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Dolly Dots in 1981
|Genres||Pop, dance, MOR|
|Years active||1979–1988, 1998, 2006–2008, 2015–present|
|Labels||Warner Bros. Records|
|Past members||Ria Brieffies|
Dolly Dots were a popular Dutch girl band in the 1980s. With their style of upbeat dance/pop, they scored many hits throughout Europe. The sextet consisted of Angela Groothuizen, Angéla Kramers, Anita Heilker, Esther Oosterbeek, Patty Zomer and Ria Brieffies.
The Dolly Dots had many hits between 1979 and 1988. They were most successful in the Netherlands, but they also scored hits in the rest of Europe. Their single "Radio" was a big hit in Japan. "P.S." was a Top 50 Billboard Hot Dance Club Play hit in 1981. They also enjoyed hits in Turkey, Lebanon, Iceland, and toured through Egypt. Although the band never cracked England, they did feature on the 23rd June 1983 edition of Top of the Pops when they were interviewed by DJ John Peel whilst on location in Amsterdam.
At the peak of their success in 1984, the Dolly Dots had their own TV series, Barbie Dolls, Wallpaper, and a #1 hit, "Love Me Just a Little Bit More (Totally Hooked on You)". At the end of the following year, Anita Heilker left the group to have a daughter. She later became the Dutch voice of Donald Duck. The rest of the band continued as a five-piece.
Heilker had already launched her own career. In 1986, she released four solo singles ("You've Got Me Keyed Up", "Into the Night", "Dancing on the Moon" and "Don't Treat Me Like This"), as well as a solo album (The Girl in Black).
Since the TV series' success in 1984, there had been plans to record a Hollywood film. In the summer of 1986, the five remaining Dolly Dots finally went to the US to work with an unfinished script and made a movie called Dutch Treat, which was released later that year. The movie (starring Lorin Dreyfuss and David Landsberg) and its soundtrack were modest successes in The Netherlands but were not released in the US due to poor reviews. The group broke up in 1988. Their last single was an attempt to break into the UK market. The Dolly Dots teamed up with hit producers Stock Aitken Waterman and released the song "What a Night". It reached number 18 in the Dutch charts, but was not successful in the UK.
On October 2, 1988, the Dolly Dots played a farewell show at the Amsterdam Escape. After more than 9 years, they felt the time was right to go their separate ways; as Ria Brieffies would later say, "There's more to life than being a Dolly Dot".
Angela Groothuizen teamed up with Ruud Mulder, former guitarist of disco/funk-contemporaries Spargo, to record as Angela & the Rude. She also began a television hosting career for AVRO starting in 1990 with an adaptation of Challenge Anneka; this was followed by Sex with Angela and later, Who's the Mole?. Her contract expired in 2005 and was not renewed. Groothuizen has since moved to RTL 4 where she was a panel judge for X Factor, The Voice of Holland and The Voice Kids. She is also host of the show Een Nieuw Begin. Groothuizen is still making music and has her own theatre shows.
Patty Zomer became a fashion stylist for several well-known Dutch artists and magazines. In the early 2000s, she co-hosted The Fashion Police with former actress Nada van Nie.
On October 1, 1998, all six Dolly Dots were interviewed by Paul de Leeuw and surprised everyone by singing a medley of three of their biggest hits. Two months later they reunited for a one-off concert to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their split, and the release of a compilation album of all their hits, called The Collection.
In 2003, Aad Ouberg, who was closely involved with the group, was responsible for getting a Dolly Dots musical off the ground. The musical Love Me Just a Little Bit More played at The Chassé Theatre in Breda and around the Netherlands during 2004.
As result of renewed interest in the group after the musical, Warner Bros. Records released a Dolly Dots greatest hits compilation album of the group as well as a DVD. In 2007, all six original members reunited for a series of guest performances during Vrienden van Amstel Live. Their success there led to three concerts of their own in Ahoy Rotterdam. The DVD of those concerts reached gold status in the Netherlands. In 2008, a tour followed, called 'Goodbye for Now'.
Ria Brieffies, who went on to pursue culinary interests, was diagnosed with cancer in November 2008; she died on July 20, 2009. Angela Groothuizen announced that without Brieffies, the Dolly Dots would never perform again.
In 2011, Anita Heilker made her comeback as a solo artist in a Dutch show called The Winner Is...
The remaining five members made a comeback as guest artists with the Toppers in May 2016.
- Dolly Dots (1979)
- American Dream (1980)
- P.S. We Love You (1981)
- Take Six (1982)
- Display (1983)
- Dolly Dots Live in Carré (1984)
- Thirst (1984)
- Attention (1985)
- Dutch Treat (1986)
- Love Me Just a Little Bit More (2004)
- Give the Girls a Break 84-87 (2007)
- Reunieconcert (2007)
- "(We Tell It All About) Boys" (1979)
- "Radio" (1979)
- "(They Are) Rollerskating" (1979)
- "We Believe in Love" 1980
- "Hela-Di-Ladi-Lo" (1980)
- "Dreammachine" (1980)
- "Leila (The Queen of Sheba)" (1981)
- "P.S." 1981
- "Crazy Situation" (promotional only) (1981)
- "Keep on Doing It" (1981)
- "S.T.O.P." (1981)
- "Do You Wanna Wanna" (1982)
- "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" (1982)
- "All the Roses" (1982)
- "Don't Give Up" (1983)
- "Money Lover (Bite the Dust)" 1983
- "Love Me Just a Little Bit More (Totally Hooked on You)" (1983)
- "She's a Liar" (1983)
- "Trick of the Eye" (1984)
- "Give the Girl a Break" (1984)
- "Tell Me Why" (1984)
- "Little Angel" (1985)
- "Only the Rain" (1985)
- "Unique" (1985)
- "Where Were You (When I Needed You)" (1985)
- "Dreaming of You" 1985
- "Hearts Beat Thunder" (1986)
- "This Girl" (1986)
- "Make It Up to You" (1987)
- "What a Night" (1987)
- "Love Me Just a Little Bit More" (1993 Remix) (1993)
- "What a Night" (G-90's Remix) (1998)
- "Jij hoort bij mij (Sam's lied)" (2007)
- Patrick van den Hanenberg, Frank Verhallen. Nederlands cabaret, 1970–1995: het is weer tijd om te bepalen waar het allemaal op staat. Nijgh & Van Ditmar, 1996. p. 104
- RTL in dutch
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