Rest in peace
24 April 2022
Yesterday Belgian all-round artist ARNO, with Bob Dylan my all-time favorite singer/songwriter/performer/entertainer ever, passed away following a long
and destructive battle with cancer. He was a bluesman, a rocker, a crooner,
a storyteller, a humanist, a natural born muscician and so much more.
He was born Arnaud Charles Ernest Hintjens 72 years ago in Ostende, the Queen
of the Belgian beach cities, but lived the greater part of his life in Brussels. He started
his career with a band called Freckleface (1 album, in 1972), then teamed-up with his mate Paul Couter for 2 albums as Tjens Couter.
With TC MATIC
The first trip to big commercial success (in Europe) started in 1980 with one of the best Belgian bands ever. TC Matic stood out with their unique post-punk-blues badass sound and Arno howling about everything and nothing.
They fabricated 5 albums (from good to masterpieces Choco and their self-titled debut LP). The band broke up in 1986 and charlatan (the title of his 2nd LP) Arno went solo. He sang in French and English. He made 15 albums and a new one was finished just before he died.
I saw him performing (with former bands/side-projects and countless times a solo artist) more than 100 times (most of all in my home country of Belgium, of course, but also in France and The Netherlands, on festivals and indoors) giving it all on stage, every single time. He was addicted to playing live and I was addicted to seeing him doing it.
A once-in-my-lifetime hero, forever in my heart and my soul.
His greatest hit was/is Oh La La La (C’est Magnifique), a 1981 classic with TC Matic.
He played it at the end of his shows throughtout his solo career. A stone gold fans classic.
Oh La La La
Rest in peace, old motherfucker…