Bring Rock 'n' Roll Back To Utrecht, May 27th. 2000
The fun part of starting a new thing is the beginning...

Red phoned me a few months ago to tell me he was gonna get rock 'n' roll back to Utrecht. Yeah right. Rock 'n' roll had gone from Utrecht some 15 years ago, when the good old Rocking Ballhouse was demolished. One thing I knew for sure though was, that if anyone could do it, Red was the one. He made just one little mistake, he picked the wrong date. With Deke Dickerson playing in Lieshout that same night, it was gonna be difficult to draw attention. For old times sake, me and Red go way back, we decided to go to Domtown. And believe us, we're glad we did.

The show was planned to start at 19:00 hrs, but hey, who goes out at that time these days. When we got in at about seven-thirty, there weren't many folks there yet. The start of the show had been moved to 21:00 hrs and at that time a bunch of cats and kittens had dropped in to see if Utrecht has still got it. Above the stage I noticed the old Rebel Flag with "Rockin' Rebels" painted on it. The very same flag that was hanging over the small stage at the Rebels' clubhouse "The Flight", Eindhoven, some twenty years ago. It was nice to meet with old friends, me and Red orginally hail from Eindhoven, and we chatted a lot about the old days and how we would love to have rock 'n' roll back the way it was...


Frans "Red" van Dorst (a.k.a. Rooie Frans) and Willem "Rock Place" van der Pol did a great job organizing the gig, the hall named "Mallejan" in the suburbs of Utrecht was not too big and not too small and there was lots of parking space (something you would never find in the city). He contracted the right bands too, cats who really dig that old time rock 'n' roll and put up a show with an enormous enthousiasme. Mischief, a local Domtown rockabilly band, started the show and they got everybody on their feet right away. I'm sure we're gonna hear more from this band, just keep your eyes focused on this website in the near future.

Reno Brothers

The Reno Brothers were something else, I had never seen this band perform on stage before, but I was immediatly impressed. The rhythm guitarist looks so much like the young Elvis that I still feel like I saw a ghost and he puts up a tremedous hipshaking show, like the King did in the late 50s. The band's performance of some great songs of the late Darren Spears (Go Cat Go), especially "Who Was That Cat", was memorable, to say the least.

Tin Stars

And then there ware The Tin Stars from The Hague, always ready for action. This band can knock down an audience any time, any place, just listen to their Nashville recordings with no-one less than Ronnie Dawson.

The breaks were varied with rock 'n' roll, rockabilly, swing and doo-wop records presented by Charly's Rhythm Revue from Amsterdam. I can assure you that this old cat felt twenty years younger and I really hope that Red can do this again, at least once or twice a year, because he proved to be right at one point: rock 'n' roll is still alive in Utrecht. Thanks Red, and thanks for the great Hard Rock Cafe shirt, I'll wear it with pride!

Until next time, The BlackCat (May, 2000)

"Red" & yours truly...