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RUUD BRINK

Summary | Biography | Discography | Photos | Audio/Video

Period

09-08-1937 - 29-06-1990

Genre

jazz, klarinet, tenorsaxofoon, vocalen

Ruud Brink

Ruud Brink (Haarlem, 9 August 1937 – Haarlem, 29 June 1990) teaches himself to play the clarinet at the age of thirteen, and soon becomes a professional musician. Inspired by clarinetist Dim Kesber he starts out playing Dixieland, but when he discovers modern jazz, the saxophonists making up The Brothers ...
Full biography

Instruments

klarinet, tenorsaxofoon, vocalen

Mentioned in the biography of

1955   Chris Dekker
1985   Maarten Ornstein

Biography Ruud Brink

Ruud Brink (Haarlem, 9 August 1937 – Haarlem, 29 June 1990) teaches himself to play the clarinet at the age of thirteen, and soon becomes a professional musician. Inspired by clarinetist Dim Kesber he starts out playing Dixieland, but when he discovers modern jazz, the saxophonists making up The Brothers in the Woody Herman band become his new role models. Stan Getz and Zoot Sims are his greatest idols. In 1953 Brink switches to tenor saxophone, and he also starts singing, in the manner of Chet Baker. From the age of nineteen he becomes a heavy drinker, an addiction that will continue to determine his life. Ruud Brink develops his own style within the Getz idiom, but has trouble finding work because of his drinking problem. An offer to join the Woody Herman band doesn’t materialize because of Brink’s lack of initiative. When his colleague Sandy Mosse dies Brink is appointed as a teacher at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. As a Getz devotee he has little affinity with the heroes of the younger jazz generation. In spite of this he hangs on for a few more years and then retires. He manages to make a living as a sideman and by doing studio work, but a great career never gets off the ground. In 1990 he seems to get the first real recognition: He is awarded the North Sea Jazz Festival’s Bird Award, in the same year as his friend Stan Getz. The jury report is full of praise: ‘Ruud Brink is a very modest jazz giant, with so many individual traits that he may justly be called a real stylist. […] He has been a tremendous swinger for years, and a master at playing ballads.’ But even this is doomed to failure. Two weeks before the presentation he dies of liver cancer. The Bird Award is presented posthumously to Ruud Brink’s son by Stan Getz.

Played in

Oscar Benton   saxofoon

1950 - 1956

At the age of thirteen he starts playing in a Dixieland band. In 1953 he joins trumpeter Cees Smal’s The Diamonds (later: Diamond Five) on clarinet, and soon switches to tenor saxophone. A year later he is asked to join the combo of bassist Ted Powder (Theek Kruijt). He performs for American soldiers stationed in Germany, playing mainly dance music, and little jazz. This is when he takes up singing. In 1956 he transfers to the Rob Pronk Sextet. Occasionally he plays with the Zaans Rhythm Quintet and in the rock & roll combo of Bill White (Wim Overgaauw). As a member of the Rob Pronk Boptet he gets a favorable review by critic Pete Venudor in Rhythme magazine (‘Eighteen-year-old Rudi Brink excels with a broad tone, surprising ideas and a great amount of swing’).

Cees Smal Rob Pronk (1)

1957 - 1981

He plays with bassist Henny Frohwein’s Atlantic Quintet, with which he tours all over Germany. Between 1963 and 1980 he is a member of the Skymasters and Boy’s Big Band. In this period his career goes downhill, but in 1973 he does record his first LP as a leader; Teach Me Tonight earns him his first Edison (Dutch Grammy) in 1974. Then Ruud Brink disappears from view. He plays commercial gigs (he can be heard on pop singer Lee Towers’ first album), but loses ‘the battle against the bottle’ and goes into rehab in 1981.

Atlantic Quintet Boy's Big Band Skymasters

1982 - 1990

In 1982 he makes his comeback with the Ruud Brink/Irv Rochlin Quartet at the NOS Jazz Festival at the Amsterdam Meervaart. When tenor saxophonist Sandy Mosse dies in 1983 Brink is his replacement as a teacher at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. The saxophpnist becomes an in demand studio musician once again. He forms a trio with singer Greetje Kauffeld and guitarist Peter Nieuwerf, with which he has a regular spot at the Herberg De Waag in Haarlem. The trio records the album The Song Is You. He also plays with his old friend, trumpeter Ray Kaart, and his older brother Han Brink (five years his senior) on drums. In the late eighties Ruud Brink often performs in jazzclubs and at festivals in Italy, he plays his first concert at the Amsterdam Bimhuis, and records the LP Double Face with Italian sidemen.

Greetje Kauffeld Peter Nieuwerf Ray Kaart

Discography Ruud Brink

In the discography you will find all recordings that have been released listed chronologically. We restrict ourselves to the title, the type of audio, year of publication or recording, label, list of guest musicians, plus any comments on the issue.

Audio/Video Ruud Brink

Video Ruud Brink

Ruud Brink met vrienden -...
Ruud Brink met vrienden - Skylark
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Ruud Brink met vrienden - Skylark

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