Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Worth Another Listen - Simple Minds

Well, despite my own Irish and German heritage, I seem to be somewhat hung up on boys from Scotland. Go figure. But Simple Minds were a magical group that managed to hit it huge with the placement of a single song in a film by the late John Hughes. The Breakfast Club used Don't You (Forget About Me) and the themes of teenage powerlessness and dissatisfaction, and it rocketed Simple Minds to international stardom.

Simple Minds was made up by Jim Kerr, Charlie Burchill and Mel Gaynor at the core, with Eddie Duffy and Andy Gillespie joining the band recently. Kerr, the lead singer, was notable at the peak of the stardom for also being married to Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders, making them a supercouple of the 80s, although they divorced in 1990. The band took the name Simple Minds in 1977, having previously been named Johnny and the Self-Abusers, a rather radio-unfriendly moniker. However, the band has stayed together for the most part, with the core group holding strong and putting out their latest release, Graffiti Soul, earlier this year.

Following the hit Don't You (Forget About Me), they released Once Upon A Time featuring the single Alive And Kicking. It was a classic song from the time, a big and sweeping power ballad, almost epic in proportion.

You can catch up with Simple Minds on their official website by clicking here.


  1. Please tell me you've listened to their stuff before "Dont You Forget about Me." "Someone Somewhere in Summertime" is still one of my alltime favorites.

  2. I had that album, too! I thought Kerr had a great voice, and I remembered that he was married to Chrissie. Cool to hear that they're still together.

  3. Kailyn, I think the first time I knew about them was 'Don't You', but then went back and listened to their earlier stuff.

    Beth, I am amused by the thought of the 50-something new wavers on the road. LOL

  4. Howard, I can always count on you to make my day. :) Love my eighties tunes.

  5. Kyle, so glad I can be of service.

    Wonder Man, mine to!

  6. Dont get me started on this wonderful, pioneering alt-modern rock band from Scotland. Dont you forget about me is and was a sign of the times for any 80's lover! It served on the same platter 2 icons from the 80"s - 1) a memorable track defining the 80"s and 2) JOHN HUGHES whose movies were an intricate part of the 80's and his movies had some of the most influential artists in modern rock.

  7. Also meant to mention that in many interviews Kerr has stated that they hated Don't You as it wasn't tyipical of their other stuff. I liked the song because of the movie but as a Simple Minds song? No way. It's a shame that what made them well known was not one of their really great songs.

  8. 2 true Kailyn....I recently got 2 of SM's older tracks - Chelsea Girl and Garden of hate...a bit different, and I guess more in tune with the band's MO. But still ... don't you - is a really great song.
    I also heard that Kurt Cobain hated performing "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and Radiohead never perform Creep anymore.

  9. Kailyn, that is often the case. I would think playing the same song at every show for 25 years could do that.

    SteveA, I was mad about Sanctify Yourself and Alive & Kicking.

  10. All the Things She Said and Ghost Dancing were good too - both out of Once Upon A Time.

    Promised You A Miracle is class radio new wave.

  11. Yes, playing something for 25 years could make you hate it. Thing is the interviews I read were less than 10 years after the song was released. Actually less than 10 if I remember correctly.

    I absolutely love John Hughes for the musical moments he gave us in his films. For me, Don't You is topped by so many other moments. And for me, the song does not mean much without the movie reference. Without the reference I can get the same feeling from Tears for Fears or The Smiths.



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