The news reached us yesterday that our colleague Bas Springer had died last Saturday evening. Well over two weeks in advance he had informed us he could not attend a meeting due to a bad case of pneumonia, but it turned out to be metastasized lung cancer. When treatment was ceased, Bas was brought home so he could spend more time with his partner Debbie, but in the end, he died the following day.
It is bizarre and shocking to lose a colleague we had just shared experiences with after a memorable concert in the Amstelkerk in Amsterdam and who not three weeks earlier had submitted an enthusiastic CD review.
Music, and especially music from other cultures, played a major role in his life. After having spent years working in the Boudisque record store Bas decided to focus on music journalism, finding a platform at the Dutch daily Financieele Dagblad. Apart from that he also wrote for various Dutch magazines as Afrika, Aloha, Revolver, Onze Wereld and until this month for Spanje and Lust for Life. From 2013 onward until two weeks ago he also regularly contributed feature articles and festival reports to the UK periodicals fRoots, Songlines and the American website Afropop.
He made the radio show Mariama for the Concertzender, with old and new music from Africa and for years had been musical programmer for the Dutch national public radio program Dichtbij Nederland (The Netherlands Up Close) on Radio 5. He was also active as DJ Mombasa, naturally with world music as his specialty.
Bas was a networker par excellence, who easily made contacts and maintained an enormous, worldwide network. It yielded him countless invitations to visit festivals, often at exotic locations, such as Malaysia and his favorite spot: La Réunion. And he enthusiastically and informatively reported on all those festivals, with an eye for detail in all shapes and sizes.
Bas was closely involved with our former magazine Beyond and then, here, at MixedWorldMusic.com, where he took on the task of coordinating the CD review section. If a preview had to be written, you could always call him. Besides writing and coordinating he was active every year at the Music Meeting in Nijmegen and the Houtfestival in Haarlem, where he interviewed artists with flair in the Mixed Media Lounge before or after their performances.
We will miss him dearly!