‘Surrender to win’ (John O’Dreams)
On ‘Surrender to win’ the Dutch singer/songwriter duo John O‘Dreams comes with brilliant self penned songs straight from the heart. Some unique covers from songs written by related songwriters and the contribution of a wide range of guest musicians complete this brand new album of beauty.
John Flierman - vocals, guitar and bodhran
Ed Veltrop - vocals, piano, Hammond and accordion
Some great guest musicians contribute to the album ‘Surrender to win’. The Irish singer/songwriters Danny Guinan and Daithi Rua on guitar. Siard de Jong, one of Hollands finest fiddle players. Uilleann piper Isaac Alderson, the All-Ireland Senior Champion in 2001 (Listowel) on no less than three instruments (uilleann pipes, flute, and whistle). And last but not least: Myrthe Flierman, John’s fourteen year old daughter.
‘Road to happiness’ is the catchy opening song and handles about hope, love and forgiveness. It’s the song where the album titel comes from: ‘Surrender to win’. ‘The Birds’ to the kidnapping and killing of hundreds of innocent school children in Beslan (2004). A protest song against violance against children, war and terrorism. ‘Growing pains’ is a flashback to the younger days of a kid struggling with family live and a confusing mix of love and fear. ‘The fields of love’? A love song without a happy ending. ‘Johnny don’t go’ is a swinging, up tempo version of a song originally written by the well known Irish songwriter John Spillane. The next song on the track list is written by Wally Page’, songwriter for a.o. Christy Moore and a good friend of John and Ed. A song about Chico Mendes, a Brazilian rubber tapper, unionist and environmental activist. He founded a national union of rubber tappers in an attempt to preserve their profession and the rainforest. He was murdered in 1988 by ranchers opposed to his activism. ‘Endless dream’ is a great mix of pop and traditional music, with Isaac Alderson on uilleann pipes. ‘She scattered crumbs’ from the hand of Ger Wolfe is one of the highlights on this album. A duet of John Flierman and his daughter Myrthe. ‘My land is too green’ and ‘John O’Dreams’ finishes this ecclectic album. Listen to the almost classical arrangement of ‘John O’Dreams’ with Ed Veltrop on piano and Siard de Jong on fiddle.
For eleven years now John O’Dreams is doing live concerts in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. In 2007 the duo did a tour in China with impressive gigs in Beijing and Shanghai. They also did thirteen (!) live tours in Ireland. The duo is inspired by a lot of Irish contemporary singer/songwriters: Christy Moore, Luka Bloom, Wally Page, Shane McGowan, ...
John and Ed are well known musical guests now in folk clubs, theatres and at major festivals. John’s biggest source of inspiration is Ireland’s number one singer/songwriter Christy Moore. John sings with a typical Kildare accent and after each gig the audience and especially the Irish stay behind flabbergasted: ‘this Dutchman must have some Irish roots’.
The Dutch folkmagazine NewFolkSounds is convinced after listening to their first CD album: ‘John Flierman is the Christy Moore of the Netherlands’. Christy Moore himself picked up the phone more than once to give this duo his support. Stage animal Ed Veltrop sings, plays Hammond, piano and accordion and knows like no one else how to win the audience’s attention. He’s also the main man behind the musical arrangements on ‘Surrender to win’. NewFolkSounds: ‘Veltrop delivers a few sublime piano, Hammond and accordion accompaniments and solos, which make it all even more dynamic’. Besides his membership of John O’Dreams, Ed is also co-operating with Irish singer/sonwriters such as Wally Page, Daithi Rua, Danny Guinan and Roesy.
Reviews on the album ‘Surrender to Win'
article in folkmagazine New Folk Sounds August/September 2009
Singer/guitarist John Flierman and piano & accordionplayer Ed Veltrop form folkduo John O’Dreams for more than 11 years. With Surrender to Win they released their second album as a duo, after Second Stage which was recorded in 1999. The recordings took place for one and a half year in a studio in Amsterdam. Therefore both men could work at ease in a relaxed atmosphere on this album and also invite several befriended musicians for their contribution.. Among them stars like Siard de Jong (fiddle) and Danny Guinan (guitar/vocals)
Half of the 10 songs on Surrender to Win were written by Flierman and Veltrop themselves and they did a more than convincing job. Strong melodies and lyrics.
On the album also songs from singer songwriters like John Spillane, Wally Page and Bill Caddick. Within a few seconds you forget the fact that John’s voice has a remarkable ressemblance to that of Luka Bloom’s brother (Christy Moore)
No copycat this one! The mature sound of the CD is can be contributed to technician and musician Barry Teehan who also played guitar, bass and drums on several tracks.
I believe that John O’Dreams delivers a convincing album for the international folkscene.
Hans van Deelen
Irish Music Magazine, Sean Laffey:
They are worth every guilder of the entrance fee!
Irish Bands Live UK
John O'Dreams has built a reputation as one of the top Irish duos. John sings Irish ballads with a Kildare accent and it would take a good man to say he was not of Irish blood. I can honestly say I was not disappointed when I slipped the disk into the player and out came this amazing blend on instruments combining to make superb Irish Music. Both are excellent musicians. These guys do it with style and add their own exciting sound. John has the great gift of being able to sing Irish ballads in the way they were meant to be sung, with passion and pride and a voice that would be envied by many an Irish man. Add to this the outstanding musicianal skills of Ed Veltrop whose backing vocals are outstanding to say the least and you have an album of great beauty.
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