West Coast Sounds of the Netherlands by Martijn Soetens



"In the Netherlands an umbrella and a sweater are necessary almost any time of year," says Martijn Soetens, the man behind our burgeoning Jeff Porcaro series. "So it's quite natural that we need sunny music to get our vitamin D. And we don't need to look far. A lot of Dutch bands and musicians are influenced by the sound of L.A. This compilation features Benny 'Master of the Smoove Grooves'  Sings, Steely Dan-ish vibes from The Johnssons, Partner’s yacht rock tune, 80’s disco by The Limit, Giovanca’s jazz-funk sounds and many more. Enjoy the soulful, smooth and funky music from Holland.

Tracklist:

Oattes van Schaik aka The Limit - Destiny
Paul van Kessel - Keep Your Soul Together
Jan Akkerman - She’s So Devine
Giovanca - How Does It Feel
The President - You’re Gonna Like It
The Johnssons - What If…
Chris Latul - Goin’ Downtown
Kris Berry - Rocket Man
Partner - Kayuta Hill
Benny Sings - Rebuilding The Omega Man
Rick DeVito - Eva
The Frog - We Got Love
Ruben Hein - Sara Smile
Solution - It’s Only Just Begun
New Cool Collective - Do Anything
Wouter Hamel - Hollywood
American Gypsy - Inside Out
Ge Titulaer - Just To Prove My Love
Sven van Zweden - Love Forever


Track-by-track commentary:

Oattes van Schaik aka The Limit - Destiny
In the Netherlands Bernard Oattes and Rob Van Schaik (aka The Limit) belonged to the top of crossover/dance music. Their album from 1985 is generally seen as one of the best Dutch 80’s disco funk albums, featuring David Sanborn on sax and Gwen Guthrie on vocals.

Paul van Kessel - Keep Your Soul Together
Singer-songwriter Paul van Kessel studied vocal jazz at the conservatory of Amsterdam and after graduating he joined various groups and bands like The Young Sinatras, The Wicked Jazz Sounds band and The Very Next. Van Kessel is inspired by old soul tracks and Beatles tunes.





Jan Akkerman - She’s So Devine
Guitarist Jan Akkerman first found international commercial success with the band Focus. After leaving that group, Akkerman continued as a solo artist, adding jazz fusion influences. This song is written by the guys from The Limit.

Giovanca - How Does It Feel
After spending time as a backup singer for various Dutch artists, Giovanca set out in 2008 with her own debut Subway Silence. In 2013 she released her third album Satellite Love. The jazz-funk sounds of ‘How Does It Feel’, the first single of this album, instantly brings to mind the works of Rotary Connection.

The President - You’re Gonna Like It
The President, a cooperation between Kayak's Pim Koopman and Okkie Huysden. This track is taken from the 1983 debut album By Appointment Of…

The Johnssons - What If…
Project by Rick & Bob Engeringh. Debutsingle ‘What If…’ is released in the summer of 2015.

Chris Latul - Goin’ Downtown
One of the founding members of Massada, a Dutch Funk/Latin/Pop band with a Moluccan background. In 1981, Latul started a solo career with the song ‘Goin’ Downtown’.

Kris Berry - Rocket Man
Caribbean-based singer/songwriter Kris Berry is a rootsy artist whose music brings together such varied styles as New Orleans jazz, country, and R&B, as well as sounds from her native Caribbean. ‘Rocket Man’ is a great tropical song.

Partner - Kayuta Hill
Partner from Limburg were perhaps the most American sounding Dutch band from the 70s. They are mostly remembered for their hit 'Kayuta Hill’. Partner played on the Pinkpop Festival in 1978, with headliners like Thin Lizzy and Mothers Finest.



Benny Sings 
Benny Sings 

Benny Sings - Rebuilding The Omega Man
Singer and producer from Dordrecht. As a producer Benny Sings worked with Giovanca, Wouter Hamel and DATA. Michael Franks is a major influence on Benny's music. ‘Rebuilding The Omega Man’ is a bonus track on The Best of Benny Sings.

Rick DeVito - Eva
Rickey Hogendorp (aka Rick DeVito), from Krimpen aan den IJssel, started his career as a front man for The Frog. After their third album Rick started a solo career, releasing 5 albums. At the end of 2007 he moved to Ibiza, where he runs a small café near Sant Antoni. ‘Eva’ was his biggest hit.

The Frog - We Got Love
Their first album was called Be Kind To Animals, Kiss A Frog (1982) and contained the almost hit 'We Got Love’.

Ruben Hein - Sara Smile
Hall & Oates cover by singer and pianist Ruben Hein. In 2010 he signed with the world-famous record label Blue Note Records. Hein worked with Fink, Jonathan Jeremiah and Oleta Adams.

Solution - It’s Only Just Begun
Song from 1980 by the symphonic rock group Solution from Groningen. Their sound is similar to the musical styles of bands such as Blood, Sweat & Tears and Chicago’s Transit Authority; horn-driven rock with fusion and jazz influences.

New Cool Collective - Do Anything
The biggest jazz band and the coolest musicians on the Dutch music scene. Their music can be described as a fresh and exciting mix of highly danceable soul and jazz, spiced with Latin flavours. You can hear al these elements in ‘Do Anything’, with singer Andrew Roachford.



Partner at Pinkpop 1978 


Wouter Hamel - Hollywood
AOR Disco by jazz-pop singer Wouter Hamel. In 2014, ‘Hollywood’ was Single of the Year at the dutch national radiostation Radio 6 Soul & Jazz. The song is produced by Benny Sings.

American Gypsy - Inside Out
Frustrated with their inability to break on their own, in 1972 the group decided to abandon the US music scene and take a stab at success in Europe. Avoiding the UK they opted to take up residence in Limburg, Holland where they caught the attention of manager/producers Piet Souer and Hans van Hemert who proved instrumental in getting them signed to Philips. The lead off rocker 'Inside Out' recalled a blend of Sly Stone funk and Barrett Whitfield produced psychedelic-era Temptations.

Ge Titulaer - Just To Prove My Love
Track from 1978 by multi-instrumentalist, singer, and composer Ge Titulaer. His son Boris aka Bo Saris is now one of the biggest talents in soul music. He is named after Bo Stief, The legendary Danish bass player who joined Titulaer on his debutalbum What’s New.

Sven van Zweden ft. Una Bergin - Love Forever
Following a successful career as fashion designer and producer, his youthful passion for music, originally inspired by the Beatles’ Abbey Road album, has at last drawn him into the recording studio. An array of influences is audible, from Nile Rodgers to Frank Ocean and from Michael Jackson to Daft Punk."






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