November 12, 2014

Dutch online pop-up music store with freebies

Filed under: Dutch first,Music,Online by Orangemaster @ 11:09 am

red vinyl

Dutch record label Black Hole Recordings has opened an online online pop-up store where people can get free tracks, ringtones and the likes by paying with a tweet. Started on 11 November, the pop-up store will be online for 30 days. Follow Black Hole Recordings on Twitter at @Blackholerec by placing a tweet with the hashtag #paywithatweet and the article you want, and it will be sent to you for free. You’ll get a direct message about you purchase.

Black Hole Recordings claims this is a world first and sells music and merch from artists such als Ferry Corsten, Tiësto and New World Punx.


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October 7, 2014

Five top Dutch DJs adorning postage stamps

Filed under: Music by Orangemaster @ 10:49 am


During the now world-famous Amsterdam Dance Event that runs from October 15 to 19, five Dutch DJs will receive their very own set of Dutch postage stamps with their faces on it. PostNL, who issues Dutch stamps, considers these five DJs to be, “leading names in the dance music world,” and it would be hard to disagree with that considering the monies they generate.

Then again, since DJing is too often synonymous with dance music, many other Dutch DJs probably deserve a stamp, which is what VICE argues, a few of which have inspired the ones that made it onto the stamps.

The multicoloured faces of Afrojack, Armin van Buuren, Dash Berlin, Hardwell and Tiësto are the ones on the stamps, while VICE suggests other major names like Dimitri, Antal and Joris Voorn. It’s simple: you’re famous and rich because you’re known outside the country then stamp, you’re great, but remain a domestic or European affair, no stamp. And of course, there’s the glaring lack of women such as Isis and maybe some from this list.

(Links:,, Image:

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February 5, 2014

Tourist film about the Dutch keeps it white and cheesy

Filed under: Art,Film,Food & Drink,History by Orangemaster @ 2:49 pm

The tourist video ‘Going Dutch’ premiered in the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam last November and yes, it is well shot. I very much like the voiceover with its impeccable pronunciation, as it has the right tone for that in-flight video feel. In fact, if you wanted to convince some friends and family abroad to visit the country this video wouldn’t be a bad place to start. The film does focus heavily on Amsterdam, which is often the first place people visit and then unfortunately associate with the entire country. Although you may learn something, I mostly saw stereotypes being reinforced like a dam with a leak in it.

Some 5 minutes into the film when basking in the past glory of Dutch football accomplishments, they actually mention that ‘women’s football has been given a boost in recent years’ although let’s face it, nobody here gives a rat’s ass about it. At about 7 minutes in we get into Dutch art, which again relies on the classics, but that is to be expected.

We continue on to 10 minutes in and ‘Dutch craftsmanship’ pushes top Dutch brands Philips and Bols — music and booze if you will. About two minutes later at 12 odd minutes, the ‘Dutch water’ bit focuses on in and around Rotterdam, with dams and shipping containers. At around 15 minutes, it’s about Dutch food and it shows herring and haute cuisine side by side, which doesn’t reflect reality at all. However, the cheese tour makes up for it and the white blonde Dutch narrator dares call himself a ‘cheese head’.

The testosterone-induced business atmosphere of the Zuidas, where a few wannabee skyscrapers are clustered, doesn’t work for me at all, but then it is often forced into every business film to make it look like we have a proper financial district. Speaking of getting down to business, Dutch music gets its bit at 20 odd minutes in after having used a picture of internationally famous singer Caro Emerald but completely ignoring her and skipping to classical music on the one hand and Dutch dance DJs (all men) on the other. By then I’ve seen three visual references to Tiësto, then finally a female DJ is on screen, but oh no, she starts praising the success of her male colleagues abroad.

In the end, the narrator is in what I think – and I am guessing here — Monnickendam, giving two blonde women passing by a badly acted once-over, as he says “come see for yourself what the Netherlands has to offer.” [Insert facepalm here].

Don’t get me wrong, we wouldn’t be writing this blog if we didn’t think the Netherlands (the entire country, not just Amsterdam) had tons to offer, but giving the impression to foreigners that everything is mostly done by white men in 2013 is scary and unrealistic. The only time ethnic minorities are shown on screen is when they plug the tolerance cliché and the muliticulti one (filmed in Amsterdam) because ethnic minorities don’t seem to be of any use otherwise, not even in the food part.

It’s safe to say that history is basically repeating itself.


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February 4, 2014

Las Vegas club bans and bashes Dutch DJ music

Filed under: Music by Orangemaster @ 2:56 pm


I shared an article on Facebook a few days ago entitled New Las Vegas Club Will Ban “Mainstream Records” And “Lazy Artists” because I noticed five of the fourteen mentioned were Dutch. Regardless of people’s taste in music, this hit list just proves how popular Dutch DJs actually are. In fact, just last summer you could enter a contest to be married by Tiësto in Las Vegas.

Dutch hits:
Hardwell is from Breda, same as Tiësto.
Chuckie is from Surinam, but lives in Aruba.
Afrojack is from Spijkenisse.
Martin Garrix is from Amsterdam.

Speaking of lazy, shame on you TV station AT5 for claiming that these are “Amsterdam DJs”. Check your facts and don’t be douches yourselves. This kind of gratuitous appropriation is exactly why the rest of the country likes to bash Amsterdam.

(Link:, Photo: Amsterdam’s DJ Natashka in Munich)

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June 19, 2013

Armin van Buuren featured with vinyl records at Madurodam

Filed under: General,Music by Orangemaster @ 9:02 am

Recently someone asked me if I had ever been to Madurodam in The Hague, an attraction many tourists and Dutch people visit, especially with kids, and my answer was ‘no’. Someone also recently asked me why Dutch DJs (music producers, really) Tiësto, Afrojack and Armin van Buuren were world-famous to which I pertly answered that Afrojack didn’t count in my books and that the other two make dance/trance music that the Dutch seem to make best.

Now that Armin van Buuren is just that much more popular than Tiësto and considered an export product like some sort of cheese, he’s now also featured in Madurodam.

As a DJ myself I am a bit miffed that Madurodam has set up turntables (you know, for vinyl records) as an attraction when in fact Van Buuren plays off CD players. I don’t care what he uses, but the art of using turntables is and will always be totally different than using CDs.

Madurodam, you’re willfully misleading children. It would be like giving them a chance to play with acrylic paints trying to mimic their favourite street graffiti artist.

(Link:, Photo of Armin van Buuren by Peter Drier, some rights reserved)

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