Kim Simmonds, born in Newbridge, Wales, in 1947, is considered a legendary blues guitarist by almost any musical standard. He has even been called one of the founding fathers of British blues by some. Besides his mastery with the guitar, he can hold his own with vocals, piano, harmonica, and even Dobro. The strength of his talent and his willingness to hang tough when weaker men would toss in the towel have carried him through more than four decades in the survive-if-you-can music business.
Thanks to an older brother, Simmonds heard plenty of music when he was growing up. He favored everything from the Beatles to James Brown. In 1966, when Simmonds was still in his teens, he formed a rock and blues group called Savoy Brown. Other members were bassist Ray Chappell, keyboardist Bob Hall, singer Bruce Portius, drummer Leo Manning, and guitarist Martin Stone. The band got its start performing in small pubs throughout London. In a year's time there was a Savoy Brown debut album, Shake Down. Throughout the decades, the list of members changed often around Simmonds, but he persisted, and the group released album after album. Simmonds issued his first solo offering, appropriately called Solitaire, in 1997. Subsequent solo releases included Blues Like Midnight (2001), Struck By Lightning (2006), and Out of the Blue (2008). The Ruf Records-issued Goin' to the Delta (2014) and Devil to Pay (2015) were released under the moniker Kim Simmonds and Savoy Brown. ~ Charlotte Dillon