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Jim Kerr of Simple Minds

December 2012

WE’VE got our work cut out for us looking at the list of dates for the tour. Although it was always the plan to do a big tour playing our greatest hits.
Earlier this year we did quite a small tour focusing on the songs from early on in our career, so now we felt it was time to play the songs from the middle part, which is when we had all the big, big songs.
It was like a non-greatest hits set but we do have a lot of fans who prefer all the earlier stuff.
One of the things I’m most proud of is that people say to me what Simple Minds are you talking about? The avant-garde, the art-rock, the pop, the ambient, the instrumental group, the political, the folk, the stadium band?
We’ve been on one hell of a journey. To play all those different styles but at the same time be quintessentially Simple Minds is an amazing thing.
And that’s what we’ll be doing this time.
The first set will be all the really big tracks from throughout our career that weren’t singles, such as New Gold Dream. That was never a single but we couldn’t do a Simple Minds set without playing it.
And the second set will be all the hits. That will be party time.
We’ll be playing at the Royal Concert Hall this time and I think that will be exciting. We love to do the arenas but we just wanted to go out and play up and down the country.
“We’re doing 30 dates and I think the last time we did that many dates in the UK it was 1979 or 1980.
It sounds corny but I think people will appreciate being able to see the band up close. I’m sure it will work to all our benefits.
We always try to play a song true to the original. I know when I go and see someone and they play a new version of an old song it can be unrecognisable. Sometimes that works but rarely.
There’s a lot to be said for authenticity.
There are certain songs that can maybe be expanded or given a different intro but we try and pretty much keep faithful to the original.
There will be a greatest hits album (Celebrate is released in March) which the record company is putting together, so I think it will be all the songs that we played on Top of the Pops or got in to the Top 40.
But we’ve included a couple of new tracks on there because there are always fans who say ‘I’ve got all these already. I like the new sleeve but that’s not enough.’
I still have a home in Italy but we’ve had a busy year. After the summer dates we were in Europe, then Australia and New Zealand pretty much up until Christmas.
It’s not the greatest hits set but a follow-on from the dates we did in the UK playing songs from the earlier albums. We broke in those countries earlier than we did over here, strangely enough so there is an audience for that stuff.
I’m looking forward to Nottingham because it has always had a great reputation way back to the early days at Rock City. We had some great nights there and we always get a very enthusiastic audience.

Simple Minds bring their Greats Hits Tour 2013 to the Royal Concert Hall on Friday, April 12.
Celebrate: The Greatest Hits is released in March

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