How did you become a musician?
I ended up in the band after I published my book and my best friend Bas and I decided it would be great to make a theatre show based on it. I had to really pitch my story to the rest of the band and thank goodness, after 15 minutes the band was in! I started doing vocals for that show. I also used to play some guitar (campfire-level) which I intend to pick up again.
Where do you see yourself 20 years from now?
Hopefully still in good health, both physically and mentally and still following my musical dreams with the band. Or in a nice cabin somewhere in the woods of Canada or Norway or Sweden, probably with Bas and his family as my neighbours!
What’s in the music folder on your phone/computer/other device?
Sonata Arctica, Anathema, Pink Floyd, Blind Guardian, Linkin Park, Iron Maiden, Amorphis, 7even Bridges (duh..).
What is your favorite song from each of your albums?
You're kidding, right?! This is like asking someone to pick a favorite child…. The song that has the most impact on me is Worst Enemy, a song I wrote with Bas in less than 20 minutes, and which hits us everytime, over and over again. Very special indeed as this song really shows the strong connection Bas and I have.
Also Keep Believing is a real tearjerker for me. It has a beautiful message, reminding me of the true importance of family and friends.
Favorite song ever to play live:
All of the songs of our conceptalbum #breakthesilence will be a blast to play live, because of the intensity of the album. Other songs I would love to perform are Comfortably Numb by Pink Floyd and What I’ve done or Numb by Linkin Park.
Best tour experience off-stage:
The night before the premiere of our first tour. Sharing a hotel room with my best friend Bas. We laughed until we cried. ALso the very first time our single was played on national radio was a milestone!
Best country to tour in:
The Netherlands rock, but I'm also looking forward to touring Canada, the UK, the USA and Australia. Then again, that means flying, right? Uhm..
Best thing to get from fans on tour:
All the positive reactions on our first tour, the attention and the smiles. People telling me that my story has inspired them or even helped them to carry on is the most valuable response I get and I am very grateful for that! To hear that our music moves people and in some way is lifechanging to people is the best thing ever!
Warm-up ritual before you go on stage:
Coffee, water, getting in the ‘bubble’, memories of the times when it all started....
Chocololate, white wine
Risotto with a nice glass of Chardonnay
Chateaubriand with a nice glass of Rioja
Did I mention chocolate?
Intouchables / The Shawshank Redemption
How I met your mother, Homeland, The Good Doctor.
Next to "Surviving PTSD & moral injury" by yours truly, I enjoy books of Tolkien and Terry Goodkind.
Suske & Wiske, Thorgal
Judo, Golf, Formula 1, Pokemon Go (seriously?!)
Your kind of heaven:
A good night's sleep!
Your worst vice:
Smoking (don’t start, kids!), chocolate?!!!
What you’d do with a shitload of money:
I’d make sure my children can do anything they want. Apart from that, a little cabin in the woods in Scotland, Norway, Sweden, Finland or Canada would be nice. I would also donate a fair share of that shitload to mental health awareness charities.
Hobbies, or rather what you do on tour to pass long travel/wait times:
Place(s) you’d like to visit:
North Cape to see the Northern Lights, pretty much all of Scandinavia, Scotland and of course CANADA! The world has so much beautiful nature....
Don’t eat yellow snow.
Last but not least: Is there something you need??!
My family and friends! My all-time best friend Bas! Uhm and my medication...now.....
Things to know about me:
I am not dangerous! At least, that’s what I keep telling myself.