Halvard Music

Halvard is a music project led by Onno Kestens, operating under his label Stoffer Bliksem.


How did you get together as a band?

If it comes to writing, recording and mixing, it's a solo project. For the gigging I have a pool of musicians/friends to rock.

What is music to you?

A really weird kind of art form.

What is the meaning of the band’s name?

When I was 14 years old, a friend of my dad (named 'Halvard') gave me a speaker box, like an external speaker. 16 years later, I decided to swap the speaker for a better one, and pimp the grill cloth and so fort. I was really content with the results and called the speakerbox 'Halvard'. Than, a few months later I was working on a collection of songs, and was looking for a name for the project. I thought Halvard was a cool name, and from a semantic point of view, the name seemed (by coincidence) to fit the project very well. The lyrics of the first collection of songs explores three state of minds, concerning Nature's Cry (the demolishing of planet earth). Later I found out that Halvard derives from the Old Norse name Hallvarðr, which meant "rock guardian" from hallr "rock" combined with varðr "guardian". So, that's pretty cool.

What is your band to you? Each member can write their own answer

Creating something out of nothing. Well, of course ideas are coming from your head, and your head is full of things, memories of music, film, people, experiences etc. But, I mean, create a full song that, in the beginning, started with a dull melody or riff, which you played by accident (or intended).

What is your music about and what message do you want to send with it?

See answer 'What is the meaning of the band’s name?'. It could be that next album is about something else though.

What inspires you to make music?

Sounds I guess. I love the sound of a good growl out of my amp, the sound of a snaredrum that fits the song, a groovy rhythm, a memorable melody.

Which musicians or bands have influenced your music?

I think the music my dad played have influenced me more than I think it did: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, The Jayhawks, The band, Neil Young, Steely Dan. And modern day artists: Kurt Vile, War On Drugs, Unknown Mortal Orchestra.

What have you learnt from each other that you didn’t know before joining this band?

This is mostly a one-man-project. But, during rehearsals I love moments where my fellow Halvardians come with somethings surprising that fits the song and makes it better.

What is the feeling during a live show?

It depends. Sometimes stressful, most times a lot of fun.

What do you dream of?

I don't remember my dreams very well.

What does it take for a band to get their music heard by a larger audience?

Have a good network I guess...

How do you see the musicians’ reality nowadays? What could be improved?

I think it is important to be able to master different disciples that comes with making music, think about writing, recording, mixing, social media, graphic design. Or just know where to find the right people.

What do you think of Drooble?


What does frustrate you most as a band?

The main focus on 'following', 'numbers' in stead of tones.

Do you support your local scene as fans? How?

Of course, go to live shows, buy vinyl!