December 5, 2022

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The widower keeps his promise to Benny Neiman for nearly 15 years

The widower keeps his promise to Benny Neiman for nearly 15 years

Relatives Liesbeth List and Benny Neyman released the song Duet You, which the two artists recorded together in the late 1980s, as a single last week. “It’s the first time since Penny’s death that new music has been released for him,” says Hans van Barneveld, 56, who has been married to the singer for many years.

As in the old days

This is the initiative of Elisa, daughter of Lisbeth. In the lead up to her mother’s 80th birthday, she will be releasing her music in the near future. In her search for new music she came across this record. Chanson Jamil has never been released before. I asked if she could release that record. So I said “yes”. Also because there are many new technologies that make old recordings look like new. Ten years ago this was not possible. I am very happy with the result. You’ll hear Penny again as usual.

Prepare

In the past 14 years, after Penny’s death in February 2008, only a unique CD case has been released. Penny’s classmates who wanted to re-release his music were rejected. Dutch singers were told that Benny’s songs could not be recorded by them. And theater producer Hans Kornelisen wanted to do a musical about the late singer’s songs. “I met Hans several times in that time,” says Hans van Barneveld. Those were good conversations and I was really inclined to deal with it. After all, many great musicals have already been created using music by deceased artists. Somehow I gave that to Penny, too. But I also had to think about the promise you made to Penny. His last wish in 2008 was that no one would make fun of his music. I wanted to be loyal to Penny in it and that’s why that play never came out. To this day I do not regret it.