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Highlighting talent from the North

Hit the North is a unique collaboration between festivals and educative institutions from the north of the Netherlands. Hit the North is established to stimulate professional talent development in Groningen, Friesland and Drenthe. Northern pop culture is unique, but often artists experience many difficulties that hold them back from really breaking through. 

Over a period of one year twelve participating acts are offered knowledge, facilities and network. The goal? To enhance their professional music career. Hit the North is focused on practical experience. Participants will participate in several bootcamps and get a chance to play on a stage during Eurosonic Noorderslag in January. The Hit the North-programme is necessary for new and upcoming artists, because the making it in and understanding the music industry has proven to be difficult. Especially, knowledge of the field and the artistic development need extra attention and improvement.

The goal of Hit the North is to provide twelve talented artists from the north of the Netherlands with a project focused on coaching and professionalism. This project is meant to improve both the artistic and the business skills of the artists in order to achieve a significant development in their future career.

Hit the North 2021

Particpating acts in 2021 are from Friesland: Blondeau, Faske, Timo de Jong and Cloudsurfers. From Drenthe: christopher404, Hiigo, DANYTHA en T A M A R. And from Groningen: Jonathan Rhodes, Jadi D, CYNN and Them Dirty Dimes. They are chosen out of many enrollments and will start their yearlong programme at ESNS21. 

Blondeau_Pers Foto

Blondeau’s sensual music brings old and new influences together. “Attract Me Now”, his debut EP, consists of smoky blues and sultry jazz elements with a fresh pop structure. He sings about honesty and openness and with his raw numbers, he dares you to take a look in the mirror. 



This band, which consists of four members from Nijmegen & Zwolle with Frisian roots, won the “Best Talent” award at Popgala Noord. They make garagepunk on a fast paced surfboard and have a great energy on stage.   


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christopher404 has his head in the clouds and both his feet on the ground. He writes intimated Dutch lyrics that does not only sketch his personal opinions, but will remind you of your own experiences and memories in a fast-paced world.  


CYNN - Press photo

CYNN, a one-woman band which consists of Cyntha Weiss. She controls a maze of equipments and instruments with which she makes her downtempo pop. During the proces CYNN completely merges with her instruments and floats in an endless space of sad songs that she grabs from thin air.



22 year old DANYTHA finds a way to deal with her personal situations through her music. By doing this, she encounters her fears and insecurities, but also love. In her lyrics she wants to inspire everyone to get a positive image about a negative feeling.



Singer-songwriter Faske gets his inspiration from the paradoxical existence of a twenty year old. While his lyrics describe some serious themes, including student debt and sporadic heartbreak, he tries to make them discussable by translating them into pop songs. 



A band that sings about life, death, coming home and pure happiness. The emotion is always close to the surface and the lyrics are recognizable and easy to sing along. They have already performed at various stages throughout the Netherlands. 


jadi d

Jadi D
The empowering and powerful Jadi D has a message that she wants to convey in her music, “girl you got this”! The in 1995 born Jadi D is all about confidence, sexiness and fierceness. She made her debut in 2019 and plans on going to the top. 


Jonathan Rhodes

Jonathan Rhodes
The music of Jonathan Rhodes has rough edges and is often unfinished, just like our lives. His songs are formed from inspiration which is drawn from the rich American music tradition Americana. With songs that that keep listeners to the edge of their seats. 


HITTHENORTH-Tamar - HR - Jantina Talsma55

T A M A R makes extraordinary stories about the everyday life, which are put into poetic pop songs. She started her musical career writing in English, but switched to Dutch after releasing her song “Nooit te weinig tijd voor een liedje”. Her new EP will be released in 2021. 


Them Dirty Dimes_Pers Foto

Them Dirty Dimes
It took a while for the members of Them Dirty Dimes to find each other, but once they did, they produced an album full of songs in less than a year. With their shared love for 1920’s music, they create old fashioned jazz, gypsy and blues with a modern touch. 


Timo de Jong-3 (Foto door Bram Heeren)

Timo de Jong
With his country, folk and music, inspired by the sixties, Timo de Jong provides a pleasant living room atmosphere during every performance. Timo’s done more than 600 live performances and has done multiple international gigs and tours.


Hit the North 2020

Participating acts in 2020 were: Cashmyra, Delore, Isa Zwart, Moonradio, Same Old, Seewolf, The Desmonds, The Resurrection and The Vices. They performed at the digital version of ESNS. 

Hit the North 2019

Participating acts in 2019 were: Woe Blind Birds, Lester Blackfield, YVI, Daisy Bellis, Mary Confurius, Nadua, Small Town Bandits, Cirrus Minor and Meadowlake. They  performed at NOORD in Oost during ESNS in nightclub OOST.

Hit the North 2018

The first edition (2017-2018) of Hit the North was a great success. The four organized bootcamps took place in Neushoorn (Friesland), Eurosonic Noorderslag (Groningen), De Muziekcoöperatie (Drenthe) and at Vlieland before Into The Great Wide Open (Friesland). All were received very well by the participants. Besides the bootcamp days there was also room for individual coaching. During ESNS18 Brouwerij Martinus in Groningen was renamed “House of the North”. It was the place were the talent of the north could meet each other. During the day there was room for workshops, discussions and presentations. In the afternoon and evening there were drinks and performances of artists from the North, including the Hit the North-participants. 

Participating acts in 2017-2018 were: The Heck, Sorry John, Saint Martinez, Boyz in the Woods, FENN, Hollow Men, Katie Koss, Esther de Jong and Pendants.