instead of going to Barcelona again in April I had Monica over here for a few days. Weather-predictions warned for rain and cold weather and seeing that April usually has no idea what it wants, I had Monica at least prepare for some cold rainy days.

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Ralph de Jongh in Café Lodewijk Napoleon

As if a long day at the track wasn’t enough I thought I’d end the Sunday afternoon with visiting a concert in Café 1809 Lodewijk Napoleon in Assen. Ralph de Jongh had a small gig there and as it was on my route from the circuit to home, it was a nice stop along the way.

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Ralph de Jongh in Vanslag

From the first time Ralph de Jongh played in the Vanslag venue in Borger, the combination has been a huge success and so it’s no surprise that Ralph and band came to Borger to present the new album here last Saturday.

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Blues in Assen

Unfortunately I had to pass on the ‘Asser Bluesroute’ this year, the festival where a good twenty blues musicians and bands will play in various cafes, bars and venues all over Assen. Luckily I didn’t miss out on all of it.

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Swingin’ Groningen 2015

I love the Swingin’ Groningen festival: it’s a terrific free festival in the heart of Groningen and brings a mix of swinging Jazz, Soul, Blues and R&B. It was a huge shame last year’s edition had to be cancelled, but I was happy to be able to attend the Friday evening part of this festival (had to give Saturday a miss, you can’t always do everything…).

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Daniel Norgren in Vera

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!

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Ralph de Jongh in Lodewijk Napoleon 1809

It’s been a year since the cafe Lodewijk Napoleon opened its doors and they decided to celebrate that moment with a concert by Ralph de Jongh, fantastic idea! Back in the day when the Cosy Corner cafe was in that location it already had some great concerts and I well remember seeing Bradley’s Circus there in a blues route. With a raised floor in the cafe it’s perfect for concerts there and having a concert in Assen for a change is really nice :)

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Ralph de Jongh in Vanslag

Ralph de Jongh held his album presentation last Saturday in the Vanslag church in Borger, a terrific stage where Ralph and his band Crazy Hearts played a fantastic concert to a swinging audience.

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