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In het programma Countdown, VOO 1984 (Bron: fotocollectie Beeld en Geluid)


1961 - 2021


beat, rock, unplugged


Officiële website


Golden Earrings, The Tornados

Golden Earring

Most successful rock group in the history of Dutch popular music. Over four decades the Golden Earring has been the most important representative of Dutch rock music. In the '60s they spearheaded the blooming beat scene in their hometown The Hague. The '70s were a decade in which the band became ...
Full biography


George Kooymans   gitaar, zang
Cesar Zuiderwijk   drums, percussie
Rinus Gerritsen   basgitaar, mondharmonica, toetsinstrumenten
Barry Hay   fluit, zang

Former members

Jaap Eggermont   drums
Eelco Gelling   gitaar
Robert Jan Stips   toetsinstrumenten
Sieb Warner   drums
Peter de Ronde   gitaar
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Mentioned in the biography of

1960   Max Woiski Jr.
1965   Cees Schrama
1965   Fred Haayen
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Biography Golden Earring

Most successful rock group in the history of Dutch popular music. Over four decades the Golden Earring has been the most important representative of Dutch rock music. In the '60s they spearheaded the blooming beat scene in their hometown The Hague. The '70s were a decade in which the band became an internationally successful rock act. In former Polydor big-shot Fred Haayen they find themselves a shrewd advisor and producer. Over the years the Golden Earring has developed its own energetic rock sound that is successful both at home and abroad. In the '90s the band has one of its biggest commercial successes with the acoustic album The Naked Truth. Besides their own career within Golden Earring, both George Kooymans and Barry Hay also have boosted the careers of new musical talents such as Bojoura, Earth&Fire and, more recently, Anouk.


Four schoolboys from The Hague form a band called the Tornados. The boys are Rinus Gerritsen (bass), George Kooymans (guitar), Hans van Herwerden (guitar) and Fred van der Hilst (drums).


The group mostly plays covers by bands like the Ventures and the Shadows. When in December of this year the British Tornados have a hit with the song Telstar the boys realize they will have to come up with a new name for their band.


The Tornados become the Golden Earrings, after a song by British band The Hunters. The first change in the band's line-up occurs: guitarist Peter de Ronde replaces Hans van Herwaarden. Following the latest trend from the UK the Golden Earrings switch from instrumental songs to playing beat music. The next step is to hire a singer.


Singer Frans Krassenburg joins the band. The Earrings have started writing their own songs which they complement with covers by the Kinks and the Zombies.


A crucial year for the Golden Earrings. During one of their gigs they are discovered by Fred Haayen, a student who works in the depot of record company Polydor. Haayen manages to get them a record deal with Polydor and will later becomes the band's producer. In the summer Fred van der Hilst, who was somewhat of an outsider in the group, quits. He is replaced by the more talented Jaap Eggermont. The group releases its full-length debut Just Ear-rings. The first single is Please Go, which shoots straight to number 10. The release of the next single, Lonely Every Day, is being postponed when it is discovered that the title of the single's b-side, Not To Find, is grammatically incorrect.

Fred Haayen


Uit de fotocollectie van Beeld en Geluid: The Golden Earrings bij het televisieprogramma Voor De Vuist Weg The year starts with a Top 3 hit for the single That Day. The Golden Earrings now spearhead the blooming beat scene in their hometown The Hague, also known as Liverpool by the North Sea, because of the many Dutch beat groups (Q65, Shocking Blue, the Motions) the city has brought forward. Other hits for the Earrings this year include If You Leave Me, Daddy Buy Me A Girl and Don't Run Too Far. Shortly before the release of the album Winter Harvest guitarist De Ronde leaves the band.


Shortly after the release of Winter Harvest Frans Krassenburg leaves the band. He is replaced by Barry Hay (formerly the Haigs) who had shortly before that turned down an offer to join Shocking Blue. Sound Of The Screaming Day is another big hit. George Kooymans writes the single Everybody's Day for singer Bojoura, which gives her career a flying start.

The Haigs


The band's musical development can be heard on the album Miracle Mirror. Psychedelics and the Kinks have obviously influenced the Earrings. First single to be taken from this album is the track I've Just Lost Somebody, followed by Dong-dong-di-ki-di-gi-dong, which is the group's first number one hit. As most bands in the late '60s, the Golden Earrings also release a ambitious double album. The single Just A Little Bit Of Peace In My Heart - the McArthur Park of George Kooymans - tops the charts.


Drummer Sieb Warner, formerly with the Motions, takes the place of Jaap Eggermont. The band shortens its name to Golden Earring and tours the US. The album Eight Miles High is released and the song Another 45 Miles is a hit. The group's US experience gives them a head start on their Dutch counterparts. George Kooymans receives a Zilveren 'Silver' Harp music award.

Jaap Eggermont


George Kooymans writes the Earth&Fire hit Seasons. The album Golden Earring, the band's first rock album, is released. The track Back Home is another number one hit. The track features new drummer Cesar Zuiderwijk, formerly of Livin' Blues.

Earth And Fire Livin' Blues

1971 - 1972

AVRO's TopPop, 1971 (bron: fotocollectie Beeld en Geluid) These are difficult years for the band. The albums Seven Tears and Together are released but fail to impress although the singles She Flies On Strange Wings and Buddy Joe top the charts. The Earring is supporting act for the Who on a regular basis. Both Barry Hay and George Kooymans release a solo album.


The album Moontan comes out. The single Radar Love reaches the top spot of the Dutch charts and becomes an instant classic.


Radar Love reaches number thirteen in the Billboard Hot 100 and Moontan becomes gold. The band embarks on another, successful, US tour. However, when returning to the Netherlands it becomes clear that the tour has been a major financial disaster: It becomes clear that the band has paid the luxurious hotels, limousines and parties out of its own pocket. The single Instant Poetry reaches number three in the Dutch charts, but fails to impress abroad.


The band moves into a new musical direction and records the ambitious album Switch. Keyboard player Robert-Jan Stips (formerly Supersister) joins the band. The single Ce Soir (Kill Me) enters the Dutch Top 10.


The album To The Hilt is released, which is even more bleak than its predecessor. Stips quits and (slide)guitarist Eelco Gelling (formerly Cuby and the Blizzards) joins the band. The Earring records the more accessible and light-hearted Contraband that features the hit Bombay.


The double LP Live is released. There is, however, some friction between Gelling and the other band members.


Grab It For A Second is recorded in the US with Jimmy Iovine. After the recording of this album Gelling leaves the band. The single Movin' Down Life is a small hit. But the band has hit rock bottom, artistically as well as financially.


The album No Promises No Debts is recorded and the group has a hit with the single Weekend Love. The next single I Do Rock & Roll is, however, less successful. The group is having difficulty in finding its way in this new musical era that is being dominated by punk rock, new wave and disco.

Gerritsen en Van Dijk


Prisoner Of The Night is released. Long Blond Animal and No For An Answer are hits.


The group is considering a break up, but nevertheless releases the live album Second Live.


The single Twilight Zone, originally to be released on George's next solo album, hits the number one spot in the Netherlands and reaches number 10 in the Billboard Hot 100. The accompanying video is directed by Dick Maas. The album Cut, produced by Shell Schellekens, tops the album charts.

Shell Schellekens


A break-up is no longer considered and the band embarks on a US tour. The album Cut becomes gold in Canada and the single Twilight Zone reaches number 3 in the charts. For the second time the band receives the Dutch Export Award.


In het programma Countdown, VOO 1984 (Bron: fotocollectie Beeld en Geluid) The album N.E.W.S. is recorded (again with Shell Schellekens) and When The Lady Smiles tops the charts. The video - director by Dick Maas - that accompanies the single is boycotted by many foreign music stations because it contains a scene in which a nun is being sexually assaulted. Later in the year the live (except for one track) recorded Something Heavy Going Down is released. The title track is released as a single and becomes a modest hit.

Shell Schellekens


Cesar Zuiderwijk and keyboard player Jasper van 't Hof record an album under the name Labyrinth. Both album and accompanying tour are modestly successful.



New album The Hole, produced by Shell Schellekens, is greeted with mixed reviews. The tracks Why Do I and Quiet Eyes are released as singles.

Shell Schellekens Sjef van Oekel


Kooymans and Hay start their own label: Ring Records. The bands they sign are Boom Boom Mancini, Piu Piu and K13. Both Kooymans and Hay release solo albums, but their albums lack commercial success.

Boom Boom Mancini Piu Piu


Two compilation albums are released on the Arcade label and the band tours the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany.


The album Keeper Of The Flame comes out. It is recorded with the latest digital techniques, which makes the album sound somewhat clinical. Nevertheless, the single Turn The World Around is a Top 10 hit. The band plays at the Parkpop festival in The Hague in front of 300.000 people.

The Plastic Dolls


The band breaks with Fred Haayen's Jaws label and signs to Sony Music's Columbia label.


Bloody Buccaneers is released and the single Going To The Run reaches number 3 of the Dutch charts. The band goes on an extensive tour of the Netherlands and Germany.


The unplugged album The Naked Truth is released and becomes the band's biggest commercial success since Moontan. This year also sees the publication of the first book about the Golden Earring: Haags(che)e Bluf ('Hague's Bluff').


The Naked Truth has sold over 150.000 copies. During the week the band plays acoustic sets in the theatres and in the weekend they play electric sets in the clubs. The band performs in front of 130.000 fans at the beach of Scheveningen near The Hague.


The album Face It, partly recorded in front of a small audience, is released and the single Hold Me Now is a small hit.


The Earring releases the cover album Love Sweat, which contains songs by Janis Joplin, Bob Seger and Eric Burdon, and performs in front of 400.000 people at the Parkpop festival.


The band breaks up with Columbia and signs to CNR.


The first CNR release is the album Naked II. The first single to be taken from the album is Burning Stuntman. Barry Hay discovers a new musical talent: singer Anouk. Both Hay and Kooymans contribute several compositions to her successful debut album.



An acoustic version of The Devil Made Me Do It becomes the new single. Although all band members have passed the age of fifty, the Earring is still going strong. The group receives a platinum album for Naked II, while Bloody Buccaneers and the Complete Naked Truth turn gold.


The album Paradise In Distress is released early in the year. It's a theme album about a gambling addict, which doesn't bring forth any major hits for the band. At the request of the Dutch National Olympic Committee, the Earring writes the theme tunefor the upcoming Olympic summer and winter games. Rinus Gerritsen is involved in a motorcycle accident and is temporarily replaced by Ocki Klootwijk. The band receives an Edison Music Award and a documentary about the band, Don't Stop The Show, shows in the cinemas. The band announces a sabbatical year.

Metropole Orkest Ocki Klootwijk Rogier van der Ploeg


The band members occupy themselves with various solo projects: Cesar Zuiderwijk tours the country with his Percossa Percussion and Barry Hay and George Kooymans write the theme song for a Dutch TV programme. This year also sees the release of the 4CD box set The Devil Made Us Do It. The box set, which contains liner notes that are written by Rinus Gerritsen, includes seventy tracks some of which are previously unreleased. George Kooymans receives a Gouden 'Golden' Palm music award for his contribution to Dutch popular music and Barry Hay tours with his band Barking Dogs.

Barking Dogs Percossa


The Earring gives permission for the organization of an exposition in The Hague called Another 45 Miles, which celebrates the group's 40th anniversary. Barry Hay in the meantime is organizing auditions for girls to form Bad Candy, an 'all chick rock 'n' roll band'.

Bad Candy


On January 22 a new single, Albino Moon, is released. In February a new studio album, Millbrook USA (recorded in New York), comes out. The track Colourblind is a tribute to Herman Brood. Millbrook USA is also released on DVD.

Herman Brood


Barry Hay is one of the guest vocalists on Vuur ('Fire') a new album by Dutch singer Frédérique Spigt. In the book Golden Earring: Rock Die Niet Roest ('Rock That Does Not Rust') Maarten Steenmeijer (professor at the University of Nijmegen) writes a portrait of the band. Golden Earring works on yet another (third) acoustic album. Additionally, Hay takes part in the Dutch overdub version of the My Dad Is A Rock Star cartoon on MTV's kids channel Nickelodeon. Barry Hay is voted Biggest Dutch Rock Musician of all time. He gets 31,83% out of 17.474 votes.

Frédérique Spigt


Drummer Cesar Zuiderwijk releases a DVD of his comical percussion project Alle Gekheid Met Een Stokje ('Madness With Sticks') with the band Percossa. Naked III, the third unplugged album by Golden Earring, is released on both DVD and SACD Surround Sound CD. The concert is registered at Amsterdam's Panama club in June 2004. To commemorate the band's 40th anniversary, in week 10 Golden Earring is for three nights in a row on popular RTL4-hosted TV talk show Barend & Van Dorp. Barry Hay cuts the duet I Don't Want To Be with US blues-rock singer Beth Hart. The intro to Radar Love by Golden Earring is voted best intro ever by Radio 2 listeners. For the second time in its career the band is invited to perform at the Pinkpop festival. Barry Hay contributes to a CD that is enclosed with a book by artist Wouter Stips. Meg and Hans Eijkenaar write the music to Stips' lyrics. The latter's band, Anouk's live band, is featured as backing musicians on the album. Early September the Golden Earring celebrates its 40th anniversary with a show during Beat City The Hague. The Rock 'n Art Hall Of Fame (National Rock museum) organizes a special exhibition about the band. Thirteen bands from The Hague record a Golden Earring tribute album: The Hague's Golden Earring Tribute, released by Hunter Music including contributions by Bagga Bownz, Blo.Torch, Can-Of-Be, Gemstone, Naked and Stud Muffins. In December a 384-page book about the band is published: Golden Earring. Research by Australian Musician Magazine and Channel 7 shows that Radar Love is the 'Number 1 Driving Song' in Australia. Long Way To The Top and Highway To Hell by AC/DC are runners-up.

can_of_be Naked


On February 1 the Golden Earring plays the Ahoy' in Rotterdam. Sax player Bertus Borgers guest stars. The song Radar Love is featured on the film The Break Up of ex-Friends star Jennifer Aniston. It's not the first time that the 1973 globals smash is used in a film. Other examples include: Wayne's World 2 (1993), Pushing Tin (1999), Oesters Van Nam Kee (2002) and Ash Wednesday (2002). Additionally Radar Love quite often pops up in games, TV-series (Six Feet Under) and ads. At the Musicians Day on May 27 at Amsterdam's Melkweg, Cesar Zuiderwijk wins a Devil (musicians to musicians) Award (established by the Dutch Rock & Pop Institute) in the category Best Drummer. In the fall the man is touring the theatres on his own with his solo percussion show Slagdroom. It is a cross of a drum demonstration and memories of his boyhood when his dream was to become a clown. Amidst the many Dutch shows, the show at Munich's Tollwood Festival is their sole international show this year. As of October 2006 on stage the band is accompanied by saxophonist Boris van der Lek. In the fall their Ahoy' show is released on DVD.

Bertus Borgers Boris Vanderlek


Because of its successful Ahoy' show of the previous year, on February 5 the band returns for another arena show.


Much to their own surprise and amazement, the song When The Lady Smiles is one of the campaign songs used by Hillary Clinton during the American primary elections for the presidential campaign. However, when the campaign leaders learn of the song's controversials video, they decide not to use it anymore. In April, Cesar Zuiderwijk receives the Cultuurprijs (Culture Award) 2007 of the city of The Hague. The award comes with a sculpture and a sum of 25.000 Euros. The award is given every two years to people, groups or institutions who have 'performed in a remarkable way in the field of the arts' thus having contributed to the image of The Hague as a city of culture. Late June, Barry Hay goes into the studio with the Metropole Orchestra to record the album Big Band Theory. The album is released on the renowned Blue Note label. On 8 September, Hay and the orchestra perform in Paradiso in Amsterdam.

Metropole Orkest


Rinus Gerritsen wins a Duiveltje award in the category Best Bassist. It is an initiative of the department Popmusic of Music Centre the Netherland (previously the Dutch Pop and Rock Institute). The winners have been selected by their fellow musicians through internet voting. The awards ceremony is during the first edition of the Gala van de Popmuziek (Gala of Popmusic), on 20 May in the Melkweg in Amsterdam. During the launch of the website Top40.nl, Golden Earring receives the Top 40 Decennium Award, because in the 1960's the band was the most successful Dutch act in the charts.

Discography Golden Earring

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.

Photos Golden Earring

Audio/Video Golden Earring

Video Golden Earring

Radio Veronica
Radio Veronica
Naar Amerika
Naar Amerika
Radar Love
Radar Love
De 'laatste' plaat
De 'laatste' plaat
De Naakte Waarheid
De Naakte Waarheid
Het eerste platencontract
Het eerste platencontract
Van Golden Earrings naar ...
Van Golden Earrings naar Golden Earring
De opvolger
De opvolger
When the lady smiles
When the lady smiles
Complete Interview
Complete Interview
50 jaar Golden Earring
50 jaar Golden Earring
Nachtelijk popfestival in...
Nachtelijk popfestival in Tiel (1970)
Golden Earring - Another ...
Golden Earring - Another 45 Miles (live,acoustic)
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Golden Earring - Another 45 Miles (live,acoustic)

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