The Netherlands: The emotional story behind OG3NE’s Lights and Shadows

by Roy Knoops 4,155 views

Dutch girl band OG3NE presented their Eurovision 2017 entry Lights and shadows on Friday 3 March. What may seem a powerful multi-vocal ballad at first, is actually an emotional personal story that the three sisters have put into a song. The song is inspired by the illness of their mother, Isolde Vol, and it is dedicated to all people who are ill or suffering, and to their families and loved ones.

Lights and shadows by OG3NE is a melodious power ballad, but when one listens clearly to the lyrics, a deeper meaning unfolds. Sisters Lisa, Amy and Shelley Vol of OG3NE are actually singing about their mother Isolde Vol, who suffers from a rare form of bone cancer, and the group dedicates the song to her and all people who are suffering, or who have a loved one who is ill.

Lisa of OG3NE explains:

The inspiration for the song lies close to ourselves. Everybody knows someone who is ill, and how life can suddenly be turned upside down. This song tells about the beautiful things, the Lights, but also about the Shadows in life.

The girls of OG3NE, who are also ambassadors of the Dutch ALS (Amyothrophic Lateral Sclerosis) Foundation, privately sung a rough version of Lights and shadows sitting at their mother’s bedside, who was very moved by the lyrics of the song.

Shelley says:

It is really an ode to our mother. As many people know, she is ill, and with this song we want to musically encourage not only her, but everyone who is sick and their loved ones. We know how it feels. We support this song 100%, it just had to be this way. We feel that it is important that people know what this song signifies. What the message is.

Because of her illness, Isolde Vol will most likely not join her daughters in Kyiv. Her husband, OG3NE’s father Rick Vol who composed the song together with musician/producer Rory de Kievit, said:

In Lights and Shadows, Rory and I have tried to capture the uncertain and unstable life of patients and their families, and to battle this with positivity and hope. The song especially has to give strength.

Although the lyrics of Lights and shadows are bittersweet, it is not a sad song, as OG3NE want to honour the love and strength their mother gives them, and share a message of hope with all people who are suffering.

OG3NE performed Lights and shadows for the first time live Friday evening in the talkshow RTL Late Night: