King’s Song Stays

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The National Committee Inauguration confirmed on Monday that it would use the original song of John Ewbank. The singers have indicated interest in continuing the project. and the concert in Ahoy will proceed as planned.

Composer John Ewbank pulled the song back on Saturday night after a storm of criticism. The Committee said, “Since the launch of the song, there has been a wave of reactions, mostly positive. It is clear that there are also critical voices in our society about parts of the song's lyrics.”

The Committee admires the energy of the composers and the 51 participating artists, who have agreed to continue with the song. After consulting the NPO (Dutch Public Broadcasting) and John Ewbank, the Committee decided to use the King’s Song.

The Committee says it deeply regrets that in the past few days, people have been negatively affected. It is extremely grateful to the composers, the participating artists and the NPO for their commitment and dedication.

The Committe thinks, in retrospect, that the making of the song proved to be a difficult task for a rather short period of time, where justice had to be done to the more than 3,000 contributions to the King’s Song. Committee member Joop van den Ende said on Radio 2 on Monday that the writers were put on a too difficult task and that that was the mistake of the Committee.

Van den Ende understands some of the criticism, but he also emphasizes that it is a matter of taste. “John Ewbank,” he says,  “is not just anybody. From his hand came 20 beautiful No. 1 hits.” The publicity surrounding the song has, according to him, also  made the song well known to the Dutch people.

Van den Ende hopes that now that the decision has been made, the storm will subside. “I hope we realize that we are talking about a song and that on that day a lot of important things are going to happen.”