Local Rockstars: Henk Petter's morgen.am and tomorrow's music

Local Rockstars: Henk Petter’s morgen.am and tomorrow’s music

Oct 17, 2014 |  by  |  Event

Whether you went out last weekend to check out an uber-geeky beat magician or a depressingly awesome indie rock band, we all know there’s always some serious musical talents rocking around the Dam. You might not recognize them all yet, but don’t worry, you will soon. In this series of interviews we talk to remarkable artists about their music and their inspirations.

The ADE violence is full on: time to get to know our local heroes. Speaking of which, I can’t go around Henk Petter, foreman of morgen.am. The magic usually happens in the morning, which exemplifies exactly what these men are all about: hard working artists that will take their music to another level, while the sun already sets into yet another morning.

Explain to me once again: what does morgen.am stand for and who are you guys?
“morgen.am is an Amsterdam booking agency and label under the management of Sander Klemann (left in the photo) and myself. We represent local talents in which ‘morgen’ refers to both the music of tomorrow and the artists’ future, and ‘.am’ to Amsterdam and the early hours where the music is mostly produced and played. Those moments provided great opportunities to get to know one another over the past years. Sander handles the business side, while I’m more the creative strategist, yet our roles often overlap and differ from manager to and babysitter. Meanwhile our family consists of the following acts: Francesco Robustelli, Doppler, Hubert Kirchner, Olaf Stuut, La Vondèl, ME.N.U., Some Chemistry and Studio.Morgen.


What does it take for an artist to join the label? Are you actively looking for artists or do they come to you?
“It usually comes naturally, yet you do have to put yourself out there on a few fronts: you have to produce original music, your performance has to be strong, preferably organise your own events, be socially attractive and of course: know how to party. And there is this .am-factor you just need to have.”

So what made you decide to do this kind of work?
“My own musical background never really persisted: I’ve played the drums and the guitar, but more for myself really. I intensely enjoy listening to music while witnessing the pleasure that radiates from the artist. The idea that I can facilitate and support music through morgen.am is what thrives me. Plus, working with Sander is a blessing: since he joined us we pushed the boundaries to elevate our artists and their music to a higher level. The current energy level is greater than ever.”

It really caught my eye last year that there was a lot of international force behind all the ADE parties. Of course it’s great that the world’s eyes are on Amsterdam, but local artists were barely brought to the attention or were merely support acts.

What was your absolute highlight of the past year?
“It’s hard to name just one. The best moments are usually the showcases with all our friends present. Last year we went to Chalet Club in Berlin, with about 100 people from Amsterdam to support us. It was unforgettable, but the trips to Groningen, Utrecht and our tour through Macedonia were just as amazing. Our label nights at Doka and Canvas were all great and our secret stage on Buiten Westen is something precious: an infamous get-together within the festival, where the after party usually lasts as long as the festival itself.”

“It sounds like the highlights mainly happen on the road; however, the continuous musical development of our artists is something we witness from up close and experience as a privileged pleasure and personal highlight.”

Your next showcase is on Sunday during ADE, something I personally look forward to. What do you aim for with throwing a party like ADE Family Affair?
“Isn’t ADE the perfect occasion to put local young guns and their efforts in the spotlights? That’s why we came up with the idea for a compilation release and showcase. It was inspiring to unite diverse talent and original music in a release party and LP, it’s good to see ADE listed events supporting local artists. And as all your friends are all over the place during ADE, we’re finishing it in style altogether on Sunday, at daytime and night.”

Last but not least: what’s on your planning ‘morgen’ (tomorrow in Dutch)?
“There are about four buffaloes bathing in a mud pool in front of me while I’m typing this and there’s a small praying mantis walking over my screen. Tomorrow I’ll leave this national park in Tanzania and fly back to Amsterdam, just in time for ADE and our Family Affair. In a less literal sense, there’s a promising release coming up by the end of December from one of the artists in the current compilation.”


When: October 19th, 13:00-01:00
Where: Baut, Wibautstraat 125
Tickets: €7,50, at the door only
Online: Website & Facebook

Photos by Jip Broeks

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