"Last gig and planning on going out with a bang. On leaving OZ then, I have to say thanks.
First and foremost to everyone who came to see us, and for making us feel as good as we seemingly
made them. Playing live for Simple Minds is always a two-way thing and the more an
audience encourages, the more energy we have to give back. That is simply how it works!" - Jim, 12th December 2012
"In the excitement of it all last night, I forgot to introduce Mel Gaynor
to the audience. Everyone on stage got a mention except him and I have no idea what made me forget?
Luckily he spared me a whack on the back of the head from one of his flying drumsticks. A great drummer?
No doubt about it!" - Jim, 13th December 2012
"Arrived earlier this evening, forgot to pick up one of my bags, airline still trying to trace it.
Bummer! Could be worse though, 22 degrees and beautiful, perfect for hanging on the terrace and
staring at the sea. Perhaps better not to go on too much about the weather especially when
friends and family back in the UK are freezing their tootsies off! Anyway, great to be back
in beautiful New Zealand, determined to make the most and of course put on a strong performance here on
Saturday." - Jim, 13th December 2012
"Last concert of this tour, in 24 hours everyone will be homeward bound. Well almost everyone,
as I decided to stay on a few more days to take in some more of this beautiful part of the world.
Hoping that the tremendous energy that has featured in the recent gigs will surface tonight,
the weather is perfect and the outdoor venue is stunning. All set!" - Jim, 13th December 2012
"Tour ended and had the chance to bid band and crew farewell yesterday. Everyone seemed to
be heading home albeit in different directions, that is just the way it is. Instead I jumped on a
small propellor plane and landed in a much quieter part of New Zealand. It's time to forget
about music, performing, being in Simple Minds etc, least for a couple of weeks.
Time to unplug totally, get out and go for some very beautiful walks." - Jim, 17th December 2012
A beautiful lunchtime at a Queensland winery was further enhanced as a
Sean Kelly lead Models brought their various musical styles,
including the Caribbean feel of Barbados, to Mt. Cotton. An easy introduction to the day's
line up, they pleasantly entertained the growing crowd.
The Church arrived early with the promise of a longer set, which kept
the congregation happy for this mass. As a frontman, Steve Kilbey puts in great effort
to help lure you away with his gothic vocals to the dark corners where the music lives. The
band create an almost epic wall of sound, mostly due to the interplay of Peter Koppes'
six-string with Marty Willson-Piper's extra-ordinary psychedelic fret work. The monolithic
Reptile lead the way and a feedback laden You Took closed the set from these Australian legends.
Devo look like a mixture of dental hygienists, aging Thunderbirds and party cruise pensioners
via their frequent costume changes, as they delivered their unique, spiky, discordant pop. The co-ordinated
stage moves and visual smack is evidence of their on going popularity and relevance, their sonic blitz
frying some already sun-affected brains. These art rockers have loyal fans, but the message was
spreading as it wasn’t just the power domes that were nodding through this enjoyable set.
The dazzling computer graphics behind them stating "Are we not men? We are Devo!" getting the
teatime audience fully involved, showing these two sets of brothers can still command a crowd,
along with an old age pension.
Simple Minds are not so easily described these days. Much of the public have
forgotten the early electronic sound influenced by Bowie, Roxy Music and
Neu! When pushed, they’ll probably recall the flag waving politicos of the mid
eighties. So what do Simple Minds do to stay relevant and, if you’re being generous,
so popular? They create an amalgam of all you believe them to be, and become an electro rock juggernaut.
Earlier this year the band toured on the back of a five album box set,
X5, which contained their first 5 records. The tour was
based on 25 songs per night, five from each album. Hardcore fans rejoiced! Fans of the global hits were
bemused. But the tour proved a success with fantastic reviews as Simple Minds
gained some critical rehabilitation.
The success of this tour, aside from its uniqueness, was due to the incredible work of keyboard player
Andy Gillespie and guitar hero and founding member
Charlie Burchill, who reconfigured the back catalogue to
inject fresh sonic blood as new flesh was applied to old bones.
The dramatic intro music plus dimming lights prepared the scene for Simple Minds
to launch into Waterfront, the never tiring classic is
a call to arms. Its pounding bassline and chiming guitar a green light for the crowd to clap and jump
in unison. The throbbing bass becomes a funky groove as
Love Song brings back the memories. In 1981, on their first
visit to Australia, it was Love Song that set them on the way
to their first gold disc, audiences lapping up the bass and rhythmic style so often found in Australia’s
domestic rock scene.
Kerr’s stage presence has changed over time too, from the tip
toeing, precise movements through to stadium kicks and legs apart singing, he’s warped the two,
creating both subtlety and dynamism for his front man credentials. Even at one point considering
swinging the mike by its lead. Perhaps the close proximity of backing singer
Sarah Brown kept him in check.
The band move between the songs very easily, this seamless flow showcases the consideration of
how the show has been put together. This Fear Of Gods,
a track of towering menace from Empires and Dance,
does side step a few people but those who know the catalogue, and the 5×5 ethos, cheer and sing
even louder. It’s a true highlight, with a response suggesting fans don’t wish to wait too
long to hear it again.
See The Lights, with its two guitar breaks, nestles surprisingly
well between This Fear and
Sanctify Yourself, as the band head back into their
stadium glory and crowd singalongs. Kerr encouragingly
offers the mike to the participating crowd showing a band at their most persuasive as the audience
gathers in their collective hands.
Not only does the music finely interweave, so does the band as a whole. Both
Burchill and bass player Ged Grimes
know how to work the stage, Charlie Burchill
has enough solos and riffs to take the spotlight while
Grimes stalks behind the front pair throwing quiet rock poses.
Sarah Brown's powerful back up vocals, and some female glamour,
occasionally steps forward to show her prowess. It’s only poor
Mel Gaynor, stuck behind the drum kit, who doesn’t get a
moment to share with the fans bar his ‘best rock n roll drummer in the world’ introduction.
As the la la las from Don't You (Forget About Me)
fade, the piston-like intro of New Gold Dream powers into
life, a stone cold classic that bridges those early electro years to when the band strode into the
stadiums. In its full blown ethereal beauty on a hot summer’s night, arms are raised to the heavens
praising the trance like swirl.
With its big chorus and towering motif, Alive and Kicking gets
Jim trading vocals with Sarah
up to a fever pitch, the crowd have no choice but to join in.
Ghostdancing, with its frenetic opening guitar riff
and rapid-fire vocals revs up the crowd again, and the mid-song inclusion of
Gloria gets them singing. But it does, however, slow momentum
of the main song, weakening its natural climax. But Simple Minds
know how to end a performance, each band member in sync riffing, hitting the keys or drums
in true stadium style leading to one big ‘pow,’ a blaze of lights and then the band taking a bow to
The positive relationship with the crowd is acknowledgment of
Simple Minds who, not only having a loyal following, but have the ability to
reign in new fans at the offer of a mike or a searing solo. As the band file off to
Roxy Music, Jim stays to take in the view,
a sea of the delirious and sunburnt flowing up the hillside. The hot, the sweaty and the hoarse at the
front look at each other eyes wide at an energetic finale to a cracking day.
Many thanks to Patrick for the set-list and pictures.
"Thanks to all in Oz who have come to see us and posted/sent complimentary messages. If you think the
band don't get encouraged by such positive responses, you are mistaken. It drives us on, even more.
Been busy in Sydney, doing promo etc. Managed to fit in a "Bridge Climb" over Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Quite an experience, especially when you are bleary eyed through staying up all night to watch events
live from Celtic Park, Glasgow. What a beautiful day! " - Jim, 7th December 2012
A Day On The Green, Bimbadgen Winery, Hunter Valley New South Wales, Australia 8th December, 2012 5x5 + Hits
"Seems like we got well into our stride in these two gigs. For the record, Aussie audiences
are as good as anywhere in the world. Great energy from band and crowd together. We won't forget
these nights, already well looking forward to coming back! " - Jim, 8th December 2012
"Firstly thanks to those who welcomed us to Melbourne last night. It was a pleasure to be back
in Australia and now that we are started we are so looking forward to the rest of the tour. Secondly,
despite the very positive reaction both in the hall and from the crowd of fans who we spoke to in the
street outside afterwards, it has been brought to our attention that a number of people complained about
the sound from where they were sitting, in particular that they could not hear the voice. This was obviously
very disappointing for them, for that we apologise. It is disappointing for us to hear when anyone is not happy,
as we put in a lot of work as well as take great pride in the production of our shows. Let's face it, you don't
get a 35 year career and the sort of great live reputation, of the type that Simple Minds enjoy,
if you don't offer a consistent quality to your audience. We do! But tonight it seems we did not come up
to the technical level that we demand. Once again I apologise to anybody feeling let down."
"It is now in the early hours here in Melbourne, in five hours the crew will depart to begin setting
up for tonight's show. Nevertheless, discussions have taken place and I am fully confident that all
will be in place for a great set tomorrow night. Thanks again to everyone who came, thank you for your
kindness towards us." - Jim, 30th November 2012
Rochford Wines, Yarra Valley Vic, Australia 1st December, 2012 5x5 + Hits
"Got our technical nightmares sorted out, we are back in the saddle. Ready to give our very best
tonight in Yarra Valley. Looking forward to seeing everyone!" - Jim, 1st December 2012
"I loved Devo. What an amazing, unique and uplifting band they are. Made me laugh, but
also so much to admire in their music. As for Simple Minds? We enjoyed ourselves immensely,
everyone said we would like this venue and the audience and we certainly did. The tour is up and running now.
No more hiccups! Looking forward to Adelaide later on tonight." - Jim, 1st December 2012
"Last of 3 in a row and the best yet. Nice venue, great crowd, everybody seemingly raving about
the sound and lights. All is as should be... good! Thanks of course for the great welcome, seemed a lot
of very happy people, least from where I stood. Many great memories of Adelaide from our early days,
tonight lived up to any of those early shows we feel. Surpassed even? Travel day tomorrow, heading
to Perth and meeting up with friends and family, got the night off - heading to an Italian restaurant
that has had great recommendations. Maybe we will invite Devo? The Perth
gig on Tuesday is shaping up to be a belter! I hope so" - Jim, 2nd December 2012
Dutch record label Now Music and management agency CAT International
are proud to present the release of The American, the first single of the
extraordinary duo Orlando Wire and Derek Forbes (Simple Minds).
The American is an original song by Simple Minds (1981), which has been
completely re-recorded and re-arranged in the studio. With the stunning bass lines of
Derek Forbes, the energetic new vocals of
Owen Paul and the house sound of Orlando Wire, it resulted
in a massive dance song. This unique combination of sounds creates a footprint for the music
of tomorrow, but honors the original song and vibe of the 80's.
The single The American is available for download on all major download portals from October 24th 2012.
Derek Forbes is best known as a band member (bass player)
of the world famous Simple Minds & the German band Propaganda.
Derek played on and wrote songs for many number one albums and
singles, including Don't You (Forget About Me)
from the Hollywood blockbuster The Breakfast Club. It was this and many other
songs like Alive and Kicking
that became number one hits all over the World for Simple Minds.
Orlando Wire has been present in the house scene from 1995 as composer & DJ
and wrote many dance tracks for acts that made it to the international dance & single charts.
With his own acts Floor Control, Santen & Young and
Re-Phonic, he also produced for major dance labels Blue Records,
Digidance, Massive Drive and Mo-Bizz among others.
Owen Paul is best known as the singer, co-writer and producer of the 1980's
worldwide smash hit You're my favourite waste of time. He is also a former member of
Mike and the Mechanics with Paul Carrack and Mike Rutherford.
He has produced two solo albums, and also has the production credit for the multi-million selling
Japanese band Buck-Tick.
It all started when Orlando met Derek during a "legends" concert in the Netherlands,
where Derek performed with his band XSM
(Ex Simple Minds). They started talking and their shared passion of music created
Although their genres of music are totally different, they found many parallels in the way
they think about music. The time was there to combine forces that resulted in their new founded project:
Orlando Wire & Derek Forbes.
A Musical genre, that joins generations (New-Age & House)
And finally, on the eve of its release, full details of the commercial
version of 5X5 Live... enjoy!
It's been worth the wait!
Some copies of 5X5 Live have now been released and
the lucky few who already have them will know what a great package it is.
The band were captured perfectly at the top of their game. Those old songs have never sounded so vibrant and
fresh. Virgin have also pulled out the stops, packing all tracks onto 2CDs, and releasing
them as great little box-set.
It's a superb conclusion to the 5X5 era of the band and a worthy release to add to the collection.
Celebrating The First 20 Years of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay
Simple Minds to Headline Concert in the Gardens
and a New Look to the World Famous Street Party
The City of Edinburgh Council and Unique Events today announced a sparkling line-up to celebrate
the first 20 years of Edinburgh's Hogmanay. Within the new look Street Party and the ever-popular
Concert in the Gardens, some of Scotland’s top bands will be rocking the world’s greatest New Year Party.
Headlining Concert in the Gardens are one of the most successful Scottish bands of all time –
Simple Minds - who will be performing a set of their greatest hits in West Princes
Street Gardens before they embark on a UK tour in the spring.
Jim Kerr said "We've played some iconic venues around the world –
and Edinburgh’s Hogmanay is right up there with the best of them. We are so excited to be coming home
to Scotland, and Edinburgh, for this great celebration of the first 20 years of Hogmanay. It’s going
to be a fantastic experience for us, and for the audience."
It's nothing to get excited about as it's just the remastered albums packaged in one box. However, rather
than just put five standard jewel-cased albums into a large box, EMI Australia packaged
each album in a sturdy card sleeve and released the set in a slim card box.
Unfortunately the artwork was also based on the remastered editions so it's not as good as it could've been.
instant live recordings, preview of 5x5 live, discography
We are happy to announce that the forthcoming live shows in Australia
are to be recorded and made available immediately on the night to fans! These recordings will also be
available to order worldwide.
These super exclusive, limited edition double CD sets feature fully mixed and mastered recordings,
delivered in high quality digipaks, and individually numbered to make them TRUE collectibles!
Best of all, if you are going to the show, you can WALK OUT of the venue with your CDs in hand!
DiscLive will capture *every note* including the encore for your listening enjoyment!
In addition, Simple Minds are offering a special DELUXE edition, which features a brand
new exclusive "rockumentary" style audio interview with Jim Kerr,
conducted by famed U.S. radio personality Redbeard.
Special discounts are available right now if you purchase in advance of the tour!
The Hampton Court gig was released (yet again) by Concert Live. As part of their seventh
anniversary in October, they issued some of their concert CDs as numbered limited edition sets. So the Hampton
Court concert was released again, but this time as a double CD set with a unique number printed on
breakfast, empires that dance, teletext
Jim will appear on Breakfast (the BBC's cosy early-morning breakfast
show) this Friday 26th October.
"Uber fan Andy Inniss is the catalyst behind this brilliant re-work of the
Simple Minds song Room.
Originally released in 1980 on the Empires And Dance
album the recent Simple Minds5x5 Tour
really opened our ears to how current some of these early songs sound."
"This was my inspiration" Andy said, "I didn't want to replicate Room
nor did I want to tinker with it that much... I'm really happy with the outcome".
The analogue television signal was switched off in the UK yesterday as the nation completed its
move to digital. One of the causalities was Teletext, the revolutionary text-based information system
which was incredibly futuristic in the late 1970s, but had become an anachronism in today’s Internet-based world.
I interviewed Malcolm Garrett on Saturday and he mentioned a hitherto
unknown connection between the jazzy "Pages From Ceefax" and the art of Simple Minds.
A mistuned television – another loss in today's digital world – would not only produce a visual
snowstorm but would also scramble the Teletext. He photographed the resulting pot-pourri of mashed-up
characters and blocky pixels and used them as overlays. So, if you’ve ever wondered what the 8-bit graphics
were on the rear of the Promised You A Miracle sleeve,
then it was a 1980s television desperately trying to decode a random Teletext signal.
(Or, in some cases, perhaps not so random...)
greatest hits + tour
GREATEST HITS + TOUR
Following a summer of festival appearances and their hugely acclaimed
5X5 tour, Simple Minds will be performing their
greatest hits live near year on a huge 28 date tour of the UK.
Tickets will go on general sale at 10.00AM 26th October 2012 but there will be a special ticket pre-sale
beforehand for subscribers of the official site starting on the
Simple Minds are one of the UK's most successful rock groups to date. Having topped
America's Billboard chart, the Glasgow band have achieved five No.1 albums in the UK as well hitting
the top spot in countless other territories including Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Australia and New Zealand.
Simple Minds are also arguably one of the best live bands in the world and over a
thirty year career have been responsible for some of the most innovative and enduring anthems in rock
music. Expect to hear songs from their extensive back catalogue including
Alive and Kicking,
Don’t You (Forget About Me),
Waterfront and more. The show will be in two
halves with an interval and no support - a whole evening of Simple Minds,
who will be releasing their greatest hits collection Celebrate: The Greatest Hits +
in March to coincide with the tour (and which will include two new tracks).
"When we started Simple Minds our objective was to be considered as one of the
great live bands. A band that had the desire to go all around the world - playing everywhere and anywhere.
That challenge is ongoing and we will relish touring all over the UK next Spring, getting up close to
so many who have supported us over the last three decades and more." - Jim
5x5 live, new simple minds box set, don't you jazz style, seriously 80s, 27 hour round trip
A live album based on the 5x5 tour will be released soon.
"Spent last night listening to GG's [Olivier Gerard's] final mixes,
what a fine job he did. Anyone who liked the 5x5 shows is bound to appreciate this soon to be released
collection. For those who could catch not the shows, this collection taken from various shows in a handful
of cities will let you hear what went on. Hope you like it." - Jim, 26th September 2012.
It's difficult to see who this aimed at and, more importantly, who would want it? It also sits uneasily
on its Amazon page
where other 80s artists are releasing super deluxe and deluxe editions of their classic albums - some celebrating
their 30th anniversaries. (The Gift by The Jam and Running In The Family
by Level 42 have been given the mouth-watering deluxe treatment).
Chill out to the following blissed out beats... nice!
Simple Minds get a good profile in this new compilation from Universal
but you have to question if this really is the "darker, cooler, alternative side of the decade" as the
Sometimes it's the little things that stand out.
Like the security guy at Basel airport excitedly telling his (much younger) colleague
all about Simple Minds after spotting my T-shirt before 7 in the morning - while
I am trying to stay awake after driving through the night back to the airport and sleeping
in the car to be back home in time for breakfast...
Or meeting people in the flesh you only 'know' through the miracle of Facebook down the front - or
meeting people who have heard of you from there but you don't know them (very weird!)
I'm writing this on the train from London to Nottingham. It's 10.16am, Saturday September 8. Last
night I was very lucky to bag the best view in the house at the Chant du Gros festival in Le Noirmont,
Switzerland - right at the front barrier, right in front of Jim.
I've had about 90 minutes sleep. Precisely 14 hours and 23 minutes on Swiss ground cost me more than
£200 and will no doubt wipe me out for the weekend now.
And if there was another show, somewhere within relatively easy travel time in Europe tonight,
then I'd be doing it again in a heartbeat.
Why do we do it? Because it's not just me.... Because we love the music. Not just because
that's a nice melody or a good rhythm or whatever.... For some of us it speaks to us on a
level we cannot and dare not try to comprehend.
Of course it helps that it's very good fun! But this is about far more than just mere music for me.
Partly it's the sense of freedom. Going halfway across a continent, meeting people you already know,
being allowed to not only hire a car but just drive out of the airport to wherever you want - including
last night a return journey through the French mountains and a quick trip into Germany just because I
could - nobody tried to stop me. In fact the border was nothing more than bridge over a river.
We take all that so much for granted - but it really is incredible when you stop to think about it.
Three countries visited in the space of one night. Amazing! And all to hear a collection of songs
mostly written at a time when Europe was a broken continent - east and west, borders, passport controls
and secret police. That was very much in my lifetime. Back in February, after the Berlin 5X5 gig, I stood
with one foot in what was East Germany and one in the west. A little over 20 years ago, that would have
got me killed. Now it's a tourist attraction.
Ever been asked what was the most important moment in your life? I always answer that it was when
one boy met another in a Glasgow sandpit. It's two years before I will be born - but everything has
already changed forever.
It would change again when I first heard Waterfront in 1983.
And again on 12 March 1984. Five people I could only consider to be Gods among men took the stage - and
as I walked away from De Montfort Hall, Leicester I knew what my life had to become - a musician,
a writer (so you can blame the band if you think this is all very pretentious!)
The music would literally save my life in 2005. And again in 2006.
That's another story maybe - but the memory of those desperate but ultimately amazing days
was with me last night. It felt like the end of a process that began with another mad dash
across a European country - Denmark - on my birthday in 2006, to see Simple Minds
light up a forest clearing above the tiny village of Nibe.
Driving home the next day, I realised I was crying my heart out to
Alive and Kicking (not the best of ideas on the Dartford bridge)
as the lyrics finally connected...
Who gonna come and turn the tide?
What's it going to take to make a dream survive?
Who's got the touch to calm the storm inside?
Don't say goodbye - in the final seconds who's going to save you?
When we got to that point last night I just felt overwhelmed to be there - in totally different
Last night was my 66th show. It will not be my last. I've racked up 10 gigs this year - and I'm
annoyed that I couldn't get it together to do more this summer (although we did go to Alicante
only to find the show cancelled!)
There was initially some confusion about this gig. The official site stated "The acclaimed 5X5 LIVE! show
in it's entirety!" which was taken to mean a 5x5 Full Set format. However, it turned out
to be the hits set instead.
Thanks to Matthias, Torsten, Sabine and Jens
for the set-list and
to Matthias and Sabine for the pictures. See
binepix.jimdo.com/konzertfotos for more pictures
RS2 Sommer Fest, Berlin, Germany 18th August, 2012 5x5 Festival Set
holiday, xsm, gold vision, discography
I've been on holiday and I've got some catching up to do. Many thanks to everyone who's sent in
set-lists and pictures from the recent gigs. I'll get them on-line soon.
XSM announce that they will no longer use the term (Ex Simple Minds) in
their name, and will only ever be referred to as XSM. We feel we are a band in our own right,
and with the new album almost complete, this means a new and exciting chapter in the life of XSM.
We are enjoying glowing revues of our new material from the cream of the music industry Worldwide, and hope
to capitalize on these magnificent responses. I hope you love the new single, and promise you that there will
be more of the same, including the trademark instrumentals of Forbes,
McGee, for you all to enjoy. We believe that this is a
New Platinim Dream for us, and it has been a real priviledge to be involved with my old partners
in crime once again. I hope you listen to my show tonight to hear the first of many tracks from the
album from XSM
Derek 'Big Dan' Forbes 31st August 2012
XSM have just released the first track from their forthcoming debut album. Outsider
was first premiered on the 31st August by LA Talk Radio on Derek Forbes'
May The Forbes Be With You show.
It was the first track played - and the second... and the third... - and can be
It will also be available through the iTunes Store soon.
"My radio show goes out to 1.6 million listeners every week. I played it three
times on my show last night, so the answer to radio play is "Yes." We are delighted with the result,
and I don't know if Jim and the rest have listened to it,
but I have a sneaky suspicion that they have." - Derek Forbes
Derek also talked about the song on the show with
Nine tracks are currently being worked on for the album. It will be finished in November for a release
in January/February 2013.
Simple Minds are in full retro mode and continue to
tour X5 throughout Europe and the album did finally
receive an expanded release as part of the
X5 Box Set. However, it’s a pity that
Virgin couldn’t mark the anniversary of this classic album with something more substantial.
However, all is not lost. Phunk Investigation, either though utter coincidence or
careful planning, are releasing a remix of the title track this month. Entitled
Gold Vision and with Dino on vocals, it’s a cover of the classic
track with all the remix tricks expected from Phunk Investigation.
(This includes a sly sample of Usura's Open You Mind to boot).
Several remixes have been produced and can be found on YouTube. The track gets its
official release through Skinflint Records later this month.
The discography update has concentrated on Disky, a record comapany from The Netherlands,
who've reissued several Simple Minds CDs:
Theatre Antique, Vienne, France 23rd July, 2012 5x5 + Hits Set
"Loving these current French shows. The audiences are a delight and the venues in both
Nimes and Viene were out of this world. Thanks to all who came. Now looking forward to the Amp It Up - Riviera
Rock Festival tomorrow night in Juan Les Pins. I saw Bowie play there many years ago and
thought it was an amazing place to see a show" - Jim, 24th July 2012
Thanks to Jernej for the set-list and photographs and to Paola
for additional photos. More shots here.
"Busy on tour, but maybe not so busy after all as we still had time to see friends, families,
and even the little doggies. That said, being in France and Italy in summertime reminded us once more
just why many consider those countries as being among the most beautiful in the world. Any doubts try
visiting, as we just have Arles, Camargue, Lyon, Vienne, Cote D'Azure, Modena, Rome and Grado... the doubts
may well disappear" - Jim, 29th July 2012
BBC Radio Four are currently broadcasting a series by Paul Morley
in which he traces the history of several, famous recording studios. The first Making Tracks programme
concentrated on Rockfield Studios and Simple Minds were mentioned several times during the show
(as Real To Real Cacophony,
Empires And Dance and
Graffiti Soul were all recorded at Rockfield).
The second programme moved from rural Wales to heart of the London and featured the world famous Abbey Road.
Both programmes can be heard via the iPlayer service.
The doors of a grimy anonymous lock-up garage were recently opened in Glasgow. Within its anonymous walls,
and smelling of damp (despite the efforts of an electric bar fire), was some of the Simple Minds
archive: boxes of old tapes, forgotten instruments and all manner of paperwork and memorabilia. Buried deep
within this treasure trove was a small box containing a selection of colour slides: closer inspection
revealed these to be the studio shots taken for the inner bag of Real To Real Cacophony.
However, the set included alternative shots, and various portraits of band members posing by the mixing console.
It’s assumed these were taken at Rockfield.
It would’ve been wonderful to use some of these photographs when we were putting together the
5x5 tour brochure.
But we couldn’t shots of all the band, so settled for just the single one of Jim instead.
Copies of When Stars Fall have now been dispatched. This limited edition is the
first physical release by The Dark Flowers and features two tracks with vocals by Jim.
Each of the 200 copies has been signed and numbered by Paul Stahtam.
And this newspaper article was published just prior to the Moderna gig. Click the image for a larger version:
Mind2Mode ruled the Ghent Festival
The annual Ghent Festival contains lots of events, going from street animations through street singers,
cabaretiers to any kind of level of music performances. Half of the city is made car-free and people
can walk through the streets where normally traffic is passing by, but in this case people walk, sit
and enjoy the street positioned events. One of the squares is equipped for late-night concerts, and
on the eve of July 19th, Mind2Mode made their appearance. First time here, so the eyes and
ears of the public were hungry to see this band that was new for the Ghent Festival.
At 21:30PM they came on stage with the tunes of Theme For Great Cities,
that soon switched over into Sanctify Yourself from the
Simple Minds. The set contained one part of covers from Simple Minds,
followed by a set of Depeche Mode and finished by a rocking one of U2.
It was a rather rainy evening, but people were very surprised to see these youngsters giving a beautiful set.
Umbrellas came and went, and on the tune of Waterfront,
it started raining cats and dogs.
As I was frontstage positionned, from time to time I took a look backwards and saw the whole square was
filled up with enthusiastic people, who at first were standing but who by now were jumping up and down all
along with the songs. Singer Steve flirted with the microphone and guitarist Martin
squeezed the hell out of his guitar. Drummer Thorsten banged his drumkit with amazing force.
By the time Don't You (Forget About Me) started, the rain stopped
and the public went wild, singing along the chorus "a capella", to great satisfaction of the band.
When the Depeche Mode set began, bassist Jacky popped up in a DM-like dresscode
and took over the guitar parts during this set. Mighty good looking stagelights highlighted
Simon Hayward playing his synths and genuinly enjoying the gig. People began to drum by
closer and closer on the square where a very energetic gig was going on. No rain could stop any of us now,
we all had a very good time enjoying the gig and singing along. Don't Go from "Yazoo
went into a medley along with Welcome To The Pleasure Dome from Frankie Goes To Hollywood,
the public went crazy!
When the U2-part was going on I noticed behind me some youngsters and (lots) of not-so-youngsters
were screaming their tongues out of their throats. Singer Steve pretented rolling a bowling-ball
into the public a few times, getting the "ball" back from the audience. interaction all over!
By now, the boys had been singing for 3 hours and almost half an hour of "encores" closed this beautiful triptych.
A very enthusiastic public showed their appreciation to the band, showing them their passage to the Ghent
Festival was oh so great! Mind2Mode came, ruled and even forced the weathergods to
their knees! Surely a night to remember, as all do who came and see them.
friendtipper, italian magazine, il piccolo, discography
Friendtipper have launched a competition
to win a meet-and-greet with Simple Minds at the Brabant Open Air Festival, Eindhoven in The Netherlands on the 25th August.
Jim's also recorded a short promotional video for the competition:
So click here for a chance to win one of
three tickets to meet the band.
An Italian magazine is offering The Best Of as its free cover disc. I don't know which
magazine it is, but the offer is running this week, so those in Italy should scan the sales racks.
Whilst on the subject of Italian publications, Il Piccolo published a page-sized spread on the band in anticipation
of the forthcoming gig in Grado.
"A couple of weeks in now and our summer tour of festivals (mostly) is shaping up rather well with some great reactions
from both audiences and media. Audiences in general, have always welcomed us, showing the kind of appreciation that many acts
would die for and making us feel that we want to give more of ourselves in return. Getting many positive reviews in the media
as we have been recently, is taking a little time to get used to."
"The reason for that is frankly for the longest time it seemed that no one in print had anything good to say about
us whatsoever. Was that a hurtful experience? Hmmm, it was certainly a confusing experience, but it was even possible to get
used to disappointments and the Pariah role was just something we needed to deal with somehow."
"Not that we are or were ever above criticism, then again who is? And I can clearly recall a period where looking back
now I would shamefully concede that we might not have been doing all necessary to engage in ways that are necessary, particularly
if you want to stay on top of your game as a live act. They were blips however, least in my view. And again, it is perhaps expecting
too much that you could just glide through a career that has lasted for 35 years without periods of stagnation."
"Stagnation is a term that hopefully was the last thing to spring up in anyone’s mind that came to see us in Newcastle
on Sunday night. What a great atmosphere in the venue, both band and crowd feeding off an energy that reminded me of shows
that we did in Newcastle way back in the early ‘80’s. No mere flashback however, the set may have consisted of songs that
belie their age, but again in my view, and indeed some of the fans I spoke with afterwards and on the train to London
the next morning, there is something altogether fresh in what is coming across from Simple Minds on stage currently."
"Long may it continue, please!" - Jim 10th July 2012
"Dalhalla in Sweden is possibly the most amazing venue I have ever seen. Ranks alongside Teatro Greco
in Sicily and even Red Rocks in Denver. Words escape as to how magic the place is. What other venue affords you
the opportunity to go play in the heart of a quarry full of ancient stone and afterwards go skinny dipping
in the most amazing little emerald coloured lake - as I did last night. Unforgettable - thanks to those you
came and made it so memorable for us." - Jim, 14th July 2012
the dark flowers, newcastle, discography
The When Stars Fall EP is now available as a vinyl style CD. Featuring four tracks,the title track
When Stars Fall has vocals from Shelly Poole (Red Sky July and Alisha's Attic).
Jim Kerr contributes This Boys Life and
Night Is The New Day and the final track is the beautiful No Trains Stop Here featuring
This is a limited edition of 200 and comes with numbered artwork.
"Arrived in late last night from a baking hot St. Petersburg to a vey wet and very "dreich" Edinburgh. With the weather not
set to change my heart goes out to the 85,000 who will be at T in The Park Festival. Without doubt we are also set for a soaking - I
definitely am - but I could not care less. Its an honour to play for people. We will give all that we have, then it its
on the tour bus and direct to Newcastle for tomorrows 5x5 gig. That one is in doors thankfully. - Jim 7th July 2012
"Another festival we can tick off as done. How do we feel? Great bands should be able to do it regardless of the conditions,
somehow I feel the weather snatched away what could have been a glorious one. Ah well! Good points? The audience who could put
up with those conditions and still have a good time are the real stars. Downside? I can't help it, but for me I dislike being
so far from the crowd. Walkways etc would have brought us much closer and we need that contact. Thanks to everybody for the reception
and of course the chance to play at T In The Park." - Jim 8th July 2012
Goodbye Dreamtime. I liked his remixes - he had the spirit of the 1970s/1980s remixer: this is, someone who wanted to emphasise the
music with a new arrangement, rather than the 1990s/2000s remixer, who wanted to remove most of the music and stamp their
own limited ideas all over it.
He was a regular remixer of Simple Minds' material and his last e-mail to me was about a new version of
Sanctify Yourself he'd been working on.
I still have a copy of his remix of This Is Not America by Bowie which was great - so search it out.
FAC 51 THE HAÇIENDA have uploaded videos of many of the first acts to
play at the now legendary venue. This now includes Simple Minds performing
Promised You A Miracle to a saturated
primary-coloured 1980s light show.
This was a free concert and was delay-broadcast by Austrian channel ORF3.
"It's all a bit of a blur!"
"Some give 100% even in rehearsals, playing each song as though lives depended on it. Mel, Andy and
Ged are in that category. Charlie and I
are... uh... not quite the same types. Learning and knowing the arrangements is quite enough in our case, plus it
genuinely seems we would rather hold back until an audience is in front of us. We can afford to be a little bit
casual of course, especially when the others are sounding so on it!"
"There will be an audience in front of us in Vienna on Saturday when we start the first of the summer
outdoor shows. Forecast to be hot and sweaty also. Has a year really passed so quick since last summer's shows?
I guess so. But it is all a blur." - Jim
Thanks to Lionello for the pictures and set-list.
"The new songs always take over me. Utopia - not even finished
written yet but feels so powerful. I reckon we should play it when we turn up in Vienna in a few days. Who cares if
it's not perfect - especially when it feels like it is?" - Jim, 19th June 2012
Comedian John Bishop selected Don’t You (Forget About Me)
as one of his top-ten records on this Sunday's Desert Island Discs (broadcast on BBC Radio Four).
Then he excelled himself by selecting the Minds' song as the one song he would save if his collection
was going to be swept away.
danube island festival
Tonight's Danube Island Festival in Vienna will be broadcast by ORF3 - albeit delayed by a couple of hours.
Check this link for more information.
xsm, discography, meeting myself coming back, punk britannia, the dark flowers
These shots of XSM were taken at the Good Heavens Festival in Oldenzaal by Jan Mak.
For more information about XSM and future touring plans then check out their website.
BBC Radio 4 programme Meeting Myself Coming Back is being trailed extensively and
the first programme features Richard Branson. The trail includes the instrumental of
Alive And Kicking as the backing.
This isn't the first time Richard Branson (the former managing director of Virgin Records)
has been featured using Simple Minds' music. The various documentaries of his ocean-hopping-ballooning-adventures
have featured tracks from New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84).
The Dark Flowers release their first EP When Stars Fall on the 2nd July 2012.
Featuring Shelly Poole (Alisha's Attic & Red Sky July)
on the title track, Catherine A.D. with the beautiful No Train Stop Here and
Simple Minds' frontman Jim Kerr with
This Boy's Life and Night Is The New Day.
Your support is greatly appreciated in getting this amazing project up and running.
All the best, Paul Statham
the live music hour, the dark flowers, discography
An archive performance from Simple Minds featured on BBC Radio 6 Music's The Music Hour
this week. Recorded on the 9th January 1980 at the Paris Theatre by the BBC, the show was originally
broadcast as part of the network's In Concert series.
Manic's front-man James Dean Bradfield has been continuing his praise of early Simple Minds.
Whilst guest DJ on BBC Radio Wales back in March, he selected Empires And Dance
as one of the "albums to hear before you die."
record store day, 5x5 intro reel, q magazine, prog magazine, reminds
Sister Ray Records Announces Record Store Day
Sister Ray Records, based in Berwick Street, Soho, London, is proud to be taking part in this year's
Record Store Day; the event is on Saturday April 21st from 8am-8pm.
After the huge success of last year’s Record Store Day, which was their busiest day ever, the world
renowned independent record shop will be stocking the vast majority of over 400 limited edition titles, which have
been manufactured for this special event. These include releases by Kate Bush,
Arcade Fire, Bruce Springsteen, PIL, Coldplay,
Elbow, Metallica, The Beatles, Bob Dylan,
Arctic Monkeys, Black Keys, Vaccines, amongst many others.
Customers started queuing outside the shop the night before last year to be the first to buy these limited records;
they are expecting it to be even busier this year.
There will be in-store signing sessions with Jim Kerr and
Charlie Burchill from Simple Minds, an appearance from
Billy Bragg and various other guests will be visiting the shop throughout the day.
St Etienne’s Bob Stanley and respected music critic Pete Paphides have
both agreed to work behind the record counter for a few hours, so customers will be able to discuss the
whereabouts of that extremely rare 7" single from an obscure all-female 60’s pop group!
All customers that purchase a Record Store Day release in the shop will be entered into a special draw
to win an exclusive Jack White "white label" vinyl copy of his forthcoming album Blunderbuss.
Record Store Day is now in its fifth year and has been instrumental in helping independent record shops
in these challenging times. For more information: www.recordstoreday.co.uk.
Jim and Charlie will be at
Sister Ray for the record signing session between 9:00AM and 10:30AM.
The Intro Reel of the 5x5 Gigs
was recently made available through the official site. Arranged by Charlie, this
montage features a collection of riffs from many of the tracks on the band's first five albums.
As part of their rediscovery of Simple Minds, Q Magazine have run a double-page
feature of the Roundhouse concert in their May issue. It includes a review of the gig, some great live pictures,
some quotes from Jim and awards the band four stars (out of five) for
(It's the one with "The Real Best Of" on the cover and a picture of Morrissey on every other page.)
Classic Rock spin-off magazine Prog Rock have also featured Simple Minds
in their latest issue. It isn’t currently known how much of the article is based on
Simple Minds, or is a through debate of why they should be included in a "prog" magazine,
but it's probably worth tracking down.
Italian tribute band Reminds have a new website. It includes
information about the band, gallery and most importantly a media section, details of live appearances and a download
the dark flowers, x5, record store day, skarphallen, discography
The Dark Flowers, a project by Paul Statham and which includes
Jim, will shortly be offically released.
The first song, Night Is The New Day featuring Jim is now
available as a free download in exchange for your e-mail address. You can either register through
thedarkflowers.believeband.com or via this form:
The video can be seen here:
Night Is The New Day will also be getting its first radio play on Billy Sloan's
show tonight (1st April) on Radio Clyde.
A three-track EP will be available in June which includes This Boy's Life (another collaboration with
Jim) along with songs featuring Shelly Poole and
Catherine AD. A thirty second preview of the EP is available at thedarkflowers.believeband.com.
The X5 box-set pages have been completed with more information about the box-set itself,
a breakdown of the commercial version, a listing of some Abbey Road reference CDs and finally the final-proof cromalins of the artwork.
Two tracks are exclusive to the box-set. The German 12" Remix of New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84)
appears for the first time with the drumming intro (which is present on the album and DVD-Audio versions of the track);
whilst In Every Heaven is the original 1982 recording of the song
(and not the reworked extended version found on the DVD-Audio).
Simple Minds are participating in Record Store Day by releasing a
limited edition 12" of two new remixes.
Those who’ve read the 5X5 Tour Brochure will already know that
John Leckie has remixed I Travel
for the release: "I'm currently mixing a new version of I Travel which the band will release on vinyl for
Record Store Day in April. It still sounds a fantastic song more than 30 years on."
Unfortunately the artwork isn’t particularly adventurous with Virgin simply reusing the sleeve from the first
I Travel release. Luckily there’s an instore signing session planned so you could get
Jim and Charlie to spice it up a bit.
(The retrospective constructivism a la Malcolm Garrett on the splash page is simply something I put together. It's not official.)
The 12" will only be available through select record shops on the 21st April.
"And just as we had settled into recording mode,
tomorrow we will hightail it to the Arctic Circle for a one – off show in Tromso and we are looking forward
to it immensely as well."
"It is always particularly good to go play somewhere for the first time; it is even more
so to go to a place that is particularly of note. Tromso after all, and despite it’s Italian
sounding name, is situated some 350 kilometres (217 mi) inside the Arctic Circle. This "Paris of The North"
and has an impressive history, and is currently home to some of the musicians from the legendary
Rokysopp. That is all pretty cool, and well, considering it might be a few degrees below zero,
perhaps cool is an understatement."
"More personally, since we arrive the night before our set, I hope to see the mysterious Aurora Borealis - Tromso
by all accounts should be the kind of place where we get more than a glimpse. I do hope to get lucky with that."
"But enough of what we are looking forward to, what can people expect who come along to see us take part in
this festival of music, what can they look forward to from us? Well, the band has been on great form over the last
months and I expect that will continue as we play a set that will highlight songs from our entire history. Plus, this
is a one – off as already said, it is also a first time as stated."
"That all means we will most probably attack it with full force, summoning up the positive energy with us,
and play with our fullest enthusiasm."
"When that happens it can quite impressive – or so it has been said." - Jim
"Over and out! Thanks to all who made our first ever set In Tromso a success. Great venue, great crowd,
fine organisation from Siggi and all the promoters team. I did not get to see the Northern Lights unfortunately,
but once again I got to feel the thrill of being in the middle of it all when the band is playing so good. There is a
level of energy about Simple Minds presently that is more evident than ever before and I am
already looking forward to the summer shows - we want to improve always."
"At one point tonight, when the crowd was making a lot of noise, I encouraged them further by holding out
the microphone and saying "Go on then - let them hear you in Oslo" (More than 1000km away?) Unfortunately a
few people only heard the Oslo word and I guess thought that I had lost my bearings. Well no actually, or at
least not this time. Tromso was special, uniquely so, and we will back for sure." - Jim
Many thanks to Lionello for the photographs and set-list.
"In the end it all passed in a blink of an eye. And all of which is probably understandable, given the way we
were traipsing round Europe, criss crossing from east to west and sprinting up and down from south to north and
then more often than not - straight back again. In fact, been so dizzying these last weeks, it is more than
little wonder that we never crossed paths with versions of ourselves, wandering like ghosts as we did, moving on
a daily basis from city to city."
"The very image of that leads me to ponder on what the young version of myself, the version that co-wrote
all of those songs featured in the 5x5 tour, would have thought could he have glimpsed into the future and observed
what we have been getting up to within the recently completed concert tour. Of course I have no idea, but if he
evenly remotely felt as positive about it all as many of us have, then I am sure he would have been a happy young fellow."
"Cannot say thanks enough to our crew, management, and agent, for making it happen. Similarly, great compliments should go to
our PR, the coverage has been extensive and somewhat relentlessly positive. (That helps!) More than all of this though, it is
our gratitude to all who came to support us that I want to convey. And so to all who made it to the shows, investing not
only their money, but also their belief in the continuation of Simple Minds. It is a big and heartfelt thanks that we send to you. You deserve it!" - Jim, Official Website, 6th March 2012
Many thanks to Gary Stafford and Claudia for the pictures and to Clive for the set-list.
Ritz Manchester 03/03/12
Who needs the Eurovision Song Contest when you can have a singsong with Simple Minds? Contingents from Germany, Italy,
Hungary (and possibly a few more other Countries) interspersed with their die-hard British counterparts and no sign of favouritism
or rivalries. After all we were all there for the same thing: having a good time. And we surely did!
No change to the set list, bit late in the tour for that, but at least we knew what was coming. As the guys belted out song after
song with such great enthusiasm it was impossible not to dance, clap or sing along. Deafeningly! I’m surprised Jim
could hear himself as he darted across the stage, asking the audience to sing even louder. Clearly back on form and having the time of his life.
Andy couldn’t stop smiling either.
Mel probably was grinning as well, but I couldn’t
see him that clearly through all the dry ice fog. Apparently the venue had a sprung floor,
slightly sticky, but it didn’t stop the crowd bouncing up and down during the faster songs.
The evening was over and gone far too quickly, even more so than in Birmingham. But nobody seemed
to want to leave, much to the annoyance of the security people.
I eventually returned to the hotel around midnight, after making a few new friends, happily holding
Ged and Andy's autograph
(Thanks guys for taking the time, appreciated). Could have had the set list as well, but as I was standing
with Hungarian fan who had missed out on getting anything, I gave it to her instead. After all we all
had shared a brilliant night with Simple Minds, why not share the spoils as well. See you all again sometime to have more fun.
The 5X5 Tour may be over, but dates are already starting to appear for a series
of Summer Festivals. T In The Park and Latitude have been the first of
many to be announced.
Those who've carefully read the new tour programme will have a very good idea of what's going
to be on the next Simple Minds single and
when it's going to be released...
"Thanks for giving us great nights in Bruxelles and Birmingham - really magic. I have been looking and
listening to some recordings of the 5x5 shows and they are pretty much everything we had hoped for. Still room
for improvements though - I think we will hit a nice peak by time we arrive at the Roundhouse in London - where
we plan on doing some recording and filming of the set. Meanwhile tonight in Barrowland - if any venue could be
termed our spiritual home it is the Barrowland. I expect an emotional high. Can't wait!" - Jim, Facebook
Many thanks to Claudia for the pictures.
O2 Academy Birmingham 24/2/12
Where shall I start? Seeing that I hadn’t heard of Simple Minds until late ’83 I had my work cut
out to catch up with the back catalogue which thankfully only took a couple of years. Did I like what I heard? You bet
I did! Did I have the chance to hear those songs in all their glory in the last 28 years? No. Well, I had heard some
of the usual suspects at previous gigs, but about 80? was ‘new’ to my ears till tonight.
Even as joined I the queue three hours before the doors opened I had the feeling that history was going to repeat itself. Why? Because
it started raining! Only slightly, but it did. Though this time round there was a roof over our heads. The warm-up music covered nearly
every original covered by the Minds over the years setting the mood nicely. By 7:15 time I strained my ears trying to
discern the intro into the first part of the main set, thinking "please, don’t make me wait any longer".
The guys eventually came on stage and without further ado kick-started the evening with I Travel
(yep, been there, done that, will do a lot more of it this year), followed by 30 Frames A Second
(going through that feeling right now, thanks to my dad for reminding me how it feels to be over 40). And the songs kept coming. I can’t
for my life remember which order they came in as I mentally ticked each one off my wish list and tried to take it all in: the lighting,
the music and the all-round good atmosphere permeating the venue, while at the same time trying to remember the lyrics and sing along.
Not easy. Finally the moment everyone had been waiting for arrived in the shape of Pleasantly Disturbed
and the appearance of Charlie’s violin. Short but sweet, those few minutes are certainly worth
looking out for and store in your memory, if you’re lucky to be at the forthcoming gigs. Room, one of my favs, ended the first part to great applause. Time for a break.
Oh great, the organisers did anticipate the crowd’s need for refreshment, handing out free cups of water to the fans in the first couple of
rows and we got a costume change! Gone is Jim’s black & white retro Empires & Dance T-shirt, having
been replaced by the white & black version of the same. The American started the second half off, with the
whole venue singing along whole-heartedly, following through with In Trance As Mission,
another tick on my wish list. More favourites followed in rapid succession (again, can’t recall the order, where is the set list?) but by now I was
floating well above Cloud 9. Bring on the possible (?) future release of the 5x5 repertoire! Someone Somewhere (In Summertime)
did finish this part though, that much I do remember. Throughout Jim was giving his best showman impression, darting
as usual from one side of the stage to the other, mouthing ‘thank you’s’ to everyone in the audience, at one point tangling the mike cable around
Ged’s mike stand, sending it flying. How it managed to miss
Ged I’ve got no idea, but no harm was done and the band played on.
Encore time and another T-shirt change for Jim: back to plain back, looking good! But before us girls in the crowd got
an eyeful of that, there was only Charlie,
Ged ploughing through
Themes For Great Cities. I hadn’t been sure how an instrumental would work live; I
stand corrected; it was brilliant. Following on we got Someone and Chelsea Girl
(again a great sing along between Jim and the crowd and then my No1 fav
Glittering Prize, it still makes my heart jump twenty-eight years on from first hearing it.
New Gold Dream closed the evening with the most fantastic lighting display.
Steve Pollard deserves a pint for that, if not a medal!
Not only does he deserve praise, EVERY ONE of Simple Minds does. If they had a ball so far, I certainly did and most likely the
rest of the audience as well from what I gathered from talking to handful of people afterwards, who all had their own stories to tell
of how long they’d been Simple Minds fans. And it wasn’t just a small sized ball; I’m talking one of those balls you roll down the
hill in. Just to climb out at the end of the experience completely dizzy but exhilarated. And I’m going to it all again next Saturday in Manchester.
I must be mad! But it feels great.
"The venue was as good as ever - likewise the audience - overwhelming - made us feel so good. Little wonder bands
from all over the world enjoy playing there. Nice to know that old time friends and family were there with us. Missed
seeing my mother's smiling face, but felt the presence anywhere. Paris next!" - Jim, Facebook
"It was Paris in springtime. (Well, almost.) And all was going even better than we had hoped for inside the charming venue
that we had looked forward to playing so much. "
"The sold-out audience seemed intent on having more than a good time and although only 4 songs into the set,
I could already tell that the band would be improving yet again on the previous night’s show. I guess that is
just a sense you develop among other things through years and years of touring."
"Anyway, it was right then that it happened, it hurt like hell and it still does more than 36 hours later.
What was it that happened? Well, rather embarrassingly I am talking about the hamstring muscle that I
might have torn in a moment of far too much exuberance, all caused while careering around the stage at the Casino de Paris."
"But y’know maybe it is not all bad news. After all a hamstring injury is something common to professional footballers, and in
my still childish dreams I still envisage being one of those at some point. (I know I may be nearly 53 but in my dreams I am still in my early 20’s)
But of course, reality is something different and for me that is where the appealing football comparison had to end. Because
although the reaction was painfully bringing a little tear to my eye, there would be no glancing over at the substitute bench
and asking for someone to replace me in my moment of great need. No chance of that! In fact we still had another two hours to play
before I could consider soaking in hot baths or strapping ice cubes to the tender part. Being so I knew that I had a very long night in front of me."
"In the end it was just another unforeseen incident, not one I would have wished for, but touring comes loaded with
moments like this. And guess what? You just have to get on with it. Back in ’82 while touring America with New Gold Dream
we even continued playing shows the night after I had broken my nose. Not the best vocal sound as you can imagine – but we had no insurance
and needed the money so the gigs had to go on. More than that we would have hated cancelling for any reason and in doing so letting people down."
"I also learned something very useful and interesting back then, something I knew would see me through the rest of the set
in Paris. Fact is, natural adrenalin is a wonderful painkiller and thankfully there was no lack of adrenalin during the set on Monday night."
"We live and fight another day!" - Jim, www.simpleminds.com
"Blink and it's almost gone. Only two more Euro shows to go - Milan tonight and Zurich tomorrow - before
we head back to UK and then Ireland where we will wrap up the 5x5 tour. A lot of people saying positive
things re the shows, we appreciate it but credit also to our crew/management who have performed as well
as anyone on stage. Simon Hayward has done a lot of behind the
scene work on our behalf over the last months, was great to see him in Glasgow." - Jim, Facebook
The Barrowland gig was positively reviewed by The Guardian in anticpation
of their Roundhouse appearance later this week. Fishbone Photography were also at the gig and have collected pictures from
the gig on their website.
Mojo have published a six page spread in the April 2012 edition devoted to early
Simple Minds. It is not only quantity but quality: journalist Keith Cameron not
only talked to Jim and
Charlie about the early days, but also spoke to
Mick. This has lead to one of the most informative, and honest, reappraisals of the seminal
Simple Minds with opinions and facts from all the original members.
The icing on the cake is a lengthy side-piece by James Dean Bradfield on the genius of Simple Minds.
It will appear on-line but the original magazine is well-worth tracking down for all the archival photographs.
the quietus, the guardian, billy sloan, uncut 5x5 review, contact music review
One of the best interviews surrounding the box-set and tour has just been published in the Quietus.
This covers the early years of the band and the recording of the first five albums. Salient points include the ten year stand off with EMI (which lead
to the all-too-obvious neglect of the back catalogue) and one of Arista's barmy ideas for rejuvinating the Simple Minds brand by
ditching the band and keeping Jim.
And another good interview will be on Billy Sloan's show this Sunday. Billy's been
a fan of the band since the Johnny And The Self Abusers days so expect a lot of history to be rediscovered during
the show. (Billy also wrote most of the 5x5 Tour Brochure and interviewed the three producers).
And another positive X5 review (which they all have been) can be found on Contact Music.
Sentrum Scene, Oslo, Norway 21st February, 2012
"Oslo is done and dusted and with it we say goodbye to 7 gigs in 8 days - travelling all the
way from the southern tip of Europe to the very north - all of them memorable too. Tonight I am knackered - but I
am happy - and I definitely wont be tired come Thursday and the Cirque Royale in Bruxelles. Thanks
to everybody who has come so far." - Jim Kerr
Many thanks to Jan Mak and Rob for the photos, and to Otto for the set-list.
bbc 6 music, 5x5 tour
X5 is BBC 6 Music's album of the day and they're playing a track from
the box-set every hour.
There have been several questions about the tour which I've answered below.
There is no support act. Simple Minds are on stage for two-and-a-half hours with a brief
intermission between the two main sets.
There’s a new range of tour merchandise for sale at the gigs. There are 5x5 T-shirts and a "new" retro
Empires And Dance T-shirt for sale. (This was based on the original T-shirt which was available at gigs back in 1980).
"I'll let you in on a secret of mine. As much as I love touring, and I really do. And as much as I feel the excitement
as every new tour begins. I really rarely enjoy the first nights of any concert tour. Don’t get me wrong please; last night in
Lisbon made me a happy guy both afterwards and during the show. However, there is just something about first nights that make it
difficult to relax in the way that I feel it takes to put over an inspired set. I guess it is because with everything becoming
so new again for the band, the tech crew, the lighting etc. The effect of that causes everyone involved to be thinking just a
little too intensely throughout."
"And so what is wrong with that you may be asking? Well, in my opinion music – or in fact anything - always works much better
when it is done as though it is flowing of its own accord and seemingly without thought. In our case, that kind of performance
usually happens after a few shows, when everyone is that bit more familiar with the new set and although still excited, much
more at ease with the challenge."
"And this 5x5 tour is a challenge make no doubt. Not many are out there touring - without playing their mega hits.
Not many are out there playing anywhere between 2:15 and 2:30 hours, as we will be during this tour. Likewise, not many
find that they are still as passionate now about playing live music as they were when they were kids – but we are, and very
much so. Then again and in putting things in perspective, not everyone has had the great level of support and enthusiasm
that has been given to Simple Minds at various stages of our career and for this we show our appreciation and thank our lucky stars."
"And so with that, I say thanks to all who gave us good times in Lisbon - but especially those who came to the concert and
made us feel so a wee bit special. It was a fine start to a tour, that is for sure."
"Okay, Madrid next!" - Jim, simpleminds.com, 15th February 2012
"Thanks to all for the last few pleasurable days In Lisbon. It was a fine start to the tour and we appreciate all who came
to support us and indeed show their love for our "early music" - which as everyone even remotely interested should know by this
stage - is what this tour is all about. Bonus for us was the little sightseeing we made yesterday morning - among others it
was a thrill to visit the old Stadio Nacional which is a "holy place" to all supporters of Celtic Football Club. Even bigger
thrill to get on to the grass and have a kick about! Celtic fans might also like to know that the great Jorge Cadete
and his girl came to say hello. The sun was shining and all in all we had a ball in Lisbon!" - Jim, FaceBook, 15th February 2012
A new Simple Minds Shop has opened. It includes CD albums, the DVD, tour merchandise and personalised awards.
The first 100 customers will receive a free 5x5 tour poster (A3 size).
More will be added to the shop so it's always worth keeping an eye on it.
how the brits rocked america, remixes, discography updates
Jim was featured last night's How The Brits Rocked America which
was shown on BBC4. He was interviewed a couple of time (at 2:50 and 19:30 minutes into the show) and footage was shown
of the band's appearance at Hurrah's in 1979 with a clip of Premonition.
A great "geeky" interview was broadcast yesterday on Dublin's Phantom 105.2 FM. John Caddell quizzed
Jim about the forthcoming X5 Box Set and
Great interview and don't worry that you missed it as it's available on podcast. You'll find it on
media.phantom.ie/podcasts under the "Finest Worksongs" option.
There's a great exclusive interview with Jim and
Charlie in today's The Sun. They're featured in a quater-page advert,
the cover of Something For The Weekend and there's a one-and-a-half page spread for the interview itself.
2012, x5, band rehearsals, youtube channel, rockol.it, steve lillywhite cbe, lost minds #3, discography
My apologies for the delayed first update of 2012. I’ve been quietly working on some official projects for the band, the fruits
of which will be revealed soon.
2012 will be a packed year for Simple Minds. Whist this doesn’t include the new album (which will appear in 2013), it does
include touring and lots of exciting new releases. It all commences with the 5X5 Tour and the
X5 Box Set.
The X5 Box Set release had been put back to the 20th February 2012 (for exceptionally good reasons).
Collectors have their work cut out for them as seven different CD promos are already starting to circulate.
Virgin have done a great job with the promos as the CDs are housed in full colour sleeves. There's an exclusive Box-Set Sampler and then
one promo for each album in the box-set.
The Queen forgot to include me in the New Years Honours (again); but for those who like to keep their album credits up-to-date,
then you'll have to pull out your copies of Sparkle In The Rain and append "CBE" to
Mr Lillywhite’s name – honoured for his services to the music industry.
A service which includes such greats as U2, Gabriel, The Stones, Morissey,
Siouxsie and Simple Minds; yet the Telegraph's picture editor
could only find a stock photo of him with Toyah. It's a mystery.