Moonshine's interview
by Philippe Archambeau

When and in which conditions has MOONSHINE been created ?
Moonshine has been founded in november 1988 by me and some friends I had previously played with in hardrock bands. We didn't set out to play Southern Rock but somehow that fitted us best.

Where do your main influence come from ?
Initially the hardrock-like southern rock bands like Lynyrd Skynyrd. Blackfoot and Doc Holliday. Gradually though, thoughout the many line-up changes, we started leaning more towards the Allman-like freer forms of Southern Rock.

Could you present the Band ? Who compose the songs ?
Right now we're a five piece band: Jan Postema-guitars, Christof Bauwens-guitars, Herman Timmer-bass, Harrie Groenewold-drums and myself, Hans Bergsma-vocals. Six of the eleven songs on our CD are originals. I wrote the lyrics and the music was written by ex-guitarist Emiel Hoving (now in Amsterdam working on a cross between country and symphonic hardrock.) and by Bas Meijer, who I worked with for 12 years and has only tecently left the band to try his luck (lovesick blues) in Portugal. Currently we're workin' on some new ideas and have three finished songs.

Do you live by the music ?
If you're not willing to compromise (who do you think knows about Southern Rock in Europe? It's not the biggest selling thing out in musicland), you're not gonna make a living in music. We play a couple of times a year, where they really want a Southern Rock band. We don't do background music.

Is your style of music appreciated in the Netherlands ? Do such bands as your exist in your country ?
The people in Holland don't know the music very well. But, once forced to hear out an entire show, they get enthusiastic.
Southern Rock can be quite dancable, you know. I know of only one other Southern Rock band from Holland. They're called Gasoline and they're a bit heavier than Moonshine. But we've played together and get along beautifully.

Do you feel a "Southern Man" ?
Have you read the book "Southern Rockers" by Marley Brant? This book defines Southern Rock very narrowly, she basically keeps the music confined to the region. Obviously Southern Rock has long since the early days evolved into more than that of which it originated. The roots lie in the South, no question about it. But I feel Southern Rock these days also represents a way of thinking that could easily be adopted by any kindred spirit, no matter where they're from.
Southern Rock for me has to do with an open-mindedness, eclectic when it comes to making music. Adapting any style, from country to rock and jazz to make the music feel good and to make it uniquely your own. Due to bands like The Charlie Daniels Band and The Marshall Tucker Band Southern Rockers have this image of family men, being simple, importance of friends and all. That I think is great. I may have crazy thoughts but I have simple needs.

Have you already opened a concert for a great band ( as Lynyrd Skynyrd or Molly Hatchet )? If no, do you hope it and for who ?
Not yet I'm afraid. I would love to open for The Allman Brothers Band (the best!) or Blackfoot.

Is Moonshine music released in Europe ? ( cd & concerts )
We released an independant CD called Roughhousin' in 1997 on our own Free Bird Records. It's still for sale.

In your opinion what can we hope to Moonshine ?
I hope for Moonshine to release another album. But this could take some time. Besides that, I hope for Southern Rock to become a little more popular. Maybe than it could be possible for us to tour a little more outside of Holland. I would love to work with other Southern Rock bands. A Southern Rock Festival? Wouldn't that be great?


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