Golden Earring bassist George Kooymans was made an honorary citizen of the Belgian municipality of Rijkevorsel on Saturday. The composer from The Hague has lived in a village near his southern neighbors for fifty years. Due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Kooymans can no longer play guitar, but he looked back on a rich Saturday rally. “Only now do you realize what you have achieved.”
In the presence of his wife Millie, two children, and three grandchildren, Hagenar received the birth certificate and many gifts at the town hall. Kooymans is pleased with the appointment and speaks of it as a “great honour”. He says in conversation with Newspaper.
“Actually, we ended up here by accident,” Koymans continues. “The intention was to move to the United States in the early 1970s, but it wasn’t easy. That’s why we went to Rijkevorsel to research. I’ve lived here for more than half my life, and yet I remain Dutch. I didn’t adopt the accent.”
My fingers are crooked. Singing is still possible
Golden Earring has become known for big hits like Radar loveAnd Twilight Zone And When the lady smiles. In March, the band had to stop performing because Kooymans suffers from ALS. “Playing the guitar is no longer possible,” says Koymans. “My fingers are crooked. Singing is still possible. Everything is restricted by illness. My days consist mainly of listening to music and reading. And every week we meet up with some friends. You happen to have a career in music, and only now do you realize what you’ve achieved.”
Many positive feedback
Kooymans’ friends approached the municipality of Rijkevorsel with a request to make him an honorary citizen. “When that news became known, we had a lot of positive feedback at Regiforcell,” Koeman’s friend Stanny van Osteyn told the paper.
“With his labors, George has moved a stone in a musical river. Yet he and his family have always remained ordinary people without delusions of grandeur. After a performance attended by twenty thousand fans outside, you can see him queuing at the supermarket checkout the next day to pay for his groceries “.
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