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Big Bill is undoubtedly one of the godfathers of modern Belgian music.


"Eene me hesp ..."
21,6 sec. - 110 Kb.
song : C.Berry, A.Hombroeckx
Produced : ??
Year : 1973
Record co. : Indigo

uit "Big Bill" (1976)
"Pirre For President"
55,5 sec. - 109 Kb.

"Vismarkt Boogie"
55,4 sec. - 109 Kb.

songs : A.Hombroeckx
Year : 1976
Record co. : Parsifal

"Sit on it"
58,3 sec. - 114 Kb.
song : A.Hombroeckx
Produced : Jean-Marie Aerts
Year : 1978
Record co. : Polydor


His real name is Armand Hombroeckx, but his music always has been performed under the name Big Bill Krakkebaas. He started playing music at a young age in Leuven, together with his brother Bert as "Bert & Skifflegroup", early 1966.

A few years later, he joins a group called "het Luk Tegenbos Smartensemble" (with bass-player Wilfried "Freakadel" Devijver). When he finds out his solo-play during the concerts of the band get received very well, he goes his own way.


In 1973 he forms a group called "Big Bill Krakkebaas & The Sock'n'Soul (Ram Jam Funky but Live) Band". Quite a mouthful. Initially, this is a group of ever-changing musicians (Simon Shimpton-Smith, Bert Hombroeckx, Eddy Verdonck, Harry Van Buel). Gradually a more or less steady group grew out of it (with Stoy Stoffelen, Mich Verbelen, Jean Marie Aerts & Jean Blaute).

Their biggest hit ever is the classical Chuck Berry adaptation "Eene me hesp ..." (a sandwich with ham).

The lyrics tell the epic story of Big Bill (and he IS big) strolling trough the nightly streets of Leuven in search of something to eat. The only place he finds open is a sandwich bar on the Oude Markt where he is confronted with the existentialist question : will I take a sandwich with ham or one with cheese.

As Oor's pop encyclopedia puts it "After ... Eene me hesp ... Big Bill's concerts continued to sparkle, but in spite of a well-received album "Sit on It" and good guitar-play, Big Bill never got out of the small-bar-concert-circuit, because he loved to much being in it". On "Sit on it", the backing group of Big Bill consisted of Jean-Marie Aerts, Stoy Stoffelen, Mich Verbelen and Jean Blaute (so in fact it was the same backing group as had Raymond van het Groenewoud).

That is why today, Big Bill can still be admired behind the counter of his bar in Leuven (the city-center with the highest ratio of bars/population in the world). He also moved to the United States (Texas) for some period during his life. Back in Belgium he recorded a nice live-CD in 1995.

An entire generation of Belgian Musicians can also be grateful to Big Bill because it was he that asked Jean-Marie Aerts (who played in his band) to produce his first album. Twenty years later, Jean-Marie has recorded with almost every Belgian Band that got founded after that.

Big Bill also takes an active part in the organization of the yearly summer festival in Leuven called Marktrock.

Albums :
- Big Bill (Parsifal, 1974).
- Sit on it (Polydor, 1978)
- Allee live + 3 (Alora, 1995)
- The original Ene mee hesp + Big Bill (Parsifal, 1995)
Singles :
- Stoose Blues / Eene me hesp (Indigo, 1973)
- Sit on it / Bobo (Polydor, 1978)
- Tes Ka / Goe zot (Polydor, 1980)

Websites :
- none found about Big Bill, but Marktrock has it's own site.

Forum :
- Read the messages/questions about Big Bill
- Add your message, question, cd- or concertreview ... about Big Bill


    Big Bill

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Dirk Houbrechts stopped working at The Belgian Pop & Rock Archives (you can read his personal statement here). The website is now entrusted to the Flanders Music Centre ( Contact:

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Last update to this site : December 2001.

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