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Simms Brothers Band - 1979 Simms Brothers Band

ARTIST: Simms Brothers Band
ALBUM: Simms Brothers Band
LABEL: Elektra
SERIAL: 6E-220-8 SP
YEAR: 1979


LINEUP: George Simms - vocals, percussion * Frank Simms - vocals, guitars, acoustic guitars * Budd Tunick - drums, timpani * David Spinner - vocals, congas * Robert Sabino - piano, electric piano, mini moog, prophet 5, hammond B-3 * Shimmy Maki - bass * Mickey Leonard - lead guitars

TRACK LISTING: 01 Take Me As I Am * 02 All We Need Is Loving * 03 Back To School * 04 Still I'll Be Waiting * 05 Get Her (Fore She Gets Away) * 06 Must Say Now * 07 You've Got Style * 08 This Time It's Over * 09 It's Just The Way She Moves * 10 Morning Song


Connecticut institutions, the Simms Brothers Band were one of the more popular New England 'Bar' bands of the late '70s. Living off Long Island Sound just across the water from Connecticut, I recall hearing their moniker frequently on radio stations I-95 and WPLR advertising club gigs, and when this album came out it, receiving significant air play. 'Discovered' by Boston's former manager, the group signed to Elektra with none other than Mike Stone at the production helm. A tour with Peter Frampton followed, although Elektra seemed uninterested in giving the band the promotion it needed and a second Eddie Kramer produced album 'Attitude' release in 1980 died a needlessly slow death. Heavily in debt, the Simms Brothers Band broke up a few months later with its membership moving on to lucrative session work with David Bowie, Billy Joel and INXS among others, but a major piece of the southern New England music scene was no more.

The Songs
I never had the opportunity to see the boys live, but according to those in the know, the debut album was a far more slickly produced affair than the good time rock and rhythm and blues band they developed their reputation on. Not a surprise, especially with Mike Stone calling the shots and I think the end result was one of the best AOR albums of 1979. 'Take Me As I Am' sounds like the first Pages album, in other words very west coast and very pleasant. The follow-up 'All We Need Is Loving' received radio play and is a charming slice of period pop rock similar to fellow New Englander's Oak while 'Back To School' brings to mind Boatz and Hotel. Excellent stuff and 'Still I'll Be Waiting' even takes a stab and Queen-like pomp and succeeds admirably. After that killer track, I have to say I've never been too thrilled with the J. Geils meets Bob Seger bop of 'Get Her ('Fore She Gets Away)' so its over to side two for 'Must Say Now' which brings us right back to the radio rock sound of Hotel and German rockers Lake. A solid AOR cut and a must hear as is 'You've Got Style' recalling the mighty Airborne believe it or not. 'It's Just The Way She Moves' apes the Doobie Brothers just a little too much, a common mistake made by many bands and artists of the era and yes, overall the record lacks originality but when it comes to AOR this good who cares? Mike Stone's production is flawless for the time and it's hard to imagine Elektra not getting behind these guys.

In Summary
These days the Simms Brothers Band occasionally reform and are still involved in 'the biz', although bassist Shimmy Maki passed away in 2002. I don't hold out much hope seeing their two albums reissued on CD but original copies are still easy to find and more importantly relatively cheap.

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#1 | rostoned on November 24 2009 15:04:12
Eric it is curious to read about Eddie Kramer, a famed rock/hard rock producer, producing these softer guys. But I remember Eddie in these years (of crisis?) was doing also bands like pompsters Airraid, after all the hype and glory of woodstock, hendrix, Kiss, Zeppelin etc.

How is the Simms Brothers second LP anyway? rockier???
#2 | Eric on November 24 2009 18:13:21
Unfortunatly I don't have it currently. It was never easy to find when it was released either, but I do remember liking parts of it and wasn't too different from the first...
#3 | gdazegod on November 25 2009 04:11:39
I will be putting up a fileshare of this album very shortly. On the hunt for the second one 'Attitude'..
#4 | gdazegod on November 25 2009 06:29:11
Hidden link for members..

#5 | swazi on May 18 2012 18:49:48
George, could you upload this one somewhere else, please ?
#6 | gdazegod on May 18 2012 23:38:17
Sure thing..
#7 | gdazegod on May 20 2012 13:55:19
Here it is, reuploaded. I'll put it in the DL Forum too, on the original thread.

#8 | swazi on May 22 2012 12:13:30
Thanks, George! clap
#9 | super80boy on November 01 2015 19:53:27
Can't see the article, but in any event - this by the numbers period 70s AOR debut is a fine listen. There's some nice harmony vocals and pompous moments, like found in 'You've Got Style'. 'It's Just The Way She Moves' is another solid outing with a rambling funk vibe. The band's second album 'Attitude' would take on a more updated new wave rock approach.
#10 | gdazegod on November 01 2015 22:00:20
Oops, thanks for pointing this out Gil.
#11 | gdazegod on November 01 2015 22:02:53

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