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Haarlem, The Netherlands (1967 – 1989)

Ekseption was a Dutch progressive rock ensemble from Haarlem, The Netherlands with changing membership, active from 1967 to 1989, growing out of the bands The Jokers and Incrowd. Ekseption was famous during the late sixties/early seventies for the way it combined themes from classical composers with contemporary rock and jazz in a blend of dominating, virtuoso keys and trumpet plus sax(es).

The story of Ekseption as we know it begins when they won the first prize at the Loosdrecht Jazz Festival in 1968, and they were rewarded with a record contract with Philips. At the suggestion of Rick van der LINDEN, the band’s keyboard player, they decided to record rock versions of Beethoven’s “Fifth” and Khachaturian’s “Sabre Dance”. Although initially the single with “The Fifth” did not catch on, three months after it was released suddenly it began to sell like hotcakes, and the basis for the now famous Ekseption formula was established: a cocktail of classical music with (symphonic) rock and jazz. Following the success of the single, their first album was recorded, which contained a mix of covers, classical themes in a rock/jazz setting, and one song written by the band.

Rick van der LINDEN emerged as the band’s artistic leader, and on their second album (“Beggar Julia’s Timetrip”) he was responsible for arranging and writing the music.


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