BRIEF ARTIST STATEMENT
My career started at the beginning of the Punk Rock craze in 1976 in The Netherlands. I started out as a vocalist and lyric writer. Experimental Electronic instruments also became part of my passion. Eventually it led me to design my own instruments today. My path has been a long and winding road around the world, collaborating with all types of people in a variety of genres and cultures. I am always looking for a new challenge, as I continue to seek exciting ways to express myself creatively through music, words, photography and film. With today’s cyberspace there are no more borders and creativity is abundant! There is a freedom to work with anyone in the world on a multi-media level. Many of my recent projects have been developed this way, this is a brand new level of collaboration for me proven to be very fruitful indeed.
Truus' musical career spans close to 4 decades. Born in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, she debuted as a chanteuse just at the beginning of the Punk craze in 1976. After a brief stint that introduced her to a touring style of life, with (ultimately) one of Holland's most famous Pop bands "Doe Maar" (then called "Fool's Band Doe Maar"), she continued playing in a number of Dutch bands. Her direction took her into a more experimental phase. She released her first E.P. in 1979 on the Plurex Label with a duet called “BandT Plus Instruments”. Playing odd electronic instruments, Bass and vocals, most of their performances were improvised. She teamed up with Michel Waisvisz, the inventor of the Crackle Synthesizer in numerous performances. At the same time she was also the lead singer in the popular Dutch New Wave Band “Nasmak”. Who released an album, again on the Plurex Label, in 1980, “Instruments Plus Nasmak / Nasmak Plus Instruments”.
After hundreds of performances all through Europe Truus was looking for more challenges and in 1981 got on a plane to NYC never to call the Netherlands her home again. Armed with background tapes of electronic percussion she reformed Plus Instruments with Lee Renaldo (now in Sonic Youth) on guitar and David Linton on Drums, Truus played Bass and the Crackle Synth and sang Lead Vocals. With this line-up they hit the New York club scene, released an Album “Februari April ‘81” on the Dutch Kremlin Label and took off on a European Tour. After returning to the US Truus again reformed the band with a number of musicians, always very active on the club scene both in NY and Europe. At the same time she worked on her solo career performing at the famed “Kitchen” in Soho and playing with Rhys Chatham and his sea of electric guitars.
In 1983 she hooked up with James Sclavunos ( Lydia Lunch, Sonic Youth, the Cramps and now with Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds & Grinderman) to start a completely new chapter. She took a U-turn from the Electronic Euro-Beat and temporarily moved to Memphis to start Trigger & the Thrill Kings with Jim Duckworth (Gun Club) playing a very raunchy Blues, country rockabilly mix. Again they toured throughout Europe and the US and released various records. The 90’s were a time of reflection; Truus concentrated on various solo projects and moved from New York City to a more laid back Seattle.
In 1998 she married renowned artist Bosko and moved to Escondido, CA. Inspired by Bosko's love for Polynesian Pop and encouraged by him to share her creations with the world, she finally decided to release a brand new CD entitled Muzotica in 2000 with follow-up Rancho Exotica. It became a trilogy with the release of "Ritualis" early 2009 - all of these feature her own original compositions with a unique take on Exotica Music.
2010 brought about a collaboration with Bosko Hrnjak, documenting the rise and fall of the mesmerizing Salton Sea in Southern California; it combines dramatic photography by Bosko Hrnjak and her own unique sound. In October 2009 Truus & Bosko were at the legendary STEIM in Amsterdam for a 2 week residency. During that time they recorded a good portion of sound for their project. They released the CD “Salton Sink Vol. 1 - Salton Sea” in 2010. For more info please check http://www.saltonsink.com
In 2011 Truus released a brand new Plus Instruments album “Dance with Me” (Truus Plus Instruments) on July 1 on her very own “Dewclaw Ditties” label features 13 original tracks of mostly driving Synthesizer Dance Music reminiscent of her earlier work in the late 70's and 80's - and a few chosen ballads of heartbreak. It had been almost 30 years since the last full length album for Plus Instruments. The album was mastered and produced by James Sclavunos (Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Grinderman) and Peter Mavrogeorgis (Tav Falco's Pantherburns).
2011 Also brought forth a collaboration with - Dutch artist extraordinaire - Rik van Iersel. The brain child of "Beukorkest", an assemblage of musicians from around the world to collaborate at a break speed tempo. She was part of a 22 piece orchestra, performing a number of shows of over 2 hours after only 3 rehearsals. It invited all to put their best improvisational foot forward, something Truus feels right at home with.
Out of that grew an impromptu collaboration with Johnny Dowd (who was also part of Beukorkest). Truus joined him on a short tour of Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands to perform as his trademark female vocalist that is part of his brilliant approach driven by strong lyrical prose with the humor of the absurd in an enticing mix of funk, soul, blues, rock, country and disco.
In 2011 she collaborated with Solex on an album of Children's songs based on the unconventional outcome of fairy tales, where they make up their own endings to well and not well known stories. Intended for children, yet cool enough for all to be enjoyed. The have finalized a full album, ultimately it is their desire to utilize it in a theater and dance production.
Summer 2012: 31 Years after the release of the Plus Instruments Album “ Februari-April 81” on the Dutch Kremlin label is re-issued on Poutre Apparente (France). A limited edition vinyl pressing of 500 of this timeless work with the line-up of Truus de Groot, David Linton and Lee Ranaldo sounds as fresh now as it did then. Another color edition was released 2 years later.
2013: Plus Instruments released the album "Trancesonics" in July on CD on Dewclaw Ditties. Blowpipe Records released it on Vinyl, featuring guest appearances by Theremin player Jimmy Virani. Another Plus Instruments release "Exile in Paradise", a collection of never before released tracks dating back to 1982 / 83 on the German Label VOD-Records. Released on Vinyl, limited edition, sold out quickly.
Surrealist Pop artist extraordinaire Mark Ryden requested Truus to contribute a song to his Compilation album of the song “Daisy” for his Gay Nineties exhibit. The pink marble vinyl features an array of big names such as Nick Cave, Mark Mothersbaugh, Katie Perry and Weird All Yankovich to name some. This album sold out quickly.
2015: Truus collaborated with Cold Void, a project of internet Visual artist Rafael Rozendaal and Film maker/ musician Luuk Bouwman. The result is the album Cold Void / Plus Instruments.
She also releases a Solo Album “Surrealist Ball” for a special event created by world the famous Baby Tattooville hosted by Pop Surrealist artists Mark Ryden and Marion Peck. 11 original Dance tracks each based on a specific ballroom dance style.
2016 Plus Instruments debuts “Signal through the Waves” featuring, James Sclavunos on Drums and Paulo Beto on synths.
2017: Truus collaborates with Brazilian Post Punk pioneer Miguel Barella under the moniker “Blue Beast”, they release an album “Devil May Care”.
2017 a collaboration between Intige Taluure (BE) and Plus Instruments. A full length album out on ltd edition cassette.
All CD's are available on this site as well as Amazon, ITunes, CD Baby and most Digital download sites as well as her own websites.
AUDIO / VISUAL
PO BOX 300024
Escondido, CA 92030