Simon Binks

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Simon Binks
Smiling man, who is standing and playing guitar.
Simon Binks as lead guitarist of Australian Crawl
Background information
Birth name Simon John Binks
Born (1956-11-27) 27 November 1956 (age 60)
Origin Mount Eliza, Victoria, Australia
Genres Rock
Occupation(s) Musician, singer, songwriter, record producer
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1976–present
Labels EMI, Geffen, Virgin, Blue Pie
Associated acts Spiff Rouch, Australian Crawl, Broderick Smith Band
Notable instruments
1964 Fender Stratocaster L series

Simon John Binks[1] (born 27 November 1956,[2][3][4] Mount Eliza, Melbourne) is an Australian rock musician who was a guitarist and singer-songwriter for Australian Crawl from founding in 1978 to disbanding in 1986.[5][6][7]


Early career[edit]

Binks was raised in the Mornington Peninsula suburb of Mount Eliza on the outskirts of Melbourne and educated at The Peninsula School.

Spiff Rouch[5][7] was a band formed in 1976, it included Binks and fellow locals James Reyne, Bill McDonough, Guy McDonough, Paul Williams, and Robert Walker.[6][7] By early 1978, Spiff Rouch had separated and Australian Crawl was formed with Binks (lead guitar), Reyne (lead vocals, piano, harmonica), and Williams (bass guitar), they were joined by James Reyne's younger brother David Reyne (drums) and schoolmate Brad Robinson (rhythm guitar, backing vocals).[6][7]

Australian Crawl[edit]

Main article: Australian Crawl

Australian Crawl performed their first live gig in October 1978.[8] Bill McDonough (drums) replaced David Reyne within the first year.[5][6][7]

Binks wrote or co-wrote four tracks[1] for Australian Crawl's 1980 debut album The Boys Light Up as well as guitars (lead, slide, acoustic) and vocals.[9] Bill's brother, Guy McDonough (guitars, singer-songwriting) joined Australian Crawl later that year.[5][6] For their second album Sirocco in 1981, Binks supplied two tracks,[1] and guitar work;[10] the third album, Sons of Beaches in 1982, had Binks providing guitars but no songwriting credits.[11]

Drummer Bill McDonough left early in 1983, the Crawl recorded an EP Semantics with Graham Bidstrup on drums.[5][6][7] Of the four tracks, Binks wrote "White Limbo"[1] which was also the B-side of the European single release "Reckless". Mountain climber, Lincoln Hall, quotes lyrics from Binks' song in his book, White Limbo: The first Australian climb of Mt Everest (1985).[12][13] The EP Semantics charted on the Australian Singles Charts to reach No. 1 and consequently some sources list "Reckless" as a No. 1 single.[14][15] After the EP, John Watson replaced Bidstrup as drummer.[5][7]

Phalanx released late in 1983 was a live album which saw Binks and sound engineer Ross Cockle[16][17] as producers.[7] Australian Crawl toured England supporting Duran Duran in late 1983 but they returned to Australia with Guy McDonough seriously ill and subsequently dying in June 1984.[5] During recording sessions for Between a Rock and a Hard Place Binks resigned, he was replaced by session musicians on guitar and by Simon Hussey (ex Cats Under Pressure) who provided keyboards and songwriting.[5][7] Between a Rock and a Hard Place was expensive and had less chart success than previous albums;[5][14] to recoup his investment, Binks returned to the band for their final national tour, recorded in the live album The Final Wave, which was released in 1986.[5]

Later career[edit]

Binks played guitar in the Broderick Smith Band in 1988.[18] He signed with Blue Pie Productions, in July 2004[19] but didn't produce any recorded materials and subsequently left.

An injury in a 1995 car crash at a North Sydney Council roadworks left Binks slightly brain-damaged with some sensory loss and restriction of finer movements of his right hand, which had prevented him from regaining the high level of skill he had previously shown.[4][20][21] A court in 2006 awarded him $330,253 in damages, down from an estimated $750,000 because lawyers for North Sydney Council provided evidence that Binks was speeding and over the legal alcohol limit.[4][22] Binks later disputed the alcohol reading as belonging to another driver and stated the remuneration mostly went to his lawyers.[21] During the court case media also reported that he fell out with Crawl co-founder James Reyne after claiming to have written "The Boys Light Up", one of Australian Crawl's early hits.[4] Binks denied this also, claiming that although he wrote the introductory musical theme from "The Boys Light Up" such work was not usually credited, and that the basic chords and lyrics were written by Reyne.[21] After an appeal by the Council, in September 2007, the amount Binks was awarded was reduced to $304,750.[23]

Personal life[edit]

By November 1993 Binks was married and they had a child.[24] During his court case v North Sydney Council, evidence was presented that he suffered from migraines most of his life and had been prescribed injections of pethidine by his doctor to combat the pain.[24] Evidence from the court cases reported that Binks was due to separate from his wife Sharon in 2006.[4][21] He lives with his daughter, Elizabeth, and continues to perform and write music.


  • Spiff Rouch (1976–1978)
    • no known recorded output
  • Australian Crawl (1978–1984)

for full list or for a quick link to albums and singles use infobox below. Studio albums with Binks:


  1. ^ a b c d "Australasian Performing Right Association search engine". Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA). Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 1 April 2008. 
  2. ^ "Simon Binks Band". Retrieved 5 April 2008. 
  3. ^ "Simon Binks". Showcase Your Music. Retrieved 5 April 2008. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Wallace, Natasha; David Braithwaite (26 May 2006). "Rocker gets $330,000 for drunken crash". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 3 April 2008. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j McFarlane, Ian (1999). "Encyclopedia entry for 'Australian Crawl'". Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop. St Leonards, NSW: Allen & Unwin. ISBN 1-86508-072-1. Archived from the original on 3 August 2004. Retrieved 8 August 2009. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f Nimmervoll, Ed. "Australian Crawl". Howlspace – The Living History of Our Music (Ed Nimmervoll). Archived from the original on 27 July 2012. Retrieved 29 January 2014. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i Holmgren, Magnus; Warnqvist, Stefan; Draper, Oliver; McDonough, Bill. "Australian Crawl". Australian Rock Database. (Magnus Holmgren). Archived from the original on 22 October 2013. Retrieved 23 March 2014. 
  8. ^ "Nostalgia Central entry on Australian Crawl". Retrieved 1 March 2008. 
  9. ^ "MSN entry on The Boys Light Up". MSN. Retrieved 4 March 2008. 
  10. ^ "MSN entry on Sirocco". MSN. Retrieved 4 March 2008. 
  11. ^ "MSN entry on Sons of Beaches". MSN. Retrieved 5 March 2008. 
  12. ^ Hall, Lincoln (1985). White Limbo: The first Australian climb of Mt. Everest. McMahons Point, NSW: K. Weldon. p. 257. ISBN 0-949708-19-4.  NOTE: On-line version has limited access.
  13. ^ "White Limbo: the first Australian climb of Mt Everest / Lincoln Hall ; photography by Lincoln Hall". catalogue. National Library of Australia. Retrieved 7 August 2009. 
  14. ^ a b Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.  NOTE: Used for Australian Singles and Albums charting from 1970 until ARIA created their own charts in mid-1988.
  15. ^ Baker, Glenn A. (1983). "Phalanx liner notes". Axel Husfeldt. Archived from the original on 29 July 2003. Retrieved 27 March 2008. 
  16. ^ "Discogs entry on Ross Cockle". Retrieved 3 April 2008. 
  17. ^ "Internet Movie Database entry on Ross Cockle". IMDb. Retrieved 3 April 2008. 
  18. ^ Holmgren. "Broderick Smith". Australian Rock Database. (Magnus Holmgren). Archived from the original on 29 September 2013. Retrieved 23 March 2014. 
  19. ^ "Blue Pie Productions Archived Nooze". Damien Reilly. 
  20. ^ Wilmoth, Peter (10 June 2007). "Home, James". The Age. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 5 March 2008. 
  21. ^ a b c d Temple, Will (26 May 2005). "Guitarist wins compo claim". Retrieved 5 March 2008. 
  22. ^ Gallagher, Patrick (24 January 2008). "Case Note: North Sydney Council v Binks [2007]". DLA Phillips Fox. Retrieved 24 April 2008. 
  23. ^ "Less damages for Australian Crawl member". National Nine News. 18 September 2007. Retrieved 9 April 2008. 
  24. ^ a b Brown, Malcolm (18 September 2007). "Court cuts musician's damages". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 11 April 2008. 

External links[edit]