I had the pleasure to talk to Dutch indies rock band You and the Blue about their music, especially their latest release White. According to their official bio, they were founded in 2019 with Marc Wessel (bass and guitar) and Stefan van Rijn (vocals and guitar). An additional guitarist and drummer are joining You and the Blue in future live performances.
The purpose of the band is to make music they want to listen to. The band released their first EP White in December 2019, which they recorded themself. The band is writing material for the second EP.
Check out their interview and songs from their first EP down below. It’s a great listen, especially one track I mention in the interview! Let me know what you think of the band and their music in the comments below!
1. Please give me a little introduction to the band/duo. Why is it called You and the Blue?
Stefan van Rijn (S): We are Marc Wessel (bass and guitar) and Stefan van Rijn (vocals and guitar) and we are from the Netherlands. You and the Blue saw the light of day in 2019 and we have been making music ever since. We have been in a band together before and always connected musically.
Marc Wessel (M): Coming up with a name was probably the most difficult part of being in a band if you ask me haha! The good and short names are long taken off courses, such as The Doors and The Clash. We were thinking out loud, naming some adjectives at our friends house. Somehow ‘You and the Blue’ popped up ‘out of the blue’, I think we knew this was it right away. It took us a few days to make the decision final.
Funny thing is that we took it more seriously since that moment. Maybe with just needed a name, it took us a long enough though.
S: There are so many bands and with today’s technology every name you can think of is taken. I guess it’s a blessing and a curse. Here we are doing this interview with you.
2. How has music inspired you in terms of your daily life and as a person?
S: Besides making music I’m a designer and I love everything I can put creative energy in, creating something out of nothing. Making music is what I love doing the most.
M: I love being productive musically and having a creative goal. It’s a great feeling creating songs and share it with someone you have a musical connection with.
3. Are there any groups or genres that influence your music?
S: It started with blues players such as Howlin’ Wolf, Lightnin’ Hopkins. It progressed to sixties and seventies bands. The Doors, Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin to name a few. Nowadays I’m more into current music, bands like Royal Blood, Highly Suspect and Red Hot Chilli Peppers. We both really like funk music.
M: The Bicycle Thief is worth mentioning because they’re great and not well known. I also love Warpaint, Modest Mouse and Gorillaz. Also funk bands as Funkadelic and James Brown. The War on Drugs, David Bowie and Rolling Stones I listen often. The list is too long for this interview.
Funny thing is we just made a Spotify playlist with music that influences us. You can find it if you look us up on Spotify.
4. Let’s talk about your latest release, the EP “White”. What was the process of making the EP like? Was there a concept or a specific sound you were pursuing when making the EP?
S: For me, the biggest search was my guitar sound. It took me forever to find a good set up with an amp I liked and the way I wanted to record it. I was looking for a nice clean sound without losing the bottom end. We do all the recording ourselves self so we had to figure out that kind of stuff, but for me, this is also a part of the process I enjoy.
Besides the music I also designed the artwork, animations, and the website. This is something I love doing and everything combined together gives me a great amount of energy.
M: We are fortunate that we know people who are enthusiastic about our music and helped us. With Logic, we create demo’s with a drum simulation. That works extremely well. Jens Brokaar played the drums on the record. We played with him in a band before and we know what he can do. He recorded al the drum parts in one afternoon without rehearsing as a group. We think he did a great job.
Leo Post mixed and mastered all the songs for us. Because of that, we’re closely involved in the process. It’s nice having a third voice for making decisions. Although somehow we never have problems with that. Without any animosity, we’ll drop song ideas if one of us doesn’t like it.
We never had a specific sound like a goal. Whatever comes out, comes out. We strongly believe that music should flow. Just let it happen and don’t take yourself seriously.
5. There are so many great songs from “White”. My favorite is “Reach Me”. Can you talk a little bit about the song?
S: “Reach me”, on one hand, is about what music can do for people, give them joy and energy. On the other hand, it’s about being a better musician and artist.
6. What is everyone’s favorite song from the EP? Why?
M: It changes from time to time. I guess “‘Come along” is my favorite because the whole structure of the song was written within an hour.
I sent it to Stefan, he came up with a great instrumental part within no time.
S: For me, it also changes. “I’ve been waiting” is a song I really like. I love the chorus, all the overdubs, and vocal effects. Marc came up with the basic parts and we really build the song together from that point. I enjoyed the whole process. “Hold on” is also a song I really like, a pure song sung from the heart.
7. What are your plans and goals (for the future)?
M: Our plan is to write and record the second EP and create a setlist long enough to perform on stage again.
S: Also becoming the best musicians that we can be and just create music.
8. You are planning on releasing a second EP very soon. Any details on that?
M: At this moment we are still writing songs for the second EP. How long it will take is difficult to say. It’s going much easier this time. We were used to just jamming and only being responsible for your own parts.
Sometimes one of us writes a complete song and it only needs a guitar part or vocals. It also happens that we start building on a bass part for instance. Since we did it before, it’s going more organically now.
9. What do you want listeners to listen for when listening to your music?
S: We hope that they will just listen to our music with an open mindset and feel the good vibes we tried to produce.
10. What kind of message do you want to say to the readers of ai love music?
M: We hope you’ll enjoy the music. f you do, you can support us by following us on social media. If you don’t like it, that’s fine as well. We still think you’re great actively searching for new music and reading this blog.
Listen to the EP ‘White’ down below and tell me what is your favorite song!
You can check out You and the Blue on the following sites: