Eternal Conversations

Pat & Evert

Patricia Maessen and Evert Verhees

"When we met in the mid-seventies, Pat could already look back on a successful musical journey as one of the three  singing sisters who formed the Dutch band Hearts of Soul and the Belgian band Dream Express.  In those years we regularly worked together at recording sessions as well as on stage and soon bonded together as  like-minded souls in our musical preferences. In 1978 we officially became a couple.

Living together inspired us to write and compose songs for upcoming, but soon to be well known young artists as well as for ourselves as a team-with-a-plan.

Pat's feeling for poetic lyrics and her ability to sing them in her own specific way led to seven compositions which we recorded at home with an old upright piano on a cassette tape. Our first step to a more ambitious project: a professionally recorded song cycle, steeped in the music we both loved. An open conversation between pop, jazz and classical.

One day, after a session at Morgan studios in Brussels, we talked about our project with house sound engineer Mike Butcher. He generously offered us a night session to record our songs with access to one of the best Steinway pianos around. As a result of this offer we couldn't refuse, we left the studio early the following morning with a stereo vocal/piano tape that would be supplemented later with three additional compositions.

Due to an increasingly busy schedule and its impact on our daily life, we unfortunately had to put our ambitions aside. In the meantime we collected the available recordings of the project on a CD as a tangible reminder. 

Then, in 1996, the unthinkable happened. Pat passed away.
It would turn the lives of our son Tim and myself upside down and I would soon realise that our work in progress, as we had imagined it, had become impossible.

Until, a few years ago, a meeting with classical composer Jeroen D'hoe rekindled a new enthusiasm about our project and inspired me to accomplish the mission that Pat and I once had in mind: to develop and enrich the songs by adding full rhythm section and string ensemble arrangements.

Using the original vocal/piano recordings as a starting point and thanks to a close collaboration with top fellow musicians as well as a renewed cooperation with Mike Butcher, the song cycle that Pat and I created together, has now been brought to fruition.

I hope it sounds as timeless as we both wanted from the beginning"
-- Evert

Pat & Evert

Eternal Conversations

We’re proud to announce the release (CD/digital) of the album ‘Eternal Conversations’ by bassist, songwriter and producer Evert Verhees and songwriter/vocalist Patricia Maessen.

In the early 80's Pat & Evert recorded only vocals and piano of this self-written song cycle. Patricia died far too young in 1996 ... and the album was never really finished. Until now, that is. The songs were completed with elaborate arrangements and the contributions of an exclusive club of absolute top musicians. The result is a stunning and timeless song cycle somewhere between jazz and pop. An emotional reunion with a strong singer.

Album front cover - Pat & Evert - Eternal Conversations

Album back cover - Pat & Evert - Eternal Conversations

Album Credits

Arranged and produced by Evert Verhees.
Strings arranged by Evert Verhees / Orchestrated and conducted by Jeroen D'hoe

Patricia Maessen – vocal & lyrics - Evert Verhees – acoustic piano, bass, ac guitars & music - Marc Bonne – drums, Claude Salmieri – drums, Eric Melaerts – guitars, Kevin Mulligan – guitar, Philip Catherine – guitar (special guest) , Cesar Janssens – percussion, Bart Quartier – vibraphone, Bert Joris – trumpet, Jeroen D’hoe and the Ataneres String Ensemble

Mike Butcher - engineer, Michel Dierickx – engineer, Guy Maes - vocal/piano isolation processing
Recording studios: ICP Studios, Morgan Studios, Nippersound Studio, STM Studio (Belgium)

Artwork front sleeve by Cesar Janssens - Photography by Veronique Onderdonck, Rob Ten broek, Serge Vermeir
Liner notes by Roland Arnould with special thanks to Barry McNeese

Supertonic Records