The band's founding members speak exclusively to Reuters about Nelson Mandela and the fall of the Berlin Wall as they look forward to a world tour next year.
Simple Minds look back at political actvism ahead of 2020 tour
Forty years since releasing their debut album, Scottish rock band Simple, known for addressing political issues in their music, have a dim view of current affairs.
Speaking to Reuters ahead of a world tour next year, the band's founding members lead vocalist Jim Kerr and guitarist Charlie Burchill has seen the social and political problems of their youth still dominating news headline.
"The issues are always the same.
Racism, war, poverty, the geography changes.
OK, apartheid ended, it was great to see that end for us ... It was great to see the Berlin Wall come down," Kerr said.
"(These were) amazing things that we never thought we'd see in our lives ... but the subjects about walls, again, it (still) features on the news ... I still think the songs can be symbolic outside of the actual geography and time." Formed in Glasgow in the 1970s, the group, whose name was inspired by a lyric from David Bowie's "The Jean Genie", has seen its line-up change over the years and but is still fronted by Kerr and Burchill.
Simple Minds, who this month released compilation album "40: The Best Of - 1979-2019" and kick off the anniversary tour in February, are known for 1980s hits like "Don't You (Forget About Me)" from teen film "The Breakfast Club", which gave the group their first U.S. no.1.
Looking forward, Kerr said Simple Minds were "wet behind the ears" compared to rockers like The Who and the Rolling Stones.
"We were kids when they were all playing and it seems that they're still having a lot of fun doing so.
So who knows?
But last night we were in the studio, demoing and that's always a sign that things are moving forward." They have no plans to slow down just yet, saying life on the road is "the thing that keeps us going" as they embark on a world tour next year.
"We were surprised after a 10-year career and I certainly don't believe we would have been touring (in) this particular year," Burchill told Reuters in a joint interview with Kerr.
"But as it turns out ... that's what we prefer to do most, is (to) tour.
I think a lot of people stop because they can't deal with that side of it but for us, it's the opposite, that is the thing that keeps us going."
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The band's founding members speak exclusively to Reuters about Nelson Mandela and the fall of the Berlin Wall as they look..