The Great Belgian Songbook

  • Garden Stage
    Monday 8•July•2024

In America, they have the Great American Songbook - the famous collection of "standards" from the days before the rise of rock'n'roll - but in Belgium, as well, we have had a talented quintet for several years that has boldly transformed a selection of belpop classics. The Great Belgian Songbook is a project of trumpeter / flugelhorn player Jo Hermans - in-demand top musician, featured on everyone from Balthazar to Raymond van het Groenewoud and Clouseau to DAAN. Together with absolute belpop specialist Jan Delvaux, Hermans designated a number of belpop toppers as national heritage. They are well-known and lesser-known songs with a story and a special dynamic, from Brel through Neefs to Gotye, dEUS, Gabriel Rios....


The songs are disassembled and rebuilt in original and surprising ways. Instrumental. With flugelhorn/trumpet, drums, keys and cello. Warm sounds, with sometimes some funk, then some classical, always some jazz. As of this year their own songs are added; Hermans and Thomaere write these new 'Belgian' songs together and continue their recognizable sound in these compositions. They have since released the single 'Waffles' and there's more where that came from. All this is brought live by an intergenerational group of top musicians, led by the lyrical trumpet/flugelhorn sounds of Hermans himself. Add to that the tomfoolery on all kinds of keyboards and synths of keyboard wonders David Thomaere and Remko Kühne, the tight drums of Marc Bonne and the funky bass lines of Trui Amerlinck and you get a live band that swings, full of guts, enthusiasm and humor. There will be no shortage of fun on stage. It's up to you to sway along lightly or break loose and party along.