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|Birth name||Nicholas John Simper|
3 November 1945 |
Norwood Green, Southall, Middlesex, England
|Genres||Rock, hard rock, blues rock, psychedelic rock, heavy metal, progressive rock|
|Instruments||Bass, vocals, guitar|
|Associated acts||Johnny Kidd & the Pirates, The Flower Pot Men, Lord Sutch's Savages, Warhorse, Deep Purple|
Nicholas John Simper (born 3 November 1945) is an English bass guitarist, who was a co-founding member of Deep Purple and Warhorse. In the 1960s he began his professional career in bands such as Johnny Kidd & The Pirates, The Flower Pot Men, and Lord Sutch's Savages.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Discography
- 3 References
- 4 External links
Simper was born in Frogmore House Maternity Home, Norwood Green, Southall, Middlesex. Prior to co-founding Deep Purple in 1968, Simper played for a number of bands, including The Renegades (1960–61), The Delta Five (1961–63), Some Other Guys (1963–64), Buddy Britten & The Regents renamed Simon Raven Cult (1964–66) and Johnny Kidd & The Pirates. Unfortunately, within a few months of his joining The Pirates, Simper and Kidd were involved in a car crash that took Kidd's life and left Simper injured. After recovering, Simper briefly reactivated The Pirates as a tribute band to Kidd (1966–67) before joining the Garden, the backing band for The Flower Pot Men (1967–68), where he played alongside Jon Lord. (It was Lord who initially suggested that Simper be asked to join Deep Purple when that band was first forming.) Simper also had a brief spell with Lord Sutch's Savages.
Simper played bass on three Deep Purple albums from 1968 to 1969. He was fired from Deep Purple in mid-1969 together with original singer Rod Evans. When new singer Ian Gillan from the band Episode Six was sought as a replacement for Evans, bandmate Roger Glover tagged along to play bass at some rehearsals and recorded the single "Hallelujah" for Deep Purple without Simper even knowing. Deep Purple's drummer Ian Paice soon suggested that the band hire Glover along with Gillan. Ritchie Blackmore had also stated in interviews that he felt Simper's bass playing was too old fashioned and more suited to old style rock 'n roll than the hard rock direction he wanted to take the band in.
After his departure, he briefly worked with Marsha Hunt before forming his own band Warhorse, that recorded two albums for Vertigo. Warhorse was managed by Ron Hire, originally part of HEC Enterprises, the original investors in Deep Purple. During this time Simper also played on a Lord Sutch live album, along with Ritchie Blackmore, Keith Moon and several other luminaries.
For Warhorse, as with so many bands, the important breakthrough of a big selling album hadn't occurred. There was very strong interest from Warner Bros, with their senior A&R rep (Dave Dee) doing his utmost to sign the band to the label. At Warner Bros expense, they went into the studio and recorded two tracks but in the end it came down to a straight choice between Warhorse and The Heavy Metal Kids.
By 1974 crippling finances signalled the end for the band. Warhorse's last gig in late '74 was at Polhill College, Bedford. Unfortunately their 2000-Watt Midas P.A. broke down and despite the best efforts of their roadie and managers it couldn't be made to perform properly. They tried, and performed a B.B.King song (Three O'clock in the Morning) to see if they could manage some kind of performance, but it was impossible and they made their apologies to the audience and left.
Simper and guitarist Pete Parks spent the next three years writing, recording and initially formed a new band, called Nick Simper's Dynamite (1975) that released one, now very rare single.
On 9 October 1976 Simper took part in the Johnny Kidd 10th Anniversary Memorial Show at the Edwardian Club at the Loughborough Hotel in Brixton.
With no financial backing, along with Parks, Simper managed to get Nick Simper's Fandango (1977–83) off the ground and released two albums. Around the same time Frankie Reid formed the band Flying Fox (1977–84) with Carlo Little, Simper and Parks to play rock 'n' roll whenever they were free from commitments from their other bands.
After Little's departure the band renamed itself The Good Old Boys (1985–present). In the mid nineties, drummer Mick Underwood invited Simper to become part of the reactivated Quatermass, which had released one album on Harvest in 1970. Under the guise of Quatermass II (1994–97) they recorded one album.
In 2007 Simper also joined the line-up of Adelle & Co with Parks, Adelle Kirk, Jim Byers and Richard Hudson.
Since launching his own website in 2000s, Simper has renewed his contact with a wider audience. The renaissance of his work has led to a one-off reunion of Warhorse in 2003 (and also 2005). During a gig in Austria in 2007 Simper performed the Deep Purple song "Emmaretta" with the support band Nasty Habits. In March 2009 Simper again performed with Nasty Habits in Austria. The band played a setlist composed of songs from the first three Deep Purple studio albums. Later that year Nick Simper & Nasty Habits played another show in Plock, Poland.
In 2010 Simper and Nasty Habits played more shows presenting "The Deep Purple Mark One Songbook" in Austria, Switzerland, Hungary and Poland and an album is in the making. The Budapest show was recorded for future release.
with Deep Purple
- 1968 Shades of Deep Purple (Re-mastered ed.: 2000)
- 1968 The Book of Taliesyn (Re-mastered ed.: 2000)
- 1969 Deep Purple (Re-mastered ed.: 2000)
- 2002 Inglewood – Live in California (Re-release: 2009)
- 2004 The Early Years
- 2011 BBC Sessions 1968–70
with Johnny Kidd & The Pirates
- 1970 The Johnny Kid Memorial Album (France)
- 1978 The Best of Johnny Kid & The Pirates
- 1983 Rarities
- 1990 The Classic & Rare
- 1970 Warhorse (UK: Vertigo 6360 015)
- UK re-releases: 1983, Thunderbolt THBL-004 (as "Vulture Blood") / 1997, RPM Records RPM-174, incl. bonus tracks / 1998, Angel Air SJPCD 034, incl. bonus tracks
- 1972 Red Sea (UK: Vertigo)
- UK re-releases: 1984, Thunderbolt THBL-010 / 1997, RPM Records RPM-175, incl. bonus tracks / 1998, Angel Air SJPCD 035, incl. bonus tracks
- 1997 The Warhorse Story – Vols I & II ([2CD]: UK 1997 RPM Records RPM-501)
with Flying Fox
- 1982 Flying Fox (ltd. ed. cassette)
with Nick Simper's Fandango
- 1979 Slipstreaming (Germany: Shark Records INT 148.503 / UK: Gull Records GULP 1033)
- 1980 Future Times (Germany: Shark Records INT 148.506)
- 1982 Just Another Day/Wish I'd Never Woke Up (UK SP: Paro Records Paro-S4)
- 1994 Slipstreaming / Future Times (UK 2CD: RPM Records RPM-125)
- 1999 Slipstreaming / Future Times (UK 2CD: Angel Air SJPCD 041) (incl. bonus tracks)
with Quatermass II
- 1997 Long Road (UK: Thunderbird CSA 108 / Japan: PCCY-01156)
with The Good Old Boys
- 2005 Live At The Horns (CD+DVD) (unofficial release)
- 2007 We Can't Do This When We're Dead – Rock n' Roll!!! (DVD) (unofficial release)
- 2009 Live At The Deep Purple Convention (UK: Wymer Records TSA1001)
with Nasty Habits
- 2009 The Austrian Tapes – Live At The Orpheum Graz (DVD) (unofficial release)
- 2009 The Austrian Tapes – Live At The Reigen (DVD) (unofficial release)
- 2010 Dolina Charlotty – See You in August (DVD) (unofficial release)
- 2010 The Deep Purple MKI Songbook (CD) (UK: Wymer Records TSA1002)
- 2012 Live at Szene, Vienna (CD+DVD) (UK: Angel Air Records SJPCD386)
- 2015 De La Frog Conspiracy (CD) (studio album)
with Blaggards & Cowboys
- 2010 Skulduggery (CD) (self-released)
- 1972 Hands Of Jack The Ripper (Screaming Lord Sutch & Heavy Friends)
- 1983 Roscoe Rocks Again (Roscoe Gordon)
- 2003 Rag Moppin' (Wee Willie Harris & the Alabama Slammers)
- 2007 Carlo Little Night of Honour (DVD)
- 2008 White Horses of Lyme Bay (CD EP)
- 2009 Never Stop Rockin' (Carlo Little All Stars)
- Steve Rosen Interview with Ritchie Blackmore, 1974 Retrieved from YouTube "Ritchie Blackmore, Guitar God|Part 1/5" on 14 January 2014.
- Anasontzis, George. "Rockpages.gr interview with Nick Simper". Rockpages. Retrieved 25 August 2010.
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