Saturday, December 19, 2020

Wout Steenhuis - Hawaiian Surf Ride (1965)

Wout Steenhuis - Hawaiian Surf Ride (1965)

01 - Hawaiian Surf Ride
02 - Harbour Lights
03 - My Little Grass Shack
04 - Paradise
05 - Hilo
06 - Hawaiian Twilight
07 - Hatian Hula
08 - Hawaiian Chimes
09 - Bien Se Que No Me Quieres
10 - Sweet Leilani
11 - Sophisticated Hula
12 - South Sea Island Magic

Wout Steenhuis

Wout Steenhuis hailed from The Hague, Holland and was a member of The Dutch Resistance Movement during the last war. His activities with the movement caught up with him and he was imprisoned in the Amersfoort Concentration Camp. 
Whilst there he made his escape enroute to execution. In May 1945 during fighting with Germans he was shot in the right arm. After a few operations the arm was once again suitable for playing the guitar, which he did as a member of the Dutch Swing College Orchestra.
He came to England in 1948 followed shortly after by his fiance whom he married later that year. Encouraged by his wife he sent some of his recordings to the B.B.C. and very soon he made his debut broadcast in 'Guitar Club'.
After that Wout appeared on several radio programmes - Breakfast Special, Open House, Charlie Chester and Easy Beat to name just a few.One of the unique features of Wout's playing was that of his multi-tracking system whereby he played all the fretted instruments heard on record and on stage. All the backing instruments were recorded seperately at his home studio and then put together. In addition to using this system on record Wout also featured it with great success on TV, radio and on stage.
His repertoire ranged from Hawaiian to pop, from jazz to vocal.
In 1963 he signed a recording contract with Denis Preston of Landsdowne Recording Studios and all his recordings then appeared on Columbia, Studio 2 and EMI labels. In 1962-63 he appeared on Southern TV in the series 'Three of a Kind' and 'Their Kind of Music' along with that popular duo Dorita Y Pepe.The sound by which most people associate Wout with is that of his home made 'Jelmer' Hawaiian guitar which can be heard on the majority of his recordings.
On earlier albums Wout was backed by The Kontikis - a name given to his own backing of multi-tracked instruments. On later albums however, due to the expansion of orchestration, it became a lengthy and laborious job to play all the instruments himself so the Kontikis were made up of session musicians such as Herbie Flowers / Tony Campo (bass), Alan Parker / Dick Abel (guitar) and Clem Cattini / Barry Morgan (drums).
Wout of course still played the main melody parts himself (i.e. Hawaiian guitar, solo guitar and ukelele).

On stage Wout used his multi-track backing to the fullest whilst playing lead 'live'. For his stage act he used the 'Jelmer' Hawaiian guitar, Burns Black Bison, HH Amplification, Sennheiser microphones and a Revox A77 tape recorder.

Wout has several Hawaiian albums to his credit, along with a couple recorded in the jazz idiom namely 'Wout' and 'Bird in the Park' released in 1969 and 1970 respectively. In addition to being a guitar virtuoso he was also a prolific composer and under the pen name of Jelmer is credited for such titles as Hawaiian Chimes, Blue Dolphin, Malihini March, Bora Bora, Lazy Guitar and Aroha Hawaii. The latter he sings in Maori.
Wout and his music have travelled the world whilst appearing as resident guitarist on board the Queen Elizabeth II, visiting places like Bermuda, New York, Boston, Los Angeles, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, Japan, Indonesia, Fiji and Hawaii.

Apart from being a solo artist, Wout has backed singers Johnny Christian and Keely Ford and also the vocal group The Wedgwoods.January 1978 saw the release of 'What's New' EMI EMC3220 and featured a variety of guitar sounds and arrangements and Wout was backed by a small group. 
Tracks such as Mr. Tambourine Man, Green Green Grass of Home, House of the Rising Sun and Harper Valley PTA first heard a decade earlier were all given a new lease of life in the talented hands of Wout.

In October 1981 Warwick Records released 'Hawaiian Paradise' WW5106 a compilation of Wout's previous recordings with new arrangements plus a few new titles. Included free with this album was 'Hawaiian Christmas' HXS 100 which featured a selection of festive tunes. This two-for-the-price-of-one album reached No.28 in the album charts during December.After a long absence from the recording scene came the brilliant 'Hawaiian Country' Valentine VAL8052 released in February 1983. This album contained a selection of C & W tunes played on the Hawaiian guitar and backed by a group of musicians in the shape of Dick Abel (lead/12 string guitar), Colin Green (rhythm guitar), Dave Richmond (bass), Cliff Hall (keyboards), Barry Morgan (drums), Frank Ricotti (tuned percussion/L.A. Percussion), Keith Nelson (banjo), Harry Pitch and Judd Lander (harmonica) plus vocal backing from Norma Winstone, Jean Gilbert and Tracy Miller.
Wout of course played Hawaiian, lead and rhythm guitar.

Wout Steenhuis passed away on Tuesday 9th July 1985 but left behind a legacy of music to enjoy and savour.

(by Kevin Wooten)

Wout Steenhuis Discography

SINGLE 45rpm

Long Road South / Scottish Soldier
Columbia DB4989 - March 1963

Kassian / Minehaha                                                                                                         
Columbia DB7021 - April 1963

Bali Ha'i / Aroha Hawaii                                                                                                 
Columbia DB7181 - December 1963

Teran Boelan / Desert Island
Columbia DB7722 - October 1965

Malihini March / My Little Hula Girl
Columbia DB7837 - February 1966

Nivram / Bay Of Paradise                                                                                                
Columbia DB8027 - October 1966

Wang Wang Blues / Dutch Guitar
Columbia DB8202 - June 1967

Space Walk / What's New
EMI 2729 - January 1978


Blue Hawaii / Hula Blues / Hawaiian War Chant / Hawaiian Hula Song           
Columbia SEG 8407 - May 1965

My Little Grass Shack / Hawaiian Surf Ride / Sweet Leilani / South Sea Island Magic
Columbia SEG 8451 - October 1965

Hawaiian Wedding Song / Moon River / Paradise / Hawaiian Twilight  
Columbia SEG 8487 - June 1966

Hawaiian Chimes / Pidgin English Hula / Hilo / Aroha                        
Columbia SEG 8501 - September 1966


Pidgin English Hula / Hawaiian Hula Song / Hawaiian War Chant / Hawaiian Wedding Song / Hula Blues / I'm Getting Sentimental Over You / Bali Ha'i / Minehaha / Moon Of Manakoora / Aroha Hawaii / Moon River / Kassian / Blue Hawaii / Green Leaves Of Summer
Columbia SX 1585 (mono) SCX 3585 (stereo) - January 1964
Re-issued as 'BLUE HAWAII' on EMI Regal Starline SRS 5005 (stereo) - November 1969

Hawaiian Surf Ride / Harbour Lights / My Little Grass Shack / Paradise / Hilo / Hawaiian Twilight / Haitian Hula / Hawaiian Chimes / Bein Se Que No Me Quieres / Sweet Leilani / Sophisticated Hula / South Sea Island Magic
Columbia SX 1695 (mono) SCX 3584 (stereo) - March 1965

Paradise Island / Desert Island / Moonlight Becomes You / My Little Hula Girl / Nani-ne-oe / Flamingo / Tiger Shark / Blue Dolphin / Malihini March / How Soon / Farewell Hawaii (my tane)  / Teran Boelan / Aloha Oe
Columbia SX 6024 (mono) Studio Two TWO 116 (stereo) - May 1966

Hi Hawaii / Indian Summer / Loa Pu Pu Le / Grains Of Sand / Bye Bye Blues / Blue Grotto Tonga / Silhouette Hula / Bay Of Paradise / Bossa Esplendida / Little Heaven Of The Seven Seas / Nivram / Wang Wang Blues / Song Of The Islands
Columbia SX 6125 (mono) Studio Two TWO 156 (stereo) - April 1967

On Treasure Island / Nina Bobo / Catamaran / Farewell Leilani / Tuki-Tuki / Moonglow / Analani-e / Blue Horizon / Beyond The Rainbow / White Sails / Sarina / Drifting And Dreaming / Kontiki Hula
Columbia SX 6191 (mono) Studio Two TWO 187 (stereo) - November 1967

Michelle / Body And Soul / Play Girl / No Time - No Place / Two Sleepy People / C Bossa / Summertime / The Fool On The Hill / She's Leaving Home / Linda-Lou / Autumn Leaves  / Vanessa
Studio Two TWO 231 (stereo) - November 1968

Bird Of Paradise / On A Little Bamboo Bridge / In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning / Pacific Blues / Into The Blue / Here Is Happiness / Patu Patu Ake / Trade Winds / Lovely Hula Hands / Girl Friday / Nivram  / Kontiki March / San Antonio Bay
Studio Two TWO 271 (stereo) - July 1969

The Very Thought of You / The Gentle Rain / And I Love Her / Why Not Today / Bach Plays Wout / La Playa / Makin' Whoopee / My Funny Valentine / Hum-Dono / The One Who Walks By The Sea / Malindi / Bird In The Park
Studio Two TWO 283 (stereo) - January 1970

Pacific Paradise / In A Trance / Children's Dance / Jungle Sleep / Fragrant Night / Melati Flower / Golden Star / Full Moon / There's No Time To Say Goodbye / Jungle Bird / Sweet Morning / Rowing Song
Studio Two TWO 357 (stereo) - October 1971

I Just Can't Help Believing / Mahi Mahi / Moorea Waltz / How Insensitive / Goodbye Blues / Albatross / Amazing Grace / Bora Bora / Morning Has Broken / Batik / Try To Remember  / Beyond The Reef
Studio Two TWOX 1017 (stereo) - June 1974

What's New / Mr. Tambourine Man / Sealed With A Kiss / Dutch Guitar / Green Green Grass Of Home / Sunny / Space Walk / Love In The Morning / Tiger Eyes / Harper Valley PTA / Lazy Guitar  / Steel Away / Norwegian Wood / Daydream / Rain / House Of The Rising Sun
EMI EMC 3220 (stereo) - January 1978

Just Good Ol' Boys / Good Year For The Roses / Hawaiian Country / I Can Hear Kentucky Calling Me / For The Good Times / Banks Of The Ohio / Sweet Dreams / Rocky Top / Cool Green An' Shady / Love's been Good To Me / Go West Young Man / Vaya Con Dios
Valentine VAL 8052 (stereo)


Maybe someone has this album and someone is eager to share it with us  👍...

Surfin' With Steenhuis 1964
Paradise Island 1966
Wout Steenhuis Meets The Kontikis 1967
Guitars For Girl Friday 1967
Hi Hawaii 1967
An Essay In Romantic Stereophony By Wout Steenhuis 1968

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