European Youth Portal
Information and opportunities for young people across Europe.

Power to the Pipo!

Great Dutch band Power to the Pipo and their Mobile Funk Station
This year, as a Eurodesk multiplier, I participated in YO!fest in Netherlands. While I was checking the bands that got to play there, one band caught my attention.

Their name, to be exact. After the name (Power to the Pipo!), I saw the stage they brought with them - their Mobile Funk Station (on the photo), which in my opinion was the most interesting one. And the last, but not the least, I had the opportunity to listen to their music.

I had to find out more about this band!


  • Who is Power to the Pipo? Who is Pipo?

Power to the Pipo is a Dutch band playing raw funky stuff. Sometimes subtle, but mostly not so much. The band consists of Michiel Sonnevijle (saxophone), Luc Pustjens (bass), Stefan Franssen (drums) and Virgil Rerimassie (guitars). Our music leans heavily on improvisation and is largely instrumentally. However, there is also the occasional shouting and “singing”. With regard to our name, “Pipo” is actually a famous Dutch clown, and prior to when we had a band name – but already started playing together – the music turned out to be rather clownish. People can get so serious about music, but for us it’s like playing with toys and having a good time with each other and the audience, hence Power to the Pipo! We just finished recording our first album “Leipe Shit”, which is scheduled for release by this summer.


  • Where have you played so far? I bet your stage is perfect for this!


We have played all over The Netherlands in bars or at larger venues. During YOfest we brought our very own stage: the Mobile Funk Station. Two years ago, our bass player and his roommate Thomas Balvers – aka DJ Fafi – got the idea to pimp an old-school caravan and turn it into a mobile stage and DJ booth. And we have been travelling with it ever since.


  • What do you guys do except playing? What are your professional careers?


Our drummer and saxophone player are solely making a living by making and teaching music. Our bass player works part-time as a social worker. Our guitarist studied law and European studies on science, technology and society and currently works as a policy advisor on biotechnology.


  • Why did you apply to play on YO!fest in the first place?


All four of us have our roots in the South of the Netherlands and partied – and played – at the Muziekgieterij many times. So we were really happy with their invitation to play at YOfest.


  • Did you get any chance to check some of the workshops? Did you participate in any of the activities?


No! Sadly not. All of us had to work in advance (laughing).


  • What did you like on YO!fest the most? Was there something that you didn’t like?


We really enjoyed the vibe of the event and the international atmosphere. Maastricht and the European Union are so strongly intertwined. This was nicely reflected in the festival. European young people having a good time together.


  • You are young. What do you think - what is the biggest problem (or challenge) that youth nowadays encounters? Do you maybe have a solution?


A lot of our lyrics deal with the issues young people are facing, such as “Loempia” (which is a spring roll) and “Put your booty in the fridge”. All kidding aside, it’s nice to be able to make music that is aimed at improvisation, dancing and making fun. There is so much insecurity these days. It varies from concrete personal questions such as: will I get a decent job after I graduate, to geopolitical questions like: what is going on in the world right now? What is happening in the U.S., in the European Union, etcetera?  It’s hard to make sense of everything that is going on.


  • Do you have a message to young people?


A famous Dutch politician’s motto was: “we have an obligation to be optimistic”. We are here now, we are young and with our actions we are shaping the future for our children. So, for ourselves – and for them – we have an obligation to make it the best we can. Looking at issues through this lens can work miracles.


  • Do you have anything else to add?

Thank you! :)



Be sure to check their music on the Internet and if you get the chance to go on their concert and see them live, I highly recommend it!


Thank you guys for your time and- Power to the Pipo!



Ana Tavić, Youth Association Alfa Albona