JA Band Amsterdam



Vondelpark concert 4 August 2002 Amsterdam

After a ride by car, train, tram and on foot my husband and I arrived at a quarter to 4 at the open air theatre in the park.
Everything there still bared the traces of the giant rainstorm, that broke loose for more than an hour around Amsterdam and its suburbs earlier that afternoon, but the sun already tried to break through the clouds.
It also appeared that the program length for that afternoon was exceeded and that the Jan Akkerman Band were still waiting for their turn. The band that had to perform before them, were still sound checking. On a certain moment I noticed Nico in the crowd, he would take digital photo's for the website that afternoon.
An hour later than planned, Jan appeared on stage (with his acoustic Lowden guitar).
He started alone with the well-known song Puccini's Café.
Afterwards the other band members joined him.
Besides Jan the line up were Jeroen Rietbergen (keyboard), Wilbrand Meischke (bass) and Ton Dijkman (drums).
In the sunshine the large crowd enjoyed themselves a lot, hearing Jan Akkerman classics like Pietons, Crackers, Streetwalker and Heavy Treasure.
From their fabulous improvisations and solo's, one could tell that the band members were having a great time too.
Jan's songs never sound the same, that's one of the reasons why I admire his guitar playing so much, just great!

At every single gig of Jan, the contribution of his loyal sound technician Neil Denholm is also very important. Thanks to him too, Jan and the band sound like they ought to do!
From the beginning until the end Jan and his band succeeded in drawing the attention of the varied audience.
When their time was up, the crowd kept on cheering for an encore; this was an improvisation of Pavane. Jan played the second encore on his brand new Firenze, it rocked tremendously, all ended in a short improvisation of the legendary Hocus Pocus.
That was a great ending of a very successful concert!
Afterwards Jan invited us back stage for a drink and then we had a nice chat with Jan and his wife Marian.
After having said goodbye to them we started our ride back home with a satisfied feeling.
Jan and guys of the band, thanks a lot for the fabulous afternoon!

Text: Irene Heinicke
Photo compilation: Nico Sijm