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Formed from the ashes of Manchester’s punk scene; Simply Red, fronted by the enigmatic frontman, Mick Hucknall have achieved ten UK Top Ten hits and have twice topped America’s Billboard Hot 100. On top of a series of iconic hit singles and whirlwind world tours, the band have released five UK No 1 albums: their iconic 1991 record Stars remains one of the highest-selling albums in UK chart history. Simply Red formed in 1985, and by the next year had released their first international hit single, when their cover of The Valentine Brothers ‘Money’s Too Tight (To Mention)’ reached the Top 30 in the USA, France and Holland, the Top 20 in the UK and Ireland and the Top 5 in Italy. Their third single, ‘Holding Back the Years’ shot to No 1 in the USA and Ireland, making the band a household name internationally. The same year, their debut album Picture Book went platinum in the UK and the USA. Today, critics revere their first record for its rock-steady RnB grooves that hark back to 1960s era Motown and Stax records. The band adopted a more contemporary sound for later albums, scoring their second major U.S. No 1 hit with ‘If You Don’t Know Me by Now’, a track that became one of the biggest hits of the decade. However, it was the band’s 1991 album Stars that proved to be their greatest success: the album was a huge seller in the UK and throughout Europe for two years running and spawned five UK Top 40 singles. Following the early ‘90s dance music explosion, Simply Red successfully adopted a more percussive, house-influenced sound for their later work, most notably heard on their hit single ‘Fairground’. Continuing to tour internationally, Simply Red are regarded as one of the most successful British pop acts of all time and remain enduringly influential and perpetually popular.
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