Vort’n Vis genesis

Posted: July 5, 2012 in History
Tags: , ,

Sure I can tell something of the starting-days of the Vort’n Vis, I’m one of the co-founders. I originated from a combination of a few things:

* ‘Just Something’, my puberty punk-band of that time: with Patrick Cherchy (bass & vocals), Patrick Calliauw (guitar), myself (guitar & vocals) and my brother David (drums),

* Jan Claus who was playing (with Patrick Calliauw) in the ‘Modern Underdogs’,

* and a few characters in the margin (sort of fans), can ’t name them all…

We were all regulars at the café [pub] San-Marco, the youth-centre (JOC) and café Den Bolhoed; the local alternative places of the Ieper centre during those days (ca. 1985)… We were looking for a new rehearsal-room, the former one (which I had managed to get by flirting with the daughter of the baron of Ieper) was converted into a war-museum (which it still is)… Through my dad, Jan Claus got in contact with the brewer who owned the café The Biker. That was closed and after negotiations with the OCMW [social welfare centre] and such, we were allowed to rent the place; the upstairs floor was still inhabited by some poor guy… Pretty soon it became clear that our new “rehearsal-space” was gonna become a café and a party-place.

In the beginning we stuck together and organised in a rather free and anarchic way, which was great but had its consequences (cash-register being robbed, drug-(ab)use, violence, etc.) and after a while (which was to be expected) the pushing and shoving for power started, the biggest mouth often got his way. I never really got to have my say on a management-level but I totally chose for anarchy and the cooperation. Jan Claus wasn’t gonna let himself be pushed of the throne even though people often tried…

Nowadays rehearsals are not even allowed at the Vort’n Vis…oh irony of fate…because of the noise and such… And the local bands don’t even get a place on the hardcore festival…

I completely respect those with an other opinion but on that level the V.V. is as conformist as the local supermarket… Coca-cola sells better than a cheaper brand cola, end of story…

Oh well, no nagging…the V.V. is still there and we (punks, skins, hard-rockers, etc.) have proven that it is possible to get along and corporate on a fairly anarchic basis. On a musical level a lot of things passed by and happened, changed,… When I oversee things quickly, besides a fair number of dramas (suicide, overdose, murder, theft, rape, addiction, assault and battery, illness,…), a lot of ve-e-e-e-ery nice things have happened (marriage, birth, career in rock-business, nice parties,…) and a ‘scene’ evolved (with a positive impact and a ‘no nonsense just be good’ attitude…) around the V.V.

So the original intention of the de Vort’n Vis grew, in the courtyard of my parents’ house, discussing about a new rehearsal-shack (I hardly believed in it myself) but went wrong already after about 2 months. The real cooperation (aiming for rehearsal-spaces, a music-studio) principally failed. But what resulted from it was indeed the voice of the youth, and that was from the beginning the main reason for its genesis, the incentive and the cause of our existence…

That is how it was for me as a co-founder. As fellow party-goer and musician I have other experiences, feelings. In the end (and since the beginning), the Vort’n Vis is a great café…

Joeri Stubbe; musician/artist

Jan Claus

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