AD VANDERVEEN – WORLDS WITHIN
Door Cis van Looy op 09 maart 2017
“Come fly with me” zingt Ad Vanderveen op zijn nieuwste werkstuk. Als we met de zoveelste al dan niet fake nieuwsberichten overladen worden, lijkt me dat geen onaangename gedachte, even weg van alle sleur en miserie uit de dagelijkse realiteit. De Nederlandse troubadour met Canadese connecties volgt met zijn poëtische songwerk de omgekeerde weg hij daalt in tien song diep af naar zijn diepste zielenroerselen.
Vanderveen wordt ondersteund door fijne muzikantenclubje met toetsenman Renee Kaaij die sfeervolle bijdragen op piano, Hammondorgel en accordeon verzorgt, een subtiel opererende ritmesectie en een blazersduo dat kleurrijke accenten aanbrengt. Met zo’n gezelschap en de alomtegenwoordige aanwezige harmonische zang van zijn levenspartner Kersten de Ligny is er ruimte voor improvisatie. Introspectieve pareltjes als Mystery, het met een fraaie dwarsfluitsolo van Bianca de Vrindt verrijkte Impossible Love en Sinking In Doubt, een prachtige folkballade met dito vocale inbreng van Kersten en een gedempte blazerspartij op de achtergrond, blijven binnen of net buiten de drie minuten grens.
In andere gevallen vergeet de songwriter de tijd en lopen de verhalende songs verder uit. All The Wating komt zelfs in de buurt van de acht minuten. Hinderlijk is dat allerminst, er is optimale wisselwerking tussen de muzikanten en de songwriter. en met weerom prachtige samenzang en tedere harmonica lijkt de tijd geruisloos voorbij te vliegen.
“Everything is allways workin workin out for me”, een positieve oprisping die door het echtpaar in de rustige fingerpicker Affirmation Blues als een overtuigend mantra gedebiteerd wordt. Als de laatste tonen van het orgel en koperblazers uitgestorven zijn in de outro van Rise wordt ons tijdens de luistersessie groeiende vermoeden bevestigd, Ad Vanderveen levert weerom een bijzonder poëtisch en persoonlijk werkstuk af.
Tracklisting Worlds Within:
The Garden Of Gone Glory
Sinking In Doubt
Changing Like The Wind
All The Waiting
Rise Up/ Epilogue
AD VANDERVEEN “Worlds Within” (Songsense Music / Sonic Rendezvous)
Een nieuw album van de Nederlandse singer-songwriter Ad Vanderveen, da’s altijd opnieuw genieten geblazen. Vanderveen is één van de weinige Nederlandse rootsartiesten die tot ver buiten de eigen landsgrenzen bijval oogst en da’s wat ons betreft niet meer dan terecht ook. Op z’n zestigste kan de beste man inmiddels immers terugblikken op een onwaarschijnlijke hoeveelheid prachtliedjes. En hij doet er daar hier en nu met plezier nog eens een tiental bij.
Tien poëtische hoogstandjes, ten tonele gevoerd tegen een volledig akoestisch gehouden achtergrond van zachte folk en americana, met zo nu en dan ook wel eens een poppy, jazzy of klassiek elementje. Met opvallende dienende bijrollen vooral voor z’n muze Kersten de Ligny en toetsenist Rene Kaaij. En opgenomen onder de productionele hoede van Pete Fisher.
Hoogtepunten zoeken doe je op een geheel als dit niet. Da’s onbegonnen werk. Je neemt er keer op keer opnieuw de tijd voor om ervan te genieten in z’n totaliteit. Om mee af te dwalen naar de gedachtenwereld van Vanderveen. Om je over te geven aan het zeldzame momentum van een zichzelf zo goed als volledig blootgevende artiest. Iets waarover het ook lijkt te gaan in de fraaie albumopener “Worlds Within”. Over het afdalen naar het eigen innerlijk als vlucht uit de realiteit.
In het werkelijk bloedmooie ingetogen kleinood “The Garden Of Gone Glory” is het vervolgens aangenaam toeven tussen herinneringen aan weleer. “No place else on earth that I would rather be than right here, right now in the garden of gone glory,” luidt het daarin. Elke al wat oudere jongere knikt dan wellicht voorzichtig instemmend even mee. Vervolgens wentelen we ons enkele minuten lang in twijfel in het ook al erg fraaie “Sinking In Doubt”. Heerlijk, hoe de Ligny haar stem daarin tegen die van Vanderveen aanschurkt. En ook dat streepje koperblaaswerk van Frans Cornelissen konden we hier best wel appreciëren.
Andere erg fijne momenten op “Worlds Within” zijn bijvoorbeeld ook nog het wel heel bedaard rockende “Mystery”, de ronduit heerlijke ballad “Impossible Love” en vooral ook het in een vlaag van uitzonderlijk positivisme vereeuwigde streepje americana “Affirmation Blues”. Als Vanderveen en de Ligny daarin op harmonieuze wijze verkondigen “Everything is always working out for me!”, dan ben je als luisteraar al snel geneigd om hen daarin te volgen.
Fresh from our publicist:
AD VANDERVEEN – ‘Worlds Within’
*poetry and music in motion*
How do you promote a discrete and introspective piece of work? You don’t, really. You can only make an announcement and hopefully notify those who might be interested. Here goes:
At age 60 singer-songwriter Ad Vanderveen realizes more than ever that writing is primarily a personal necessity; it’s between him and the universe and a small but devoted fan-base is welcome to listen in.
Vanderveen has been a musical adventurer for well over 4 decades, exploring and following his muse wherever it takes him. This time this path led to acoustic improvisational songs with a contemplative mood and atmosphere.
‘Worlds Within’ is an album of poetry and music in motion, in the sense that it consists of poems set to music with an improvisational approach. Some of the songs turned out like compact folk tunes, while others seem to lose track of time and venture way beyond the usual 3 to 4 minute time span.
The lyrics have a personal and philosophical character and the music breathes a contemplative and mystical atmosphere, rooted in an earthy acoustic folk style.
“These songs started out private and personal, as songs do, and together with some great musicians we made what you could call a record of contemporary folk with some jazz and classical overtones.”
Ad Vanderveen has built up an impressive catalog of CDs over the past decades. In 2017 this will be augmented by ‘Worlds Within’, his 30th record release of new originals.
“Having just come from inside of this new music it’s tempting to go into superlatives. Of course it feels like the best I’ve ever done, otherwise I wouldn’t have done it.
But the truth is I don’t have any perspective, I traded that in for unconditional love and care in crafting it. All I know is that it comes from a very deep place”. AV October 2016.
Spent the summer doing some traveling, writing songs and poetry, and also a chapter for a book about Neil Young by Herman Verbeke ( in Dutch). Recording new music as well, a new CD titled ‘Worlds Within’ is in the making and scheduled for release early 2017. Listen to title track preview
Starting with a record company quote:
“AD VANDERVEEN: for more than 20 years this renowned Dutch singer-songwriter has been one of the most consistent and reliable artists on the roots rock/Americana scene.
Hardly a year goes by without a release from him, some years there may even be two CDs or a double album.”
This year is no exception; we would like to announce the release of Ad Vanderveen’s new CD ‘The Stellar Cellar Band’. With this record Ad delivers ten new songs in a no frills cellar room recording, fronting an electric 3-piece rock band.
Parallel to this release on Blue Rose Records, an independent limited-edtion CD will also be available called: ‘The Barn Basics’. This Cd features the same songs in an acoustic setting, featuring Ad with his long time partner and musical companion Kersten de Ligny.
The schizophrenia between electric and acoustic music runs throughout the history of popular music and no less through AV’s career. It’s two distinctly different listening experiences that seem to appeal to different audiences.
That’s why, even in this time of declining Cd sales, we want to offer both options;
The Barn Basics is for a layed-back acoustic listening mood,
The Stellar Cellar Band is for a more energetic electric band listening mood.
Both Cds are available mid March 2016, orders now on our Store page.
Especially for those interested in acoustic music, an independent limited-edition CD with an acoustic version of the 2016 ‘The Stellar Cellar Band’ CD will be made available. This high-quality recording was made in an old barn with acoustics and an atmosphere very well suited to the music.
Alongside Vanderveen on vocals/guitars/harmonica is his partner and long-time musical companion Kersten de Ligny on harmony vocals, autoharp and percussion.
Where ‘The Stellar Cellar’ can be said to have more of an urban rock’n’roll vibe, ‘The Barn Basics’, as is to be expected, emphasises the folk and country aspects of the music.
This sparse setting makes for a very up close and personal listening experience, with the focus on the lyrics, chords and emotional content at the heart of the songs.
The Barn Basics will be available in a limited run parallel to the release of The Stellar Cellar Band CD on March 11 2016.
Pre orders now on our store page.
For more than 20 years this renowned Dutch singer-songwriter has been one of the most consistent and reliable artists on the roots rock/Americana scene. Hardly a year goes by without a release from him, some years there may even be two CDs or a double album. The original plan for 2015 was to tackle a long-planned project and record new versions of his most-requested songs at live shows: But during the year-long recording process he experienced bursts of creativity and wrote song after song. Thus we now get a new Ad Vanderveen opus featuring two CDs in lovely packaging entitled Presents Of The Past/Requests Revisited.
Ad Vanderveen was born in 1956 in Hilversum/Netherlands but half of his family hails from Canada. And obviously, those are the genes that make themselves heard. Since the early 1990ies he has been bringing his music to clubs all around Europe, later on all around the world. These days, along with Hank Shizzoe, Markus Rill and Iain Matthews (all of them fellow Blue Rose artists), he is one of the foremost European musicians with close ties to the American storyteller culture. Ad Vanderveen is a very communicative type who enjoys collaborations. On more than twenty albums and in uncountable live shows he has collaborated with top-shelf artists like Eric Andersen, David Olney, Al Kooper, Herman Brood and Eliza Gilkyson. In recent years he enjoys performing with his partner, talented singer Kersten DeLigny, and from time to time he reactivates the Iain Ad Venture (with Iain Matthews).
His new album is dedicated to relaxed, mostly acoustically arranged Americana, cementing Ad Vanderveen’s reputation as a keen-eyed, detailed lyricist and versatile performer. With his voice and instruments he is able to convey mood and atmosphere in a way that only the greats of the genre can: Guy Clark, Rodney Crowell, Gordon Lightfoot, Townes Van Zandt, and, yes indeed, Neil Young. The CD with ten new, self-penned songs starts with ‘Welcome To my Kitchen’ with acoustic guitar, striking dobro and Vanderveen’s mature, earthy, storytelling voice. The following title track adds discreet percussion, lap steel and Kersten DeLigny’s beautiful voice to the mix. ‘Well That Never Runs Dry’ captures the early 70ies Dylan/Young sound with slightly more opulent instrumentation including harmonica, banjo, organ, backing vocals, a delicate electric solo and a meandering acoustic country rhythm not far from Blood On The Tracks or Harvest. And so it goes: ‘Long Ride’, the John Prine-y ‘Small Time Real Life Stories’, the banjo-and-accordion-framed ‘Another Life’, ‘The Future Has Changed’ with percussion, sparkling piano, harmonica and enchanting duet vocals by Lynn Miles. This all sounds organic, natural, effortless. ‘Music Waiting For The Words’ follows, a lesson from the songwriter’s workshop, ‘World So Crowded’ and the moving finale ‘Sister’, a sensitive folk ballad, Townes van Zandt-style.
Seamlessly Vanderveen segues to Requests Revisited, this remarkable double album’s second disc. This batch of ten re-recorded songs starts with a brisk country-rock version of ‘First Feeling’. ‘Anchor’ with its complex phrasing may remind listeners of David Crosby. This composition’s mystical character is supported by a string trio, DeLigny’s harmonies and sparkles of electric guitar. ‘Blues So Bad’ features great dobro/bottleneck parts while ‘Emigrant Family’ is an extremely laid-back acoustic country rock number a la Neil Young and Nicolette Larson. ‘The Moment That Matters’ has been rearranged into a profound ballad with piano and strings. ‘Well Of Wonder’ comes back as a pedal steel-drenched alt.country noir hymn before it shifts gears into an electric powerhouse, halfway through the eight-minute epic. ‘Soul Power’ – on stage often loose and extended – morphs into a tight three-minute stomper. ‘Wonders Of The World’ is an elegiac piano number, once more demonstrating Ad Vanderveen’s fondness for Neil Young while ‘Driftwood’ emerges as a melodic Americana/folk rocker.
In the meantime the Dutchman has shed his folkie skin and plugged in for real. The official album closer ‘Still Now’ leads into a long feedback fade before the epic, hidden bonus track ‘Water Under The Bridge’ in the course of its 19:57 minutes (!) mutates into a mighty amalgam of ‘Cortez The Killer’ and ‘Like A Hurricane’ while Ad Vanderveen leads a big band rockestra with four electric guitarists, keyboarder, bassist and drummer incorporating an American studio session featuring Leland Sklar and Harry Stinson – what an amazing finish!
Big parts of Presents Of The Past were recorded live in the Acoustic Alley of the Theater de Steeg in Den Haag. Overdubs and the sessions for Requests Revisited were recorded at Seafront Music Studio in Den Haag. Vanderveen plays most instruments: acoustic & electric guitars, banjo, harmonica, autoharp, bass and percussion. Kersten DeLigny provides her essential backing vocals. Seafront owner, co-producer and multi-instrumentalist Rene Kaaij (drums, bass, keyboards, accordion, percussion, backing vocals), Timon Van Heerdt (acoustic bass, lap steel, mandoline) and Rob Van Duuren (Pedal Steel) also contribute to this great project that will further enhance Ad Vanderveen’s standing in the international Americana scene.
Ad Vanderveen: Exceptional Americana from Norway to the USA
by Lee Zimmerman
May 11, 2015
Column: Americana Abroad
Retrospectives, anthologies and greatest hits collections are an ideal way for newcomers to get an initial snapshot of an artist that has suddenly attracted their attention. Most great discoveries offer a shortcut to a back catalog, an easy, cost-effective way to get to the heart of an artist’s essence before delving into the more extensive back pages.
Norwegian singer-songwriter Ad Vanderveen’s previous offerings are given a perfunctory examination courtesy of a new two-disc set entitled Presents of the Past/Requests Revisited. As the title implies, it looks back on some of his musical highlights while also previewing a new set of songs that point the way forward. Given the number of those who are likely as-yet unaware of Vanderveen’s 40-year career, this new collection seems an apt way to quickly catch up on a career that extends back to the 1970s.
Still, it’s a measure of Vanderveen’s consistency and creativity that even a double-disc set becomes far too skimpy to give due credence to his accomplishments. A native of Norway, Vanderveen is Americana in everything but his origins. An earlier album, Days of the Greats, documented his fascination with American mystique, its title track commemorating a time when JFK and Clint Eastwood held sway over the world’s imagination. Vanderveen’s reflective musings on this collection give his songs a weary charm that’s all but irresistible, and while he sometimes takes his cues from others – John Stewart, Townes Van Zandt, Gordon Lightfoot, and Neil Young all occasionally come to mind – his body of work could easily garner the envy of any acoustic bard armed with a guitar, a melodious voice, and a sizable stash of songs.
The bulk of Vanderveen’s catalog is built on his solo offerings, albums that are now recognized as classics by a small but fervent following of devotees. Each of them in turn helped define his modus operandi. Other essential acquisitions include collaborations with former Fairport Convention mainstay Iain Matthews, one-off efforts with Eliza Gilkyson and David Olney, as well as primary roles played in a pair of short-lived bands – Personnel and the O’Neils.
Presents of the Past/Requests Revisited does what the best archival collections manage to do: combine fan favorites with an entire album of new offerings.
“It started with the idea to re-record the requests I’ve been getting at live shows through the years, since many of those songs are not available on CD anymore,” Vanderveen writes on his website. “It almost felt like I was covering myself, but during the work on Requests Revisited, the new songs also kept coming. They seemed to have more of a vintage-roots character to them and asked for a slightly different approach.”
In that sense, the new material stays true to Vanderveen’s basic template: a rugged and stirring folk-based sound that supports his astute observations. Suffice to say, it is exceptional.
While in Canada and the US we shot two videos of songs from the new record, one in the country and one in the city.
‘Emigrant Family’ returned to its original scene in Ontario and ‘World So Crowded’ was shot in Chicago on State Street (that great street)
Filmed by Benjamin Vanderveen.
Both are up on our video page now: http://www.advanderveen.com/video/
Blue Rose Records releases a double CD by songwriter/singer/guitarist Ad Vanderveen on May 8 2015.
One disc consists of new songs and is titled: ‘Presents Of The Past’.
The other disc contains newly recorded audience favorites entitled: ‘Requests Revisited’.
As the titles suggest there is a connection between the two and they seem to go together like a kind of concept album.
The listener gets an inside peek into, and an overview of, the musician’s life and work over a 40-year career.
The record has been a year in the making and has all the marks of what they call a ‘career-defining record’
The basis for the new songs on ‘Presents Of The Past’ was recorded live with an acoustic combo in a small theatre without an audience.
The songs breathe an atmosphere of timelessness, rich with roots music influences and traditional instruments.
The M.O. of ‘Requests Revisited’ is more of a studio production with arrangements for band, strings and guest musicians.
The common thread throughout both discs is acoustic under-and-overtones, with musicianship always serving the lyrics. The arrangements are sparse yet effective, with upright bass, percussion, guitars, keyboards, banjo, accordion, harmony vocals and even a gospel choir.
Vanderveen comments: “It started with the idea to re-record the requests I’ve been getting at live shows through the years, since many of those songs are not available on CD anymore.
It almost felt like I was covering myself, but during the work on ‘Requests’ the new songs also kept coming. They seemed to have more of a vintage-roots character to them and asked for a slightly different approach”
‘Presents Of The Past / Requests Revisited’ has no A or B side.
For those already familiar with Vanderveen’s repertoire the new songs may be the main focus.
The uninitiated may first be drawn to the ‘Requests’ for an overview of the singer-songwriter’s oeuvre.
In each case this can be considered a milestone in the work of one of today’s finest artists in the Roots/Americana genre.
Release May 8 2015, available through our store page now.