I met this great guy through music!
He and his band, The Grand Astoria, travel the world and bring a great reportoir of beautiful songs that have their own identity. He is an innovative songwriter and brings a challenging and technical set to the audience that is open for a challenge to watch and listen. If they are nearby, it is worthwhile to go see and listen to them live.
Monthly ArchivesMay 2014
Besides a writer and musician, Nico Dijkshoorn is also a real Boutique and Vintage gear collector. He also added most of Dr.No’s Boutique collection to his insane collection of rare and fine instruments that he not only collects but also shares stages and theatres with.
I would like to take you on a little ride through history so… “BUCKLE UP AND SHOVE IT”!!!
Before talking about the new Peter Pan Speedrock record “Buckle Up and Shove It”, I like to say a bit more about this special bunch of people that are very dear to me.
I have never met such a hardworking and sincere band that dedicated their entire life to do what they love. They inspired me to do the same!
Life changing moment.
I think every musician has had that recognizable life changing moment. That moment when you heard, seen or experienced a band in a searching period of life, that turned the knob and made that live changing direction. Around 1996 I was playing guitar in several bands in Eindhoven and Tilburg. At that same moment a bunch of local loud bands stood up and created a pact moving outside city limits, carrying the Eindhoven Rockcity flag. These loud bands also caught my attention. One of them was Peter Pan (no Speedrock attached yet). They were loud, rough and filled the local rehearsal space with their own sound, loud guitars, fast drums, and catchy bass riffs. So loud that some bands rescheduled their time of rehearsal when Peter Pan was creating thunderclouds in the nearby rehearsal room. Often you could caught me hanging outside our own rehearsal rooms listening to their set that they rehearsed over and over. They created “that special vibe” when they were around.
At that time I was also working with a local band as a roadie called Toon&deTontjes.
We rented the Van of Peter Pan when we had to play in the area around Eindhoven.
There I met Peter for the first time handing over the key and payment for the Van (an old MB100 that nearly hold together). Often Peter let me listen to their new records and proudly showed me their new ideas on artwork and merchandise at his home.
Things slowed down with the band I was working for as a roadie, and I asked Peter when I was collecting the Van, “If they hadn’t a job for me”. “No dude we have no money and no more space left in the Van…sorry”. I kept asking cause I was persuasive to be part of their team.
After numerous requests “if I could be of service as a Tech?”, they gave me a chance to hit the road with them ( I think they got tired of me asking all the time). I believe it was 1999 that I first traveled with Peter Pan Speedrock, but I never forget the first venue “de Kelder” Apeldoorn. My first encounter of Dikke Dennis was at that same venue where I found out rumors about him were actually true and no fiction (without getting into details…..).
I was really excited to join them were I was way too early that first day at the tour manager’s house (Leo Hoeksema at that time). For me the magic began there, when I got this burning sensation while getting in the (for me familiar) Van. Loud music filled the street when they arrived and opened the door, and empty beer cans were falling out. I believe this was my life changing moment.
As a quiet guy sitting in the small three seated back or on the engine cover box, I absorbed the atmosphere.
I did not want any cash for my job as I already received restaurant meals, good company and an awesome adventure at the end of the day.
During my day job I was working for the boss. There I was impatiently waiting for the weekends to arrive to have more adventures. We always came back when the birds began to sing and the sun was appearing on the horizon, arriving in the street with loud music and falling out empty beer cans…. ( the neighbors must have hated me at those early mornings). Sometimes getting back from a weekend going straight from the Van to my day job often being late for work, still had some alcohol breath breathing in my bosses face while greeting him “good morning sir!”. Peter Pan asked me to join them more often. When I got home one day I discovered a 25 gulden bill in my sweater, that Bartmann put there, because I was refusing any payment while he thought I was deserving it “you work hard dude, take it or I will whoop your ass” (still have the 25 bill somewhere).
Many tours, festival, shows in and outside the country followed, I believe I participated as a Guitar Tech for over more than 800 shows (counting the saved wristbands, were not all venues used wristbands). After working with numerous colleges as techs, sound/light engineers, merchandisers, wrecking several vans, breaking up with wives and girlfriends, arguments, seeing beautiful places and meeting amazing people around the globe together with this group of extraordinary people, I developed my own route to follow and for me it was time to move another direction.
At that time I was experimenting with building my own guitar effects while having my own band merchandise company Blendomatic. Peter asked me to build him an effect that he needed to boost up his gain. He is real picky and hard to satisfy when it comes to his sounds. After several prototypes I came up with what later became the Drive-0-Matic (Peter created its own artwork for that pedal). After five years of having Blendomatic (where we also printed Peter Pan Speedrock merchandise), I quit after having different visions with my partner by selling my company share to him. From there Dr.No Effects slowly developed at my small attic. My first and still most successful effect the Drive-0-Matic, made me create and learn to build the company to what it is now. But also left me no time to travel and tour with Peter Pan Speedrock anymore…..
Nowadays I have everything I could wish for, and I do what I love to do every single day.
All inspired and developed from that single life changing moment back in 1999 when I got in this little red Van with this wild bunch.
We now do have our own band called “Four Headed Dog” were we sail another flag than Peter Pan Speedrock, by creating the heaviest tunes on earth.
“Buckle Up and Shove It”.
When I started listening to their 9th studio album “Buckle Up and Shove It ” that’s about to be released that I have the privilege to listen before the release, I realized there is only one Peter Pan Speedrock and there always will be one Peter Pan Speedrock that can’t be compared to non-other existing band.
As I can only describe their show as a big old “Gatling Gun” brought on stage by the three gentlemen, firing a big round of RAW musical bullets through their Rock and Roll barrel with fury and passion at close range……leaving no one alive, this record promises to keep them doing what they do best…ROCK OUT!!! O…and yes….they only did over 1800 shows like this…..wauw!!
My absolute favorites on the album; the own interpreted cover of the Yardbirds “Heart Full of Soul” with on vocal the raw and intense voiced Sparky from Demented are Go.
“Deadringer” is my second favorite song, that got an awesome intro.
The bridge of “Deadringer” even makes your feet do a little funky dance. You can hear were Bartmann is coming from in “Wide Eyed and Thirsty” were they kick in the Psycho influences. For me the main riff of “MurderTruck” can go straight to be nominated as the heaviest riffs of all times! And before you know it you land into yet another exciting part of the song, Awesome!!! “Note to Self” is a real surprise that stands out from all the 13 songs (that are a traditional number of album songs) on the record in a very positive way! Love that lazy and easy going vibe to it! With this cool Drum and Bass part in the middle, Peter takes over with a guitar solo that sounds as a low flying steel bird later on to be transformed into a fighter jet to tear it all up!!!
I know they took a long time to make another masterpiece like this, and I,m sure all of you Peter Pan Speedrock fans will dig!
And last but not least…
I don’t believe I ever did, but I really like to take this opportunity to say “Thank You Guys, thanks for giving me the best time in my live, and help me inspire to do what I do now! I Love you!”