Red Shoe Sessions organise small house concerts around Nijmegen but this time they arranged a whole day of artists in a large multi roomed house.
De Refter is a commune which has been in operation since the 1980s and is housed in an imposing Gothic building in Ubbergen just outside Nijmegen. It was a boarding school run by nuns but now is home to 80 people.
There were 5 concerts in different parts of the building. The first one was in the chapel and was like a ‘gong bath meditation’ except the two guys used different types of sound producing instruments. Most people closed their eyes but I had to peek sometimes to see what they were using! Then we went upstairs to an apartment and on a terrace we listened to Mary Lee & the B-side Brothers, a Brazilian garage punk group. then back outside to climb a tower to hear Lou Shields an American slide guitarist. The fourth concert was in a library and Roosbeef is a Dutch woman who recited poetry and played piano – I could only half understand! The last concert was in the basement and it was Benjamin Yellowitz, an nice guy from Birmingham.
On the way back to Nijmegen we passed the location of de Kaaij and saw how flooded it was! The Kaaij festival starts in early July, so we hope the water will recede soon!