- De Houseband
Houseband started their career literally as a houseband. They started out in 1973 as the in-house orchestra at Amsterdam’s legendary club Paradiso, and they were one of the first funk outfits from the whole country. The very same year the first appearance of multi-instrumentalist Peter Smid, and guitarists Frank Sutherland and Harry Hart occurred for the VPRO show Monday night, the radio show by Wim Noordhoek. Noordhoek invited the guys to play there more frequently. Together with some other members that were involved also in the Paradiso sessions, they started out as the house band for the VPRO. The VPRO (originally an acronym for Vrijzinnig Protestantse Radio Omroep, meaning Liberal Protestant Radio Broadcasting Company) is a Dutch broadcasting organization that started out in 1926 and is still active today.
In 1976 VPRO launched the Zeldzaam & zonderling -series (meaning Strange and rare) and the first volume was studio recordings by the Houseband called simply De houseband. The following volumes were mostly spoken word, comedy and other vocal material. Overall it’s very uninteresting series except this first release. The records were given out as a promo and as far as I know, they were never for sale anywhere. As a radio show studio orchestra, the Houseband played really wide variety of music, although their touch was very soul and funk oriented. The debut album contains all kinds of stuff from pop to blues and beyond. What makes this one interesting, is the cover versions of the JB’s hit “(Givin’ up) food for funk”, the Meters medley “looka-pye-pye / Cissy strut” with a nice break and one original composition, “Baby funk” as written by Frank Sutherland. Obscure record with some good funk for all funky music enthusiasts. Houseband released three more albums in the 1970s and all these are worth mentioning later. All the volumes of Zeldzaam &n zonderling -series have the same cover and only the small sticker on the bottom left corner indicates what’s inside, so don’t be mislead by the cover.
(Givin’ up) food for funk
Looka-pye-pye / Cissy strut