The original Gentle Men recording was released in 1997 by Robb Johnson in collaboration with Roy Bailey, Belgian singer Vera Coomans and Belgian jazz band Koen De Cauter and the Golden Serenaders. The album takes the form of a song cycle inspired by the experiences of Johnson’s grandfathers during the First World War, and was released as part of the Vredesconcerten Passendale (Passchendaele Peace Concerts) series. The project was an annual event, whereby a singer/group is asked to create a work in memory of Passendale (Passchendaele).

Few
 songwriters
 have
 the
 armoury
 to
 attempt
 a
 song
 cycle
 as
 delicate
 as
 this.
 The
 incorrigible
 Johnson
 ‐
 a
 fringe
 figure
 for
 far
 too
 long
 ‐
 is
 one
 of
 the
 few
 with
 the
 conviction 
and
 sensitivity 
to 
make
 it 
work
 MOJO
 

What
 the
 media
 said
 originally
 about
 the
 1997 
version
 of
 Gentle 
Men:

Moving
 and
 impressive … a
 compelling
 family 
historyDAILY
 TELEGRAPH

Superb fROOTS


A
 superb
 work  R2 
(formerly 
ROCK’N'REEL)

A
 milestone
 album TAPLAS

97-singers-portrait1

Vera, Robb and Roy