KIM SIMMONDS & SAVOY BROWN
British Blues/Rock pioneer Kim Simmonds and Savoy Brown celebrate 50 continuous years of touring, more than 5,000 gigs from the Royal Albert Hall to Carnegie Hall to the Fillmore East and West, and now, the bands returns to The Magic Bag!
Kim Simmonds is not living in the past; he’s challenging himself and his band to reach new heights and find higher ground.
That’s what Kim lives for and invigorates him - playing for audiences who are hungry to listen for new heights in artistry - not just living off 50 years as an architect of the British hard blues scene.
“Whether I like it or not, I think my destiny is to keep doing what I’m doing, play in clubs and theaters where people pay their hard eared money to hear us give them one-hundred and ten percent.”
Spring 2015, the band released The Devil To Pay, Simmonds’ 46th album, and it shows what 50 years giving one-hundred and ten percent can do.
Anyone with an appreciation of blues-rock will have been following that circle intently since the start. Rewind to when the Savoy Brown Blues Band formed in 1965, and began playing gigs as they held residence at the Nag’s Head, which became a scene for Fleetwood Mac and many others because of Savoy Brown’s beginning there. “We practiced seven days a week there; we were extremely driven.”
Kim was a lynchpin of perhaps the most exciting scene in history, establishing Savoy Brown in the first wave of British blues-boomers, signing to Decca, opening for Cream’s first London show and being namedropped in the same breath as peers like Clapton and Hendrix (with whom he jammed). Even then, the guitarist was emerging as the band’s driving force. “I had a vision,” he reflects. “When I started the band back in 1965, the concept was to be a British version of a Chicago blues band. And the exciting thing now is, that vision is still alive.”
Soon, Savoy Brown had achieved what most British bands never did – success in America – and became a major Stateside draw thanks to their high-energy material and tireless work ethic. “There’s way too much said about sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll,” Kim told Classic Rock. “It’s a cliché. We were all extremely hard-working guys. When we came over to America, we were like a little army. I look at that time as being filled with incredible talent.”
Times changed, of course, and by 1979, Simmonds had moved from a London he no longer recognized – “The punks were everywhere!” – to settle permanently in the States. The Savoy Brown band members came and went, and the music scene shifted around him, but the guitarist stuck thrillingly to his guns, staying true to the music and the muse.