Simply Red – A Successful Band of the 1980s and Beyond
Mick Hucknall and manager Elliot Rashman formed Simply Red, an English pop band, in 1985. In previous years Mick Hucknall had been involved with a punk group called “The Frantic Elevators”, but after limited success the group split up just 7 years after coming together.
Hucknall and Rashman put together Simply Red and in no time the newly formed group was grabbing the attention of a number of record companies. The name “Simply Red” was a nickname that had been given to Mick Hucknall because of his vibrant red hair colour. The “Simply Red” also represented Hucknall’s political attachment and his support for the England’s Manchester United football team. The music of Simply Red was influenced by many music genres, but mostly reggae, rock, blue-eyed soul, jazz and pop music.
The Simply Red group was given a contract in 1985 by Elektra, an American record label, which is now called the Atlantic Records Group. At that point Simply Red was made up of Mick Hucknall, Fritz McIntyre on keyboards, Sylvan Richardson on guitar, Tony Bowers on bass, Chris Joyce on drums and Tim Kellett on brass. With the members of the group continuously changing over the years, Simply Red became known more as a name for Mick Hucknall’s recordings then as a group of musicians.
The year 1985 proved to be a successful year for the newly formed Simply Red. Their first single, “Money’s Too Tight To Mention”, reached the Top 20 in the United Kingdom and the Top 30 in America, France and Denmark. The single was a cover version of a song originally performed by The Valentine Brothers. Later that same year Simply Red brought out their debut album called “Picture Book”.
The following year proved equally successful with Simply Red re-recording a song called “Holding Back the Years”. The song had originally been done by “The Frantic Elevators”, but had not proved much of a success. This time the song proved to be a hit with its easy listening, pop style genre. The song was a hit in the United States, it was ranked Top 5 in both Great Britain and the Netherlands and was ranked Top 20 in Italy. Simply Red’s second album, “Men and Women”, and their third album, “A New Flame”, were equally successful.
Then in 2003, Simply Red, released “Home”, which was made up partly of cover versions and original songs. Two years later, in 2005, the group released an album called “Simplified”, which was made up of all their classic hits from the previous years. Simply Red’s most recent release is their tenth album called “Stay”, which proved to be very popular. On March the 5th of 2007 the group, Simply Red, released their latest single, “So Not Over You”.
Over the years Simply Red has changed its look and style of music many times, but their songs continue to be been loved and supported by their loyal fans.