Nick Simper

Nicholas John Simper (born 3 November 1945) is an English bass guitarist, who was a co-founding member of Deep Purple and Warhorse. In the 1960s, he began his professional career in bands such as Johnny Kidd & the Pirates, The Flower Pot Men, and Lord Sutch's Savages.

Nick Simper
Nick Simper
Nick Simper in 2015
Background information
Birth nameNicholas John Simper
Born3 November 1945 (age 73)
Norwood Green, Southall, Middlesex, England
GenresRock, hard rock, blues rock, psychedelic rock, heavy metal, progressive rock
Years active1957–present
Associated actsJohnny Kidd & the Pirates, The Flower Pot Men, Lord Sutch's Savages, Warhorse, Deep Purple


Simper was born in Frogmore House Maternity Home, Norwood Green, Southall, Middlesex. Prior to co-founding Deep Purple in 1968, Simper played for a number of bands, including The Renegades (1960–61), The Delta Five (1961–63), Some Other Guys (1963–64), Buddy Britten & The Regents renamed Simon Raven Cult (1964–66) and Johnny Kidd & the Pirates. Unfortunately, within a few months of his joining The Pirates, Simper and Kidd were involved in a car crash that took Kidd's life and left Simper injured. After recovering, Simper briefly reactivated The Pirates as a tribute band to Kidd (1966–67) before joining the Garden, the backing band for The Flower Pot Men (1967–68), where he played alongside Jon Lord. (It was Lord who initially suggested that Simper be asked to join Deep Purple when that band was first forming.) Simper also had a brief spell with Lord Sutch's Savages.

Simper played bass on three Deep Purple albums from 1968 to 1969. He was fired from Deep Purple in mid-1969 together with original singer Rod Evans. When new singer Ian Gillan from the band Episode Six was sought as a replacement for Evans, bandmate Roger Glover tagged along to play bass at some rehearsals and recorded the single "Hallelujah" for Deep Purple without Simper even knowing. Deep Purple's drummer Ian Paice soon suggested that the band hire Glover along with Gillan.[1] Ritchie Blackmore had also stated in interviews that he felt Simper's bass playing was too old fashioned and more suited to old style rock 'n roll than the hard rock direction he wanted to take the band in.

After his departure, he briefly worked with Marsha Hunt before forming his own band Warhorse, that recorded two albums for Vertigo. Warhorse was managed by Ron Hire, originally part of HEC Enterprises, the original investors in Deep Purple. During this time, Simper also played on a Lord Sutch live album, along with Ritchie Blackmore, Keith Moon and several other luminaries.

For Warhorse, as with so many bands, the important breakthrough of a big selling album had not occurred. There was very strong interest from Warner Bros., with their senior A&R rep (Dave Dee) doing his utmost to sign the band to the label. At Warner Bros. expense, they went into the studio and recorded two tracks but in the end it came down to a straight choice between Warhorse and The Heavy Metal Kids.

By 1974, crippling finances signalled the end for the band. Warhorse's last gig in late 1974 was at Polhill College, Bedford. Unfortunately, their 2000-Watt Midas P.A. broke down and despite the best efforts of their roadie and managers it could not be made to perform properly. They tried, and performed a B.B. King song (Three O'clock in the Morning) to see if they could manage some kind of performance, but it was impossible and they made their apologies to the audience and left.

Simper and guitarist Pete Parks spent the next three years writing, recording and initially formed a new band, called Nick Simper's Dynamite (1975) that released one, now very rare single.

On 9 October 1976, Simper took part in the Johnny Kidd 10th Anniversary Memorial Show at the Edwardian Club at the Loughborough Hotel in Brixton.

With no financial backing, along with Parks, Simper managed to get Nick Simper's Fandango (1977–83) off the ground and released two albums. Around the same time, Frankie Reid formed the band Flying Fox (1977–84) with Carlo Little, Simper and Parks to play rock 'n' roll whenever they were free from commitments from their other bands.

After Little's departure the band renamed itself The Good Old Boys (1985–present). In the mid-1990s, drummer Mick Underwood invited Simper to become part of the reactivated Quatermass, which had released one album on Harvest in 1970. Under the guise of Quatermass II (1994–97) they recorded one album.

In 2007, Simper also joined the line-up of Adelle & Co with Parks, Adelle Kirk, Jim Byers and Richard Hudson.

Since launching his own website in 2000s, Simper has renewed his contact with a wider audience. The renaissance of his work has led to a one-off reunion of Warhorse in 2003 (and also 2005). During a gig in Austria in 2007, Simper performed the Deep Purple song "Emmaretta" with the support band Nasty Habits. On 6 September 2008, The Good Ol' Boys stepped in at the last minute to support Deep Purple tribute band 24 Carat Purple at the Mick Jagger Centre, Dartford. Simper played "Hush" as a guest with this band, using bassist Pete Hartley's bass guitar. In March 2009, Simper again performed with Nasty Habits in Austria. The band played a setlist composed of songs from the first three Deep Purple studio albums. Later that year, Nick Simper & Nasty Habits played another show in Plock, Poland.

In 2010, Simper and Nasty Habits played more shows presenting "The Deep Purple Mark One Songbook" in Austria, Switzerland, Hungary and Poland and an album is in the making. The Budapest show was recorded for future release.[2]

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame snub

In 2016, Deep Purple was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but Simper was excluded from induction. The decision by the Hall was perplexing, as all other members from the band's first seven years (1968 to 1974) were announced as individual inductees. This included original singer Rod Evans whose tenure in Deep Purple paralleled Simper's. Further, Evans was at one time sued by Deep Purple management for performing under the band name without permission in 1980. (Simper was approached by the same promotion company that hired Evans, but declined to participate.) Simper seemed to take the snub in stride, stating, "Yes, it is a little strange that I am [the] only one from Marks I, II and III being left out, but I shan't lose any sleep over this. It's not as if I need to be given this award to know what we did in Deep Purple made an impact. And I'm sure it wasn’t a decision that came from the band."[3]


Year Band Title Notes
1968 Deep Purple Shades of Deep Purple Re-mastered ed.: 2000
The Book of Taliesyn Re-mastered ed.: 2000
1969 Deep Purple Re-mastered ed.: 2000
2002 Inglewood – Live in California Re-release: 2009
2004 The Early Years Compilation
2011 BBC Sessions 1968–1970
1970 Johnny Kidd & The Pirates The Johnny Kid Memorial Album Compilation
1978 The Best of Johnny Kid & The Pirates Compilation
1983 Rarities Compilation
1990 The Classic & Rare Compilation
1970 Warhorse Warhorse UK: Vertigo 6360 015, :UK re-releases: 1983, Thunderbolt THBL-004 (as "Vulture Blood") / 1997, RPM Records RPM-174, incl. bonus tracks / 1998, Angel Air SJPCD 034, incl. bonus tracks
1972 Red Sea UK: Vertigo, :UK re-releases: 1984, Thunderbolt THBL-010 / 1997, RPM Records RPM-175, incl. bonus tracks / 1998, Angel Air SJPCD 035, incl. bonus tracks
1997 The Warhorse Story – Vols I & II [2CD]: UK 1997 RPM Records RPM-501[
1974 Nick Simper's Dynamite St. Louis / Soul Rider (Single)
1979 Nick Simper's Fandango Slipstreaming Germany: Shark Records INT 148.503 / UK: Gull Records GULP 1033
1980 Future Times Germany: Shark Records INT 148.506
1982 Just Another Day/Wish I'd Never Woke Up (Single) UK SP: Paro Records Paro-S4
1994 Slipstreaming / Future Times UK 2CD: RPM Records RPM-125
UK 2CD: Angel Air SJPCD 041 (incl. bonus tracks)
1982 Flying Fox Flying Fox ltd. ed. cassette
1997 Quatermass II Long Road UK: Thunderbird CSA 108 / Japan: PCCY-01156
2005 The Good Old Boys Live At the Horns (CD+DVD) unofficial release
2007 We Can't Do This When We're Dead – Rock n' Roll!!! (DVD) unofficial release
2009 Live At the Deep Purple Convention UK: Wymer Records TSA1001
2009 Nasty Habits The Austrian Tapes – Live At the Orpheum Graz (DVD) unofficial release
The Austrian Tapes – Live At the Reigen (DVD) unofficial release
2010 Dolina Charlotty – See You in August (DVD) unofficial release
The Deep Purple MKI Songbook (CD) UK: Wymer Records TSA1002
2012 Live at Szene, Vienna (CD+DVD) UK: Angel Air Records SJPCD386
2015 De La Frog Conspiracy (CD) studio album
2010 Blaggards & Cowboys Skulduggery (CD) self-released

Guest appearances


  1. ^ Steve Rosen Interview with Ritchie Blackmore, 1974 Retrieved from YouTube "Ritchie Blackmore, Guitar God|Part 1/5" on 14 January 2014.
  2. ^ Anasontzis, George. " interview with Nick Simper". Rockpages. Archived from the original on 1 September 2014. Retrieved 25 August 2010.
  3. ^ Weisman, Roger (6 April 2016). "Deep Purple Bassist Nick Simper's Hall of Fame Snub". Huffington Post. Retrieved 25 January 2017.

External links

Deep Purple

Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968. The band is considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, although their musical approach changed over the years. Originally formed as a progressive rock band, the band shifted to a heavier sound in 1970. Deep Purple, together with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, have been referred to as the "unholy trinity of British hard rock and heavy metal in the early to mid-seventies". They were listed in the 1975 Guinness Book of World Records as "the globe's loudest band" for a 1972 concert at London's Rainbow Theatre, and have sold over 100 million copies of their albums worldwide.Deep Purple have had several line-up changes and an eight-year hiatus (1976–1984). The 1968–1976 line-ups are commonly labelled Mark I, II, III and IV. Their second and most commercially successful line-up consisted of Ian Gillan (vocals), Jon Lord (keyboards, backing vocals), Roger Glover (bass), Ian Paice (drums), and Ritchie Blackmore (guitar). This line-up was active from 1969 to 1973, and was revived from 1984 to 1989, and again from 1992 to 1993. The band achieved more modest success in the intervening periods between 1968 and 1969 with the line-up including Rod Evans (lead vocals) and Nick Simper (bass, backing vocals), between 1974 and 1976 with the line-up including David Coverdale (lead vocals) and Glenn Hughes (bass, vocals) (and Tommy Bolin replacing Blackmore in 1975), and between 1989 and 1992 with the line-up including Joe Lynn Turner (vocals). The band's line-up (currently including Ian Gillan, and guitarist Steve Morse from 1994) has been much more stable in recent years, although keyboardist Jon Lord's retirement from the band in 2002 (being succeeded by Don Airey) left Ian Paice as the only original Deep Purple member still in the band.

Deep Purple were ranked number 22 on VH1's Greatest Artists of Hard Rock programme and a poll on British radio station Planet Rock ranked them 5th among the "most influential bands ever". The band received the Legend Award at the 2008 World Music Awards. Deep Purple (specifically Blackmore, Lord, Paice, Gillan, Glover, Coverdale, Evans and Hughes) were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2016.

Deep Purple (Deep Purple album)

Deep Purple, also referred to as Deep Purple III, is the third studio album by the English rock band Deep Purple, released in June 1969 on Tetragrammaton Records in the United States and only in September 1969 on Harvest Records in the United Kingdom. Its release was preceded by the single "Emmaretta" and by a long tour in the UK, whose dates were interspersed between the album's recording sessions.

The music of this album is mostly original and a combination of progressive rock, hard rock and psychedelic rock, but with a harder edge and with the guitar parts in more evidence than in the past. This was due both to the growth of guitarist Ritchie Blackmore as a songwriter and to the conflicts within the band over the fusion of classical music and rock proposed by keyboard player Jon Lord and amply implemented in the band's previous releases.

The band started their second US tour in April 1969 with little support from their almost-bankrupt American label and without an album to promote, because of a delay in the manufacturing of the new LP. During the tour, Deep Purple showed a remarkable progress as performers and a musical direction more oriented towards a heavier and louder sound than before. Doubts about compatibility of vocalist Rod Evans with the hard rock music that other band members wanted to pursue brought about the decision of searching for a substitute, which was found in Ian Gillan of the band Episode Six. Gillan formed a songwriting duo with Episode Six's bassist Roger Glover, who was also invited to join Deep Purple and replaced Nick Simper. The band's new line-up, identified as Mark II, debuted live in London on 10 July 1969.

Commercially, this album was the least successful of the three albums released by the band's Mark I line-up and was ignored by critics upon its release. Modern reviews are generally positive and remark on the variety of styles within the album and the boldness of the song arrangements.

Deep Purple in Concert

Deep Purple in Concert is a live album by the English hard rock band Deep Purple, recorded by the BBC for their "In Concert" live series in 1970 and 1972. First released in 1980 in the UK, with the current US edition being made available in 2001.

Inglewood – Live in California

Inglewood: Live in California is a live album by Deep Purple. It was recorded in Los Angeles on 18 October 1968, as the supporting band for Cream, at their Farewell Tour. One of the very few live recordings featuring the Mark I lineup, it was finally released in 2002 on Purple Records.

List of Deep Purple band members

Deep Purple are an English hard rock band from Hertford, Hertfordshire. Originally known as Roundabout, the group formed in March 1968 featuring vocalist Rod Evans, guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, bassist Nick Simper, drummer Ian Paice and keyboardist Jon Lord. This first lineup of the band, known as Mark I, released three albums within the space of a year – Shades of Deep Purple, The Book of Taliesyn and Deep Purple – before Evans and Simper were fired from the band at the request of Blackmore and Lord. Mark II of Deep Purple saw Ian Gillan and Roger Glover replace Evans and Simper, respectively, in the summer of 1969. This lineup of the band has since been identified as their most successful, with their next four albums reaching the top four of the UK Albums Chart, including number-one albums Fireball and Machine Head.After the release of seventh studio album Who Do We Think We Are in early 1973, Gillan left the group due to creative differences with Blackmore, and was followed shortly by Glover. Deep Purple, Mark III were formed later in the year with the addition of vocalist David Coverdale and bassist and vocalist Glenn Hughes. This lineup released two studio albums – Burn and Stormbringer, both in 1974 – before founding member Blackmore left the band, reportedly due to the new influences of funk rock presented by Coverdale and Hughes. Mark IV of the band, featuring Tommy Bolin in place of Blackmore, released their only album Come Taste the Band in 1975, before breaking up the following year.After almost ten years disbanded, Deep Purple reformed in 1984 with the Mark II lineup of Gillan, Blackmore, Glover, Paice and Lord. However, after just two albums – 1984's Perfect Strangers and 1987's The House of Blue Light – Gillan left the band once again following tensions with Blackmore. He was briefly replaced by Joe Lynn Turner, who had performed with Blackmore in Rainbow, before returning again just a few years later. Blackmore departed again in 1993 and was replaced briefly by Joe Satriani, before current guitarist Steve Morse joined in his place permanently in 1994 to begin Deep Purple Mark VII. Another original member, keyboardist Lord, departed in 2002, leaving only drummer Paice as the only constant member; Lord later died of pancreatic cancer in 2012. Lord's replacement was Don Airey.

Mark I

Mark I or Mark 1 often refers to the first version of a weapon or military vehicle, and is sometimes used in a similar fashion in civilian product development. In some instances, the Arabic numeral "1" is substituted for the Roman numeral "I". "Mark", meaning "model" or "variant", can itself be abbreviated "Mk."

Quatermass (band)

Quatermass were a British progressive rock band from London, active between 1969 and 1971. A related band, Quatermass II was active in the mid-1990s.

Shades of Deep Purple

Shades of Deep Purple is the debut studio album by the English rock band Deep Purple, released in July 1968 on Tetragrammaton in the United States and in September 1968 on Parlophone in the United Kingdom. The band, initially called Roundabout, was the idea of former Searchers drummer Chris Curtis, who recruited Jon Lord and Ritchie Blackmore before leaving the project. The Mk. I line-up of the band was completed by vocalist/frontman Rod Evans, along with bassist Nick Simper and drummer Ian Paice, in March 1968.

After about two months of rehearsals, Shades of Deep Purple was recorded in only three days in May 1968 and contains four original songs and four covers, thoroughly rearranged to include classical interludes and sound more psychedelic. Stylistically the music is close to psychedelic rock and progressive rock, two genres with an ever-growing audience in the late 1960s.

The album was not well received in the UK, where it sold very little and did not chart. In the US, on the other hand, it was a success and the single "Hush", an energetic rock track written by Joe South and originally recorded by Billy Joe Royal, became very popular at the time, reaching number 4 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. The good sales of the album and the intense radio play of the single contributed largely to the attention Deep Purple would get in their early US tours and also during the 1970s. Modern reviews of the album are generally positive and consider Shades of Deep Purple an important piece in the history of Deep Purple.

The Anthology (Deep Purple album)

The Anthology is a compilation album by the British hard rock band Deep Purple, containing material by Mks I (1968-1969), II (1970–73), III (1974–75) and IV (1975–76) line-ups. It was released as a double vinyl album and double-cassette, and included a few previously-unreleased tracks and mixes. The sleeve-notes were written by Chris Charlesworth, author of Deep Purple - The Illustrated Biography.

This compilation was never re-issued on CD: a 2CD set, released by EMI in 1991, was also titled 'Anthology', but featured different songs and only previously-released material.

The Book of Taliesyn

The Book of Taliesyn is the second studio album by English rock band Deep Purple, recorded only three months after Shades of Deep Purple and released by Tetragrammaton Records in October 1968, just before their first US tour. The name for the album was taken from the 14th-century Book of Taliesin.

The structure of the album is similar to that of their debut, with four original songs and three rearranged covers, although the tracks are longer, the arrangements more complex and the sound more polished than on Shades of Deep Purple. The music style is a mix of psychedelic rock, progressive rock and hard rock, with several inserts of classical music arranged by the band's keyboard player Jon Lord.

Deep Purple's American record label aimed for a hippie audience, which was very influential in the US at the time, but the chart results of the album and singles were not as high as expected. This setback did not hinder the success of the three-month US tour, when the band played in many important venues and festivals and received positive feedback from audiences and the press. Deep Purple were still an underground band which played in small clubs and colleges in the United Kingdom, largely ignored by the media and the public. British record company EMI did not release The Book of Taliesyn until June 1969, on the new underground prog rock sub-label Harvest Records, and the album did not chart. Even the release of the new single "Emmaretta" and new dates in their home country in the summer of 1969 did not increase album sales or the popularity of Deep Purple in the UK. Perception of the album changed later years, when it received more favourable reviews.

The Early Years (Deep Purple album)

The Early Years is a 2004 compilation album by the British hard rock band Deep Purple. This is a compilation of material released in 1968 and 1969 and includes unreleased mixes and new mixes of tracks from the same period.

Warhorse (British band)

Warhorse was a British rock band formed by the bass guitar player Nick Simper.

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Live albums
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