Eelco Gelling (12 June 1946) is a Dutch guitarist. Gelling played with Cuby + Blizzards until 1976 and with Golden Earring (1977-1979) a.o.. He is considered to be one of the best guitar players ever from The Netherlands.
Cuby + Blizzards or Cuby & the Blizzards (C+B) was founded by Eelco Gelling and Harry Muskee in 1964. Their first single was released in 1965 followed by a string of albums starting in 1966. During his time with Cuby + Blizzards the band became famous in Holland, Germany and the UK. They played, recorded and toured with Eddie Boyd, Van Morrison and Alexis Korner. In 1966 they toured with John Mayall and when Mayall came over to the Netherlands to stay for a couple of days, he asked Gelling to join the Bluesbreakers. Gelling did not agree and stayed with Cuby + Blizzards. The 1969 album Appleknockers Flophouse is considered one of the greatest Dutch Blues albums. The guitarist rivals many great players like Jan Akkerman, Peter Green and Mick Taylor. The band recorded their last album in 1974, named Het Afscheidsconcert (The Farewell Concert). Harry Muskee and Eelco formed Red, White 'n Blue but after two singles and an album reunited with Herman Brood in 1976 for a short period to record two more Cuby albums Kid Blue and Old times, Good times. In the early '90s C+B was re-formed this time without Gelling.
Golden Earring (1977-1979)
In 1977, he joined Golden Earring where he played for several years. He first appeared as a full-fledged member on "Contraband" (released in the U.S. under the title "Mad Love"). Eelco's haunting slide work is highlighted on the tracks "Sueleen" and "Bombay". While out on tour the group recorded it first live album "Golden Earring Live". Eelco helps the group deliver many of their classics including an extended version of the group's smash hit "Radar Love". Gelling also plays on the group's "Grab it for a Second" album. During a tour in the United States he left the band; after discussions about the music style and after his favorite guitar (a Gibson Les Paul) was stolen from a cab in New York, he quit Golden Earring and went back to the Netherlands.
80's and 90's
When Eelco returned to Holland, Harry Muskee asked him to join the Muskee Gang, during a recording session Eelco was fired and left for Den Haag to join the Freelance band. He played in several bands and after a few years started his own, the Eelco Gelling Band.
00's and onwards
In 2000 Eelco joined Den Haag local band, Xray for a show in Doornroosje in Nijmegen. A live recording with two original songs was released in early 2001.
On 25 June 2010 the Eelco Gelling Band performed for the last time, since then the band continued as Kroppo's Blues Band, without Gelling.
In 2010, C+B Classic, Window of my eyes was used in the movie The American featuring George Clooney.
In 2012, Eelco appeared in the documentary 'Gitaar Jongens' (Guitar Guys) by Henny Vrienten. Eelco was interviewed at home and appeared on stage at the Royal Carre to play with Jan Akkerman. Eelco hadn't played for a couple of years and has since been working to get back in shape. In 2013 and 2014, Jan Akkerman asked Eelco to join him for some shows in Zoetermeer and Groningen.
On April 14, 2015, Eelco was inducted in the Dutch Blues Hall of Fame and presented with a trophy by former C+B manager Johan Derksen. He also received a 45-year-overdue Gold Record for Groeten uit Grolloo. Eelco played a surprise set with Ruben Hoeke and Raymond van Kuijen.
On April 29, 2015, Eelco opened the exposition, "Eelco Gelling, Geweldenaar op de Gitaar" (Savage or Giant on Guitar) at the C+B Museum in Grolloo.
Eelco's favorite guitar is his longtime companion the famous sunburst 1960 Gibson Les Paul. Eelco has owned this guitar since the early Cuby days when he traded his Gibson ES-330 for it. The guitar has been stolen, broken, abused and was recently restored to former glory. Eelco used a Fender Concert (4x10) or a Marshall 100 watt stack to amplify his guitar. In the 80s, when Eelco played with the Blues Connection, he usually resorted to playing on his Acoustic Control Corporation Model 165 combo. After departing from the Blues Connection in the early 90s, Eelco started using both the Koch KC50 and the Koch Multitone amplifiers. Recently he has switched back to Marshalls and now uses a small Marshall Class 5 combo.
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