I owned a bar/coffeshop in Groningen, Netherlands, and lived the rock and roll lifestyle in the early nineties: I played electric guitar in new wave (Desert Corbusier) and experimental bands. I eventually got tired of this extravert lifestyle and noise, sold the bar and moved to New York in 1993. I then remembered some of the lute repertoire I had got acquainted with as a classical guitarist, and started to study lute with a teacher, Pat O’Brien (who was a guitarist himself and a student of Reverend Gary Davis). It was part of a period of deep introspection, I lived like a monk during my first years in New York. My first lute album came out in 2000. (JVW)

Aside from performing hundreds of shows, Jozef Van Wissem has been working a lot with visual media. He was commissioned by London’s National Gallery to compose a sound piece to Hans Holbein’s painting «The Ambassadors» and composed & performed lute and voice pieces for the Sims Medieval video game. Jozef has been increasingly in demand as a soundtrack composer: he recently wrote the music for upcoming feature film «Red Right Return» (in which he also played the role of an ex-junkie), is currently working on several film soundtracks, and was picked among the «12 film composers to watch» on Indie Wire.


Composer/lutenist Jozef Van Wissem to release new album on Crammed's Made To Measure series

The New York-based Dutchman's very personal work was recently showcased in his award-winning soundtrack for Jim Jarmusch's "Only Lovers Left Alive". Both Jarmusch & Yasmine Hamdan are guesting on the new album.

Live Dates

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JOZEF VAN WISSEM - It Is Time For You To Return
It Is Time For You To Return

SOUNDS, Visuals & More

Contains videos & live footage, free mp3s & streams, pictures, press quotes & clippings, and maybe even personal contributions from the artist.