Monday, January 3, 2011
In 1958 -- in youth club 'Don Bosco', Rijswijk, Netherlands -- the 13-years old Hans van Eijk met Johnny Lion (Jan van Leeuwarden), who formed a singing duo at that time with his brother Fred. Together Johnny and Hans create a band: Johnny & The Jewels. Initially it was a seven piece orchestra which played -- in addition to their performances on party's -- in the parish hall of the Catholic Church. Drummer Frits Tamminga was already in the first line up and also Joop Oonk -- trained by Hans van Eijk for bass player. Peter Tamminga did play piano and Chris Jackson guitar. And then there was a certain Bas -- school companion of Hans van Eijk -- and a girl singer: Nellie. Later on Tjibbe Veeloo replaced the rhythm guitarist of the first line up: Chris Jones. The original 'Frisian' Tjibbe also learned to play guitar with the help of Hans.
Summer 1960, Willy Wissink (Willy & His Giants) operates the dancing pavilion of the roller rink in the Zuiderpark in The Hague. He also performed there with his own group: The Real Rhythm Teens. Johnny & The Jewels play there on weekends. A cousin of laundry owner Herman Batelaan played with Willy Wissink, and so comes Batelaan had contact with Wissink. When Willy leaved The Hague, Herman did take over the dances in the South Park and met Hans van Eijk and his guys. Herman Batelaan sets itself up as business manager. The orchestra was reduced to five men and from October 1960 they continue under the name The Jumping Jewels. Early 1961, record company Phonogram was looking for a guitar group -- in the style of the successful British Shadows -- who could record the world hits "Wheels" and "(Ghost) Riders In The Sky" for the Philips label. Herman Batelaan brought The Jumping Jewels at the right time in contact with Phonogram. The result was that, March, 1961, their version of the two instrumentals could be found in the record stores.
The group scores -- both, with singer Johnny Lion as instrumental -- a reasonable number of hits and grows as the most popular guitar group from the lowlands. But also in the rest of Europe and Asia they sold many records. In 1964 Pakistan, Malaysia and Singapore are visited. In Singapore approximately 10,000 fans saw their performances at the Odeon theater, in the middle of the city. 1965 Is a turbulent year for The Jumping Jewels. In April, they join Johnny Lion in the circus of Toni Boltini, but it also came to a break that summer. Johnny Lion scored a big hit with the Dutch song "Sophietje," without the Jewels. Their share was acquired by The Young Ones. The Jumping Jewels ended then their contract with Herman Batelaan and continued as a backing group for Rob de Nijs -- another popular Dutch singer. Batelaan however went to court because of rights of the groups name. He won the lawsuit which meant the end of the Jumping Jewels. Early 1966 Hans van Eijk and his men made a relaunch as a beat group: 'The Jay Jays'.
Labels: Jumping Jewels