After four decades, an enigmatic album by Dutch Eurovision 1975 winners Teach-In has finally been recovered and made available to the public.
Following their victory at Eurovision 1975 with the song Ding-a-dong (original Dutch version Dinge-dong), the band Teach-In experienced a sudden whirlwind of success.
ing-a-dong became a hit across Europe and the band around iconic front-woman Getty Kaspers released the album Get on board and the singles Goodbye love and Rose valley.
Getty Kaspers left Teach-In in 1976, pursuing a solo-career under the mononym Getty. The band was then joined by two female vocalists, the Dutch Marianne Wolsink and the Flemish Betty Vermeulen, resulting in the group’s biggest Dutch hit, Upside down.
In 1979, Teach-In travelled to the United Kingdom to record their album Room 115, named after the hotel room-number in which they stayed, in 10CC’s Strawberry Studio’s. Two singles were released, Bad days and Regrets, but the recordings of the album mysteriously disappeared before the entire album was released.
Album has been found!
For many years, rumours surrounded the lost Teach-In recordings: they were said to be stolen after someone left them in a car, or perished in a fire in a storage box. A desperate search for copies of the recordings ensued, a national call to everyone involved with the recordings issued by DJ Joost den Draaijer (alias of Willem van Kooten) and producer Eddy Ouwens.
Now, 40 years later, the recordings have been recovered: ironically enough by Teach-In’s drummer Ab “Appie” Timmer and his son Dennis, in the band’s hometown Enschede:
Back then several copies of the mastertapes were made. In those days I had a sound studio here in Enschede, and I had a lot of sound tapes from that time lying around. My son Dennis, who also owns a studio, was listening to them. He wanted to know what we recorded here in the former days. And then he found those tapes again. Pure coincidence.
Ab Timmer is very pleased that Room 115 is finally recovered and is now available, even purely for nostalgic reasons:
We really won’t get rich from it, but above all it’s fantastic that now they’ve shown up again (…) But the beautiful thing is that the collection of Teach-In is now complete.
Room 115 by Teach-In, released by record label Red Bullet, is now available, including on iTunes and Spotify.
The band Teach-In was formed in Enschede in 1967, and soon attracted attention with their catchy melodies infused with pop, folk and country elements, and their striking attire fitting within the Flower Power and hippy-movement of the 1960’s. The band’s members changed on several occasions.
In 1975, Teach-In had their major international breakthrough when the band won the Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm, Sweden.
Led by vocalist Getty Kaspers, who was born in Austria and adopted in the Netherlands, the band at the time consisted of Ard Weeink, Chris de Wolde, John Gaasbeek, Koos Versteeg and Ruud “Rudi” Nijhuis.
Teach-In performed Ding-a-dong (credited as Ding dinge dong) as opening entry of the contest, and ultimately won with 152 points.
Teach-In were the last Eurovision-winners of the Netherlands, although the country reached the top-ten several times, and came close to winning the Eurovision Song Contest 2014 with the hit Calm after the storm by The Common Linnets, who actually won semi-final 1.
Ding-a-dong was a hit throughout Europe and remains a beloved Eurovision evergreen. The song was covered several times, including in French by French-Israeli singer Rika Zaraï (as Le petit train) and in Turkish by Füsun Önal (as Söyleyin arkadaslar).
Russian singers Alyona Apina and Murat Nasyrov used Ding-a-dong‘s melody for their song Moonlight nights (Лунные ночи), and a Greek version was recorded by Bessy Argyraki (who herself participated in Eurovision 1977, representing Greece as part of the group Paschalis, Marianna, Robert & Bessy, placing 5th with Mathima Solfège).
Pop-singer Sarolta Zalatnay made a Hungarian version of the song.