Earth and Fire
Earth and Fire website
November 23rd 1968 is the date of birth of Earth and Fire. Chris Koerts (solo-guitar), Gerard Koerts (solo-guitar, keyboard), Hans Ziech (bass-guitar) and Cees Kalis (drums) are the first members of the group. Manuela Berloth joined the group as a singer after she had already established a solo career under the name of Lysett.
A few months Manuela leaves Earth and Fire, beeing replaced Jerney Kaagman.
Joop Roelofs (of the rock group Q65) brings Earth and Fire in contact with the members of another famous Dutch rock group called The Golden Earring. They are quite positive about Earth and Fire and the result is an invitation to open as supporting act for the Golden Earring, starting September 19, 1969. During the last show Fred Haayen, manager and producer of the Golden Earring, has a major surprise. He asks Earth and Fire to cut their own record. Earring guitar player George Kooymans requests for tracks which would make a suitable debut release. As none of the tracks are suitable, according to his opinion, he offers his own composition named "Seasons".
During the 70's an unbreakable string of very successful hits followed with "Invitation" (71), "Storm and Thunder" (71), "Memories" (72), "Maybe Tomorrow Maybe Tonight" (73), "Love of Life" (74), "Only Time Will Tell" (75), "Thanks For The Love" (75), "What Difference Does It Make" (76) and "7, 8th Avenue" (77), as the fans noticed the group's material deviating from the hard-edged progressive rock sound towards mainstream 70s pop.
In 1978, drummer Van der Kleij was the first to leave, followed shortly by bassist Theo Hurts. They were replaced by Appie Tamboer and ex-Focus bassist Bert Ruiter (Jerney's new boyfriend) respectively. The band didnt play live much anymore, at the end of the 70s, and the demos for the new album were rejected by Jaap Eggermont, their producer. Earth and Fire then proceeded to switch their record labels from Polydor to Vertigo, with which they recorded and released 1979s "Reality Fills Fantasy", produced by Gerrit Jan Leenders. This album, which was once deemed by Eggermont as "not having enough commercial potential", became the bands greatest succes to date! The single, "Weekend", hit the top of the charts and stayed at No.1 for weeks, in several countries!
However, in early 1980, Chris Koerts left the band. His position was taken by Ronnie Meyes (previously with Brainbox). With him in the fold, the band recorded their significantly less successful "Andromeda Girl" (1981), but the followup, "In A State of Flux" (1982), scored fairly big! On this album, the group returned to their funkier roots. It combined punchy, concise, melodic rock with some symphonic arrangements, at last making an overdue comeback. "Twenty Four Hours", a song by Gerard Koerts, subsequently became a hit. The Spring of 1983 saw Earth and Fire reduced to a trio. Meyes went on to join The Millionnaires, Tamboer, and Het Goede Doel.