The Herb Spectacles started out in the autumn of 1999, comprising three members from The Treble Spankers and one of The Amsterdam Klezmerband trumpet players. After some frantic searchig for personnel it was decided to take a different approach: through an ad in a free-ads paper a marimba player and a percussionist were found.
After a few weeks already they did their first shows in bars and cafes, which in the year 2000 eventually resulted in a gig at the Lowlands festival.
From there things started happening and the "Specs" did many a show at various locations, ranging from beach bars, (film)festivals and foreign countries like Germany.
In june 2003 something big was bound to happen, and happen it did: the release of their first CD The Incredible World of The Herb Spectacles, recorded in 2002/2003 with the then current line-up of the two remaining Spankers (Frank Sloos sold his sticks to Philip ten Bosch), supplemented with illustrious guest musicians such as guitarists Don van Dongen (Speed 78) and Roberto Telefono, and trumpeter Manuel del Campo.
The music of The Herb Spectacles is a heady mix of South American Tijuana and Mariachi sounds. In the 1960's this type of music was popularised by musicians such as Chet Baker, who recorded many Mariachi albums, and of course Herb Alpert, who put this musical style firmly on the global map.
The Herb's debut CD The Incredible World of ... and the follow-up Bongolitos Hideaway contain many self penned compositions, inspired by the sounds of Tijuana and Mariachi music.