Phil ‘the Tremolo King’ Vanderyken is a musical polyglot, a wandering bohemian soul whose music reflects his adventurous life. Born and raised in Belgium, Phil has made his home in New York City, Austin, and now New Orleans.
His band “the New Orleans Eclectic Ensemble” features Alex Levy on sousaphone or Brandon Brunious on upright bass, Stephen Montalbo on marimba, Dan Ruch on trumpet, Persis Randolph on bassoon, Tiffany Ann Pollack on vocals, and Megan Harris Brunious on vocals, accordion and trumpet, playing a repertoire ranging from trad to gypsy swing, klezmer or the accasional Turkish tune. “The New Orleans Eclectic Ensemble” had its official debut at the Trinity Artist Series on November 13. A live recording of the concert will be available.
In April ’17 Phil’s original play ‘When books Begin to Burn” was performed at the Mary Majak experimental theater venue. It featured the New Orleans Eclectic Ensemble and a cast of Claire Givens, Siham , Glenn Preston, Josh Stover and Jeff Flack.
A brand new CD is in the works, entitled “St Joe’s Pawnshop Orchestra” with recording taking place at Listen Up! Studios in New Orleans.
Phil and band have played various local venues like Rare Form, AllWays Lounge, Apple Barrel, Casa Borrega, Balcony Music Club, Circle Bar, Tiptina’s, Dragon’s Den, 30/90, Siberia, Mahogany Jazz Hall, and more. They performed monthly for a year-and-half at ‘Tip’s on the Tarmac” at the Louis Armstrong Airport, and have played at the Palmer Park Arts Market, Bach Around the Clock , New Orleans Museum of Art ( NOMA) , Trinity Artist Series. and Live at Aloft.
Phil’s songs combine a European sense of melody and drama with various forms of roots music found in New Orleans’ eclectic music scene. The many characters and hairy situations encountered during the travails of a struggling immigrant musician provide a never ending source of inspiration.
Phil’s first CD “A Man…A Mood…A Guitar” was recorded in NYC with members of legendary ska band the Slackers. His second CD “11” was recorded in Austin and New Orleans and got nice reviews and airplay in the US , UK and Spain. In ’12 Phil did the Tremolo Train Tour, a tour by train from New Orleans to LA, with stops and shows in between, financed by a successful kickstarter campaign and filmed for a future documentary. In ’13 Phil contributed his song “Ride Grim Reaper ride” to the yearly WTUL compilation “Songs from the Basement” and played at the CD release party. He also scored “Simple” an independent New Orleans feature film. In September ’14 he organized a local event for Cassette Store Day at Euclid Records, sharing a bill with Blind Texas Marlin and the Wasted Lives.
Phil has released several music videos. His most recent one, “the Wolf”, recorded at Bear America Records and filmed with an all local cast, follows the hijinks of the proverbial “wolf” ( he’s always at the door!) portrayed with hilarious abandon by local legend Johnny Rock.
Phil has shared the stage with the Dapper Dandies, Renshaw Davies, Blind Texas Marlin, This Stunted Sextette, the Wasted Lives, Natalie Mae Palms, Vic Ruggiero, and many more. He has played gigs in Belgium, Berlin, New York City, Austin, Los Angeles, and Phil the Tremolo King and the Eclectic Ensemble are ready to amaze, intrigue and entertain audiences at your venue.