1999 – present (18 years)
There are at least two known bands with the name Amsterdam:
1. A pop/rock group from Liverpool, England
2. A Dutch psychedelic rock band from '70s
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1. Amsterdam were formed on Merseyside in 1999 and promptly stayed there - mainly because they didn't really have any band members or any songs - but Ian Prowse had to tell his friends in the pub he had a new band going.
A few gigs were played with various band line-ups and to stunning indifference, but all this changed in 2000 when the arrival of Ian's best-ever songs rescued him from the pub and they immediately won an NME competition to find the best-unsigned band of 2000.
Next up the band were one of the winners at the prestigious music biz event In the City.
Since then the boys have had the most successful website in the country for any unsigned band with traffic reaching an unbelievable 200,000 hits even though the band haven't released any records other than through their own site.
Amsterdam have also appeared on an EMI compilation album Mersey Boys and Liverpool Girls alongside Paul McCartney and all the Liverpool greats. In fact, the launch gig for the album saw Amsterdam steal the show and left fellow performer Elvis Costello gobsmacked in the wings.
The band have now performed sell out shows in Liverpool and London and garnished fantastic national reviews from the likes of The Guardian ('Liverpool's most likely to') and Channel 4 Teletext ('tunes to move mountains').
Other factors were the recent storming of the Janice Long show where the band performed three stunning live tracks in the famous Pebble Mill studios, Janice herself commented at the end that the BBC Radio 2 email address had never had such a response. Apparently the praise poured in from listeners all over the country.
The Sunday Express also proclaimed Amsterdam the best band you haven't yet heard!
The profile of the band then unexpectedly rocketed with the patronage of worldwide songwriting icon Elvis Costello. Elvis - who had been impressed at the Mersey Boys and Liverpool Girls show - asked the band if they would play with him live on BBC TV's Jonathon Ross Show to promote his new single.
The band got on famously with Elvis who then took them over to the Netherlands to open up for him on the first date of his world tour in Amsterdam itself! This was then followed by the opening slot of the year in front of 4,000 people at Costello's big hometown show at the Kings Arena in Liverpool, the band responded by putting in their best ever performance.
The boys also made the last-ever John Peel Festive Fifty with the late legend weeping live on air when he played the Amsterdam anthem Does This Train Stop on Merseyside?
Recently Peelie's wife Sheila went live on BBC Radio 1 for the first time ever to personally dedicate the song to her late husband above all the other hundreds of tunes he loved: "This is the one he would have wanted me to play" she said.
Even more sold out shows followed and the gang came to the attention of London-based independent label Beat Crazy Records.
Following the recruitment of new bassist Paul Hagan, the band have recorded their proper debut for Beat Crazy. The first single to be lifted from the album, The Journey, reached number 32 in the official UK top 40 in January 2005.
The third single from the album Takin' On The World, was playlisted on BBC Radio 2 and many other stations. The single then proceeded to chart in October 2005.
The band officially announced on the 14th June 2006 that they had parted company with the record label Beat Crazy, the following statement was posted on their website.
"We can also now happily confirm that Amsterdam have parted company with Beat Crazy records. The band will now sit down and plan the next move with their management team at Cruisin music who also represent The Stranglers and Tina Cousins.
The first chapter of a post-Beat Crazy world is to be the live album which will include new songs, tunes from The Journey as well as older Amsterdam classics."
2. The members Donald Van Os (gt, voc), Jacques Zwart (bs) and Martin Van Os (dr) from the Amsterdam based pop-band Penny Wise, changed their name into Amsterdam in 1969 and added Michel van Dijk (gt) and Peter van Asten (voc).
In 1970 they released two successfull singles; "Indian Pipe" and "Lucy Lucy". After these two singles they released until 1975 another six singles. In 1975 they split up and afterwards the album "Amsterdam" is released.
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