Friday, April 09, 2021

Interview with Elephant

The recently released debut EP from Rotterdam's Elephant is quickly becoming one of my favorites.  I recently did an email interview with the band where we covered their time in a Fleetwood Mac theatre show which actually led to their formation, the impact of covid, working with a member of DeWolff as producer and more.

Can you tell me who the band members are and what they play and also give me a little band history?

Elephant’s band members are: Frank Schalkwijk (vocals, guitar), Michael Broekhuizen (vocals, guitar, bass), Bas Vosselman (vocals, bass, guitar) and Kaj van Driel (drums & percussion).
We’ve been playing in different bands for a long time. At one point we all played together in a Fleetwood Mac tribute show. That’s where we grew close and decided we wanted to start a band. Because of the pandemic and the lockdown, the band became almost a religious exercise.

How does your songwriting process tend to work?

We have a very organic way of working in which all four of us contribute. Most of the time one of us has a riff or a hook and we start jamming on it. Then someone takes it home and writes a second part. We then develop it further in the rehearsal room. We don’t limit ourselves to our instruments. For instance, Kaj often plays guitar during songwriting. It’s always about the song, never about who plays what.

Your EP was produced by Pablo van de Poel from the band DeWolff. How did you hook up with him and how was the experience with him producing?

Pablo is an absolute legend. We already knew him and figured he would be the best match for our music. We recorded on tape which gives our songs the sound that we want.  Pablo also has great ideas to lift the songs to another level and always goes for that extra mile.

There are three of you that sing lead vocals along with some outstanding harmonies. How do you decide who sings lead on what song?

The song actually decides whose vocals should be lead. We all have different styles of singing, and most of the time it quickly becomes clear whose voice fits the song best.

Was it odd putting out an EP without really being able to test the songs much live due to covid?

Very odd! The pandemic made us grow closer as friends because the band is all we got. It has become a therapeutic activity for us. So in that sense the pandemic helped. However playing live shows is what we all love to do the most. We really miss that. For shaping and testing the songs we wouldn’t know, because we didn’t have much opportunities yet…

You have some various live performances on Youtube with alot of great tunes not on the EP (I absolutely love “Hometown”). I know the EP is just out, but do you have any plans for recording any of those songs and was there any reason you didn’t go ahead a record more for a full album instead of an EP?

Most of those songs are newish. The EP was recorded a year ago so we simply didn’t have them yet. However there is a rumour that we have just recorded our full length debut album ;)

You have a couple of really cool animated videos for “Bird’s Eye View” and “Never Know It’s Real”. Can you tell me a little about those?

Thanks! They were made by friends of ours. Cox Janssen did “Bird’s Eye View” and Emile Maigyte did “Never Know It’s Real”. We gave them total freedom to do what they want. I think that worked out really good. Maybe in the future we’ll work with them again.

How is the Dutch music scene?

Up till the pandemic it was very much alive. Great festivals, great venues and all that.
We’re hoping that things will be as they were soon… In the meanwhile, be sure to check out a live show of DeWolff or The Dawn Brothers on youtube, they really are amazing.

I read that a couple of you were involved in something called Fleetwood Mac: The Incredible Story from The Cosmic Carnival. Can you tell me a little about that?

We all were! It was a theatre show about Fleetwood Mac. We played all the songs starting with the legendary Peter Green and Jeremy Spence songs, and ending with the success of Fleetwood Mac up until this day. The show was a big success in Holland. We had such a good time zooming in on Fleetwood Mac, they’re such a diverse band! Truly one of the greatest of all time.

Are any of you involved in any other projects at this time?

Nope. Elephant is all we got. This way we can give the full 100%!

I know people can listen to the EP on Spotify but I didn’t see anywhere online where people can buy physical copies. Is there somewhere for them to go to order one if they are interested?

They can message us on Facebook or Instagram. Or email us at :

Is there anything else you would like to share with readers?

Did you know the Elephant Song by Kamahl?



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