HERMAN GILLIS - Aka. SHERMAN : The Best Hidden Secret of Belgian's Music.

The live of Herman Gillis is a mixture of two major interests : music and electronics.

The interest in electronics started early during his childhood. He developped several home-made projects, for home use. When he was 14 years old he bought his first guitar and practised by listening to famous artists, such as Jimi Hendrix. Very soon, Herman Gillis became a virtuoso guitarist as well, and people started to notice him, for joining their bands. During that time, due to shortage of money he had to build electronic gear for own use. Herman built guitar amplifiers, a guitar synthesiser and other effect boxes.

When he was 18 (back in 1982), he started to listen to bands such as U2, the Cure, the Human League, Depeche Mode, etcetera. Based on these influence, he then formed a band, called (The Primitifs( and they managed to reach the finale of Humo's Rock Rally in 1984. According to Humo, this was the band with the most amazing instruments. However they did not know that these were built by hand, by Herman. E.g. an air-scratcher, a drum machine (including self-made drum pads), a primitif computer system, MIDI, etc...

After the Primitifs split up, the 3 remaining founders continued as the (Passion of a Primitif ( and again reached Humo's Rock Rally finale in 1986. With their prize of being the second, they recorded an album produced by Jo Casters (frontman of Poésie Noire). Jo Casters discovered Herman and asked him to join Poésie Noire as guitarist. However, very soon Herman was the co-maker of almost all Poésie Noire recordings.

Around 1987, many other new ideas came up and without knowing it, Herman soon programmed the first dance beats of several famous New Beat songs, such as Move Your Ass and Feel the Beat, Taste Of Sugar, etc...
Jo Casters, Herman Gillis and Roland Beelen (Antler records), known as producers-trio (Morton / SHERMAN / Bellucci) soon became the most productive New Beat makers of the late eighties. The number of songs / CD's and LP's in endless and difficult to count, but Herman Gillis estimates the number of his recordings over the 100's (in only 1,5 years time). One LP (with 13 different songs) was even made in only 3 days.

Morton / Sherman / Bellucci were asked by many national and international artists for remixes and they even made a remix for the fashion designer Jean-Paul Gaultier. Side projects of Herman « Sherman » included very serious, artistical electronic music as well, and he worked under different pseudonyms, e.g. Boris Mikulic (a so-called Yugoslavian). He made these recording (2 LP's and 2 CD's) on his own, in his tiny little home studio. After having arranged and produced another album of Poésie Noire, Jo Casters and Herman split up in 1990.

From then on, Herman Gillis again formed and produced different dance bands, such as MC Baker with their song (Don't Mess It Up), did several remixes (e.g. for Frank De Wulf, Wire, Company Of State) and did make another national hit with (Come To Me) from Marée.

During that hectic producers-live, Herman still played in the band Running Cow, later Volt (both with singer Daan Stuyven). All recordings (some singles, maxi's, and CD's) were produced by Herman in coöperation with Wouter Van Belle.

After Volt split up, Herman fell back on his own, was sick and tired of the music industry, and decided to dedicate his time only on development of electronic gear.

From 1993 to 1996, he spent his time entirely on making a new synthesizer, and was repair-man / synthesizer-doctor for artists and music stores.

In 1996, the first prototypes of the Sherman Filterbank came out. This simple effect box was found to have a revolutionary sound by many musicians, and soon the first 40 prototypes (built by hand) were all sold.

After Herman spent another 6 months to develop the follow-up version of the Sherman Filterbank, with MIDI, the sales started off well and by now (1999) he has sold more than 1800 units already. Sales are world-wide, in 20 countries, and the Sherman Filterbank is very big in Japan.

Recently, Herman started to develop another Sherman box, and is busy with more artistical projects as well, which will bring together sound and vision.

Pieces of art and performances, including prototypes of an (image synthesizer), in combination Sherman Filterbanks will be used by a famous French artist, in New York, Paris and other cities in the future.