Bold head, bold performance
Jan kicks off for
Bold was his head; bold was
his performance. Jan Akkerman’s try-out for the Irish gigs took
place at Hotel Wientjes. The Dutch guitar master and his band kicked
off a series of concerts organized by the local jazzclub in Zwolle.
The opening set was on accoustic guitar with jazzy tunes like Streetwalker,
Cotton Bay. The normal stuff so to speak, but never boring, because
of the fact that Jan always is inspired by his ‘surroundings’.
First, there was (another) new band. Coen Molenaar,
on keyboards had nice dialogues with Jan and his solo's are great and
jazzy. It’s nice to see jazzy keys back in the band, it goes along
well with Jan’s musical language.
On drums there was Remco van der Sluis, a drummer who
has done a lot of session work and played a lot in theatres. It’s
awesome to see how well he matched in Jan’s band as if he never
played anywhere else! There are some great musical talents here in Holland.
And Jan is always the man they want to play with. And Jan always wants
to play with them, for some refreshment in his music. Oldies like Streetwalker,
Piétons and Tommy will be never boring because it’s still
new for his band members.
Except for one band member only: Cees van der Laarse on bass. For me
this night was a special one just because to see him play, since Van
der Laarse played on the ‘Jan Akkerman’-album. Jan sometimes
had to help him to play the right chords on his upright bass, on Pupilla/Tommy
Jan shouted the chords to get his friend on track. But when Cees was
on course he was an unstoppable muscian Jan nodded and smiled, as old
friends do: the Jan’s musical journey goes on, as if there never
was an interval of time.
It was obvious: Jan and his band had a good time, especially when this
new Firenze-guitar was touched by these mighty Akkerman fingers. What
an aggressive sound and subtle emotion, with his eyes closed Jan seemed
to enter another world, totally inspired.
The fans in Ireland and the United Kingdom will have another chance
to see this for themselves. I hope they will take it. It’s hard
to believe but I think Jan is still getting better on his instrument...
Bas van den Berg