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Simply Red is a Manchester, England based R&B band that emerged in 1985 as an outgrowth of the punk group The Frantic Elevators. Mick Hucknall was a member of the Elevators and after their dissolution he partnered with manager Elliot Rashman to put together a new band. Picture Book was Simply Red’s crisp debut album commercially elevated by the Valentine Brothers’ “Money’s Too Tight (Too Mention)” and a re-recording of The Frantic Elevators’ “Holding Back The Years” that carried them to the mainstream. Hucknall became one of the most distinct blue-eyed soul singers from the UK alongside George Michael and Jay Kay of Jamiroquai. During this peak period they released four more albums; Men and Women, A New Flame, Stars and Life. They amassed a discography of singles that turned Simply Red into an enduring bastion of soul including “Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye,” “It’s Only Love,” “If You Don’t Know Me By Now,” “Something Got Me Started” and “Stars” being the most popular US releases. “Thrill Me” is from the 1995 album Stars which was the best-selling album in the UK in 1991 and 1992. Masters At Work’s remix of “Thrill Me” is considered one of their best additions to dance music’s golden era. “Fairground” in 1995 was their first number one British hit and it helped the Life album achieve another platinum certification for the band. A greatest hits project came out in 1996 with a cover of Aretha Franklin’s “Angel” co-produced by The Fugees. Blue and the Love and the Russian Winter albums were not as big as previous successes garnering modest attention for “The Air That I Breathe” and “Say You Love Me.” Home was their first album on Hucknall’s Simplyred.com label and it did well because of “Sunrise,” “You Make Me Feel Brand New,” “Fake” and “Home.” Simplified and Stay was their last studio albums before Hucknall decided to do a farewell tour in 2009-2010. He released his first solo album, Tribute To Bobby in 2008. Hucknall received an honorary doctorate from the University of Manchester this year and his second solo album American Soul will be released on October 29th.