Bill Champlin "No place left to fall"

John Simms passed away


We have just had received a very sad piece of news today. John Simms passed away in September. This artist has evolved in the AOR, MOR, Westcoast Music and R&B vein since the Seventies with his brother Arthur Simms. In The Seventies, John Simms was a member of The Softones. Born in Baltimore (U.S.A.), John Simms was a real talented artist. His father was a Gospel singer with the Spiritual Chords in The 30s and 40s.

When he was 20 y.o., John Simms came to Paris (France) with his brother Arthur Simms (singer, piano player). Both were studio musicians in France for major artists. In 1980, they record an eponymous album on Casablanca Records "John and Arthur Simms" which became a Classic Westcoast Music album. With Alec R. Constandinos as a producer and Greg Mathieson as a producer, the Simms Brothers has written and composed all their material for this LP. In Dawnbreaker Studios from San Fernando Valley (California), they gathered great sessIon musicians like Paul Jackson Jr, Steve Gadd, Paulinho Da Costa, Greg Mathieson, Gary Herbig, Jerry Hey, Bill Reichenbach... and Stephanie Sprull, Maxime Willard, Julia Tillman and Gerald Garrett as backing vocalists.


From this legendary LP, we love The great song "Not Gonna Let You Slip Away" and "I'm Gonna Miss You". You can listen to these songs and others from John and Arthur Simms at their MySpace pages.

Back in the 80s, John and Arthur Simms have worked in smooth Jazz with Michel Jonasz ("La Boite de Jazz") and Pop french singing artists like Robert Charlebois, Eric Serra (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack song from Eric Besson "Subway" with the song "It's only mystery!" sung by Arthur Simms), Catherine Lara... And other artists like Yves Simon, Jacques Dutronc et Chagrin d'Amour! During the 80s, John and Arthur Simms did actors and sang in several french films. Arthur Simms passed away in 1987.

At this time and during the nineties, John Simms was backing musician and vocalist here in France.


John's wife Brenda Jackson (a.ka. Danielle Rogé) passed away in 2002.

In 2007, John Simms did a great come back with a marvellous Soft Rock and Pop new album called "My Acoustic Soul" and did concerts with his own band in France and in Europe.

We have seen him several times in concert in Paris last year... Him and his acoustic guitar and an incredible nice presence and artist. We remember his powerful versions of hits from Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, Stevie Wonder, Al Green, Marc Cohn, Elton John...

You can see his live videos on YouTube, listen to his most recent material at his official MySpace page (where it's possible to leave comments) and click on his site Web.

John was definitely a great and friendly guy.

RIP John Simms.

Picture 1 : John Simms in concert in Paris in August 2007.
Copyright: J.-L. Raymond.


The comments to this entry are closed.