Philamonjaro photographs and watches Simply Red play a celebratory and uplifting set at La Marina in Valencia in Spain.
This crowd was immediately dancing and cheering as Simply Red opened with 'Look at You Now' from 'Picture Book' (1985) then into 'Ring That Bell' from 'Blue Eye Soul' (2019).
Frontman Mick Hucknall greeted the audience two songs into the set with bright enthusiasm “Hello Valencia! Beautiful weather. We’re here, We’re alive. We survived!” Fans resonated. He continued, “I hope we are going to play some of your favourites tonight”. And that is exactly what he proceeded to do as the band went straight into 'She's Got It Bad' from their 'Stars' 1991 album. The set continued with the 1989 title track and top 20 hit 'A New Flame'. And it never let up from there. The concert celebrated a stunning three-decade songbook of hits. The audience sang each tune’s chorus en masse with abandon. This euphoric music comes with some deeply embedded memories in our hearts.
The seven member ensemble delivers a big sound in tight lock-step, as one expects. The line-up on tour has been consistent for the past seven years - Kenji Suzuki (guitar), Ian Kirkham (sax/keys), Kevin Robinson (trumpet), Dave Clayton (keys), Steve Lewinson (bass). With the exception of drummer Roman Roth, the other bandmates had been members in previous incarnations before disbanding in 2010.
Hucknall is a showman with a voice that is not to be overshadowed by stagecraft. His voice stands the test of time. But what is further impressive is his ability to connect with the fans. In his own words from his recent Steve Wright BBC interview. “So many people have gone through difficult times. And one of the things that musicians and artists can do is raise the spirits of people. People just want a bit of escapism. It is necessary now.” Hucknall closed the concert with hardy ‘gracias’ that was met with a prolonged round of “ola!”. If an uplifting night was Hucknall's mission, then this concert met his goal.
Catching Simply Red on this tour is worth it. The 'Blue Eye Soul' 2022 Tour continues through the UK and Europe through most of the year.
Look at You Now
Ring That Bell
She's Got It Bad
A New Flame
Holding Back The Years
It's Only Love
The Right Thing
Something Got Me Started
Thinking of You
Money's Too Tight
If You Don't Know Me by Now