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'He Was Already Here in 1971': Willem Vermanderi (82) Lets Jensey Festen Sing With All His Heart (Ghent)

‘He Was Already Here in 1971’: Willem Vermanderi (82) Lets Jensey Festen Sing With All His Heart (Ghent)

He lives. Gentse Feesten: 150,000 visitors on the first day • Police urged not to swim

Vermandere was pretty early and often on the big stage at Sint-Jacobs. Even before the grand podium existed. “The first time was in 1971,” says Guido de Leo, former senior president of Treffpunt. “Definitely in the early years he used to play here almost every year. Vermandere also loved to play here. If he works on Sint-Jacobs, he works everywhere, that was his motto.”

According to De Leeuw, the West Flemish folk singer also has a large and loyal audience who comes to Gentse Feesten just for him. “They always come early to get a good seat after a performance, and they stand up right away to go home, but first of course they applauded for a long time,” says De Liu.

© Stephen Hendricks

Performance stopped once because..too loud

The performance of all these years also provides a large number of anecdotes. The lion takes out one at once. “As a presenter, journalist Humo Rudy Vandendaele addressed the audience after Vermandere’s performance: covered wagons toward Ruddervoorde are waiting behind the church,” says De Leeuw, who also recalls that Vermandere once had to stop his concert by the police because… ..too noisy.

Since non-profit organization Uitbureau took over the organization of Gentse Feesten at Laurentplein, Vermandere has also played regularly there. But on Saturday he returned to Walter De Buckplein. Vermandere, with the support of three musicians, quickly played about twenty songs, sitting on a bar stool. And in between, he also revealed where he learned the trade.

Willem Vermandere at the Ghent festivities (2). © Het Nieuwsblad

“From my father, who used to write poems, especially on Sunday afternoons, when he’d been playing cards for a very long time and coming home a little crooked,” Vermanderi explains. “Rhymes weren’t always correct.” His words were not fully uttered and West Fleming continued pier the beast in. Then the audience sang on Walter de Bucklein for the first time.

© Stephen Hendricks

Blanche and his birds

Vermandere writes seemingly simple songs: banal notes from his immediate environment, sometimes with a philosophical undertone, but he is afraid to take positions on social problems like racism and futile wars. Watch it scared white manand the My Gazette, where it puts the far right and Putin on alert.

Firmandiri concluded with his song on Saturday evening let me walk. Walter de Bucklein sang the entirety a second time and called a repeat number. Then Firmandiri and his companions performed a piece of music, but Blanche and his birdshis first major hit from 1971, this time left it.

© Stephen Hendricks

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