Maarten Hoogstraten has been relatively quiet as of late, but made an exception when he sat down for an interview with Billboard. As the surviving member of Bingo Players, he has spent the past several months processing while continuing to push the dream that he shared with Paul Bäumer.
It’s still hard for me to think about it. But it’s good to be back on the road. It’s good to finally start making music again and playing shows, even though it’s now by myself.
Bingo Players were on the fast track to the top, Billboard points out. “Cry (Just A Little)” was their breakout track in 2011, leading to massive crowds and a residency at Hakkasan in Las Vegas, Nevada in early 2013. When Bäumer fell unexpectedly ill, the duo took a short break before Hoogstraten played several shows on his own.
The first few shows I did alone were really weird. I always thought he was next to me and he wasn’t. He was always the more outgoing guy, entertaining the crowd and I was the more shy one.
Even before passing, Bäumer expressed his wish for Bingo Players to continue on without him. Hoogstraten was anxious about pushing forward under the same moniker. That changed when he saw their fans’ reception, he expressed to Billboard.
I was afraid, especially when I said I was going to continue Bingo Players by myself, people would say, ‘yeah, but it’s never the same without Paul,’ but nobody said that. For me, that was one of the most beautiful things, to see so much love from the fans, from the community and everybody.
His most recent hit, “Knock You Out,” was a natural fit for his circumstance. It has since served as the launching pad for Bingo Players to pick up steam once again. Hoogstraten’s music will grow naturally, but will always reflect the sound their fans have come to love. He knows that, from this point forward, it’s a new chapter.
Sometimes it still feels like he’s there…The same goes for in the studio when I’m making music. I was so used to having somebody else’s feedback. Now when I’m alone in the studio I can hear what would Paul do. It’s nice.
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