EBI PARTY in Holland

THE 2003 EBI PARTY

Party 2003 !

Last year's was one of the few EBI Parties on a cold and rainy day.

This one was better all the way. The weather was wonderful and the Party was the best one in many years, one of the best ever......and I have been at all of them and met many fans who come close to that record!

We arrived at the venue at 12:00 sharp to get seats and tables organized and put up some nice decorations. Incredible how fast this whole 'ceremony' is done nowadays, setting the equipment up, sound check, the whole deal. After 36 or 37 times experience kicks in!?!?

Rob Blokland and my son Mark arrived at my house exactly on time in the morning and everything up to the start at Spakenburg worked like clockwork, including the traditional late start.

Fans started pouring in earlier than ever. Quite a crowd at 2:30!! Meanwhile we continued working on the seating and stands.

Of course we allow all those people getting in so early. This is a once a year chance to meet in person, talk to each other while having a drink. Yes, romances start here!?!? It is like a simple birthday party gotten out of hand and I can now officially state that there is no one who wants to make any changes to that years old menu.

Officially we start at 4:00 but most experienced fans know that I always wait till 4:30 for the official opening speech. Easier to talk when all people sit and listen!?

Of course most important news was about the success of the role of the Everly Brothers during the Simon and Garfunkel concerts. Also the fact that we had more attendants for this Party than we had had in years, got my attention. You could hear a pin drop during my short talk.

Not enough compliments to describe our audience. Quality Guys.

The girls and Henk of the Party Center gave it their best as always. Real good service, fast and friendly. Everybody got his coffee, soup and buns as efficient as ever. 

Harmony Trail opened the live music segment. The magnificent duo mostly do several blocks of 25 to 30 minutes of Live Everly harmonies throughout the evening. Although we feared for Fred's voice as a result
of a slight flu attack his voice held pretty well all through the evening. This was their 11th appearance and the duo succeeds in staying fresh time and again. The audience loves them and gave them a lot of praise
and applause. 

Party 2003 !

This first block was followed by four more, each almost half an hour.  They play Everly classics but fortunately mostly other jewels, like 'Less Of Me'. This time they did a special rendition of 'Am Abend Auf Der
Heide' for Jürgen Nowak and his friend who came all the way from Kassel in Germany to present us with a DVD with wonderful Everly clips to show the fans gathered there. Very good and special as always.

These video clips were shown by Rob Blokland on a very big screen in between the live performances. Clips like of course the part from the Bravo documentary where Jason is presented as a son of famous father
Phil. Many other clips that we had never seen before were shown all through the evening.

Luc Benistant sang solo and did a few Cliff Richard, Buddy Holly and Everly songs for almost half an hour. Nice variation, Luc.

After videos and the lottery draw, Mike Brambles did his genuine Roy Orbison Tribute performance for more than half an hour, including the suit, the very hot long-haired wig, the very dark glasses and the guitar.... the whole shit. Songs we all know like 'Pretty Woman' and 'You Got it', but especially Roy's Everly songs 'Love Hurts' and 'Claudette'. They all went down very well with a very appreciative audience.

Party 2003 !

Later in the evening Mike came out as 'himself' and did 5 Everly songs that again had a special, different sound to them. So funny how some did not know that this was the same person that they had seen and heard a few hours and a bingo round earlier. He got the audience going at several moments and even got some people to do handclaps and dance!?!? 

At the end of the Party, Harmony Trail did a few songs to introduce the Sing- Along. A series of very well-known Everly songs were sung by all and the set was ended by Fred who soloed on Rod Stewart's 'Heart'. Again some dancing and handclapping......are we getting loose here?
For some reason everybody knew the words. 

My son Mark presented the Kentucky Shop where people could buy very special vinyl albums and singles, lots of CD's etc. He did a very good job again and took some nice photos during the whole evening.

Yvonne van Rooijen presented a lottery and bingo round half way the evening, divided in between performances. Last year she introduced Rob van Enter as the new Lottery man. This year unfortunately he could not be with us due to health problems of his wife Yvonne (now this is a different Yvonne.......getting complicated?). We hope the couple will enjoy a much deserved vacation.

Party 2003 !

Yvonne van Rooijen not only has done the lottery and bingo for many years, she also takes care of the biggest part of the organization of the whole event. At the end of the evening I highlighted Yvonne in my send-off speech and thanks to Karin I could present her with a nice bouquet of roses and gift to show our gratitude for all she does. She phones the restaurant to reserve the venue, she phones the people who want to perform, she buys prizes for the bingo and lottery, she designs and prints the coupons that are handed out at the entry....and she's there as one of the first to help set the seating and tables, and put the program for the
evening on a large card board for all to follow the time schedule!

Yvonne also bought some nice small plants in an orange Halloween pumpkin pot to give to all the people who helped make this Party successful. A hell of a job, all done with a smile though I can tell you, the whole evening was one constant headache for her.....literally.

Party 2003 !

For all of this I thought it was about time that we asked for a loud, well-deserved applause.

Ooh, it's not that I do not do anything for this Party, but my 'job' is easy. What I do is important. Many people have convinced me of that....plus I really do know myself!?!?!?? I've been around during all these 37 years, during more than 36 of these parties. Everybody in this Everly world knows me. All are there at the spot at the Restaurant in time to do the job and the evening apparently roles by itself. There's a togetherness behind it all, like I always say. I'd like to think that that's what I had a stake in for all those years. It does not role just like that, you see, it's years of enjoyment and togetherness, tolerance.

So if Mike Brambles feels he would love to perform at our party and comes all the way from England for this with his lovely girlfriend, one or two E-mails with me do the trick. I hardly have to do anything for this but he's there in time and gives us all a lot of joy. Terrific fan, his Girl too......11 hours to get there, hats off!
Enjoy Guys.

We would like to thank the personnel of the restaurant ' 't Haantje', Jacqueline, Marijke, Jolanda and Henk who always look forward to this evening and enjoy it very much. Our own Lydia, John, Rob Blokland and Bas Siewertsen, my son Mark, all the people there, thanks so very much.

MAKE A NOTE OF THE NEXT ONE, 16th OCTOBER 2004

Where do you get this service and entertainment for only US $10.00? Ridiculous price really! But 128 attendants can't be wrong!

Oh, Anthony Lauren's Roy Orbison Tribute CD 'You Got It' is very much worth buying. Thanks to the Rocky Top Music Group you can order it at EBI for only US $13.50 plus shipping......if you send us a donation for EBI we will cover the shipping!

Martial F. Bekkers
EBI-Coordinator

With special thanks to Piet Piekstra and Mark Bekkers for their photos !

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