Maarten Swaan is a singer/songwriter/musician from Holland, and also a founder of the popular Dutch-American band Melou.
In 2005 Maarten left Holland for a life of traveling the world and playing music. Starting in Guatemala, Maarten met Annie Goodchild, with whom he found the band Melou. They recorded 2 full-length albums (“Communication“, 2006; “Battery Park“, 2008) and did 3 extensive tours through Europe and New England. In the summer of 2009, Melou played her last show in Holland, and the members decided to go their own ways into the world of music.
In September of ’09, Maarten’s musical adventure took him on a tour in Holland and England with American songwriter Leslie (Serpentfly) Helpert. He then ventured to Boston to play and tour for 3 months with singer Charlie Christos.
While touring and recording for other groups Maarten began writing his own music. Recording demo tracks on a laptop, based on only piano, guitar and vocals, he created an ambient, 70’s sounding vibe reminiscent of Pink Floyd, the Beach Boys and Queen. In February ’10, Maarten traveled to the beautiful and inspiring city of Barcelona to record his debut album at the Emergency Room Studio with producer Dave Bianchi. The goal was to keep the ambient 70’s sound from the demos in the new recording, but to add a full band. With the help of his musical friends in Barcelona, Dave and Maarten created a wonderful EP, entitled: “Write Me Notes” that was released in June “10 worldwide on I-tunes.
In the summer of 2010 Maarten got asked to join his friends in the “Negritos“, an Argentinian band, to play bass for them. With them he then ventured to Buenos Aires for 2 months where he toured during the summer months of December ’10 and January ’11. From the hot summer in Argentina he flew to the cold winter of New England, where Maarten toured New York, Boston and many cities in Vermont and New Hampshire. Again with his good friend Charlie Christos he performed in a duo show, songs from both albums ” Write Me Notes” and Charlies album “Widow’s Gun” on which Maarten played guitar.
All of the touring gave Maarten enough inspiration to write enough songs for a new album. Back in Barcelona, he started with his band for the 4th time in cooperation with Dave Bianchi, the recordings for his 2nd solo album. “Broken Bike” is the title of the album, which contains a duet with Leslie (Serpentfly) Helpert. A much more diverse album, less melancholic, but still with it’s epic moments, different styles, and topped of with a classical piano piece this EP almost can be called a full length album. In December of 2011 it was officially released under the independent abel ” Whatabout Music” .
After the recordings, Maarten took the band for an album release tour in Holland. Later in the year, in September, they all ventured to the USA, where they played a 2 week tour in the New York and New England area. They played in cities as New York, Boston and many places in Vermont, New Hampshire and Main. This all together with Charlie Christos, with whom they toured together, mixing the sets of Maarten and Charlie, supported by the band.
This all brought the band even more together and new plans were made for a next album, which will be released in July of 2013. Maarten Swaan’s full length album “Voices” is a fact and it will be released together with the new EP “Skylark” with beautiful singer Annie Goodchild under the band name Melou.
You can find the music under Live!