Sunday, 26 September 2010


Last night I watched Simply Red - For The Last Time on ITV. The band are bowing out gracefully for a good old rest with this last tv appearance and an upcoming tour. The band, and in particular their lead singer Mick Hucknall, has a marmite reaction with most people. You either love him, or hate him. I am cemented, nailed down and never in a month of Sundays would I ever be shifted from the 'I love Mick Hucknall and Simply Red' camp. His music provided the backdrop to my late teens, early twenties and beyond. His songs evoke huge memories of those heady times of being in love and having your heart broken. Out of all their own songs, I included the cover version video clip which  brought back the 'heartbroken' period but it stands up as an important milestone in my life in the 80's and I think it showcases Mick Hucknall at his very best. Simply superb. 
I've seen him live on four occasions (yes, I am that big a fan). He is on the money each time, giving the audience a fantastic night. I defy anyone who stays in their seat during a Simply Red concert. And here's another couple of reasons why Mick Hucknall is my number one...
A few years back, I bought one of his CD albums when it first came out. I filled out the insert inside the CD cover with my details and gave a quick review of the album. Not long after, I received two free complimentary tickets to a Simply Red concert at the MEN arena in Manchester. And get this, the seats weren't up in the Gods and 3 miles away from the stage, but front seats and within touching distance of Mick gyrating on a stage built in the shape of a guitar which led out towards the audience. 
My second reason? Mick's a Manchester lad and a die hard Manchester United fan. He'll do for me. 
Last night's show on itv was great television and a fitting tribute to a talented and superb musician and performer. And of course, I shall now be booking tickets for the Simply Red concert in December, no doubt accompanied by the other three members of the Jolly Girls Outing Club from Lancaster. Swanky hotel booking and shopping the day after in Manchester? Simply compulsory. 

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