Picture - Biography

This band's profile is 'invisible', meaning that it's much less prominent on the site - either because it's incomplete, or maybe doesn't entirely fit MS format.





If you say Holland and the first Dutch metal band, which image comes to mind then? Right! We're talking about Picture! And they're back stronger and more motivated than ever.

Picture was the very first Dutch hardrock band with a "record deal". With a history of 7 released albums world-wide and extensive tours throughout Europe with AC/DC, Saxon, Ted Nugent, Rose Tattoo and April Wine, everybody understands the past of Picture.

Back in 1979 (30 years ago) the story of Picture began. Classic songs like "Heavy Metal Ears", "Diamond Dreamer, "Bombers" and "Eternal Dark" (covered later by Swedish metal giants HammerFall) and highly energetic live performances made Picture a very successful band. Picture paved the way for all other successful Dutch hardrock bands that followed in their footsteps soon afterwards.

In many countries in the world Picture is treated as a cult band and when the long anticipated reunion finally happened at the beginning of 2008, many invitations to play on big (foreign) festivals followed soon. A limited edition live CD was being recorded and from December 2008 until January 2009 the band retreated in the StarSound Studios in Utrecht (Holland) to record their new studio album Old Dogs New Tricks.

October 1st 2009, 30 years after the release of their first album, a new Picture studio album Old Dogs New Tricks is officially released. The album contains a wide variety of hard rock and old school metal songs, completed with a breath taking ballad. The album was produced by Nico Verrips, who already produced and wrote numerous hits into the charts and who kept the eighties feeling, but gave the record a contemporary modern sound.

Old Dogs New Tricks is a typical Picture album with a variety of heavy and dynamic songs. The powerful and raw voice of Pete Lovell shows to its full advantage with this kind of heavy music. Add the brilliantly composed songs anno 2009 to this and you will agree that this is Picture in their historically best line-up ever.

(Source: New official website, 24.1.2013)

After being rather successful in a local band, lead guitarist Jan Bechtum decides to put an add in a Dutch music magazine to find a new band. A few months later Rinus Vreugdenhil reads the add and calls Jan to join him and Laurens Bakker to form a new group. The first time they play together they know immediately that this is the band they've been looking for. They decide to name the group Picture. The name had been used before by the local group in which both Rinus and Laurens had played. The search for a good vocalist ends a few months later when Ronald van Prooijen agrees to join Picture. Two months later in August, Picture records a demo in the rehearsal room and the song "My Gun Shoots" from this demo is aired on Dutch radio in the program of Alfred Lagarde.

During a gig in December two Dutch radio people from Vara's Popkrant get excited over Picture and decide to put them on their show. Picture records three songs in a radio studio and these songs are aired together with interviews in January, 1980.

Even before the performance in Vara's Popkrant the band signs a record deal with Warner Brothers.

In March Picture is supporting act for the Canadian rock group April Wine in Amsterdam.

The record deal with Warner is cut off. Warner wanted Picture to play more commercial songs and Picture did not want to play anything other then their own material.

In July Picture opens for AC/DC. Later in July, a new record deal with Phonogram is signed. In the end of 1980 the first album is recorded in the Dutch Wisseloord studios.

The album Picture is released all over the world. The band members, however, are very disappointed over the sound and mix of the album.

Picture does two European tours as supporting act of Saxon and supports Ted Nugent in Amsterdam.

Picture is working very hard to put a new album together which is recorded and released in the fall of 1981 (Heavy Metal Ears). The album's sound is much better.

Picture does a extensive tour in Italy.

Due to personal problems Ronald decides to leave Picture even though international success seems not far away. In South America, Picture becomes very popular. Picture even reaches third place on a Mexican metal popularity list, behind Kiss and Black Sabbath.

A new Israelian singer Shmoulik Avigal joins the band.

Picture is invited by Kiss to join them in a Mexican tour. Everything seems taken care of but unfortunately there is no money to pay for the flying tickets.

The third album Diamond Dreamer, recorded with Shmoulik and co-produced by Pete Hinton (Saxon) and Jan Bechtum is a great success!

Chriz van Jaarsveld is added to the band as a second guitarist to boost the band's live performance.

After a small fight between Picture manager and Shmoulik, the Israelian singer is fired. The English singer Pete Lovell replaces him.

Picture does a small tour in Israel. Right after this tour Jan Bechtum leaves the band for different reasons. Later on Picture is invited to the Donnington festival but the new guitar player Henri Van Maanen is not ready for this and the show is canceled.

The new album Eternal Dark is released but the original Picture sound has gone although the production of the album is again the best ever.

Drummer Laurens Bakker leaves the band.

The album Traitor is recorded with only one original band member left (Rinus).

An invitation to the great Rio festival must be turned down (again) due to financial problems.

The album Every Story Needs Another Picture is recorded almost entirely by studio musicians. The only reason to record this album is the contract with Phonogram. Again a sad milestone in the Picture history.

Former Vandenberg vocalist Bert Heering joins the band.

The album Marathon is the last album Picture would record.

Picture does a single reunion concert in Sliedrecht. The original line-up with Laurens Bakker, Rinus Vreugdenhil, Jan Bechtum and Ronald van Prooijen shakes Holland for the very last time. There was much hope that the four would stay together to do regular shows but organizers were scared off by the huge amount of money Picture management asked for a show. Unfortunately the Picture members did not know this and would not have agreed.

Jan Bechtum starts a new rock band with Mark Maas (drums) and Jos Adema (bass).

When the search for a good vocalist seems to fail they decide to reform Picture hoping for more chances to find a singer.

In January lead singer Michel Zandbergen records a demo with Picture and decides to join the band. A new Picture is born.

After two years of club tours, the new incarnation of Picture is unable to secure a record deal, and Jan disbands the group. Jan goes on to found an IT company in Holland.

Meanwhile, the other members of Picture are involved in various projects. Ronald is singing for a band called Exist and guitarist Chriz van Jaarsveld is playing in a band called Jetland.

Thanks to the efforts of longtime fans signing an online petition, Double Dutch secures the rights to Picture's first four albums, and releases them for the first time on CD. Picture and Heavy Metal Ears are released on one CD, and Diamond Dreamer and Eternal Dark are released on one CD.

(Source: Official website, 24.1.2013)