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Trivia / Simple Minds

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  • Black Sheep Hit: "Don't You (Forget About Me)".
  • Creator Backlash:
    • For the longest time, the band disliked "Don't You (Forget About Me)". In fact in the original recording Jim Kerr intentionally slurred his vocal in parts because he hated some of the lyrics ("I'll be alone, dancin' you know it baby" for instance). Jim has come to appreciate the song since then, mainly because he loves the crowd reaction it gets and because he has since rerecorded the song to his liking (For instance the Special Mix by Hu-Mate which appears on Live And Rare).
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    • They have never been fond of their debut album, Life in a Day, because they felt it didn't really capture their sound, coupled with how poorly it charted, they recorded the Real To Real Cacophony album very soon after as a way to make up for it. It was even less successful.
    • The band originally weren't fond of their song "Glittering Prize", but it grew on them over the years.
  • Creator Breakdown: The song "Street Fighting Years" was written about the murder of one of Jim's close friends. He was so upset and angry by it that he could not convey all the emotions he felt into words, and so effectively had writer's block for a short time. He decided the lyrics should convey each of the emotions musically, as they would have occurred to the protagonist of the song. The sad and epic mood of this song was unusual by Jim's standards, and helped influence the rest of the album of the same name.
  • Cut Song:
    • "Kaleidoscope" and "Here Comes the Fool" were both recorded for 1979's "Real To Real Cacophony" and left off, without being used as B-Sides in its era. This recording "Kaleidoscope" was released in 1980 as one of the B-Sides of to "I Travel", as a bonus track on the 1982 compilation "Celebration", and then finally reunited with "Real To Real Cacophony" on the second disc of the X5 box set. "Here Comes The Fool" was attempted again both in a 1979 Radio Session and for "Empires And Dance", but the band felt it failed to capture its live energy in studio (also the Radio Session is hampered by distortion that would have prevented it from working on vinyl), so did not release it. A 1979 live version recorded by the BBC was eventually released on Silver Box in 2004.
    • "League of Nations" and "Sound in 70 Cities" were cut from the original CD release of Sons And Fascination / Sister Feelings Call for space reasons, though reinstated on the remaster.
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    • "Saturday Girl" left off "Street Fighting Years" and "Good Night" left off "Real Life" were both tracks with full lyrics omitted for being too similar to other tracks on already long albums that still had to fit on vinyl. In an odd decision, the vinyl version of "Street Fighting Years" omitted the last track "When Spirits Rise", yet reprised all three tracks from the Ballad Of The Streets EP (including the cover of Peter Gabriel's well-known "Biko").
    • "Bittersweet" and "Liaison" are a subversion; they were liked and played live by the band, but only included on Big Music's deluxe edition as the group wanted to make the deluxe worth buying for fans (The previous LP Graffiti Soul's Cover Album Searching For The Lost Boys disc is largely regarded as inessential and didn't sell as well as the group intended).
  • Executive Meddling: Delayed the release of Our Secrets Are The Same by four years.
  • Hitless Hit Album: Graffiti Soul.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes:
    • The compilation The Early Years was only available for a week before being pulled out of print for copyright reasons. It turns up occasionally, but is still sought after by fans.
    • Their songs "Special View", "Garden Of Hate", "New Warm Skin", "Film Theme Dub" and "Celebrate" (Extended) have never appeared on CD due to being from the Arista Records period (The Themes Box which collects nearly all their singles, starts with the Virgin period).
      • The fandom rejoiced when all the Arista tracks appeared on the X5 box set in addition to a previously unreleased version of In Every Heaven.
    • Their first single under the name Johnny And The Self Abusers, "Saints And Sinners/Dead Vandals", has not appeared on any of their releases but has been released on a couple of various artist CD compilations put out by the original label, Chiswick Records.
  • Not Christian Rock: Jim grew up a Christian and has never been shy of having Christian themed lyrics. Overt examples are "7 Deadly Sins" which looks like a sermon, "Glittering Prize" which reads like a hymn, and that a cross appears on the cover of New Gold Dream. The song "This Fear Of Gods" deals with the subject of religion in Eastern Europe, and "New Warm Skin" implies that the person committing the plastic surgery is playing god. "Sanctify Yourself" is intentionally done in the style of gospel music. "Seeing Out The Angel" deals with angels. The instrumental "Someone Up There Likes You" is pretty self-explanatory (and might reveal why Jim didn't feel he could write lyrics for it). There are numerous other examples. However, the band has always talked about a diverse range of subjects and has no interest in being pigeonholed as a Christian band. Jim has said that they feel the religious aspects add to the mystical quality of their music.
  • Older Than They Think: Many reviewers of the band's Celebrate compilation thought that the Patti Smith Cover Version "Dancing Barefoot" was a new track, such was the failure of its parent 2001 Cover Album Neon Lights. It was actually a single at the time, and whilst not a hit, Celebrate was designed to be a complete singles collection (it misses out a few non-album ones however).
  • Throw It In!: The Big Rock Ending filled with La-la-la-la of "Don't You (Forget About Me)" came from improvising a coda for the song.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Sparkle In The Rain was originally quite an ambitious album, with sprawling demos (some of which leaked), and was to have had a side-long suite entitled A Brass Band In Africa. Whilst ultimately the album was made with shorter, more commercial songs, A Brass Band In Africa wasn't forgotten. You can piece most of the suite back together from Shake Off The Ghosts, A Brass Band In African Chimes and a hidden track from the end of the Speed Your Love To Me extended mix. However, there are a few sections of material that are still missing. Sadly this was overlooked for the Super Deluxe Edition of the album, largely because Virgin's vaults were so badly organised. Also, the extended mixes of Up On The Catwalk and Speed Your Love To Me are noted for not being your typical extended mixes - they are much more intricate and feature additional parts compared to the album versions. They could easily be the ones that would have been on the original album before it was trimmed down.
    • "Don't You (Forget About Me)" was pitched to a few other performers before Simple Minds were asked to record it: Namely, Cy Curnin (of The Fixx), Billy Idol, and Bryan Ferry, all of whom turned it down. Billy Idol would later record a Cover Version for a Greatest Hits Album.


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