Review: Bad Company Drummer Simon Kirke Simmers on 'All Because of You'

The term “busman’s holiday” refers to avacation spent doing more or less the same thing you do to make a living. SimonKirke is best known as the drummer for two of England’s most venerable rockoutfits, Free and Bad Company, so All Because of You, his thirdfull-length solo LP, qualifies as an escape – with a catch: The hard-groovingpercussionist spends most of his time in front of the band, crooning into amicrophone while strumming a guitar or ukulele. Though he’s hung his hat in NewYork City for years, Kirke shows an enviable rapport with bandmates JoshSolomon, Erika Brett, Nate Bellon and Danny Rosenthal, members of polished yetrootsy Chicago outfit Empty Pockets. Kirke’s likably scruffy voice and earnestdelivery ideally suit sentimental, easygoing songs that attest to clearing life’shurdles with the help of a higher power and a good woman’s love. Apart from “TroubleRoad,” brought to a boil by Gov’t Mule guitarist Warren Haynes, AllBecause of You maintains a bubbly simmer throughout – even on a uke-drivencover of the earthy Bad Company anthem “Feel Like Making Love” thatwouldn’t sound out of place on a Collective Soul LP.

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