I really love music. When I was at secondary school in Amsterdam, I went home every day via the Utrechtsestraat, past the ‘Concerto’ record shop. I looked it up and they are still there! The collection was enormous back then and they had loads of second-hand records. I spent almost all the money I earned doing odd jobs on vinyl. I had everything by James Brown and Van Morrison. I also bought LPs by Gil Scott Heron, Otis Redding, The Staple Singers and lots of old Stax records. Stax was the most prominent label in Gospel and Soul. After the album ‘Graceland’ by Paul Simon I also bought a lot of African music. Lieve, my oldest daughter, won’t let me say it anymore, but I really love ‘black music’ and it makes me feel nothing other than positivity.

When I started studying, I missed the music from home, which I had always listened to. The classical music my parents used to play was always present and now that it was not around, I missed it. My parents also listened to all kinds of other music, but I had that myself so didn’t miss it. I snitched cantatas by Bach from my father. He loved song and so did I. For over twenty years I listened mainly to classical music and sometimes other things, but for the last few years I have been listening to everything all mixed up again.

The biggest (re)discovery is African music. Sometimes they are even the same musicians and/or bands that had been around for ages when I was young. Strangely enough, this African music forms the background for the layout and atmosphere of the hotel. Especially in the lobby that, decorated with lots of plants and greenery and in the previously described ‘African Emanuelle’ style, is inspired by the music of Orchestra Baobab, Bonga and Afro-cubism. There are particular songs that I think everyone should hear when they walk into the room for the first time. And for the DAKBAR, where all the music has to be at least swinging (which sometimes means something different to me than to others), there is also a lot of African music on the list.

We’ve been compiling playlists for quite some time now. The lists for the lobby in the morning and the DAKBAR have really developed well and can be found on the Hotel Piet Hein Eek Spotify channel. For those people who really can’t wait, we have already made a shortlist in Spotify of the music that will soon be played in the Hotel lobby and in the DAKBAR. Click the links to view the shortlists.

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