After having spent a great afternoon on Groningen including a visit to the Noorderlicht photo exposition at the Suikerfabriek area, I was all set for an evening of music in the Groninger Museum where five great artists were to play a set in the museum.
On May 5th we celebrate freedom in the Netherlands, it was the day the Second World War ended for the Netherlands in 1945. There are festivals all over the country with a bunch of mayor bands and a lot of local bands. This year was my first visit to the festival in Groningen.
Last Friday I was back in Borger again, this time for a gig in the Roots on the Road series. They had a great band on with Ha Ha Tonka and opened with a set by New York based Christopher Paul Stelling.
I saw Gabby a while ago in De Oosterpoort. A lovely gig for a rather small selected crowd, but a very energetic and good humoured girl that easily won over the audience. So I was thrilled to see she’d be back in Groningen and on the main stage of Noorderzon no less. I was very curious to see how that would work.
I didn’t know the band (hardly ever listen to radio and can’t remember when I last actually watched MTV, does that even still exist?), but I do have my antennas out for interesting names and Of Monsters And Men raised a buzz. And so last night I -finally- went to Noorderzon.
On Monday the 28th of May -Whit Monday- there were still many more festivals. Pinkpop was about to work up to the main act (Bruce Springsteen), Ribs&Blues was far from done, but I chose to check out the park in Groningen where wishfulmusic held it’s second ‘Picknick in het Plantsoen’
One of the most interesting names of Eurosonic this year was without a doubt Amatorski. Playing a set in Plato on Platosonic and a gig later that evening in a venue somewhere I regrettably missed them both, but the name stuck and the EP and album (TBC) that they have out sound just about perfect. So seeing them return to De Oosterpoort for a regular gig made me as happy as can be.
Friday -almost a week after the Rhythm&Blues festival- I’m well rested and it’s hight time to check out music again and with Kim Janssen and Rue Royale in Vera I’m in for an evening of absolute gorgeous music.
Now that the festival is in it’s second hour, it’s getting pretty busy and the first main act on the biggest stage is a big part of the reason for that. I have to rush to that stage to find a decent spot and only just about manage. Now bring on Charles Bradley, the “Screaming Eagle Of Soul”!
As I was in Groningen anyway for the Cristina Branco concert in De Oosterpoort, I thought I might as well check out the Great Lake Swimmers in Vera, the start of the concert was nicely timed to make it from one venue to the other.
Hardly recovered from the Platosonic and Eurosonic weekend I was of to Groningen again yesterday to visit the 1 year anniversary of wishfulmusic. And how do you celebrate one year of programming lots of beautiful gigs? With more performances of course. The stage was the Groninger Museum, that I visited last year for an edition of Groninger Museum Live.
I came to know the Death Letters about two years ago as an incredibly good Dutch answer to the Black Keys. Aged 19 and 17 at the time, the duo had an amazingly fierce, intensive act on stage. I hadn’t seen of heard of then the last year, other than a review on their second album. They had left the blues behind and keeping the intensity they’re now more of an indie punk-garage pock band. And now they were back in Groningen again. So for the 8th time in two weeks, so was I
A few months ago I read the announcement that Elvis Costello was going to come to Groningen! That was something to look forward to. The man’s musical career is as long as I am old and he still releases great albums. The gig in De Oosterpoort (on November 8th) would be a solo-performance, to be opened by Larkin Poe