Even as a little kid, Specs Hildebrand (born: 1950) couldn’t take his eyes off a guitar whenever he saw one. The instrument simply fascinated him. Nevertheless, he had to wait until his 12th anniversary before he himself got his first copy. It soon became obvious, he neither had the temperament nor the talent to repeat guitar solos from great examples note by note. Specs turned out to be a ‘song man’: a man who sings narrative and poetic songs, accompanying himself on his six-string. At an early age he also found out that he had a musical preference for country, folk and blues. So it was just plain logic that, from the age of 17, Specs always joined bands which played these kinds of music.
Specs’ first solo album ‘File Under Popular’ – fully written and composed by journalists Ton de Zeeuw en Jip Golsteijn – was released in 1975. From 1984, after 3 albums with Golsteijn/De Zeeuw songs, Specs en Jip took care of the lyrics, the music and the production of Specs’ albums. That year Specs also initiated his own Living Room Band. Ever since he plays with this group of like-minded spirits – both on stage and on record – country rock, mixed with a substantial dose of rhythme & blues. People who went on to a higher education in this field, nowadays call it ‘Americana’.
However, deep down at heart Specs still sees himself as the ‘guy-with-the guitar’, a solo artist with the However, because deep down at heart he still sees himself as the “guy-with-the-guitar” he once was, at set times Specs visits smaller venues to perform the acoustic, stripped versions of his favourite songs.
But whether he plays with an electric band, with one or two sidemen or solo; the songs always sound great. After all, there are not many singer/songwriters in this country who can show more than 30 years of experience.
To a great extent Specs Hildebrand’s repertoire includes both contemporary country- en blues songs and work from times long past. Covers, but also original material from the 12(!) albums he recorded with The Living Room Band and with the jugband Ugly Duckling.
Specs Hildebrand is a veteran, who still captivates his audience with honest music and funny anecdotes, and who, for more than 30 years now, blends craftsmanship and feeling.