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Q65 Interview with Joop Roelofs


I would like to thank you for agreeing to do this interview. I'm really excited to get some details and information about one of the best psychedelic bands, that were from Europe.
How do you feel about the fact, that people all over the world still listen and enjoy your music after all this years?

I call it after fun, so incredible that after 45 years a small group of music lovers are still discovering Q65.

Can you describe your first influences that made an impact on you as a young boy?

Everly brothers, Ricky Nelson and Freddy Cannon. We were poor, so I could only afford buying 3 singles a year.
Q65 was formed in early 1965 when guitarists Joop Roelofs and Frank Nuyens decided to start a band with singer Willem Bieler. The line-up was complete by bass player Peter Vink and drummer Jay Baar. Were you in any bands before Q65 (Kjoe?)?

No, me and Willem were rookies, Willem never sang before and I couldn't even tune a guitar.

I would like to know how do you remember your first sessions as a band? Why did you choose the name Q65?

We started rehearsals in the waiting room of a docter beneath my parents home, the name Q65 was already present before the band started, I did a combination of Route 66 and Suzy Q, both Stones covers.

You released three 45's for Decca in 1966 and then you recorded a debut album. How did you came in contact with Decca?

After 5 months of live performances Decca came to us, we never did competition things. Our first recording was an audition but released without us knowing that, we found out hearing it on radio.

Your debut is called Revolution and it was released in 1966. The album is a masterpiece. It was way ahead of it's time. I really love sound of the blues mixing with touches of psychedelia. What are some of your strongest memories from recording your debut?

In those years Dutch bands released albums mainly as a compilation of their singles. We did it in an other way, we wanted the people to know we could handle all kind of music-styles, not just the Q-sound.

Do you perhaps know how many pressings were made? Share a few words about the cover artwork...

Revolution the first Album should have been GOLD, but we were in war with the record company (Philips).

How was touring going for you in that era? I would really like if you could share some interesting stories from concerts...

Traveling was hell, we were involved in two fatal road accidents, sometimes we had to do three gig a day all over Holland, so sometimes stepping in the van we told the manager we would do only two, so he had to cancel one of  them that same day, hahahah. There was always lots of violence in the public were ever we performed, and it gave us a bad name and less work. nobody had the guts to book us.

What happened next? Your next album was released 3 years later. In the meanwhile you recorded and released some very great 45's. I would also like to ask you about Circus...this was a project by Frank, Jay, Marco and Frank around 1968?

When it was clear Willem wanted to join the army for duty, Frank, Jay and me decided we wanted a sequel to Q65 in a psychedelic way, we did some recordings as Circus (never released), but as I didn't like this freaky stuff, I left the band and had to live on social security.

Well, here we are in 1969 and you just released Revival album. A very consistent mix of soft and hard rock, with some prog, latin , and psych moves. What do you remember from recording sessions? Again I have questions about pressings and cover artwork.

I was not involved in the release of this album, didn't even get a copy. Every thing a bands records is owned to the record company so they can do as they like without asking us, they make the tracklist just to make some more money. I have adviced people not to buy our latest compilation CD, I feel ashamed about some bad recordings, to explain: sometimes we recorded a joke for the B-side, cause nobody would listen to that.

With your next album called Afghanistan, your style changed a bit. I really dig this LP very much. Why did you choose the name Afghanistan?

This is the first LP, that was not released on Decca, but on Negram Records...

The Live-recordings were made at a venue where you could buy Afghanistan hasjish.

We're Gonna Make It was your last LP from 1971. What happened next?

Willem was terrible again, out of control. and Frank broke a leg in a football game, so we decided to change the line up.

Well after a long time you decided to record again and recorded album in 1997 called Trinity and in 2002 Revolution. What can you tell me about this two releases?

Revolution 2002 is the same story as Revival. Willem was dead and cremated in 1997 we contributed to a TV item classic albums Revolution. So Willem decided he wanted an unplugged Cd to score some money as result of the succes of that TV item.

What are some of your future plans?

I'm planning to die, hahaha, 67 years now but my liver is still growing, hahahah!

I think we covered the whole story about Q65. Would you like to share anything else? I would also like to thank you for taking your time. I really appreciate this a lot.

Live your life and live by the ten commandments, hihihih.

Interview made by Klemen Breznikar / 2011
© Copyright 2011

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