10 international music hits by Dutch artists

10 international music hits by Dutch artists

Classic pop hits come from all over the world, and the Dutch have contributed their fair share!

From rock to Eurodance - the Netherlands has brought forth some popular English-language or instrumental ditties that you may think were created by native English speakers. The country may be small, but its influence on the international music industry is bigger than you might expect.

Hits by Dutch artists

Here are 10 pop songs by Dutch artists that became international hits over the past several decades.

1. Radar Love, Golden Earring

Hailing from The Hague, Golden Earring is probably one of the most famous Dutch rock bands in history. The 70s song Radar Love is about a driver who is on the way to his lover, and communicates with her through letters and phone calls.

2. Venus, Shocking Blue

Recorded in 1969, this rock song reached the number one spot in nine different countries! It was written by Robbie van Leeuwen, and performed by Shocking Blue, a band from The Hague that played psychedelic rock.

3. Eruption, Van Halen

This instrumental Van Halen song was written and almost exclusively performed by the innovative electric guitarist Eddie van Halen in 1978. Together with his older brother Alex, a drummer, they founded hard-rock band Van Halen. The pair was in Nijmegen, but relocated to America when they were quite young.

4. Get Ready For This, 2 Unlimited

Dutch electronic music group 2 Unlimited created a range of hits, among which Get Ready For This (1992) was the most successful, together with No Limit.

Get Ready For This is one of the most frequently played songs at sporting events around the world, and can be heard in various movies and television shows.

5. We like to party, The Vengaboys

This Eurodance song quickly gained popularity in the US and other countries in the late 90s.

The Vengaboys are from Rotterdam, and their other hits include Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom!! and We're Going to Ibiza. They were awarded the name of best selling dance group of the year by the World Music Awards in 2001.

6. Father & Friend, Alain Clark

2007 brought forth a touching duet by Dutch singer Alain Clark and his father, Dane Clark. The song was a hit in various European countries. The two dedicate the refreshingly honest ballad to their relationship as family and friends, and take pride in being in each other’s lives.

7. Hocus Pocus, Focus

1971 song Hocus Pocus was soared through the charts across various countries. It was performed by Dutch progressive rock band Focus, made up of performers from the pit band for the Dutch production of the rock musical Hair.

Including sounds like yodelling, scat singing, whistling, organ playing and flute riffs, the hyperactive and eccentric piece gained much appreciation from the public. It still pops up as background music in various television shows.

8. Somebody, Natalie La Rose

Born in Amsterdam in 1988, the Dutch singer Natalie La Rose achieved international success with her debut song Somebody in 2014. The song's popularity was aided by the fact that it was produced in Miami, and featured established American singer and rapper Jeremih.

Somebody uses samples of the iconic I Wanna Dance With Somebody by Whitney Houston, as well as a few other songs, and became a popular track at nightclubs and events around the world.

9. Better off Alone, Alice Deejay

2000 hit song Better off Alone inspired a more accessible and commercial brand of trance music. Alice Deejay was a pop-trance collective by DJ Jurgen, a DJ and music producer from Delft. They created a few more songs, but Better off Alone was their undisputed highlight.

10. A little less conversation (2002 remix), Junkie XL

A little less conversation was a popular song performed by Elvis in the 1968 film Live a Little, Love a Little. In 2002, it was remixed by the Dutch Junkie XL - also known as Tom Holkenborg - and became a worldwide hit once again. You can often hear the song in pop culture films and commercials.

The remix featured a later recording of Elvis with a lower voice, more focus on guitars and horns, and an added funk drum beat.

Successful Dutch DJs and singers around the world

Of course, it's impossible to include all of the Dutch singers, DJs and music producers that have managed to achieve international success. Did we miss any of your favourites off our list? Whether you're a huge Armin van Buuren fan, or someone who was proud to see Duncan Laurence take home the Eurovision trophy, there's a little something out there for everyone!

Did any songs on our list surprise you? What's your favourite Dutch song? Let us know in the comments below!

Alexandra van Kampen


Alexandra van Kampen

English and Japanese theatre and culture are my forte. My mother was raised in England, and my grandmother in Japan. I studied Japanese Language and Culture, and Film and Photographic...

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Herbert Darick 17:32 | 2 March 2019

Major international hits were also: Ma Belle Amie by The Tee Set from Delft Mississipi by Pussycat from Brunssum The Smurf Song by Pierre Kartner/Vader Abraham

Starr John 23:41 | 7 August 2019

1989 King Bee - Back by Dope Demand, Iconic track to us in the UK \o/

Kelvin Kld 03:50 | 3 October 2019

Wait.... where is ''George Baker- Little Green Bag'' thought everyone knew that track lol

mokumhammer 14:03 | 21 June 2022

You missed 'bom bom' by Sam & the womp - featuring on vocals Bloem de Ligny (from Apeldoorn) - made #1 in 2012 in the UK singles chart.