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Monday, January 23, 2012

I'm a Blues Man - Matthew "Dutch" Tilders

Dutch Tilders (29 August 1941–23 April 2011) (born Mattheus Frederikus Wilhelmus Tilders, anglicised as Matthew Tilders) was a Netherlands-born Australian blues musician
Dutch Tilders was born in the Netherlands in 1941 and emigrated with his parents and siblings to Australia in 1955. As a child he had sung in school and church choirs, but later moved towards blues music, his first paying gig being on harmonica at Collingwood Town Hall at age 15, at a concert also featuring Johnny O'Keefe.

Tilders later took up the guitar, to be able to accompany himself when playing in cafes around Melbourne.

Tilders released his self-titled first album in 1972 and during the 1970s recorded and performed with musicians including Kevin Borich, Taj Mahal, John Mayall and Brownie McGhee.

Tilders also worked solo and toured with John Mayall, Taj Mahal, Brownie McGhee and Sonny Terry. B B King first met him in 1976. Having only heard and never seen Tilders, King assumed that he was black. King and Tilders became good friends mates simply because King believed that, regardless of his European origins, the Dutchman was a genuine bluesman.

During the 1970s and 1980s, Tilders fronted bands such as the Elks, the Cyril 'B' Bunter Band, Mickey Finn and the R&B Six. Later he toured extensively with The Blues Club and The Legends Band.

Tilders was dubbed the "Godfather of Blues" in Australia.[citation needed] As recently as November 2010 he joined Barbara Blue, known as the "Queen of Memphis Blues", on her Australian tour.

Tilders died on 23 April 2011, aged 69. He had announced that he had been diagnosed with esophageal cancer and liver cancer in May 2010, and had retired from performing in January 2011 due to his illness and treatment
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  1. So wonderful to always be finding more pages of Dutch on the web. This is a worthy tribute and on behalf of Dutch Tilders Estate I thankyou for remembering our great bluesman. Lynne 'Peanuts Promotions'. I am here to assist all enquiries re Dutch Tilders Music History. New facelift happening now.