Closing the Book

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

9780306811838_p0_v1_s1200x630Sylvie’s epic daily Tweeting of  Serge Gainsbourg: A Fistful of Gitanes, which she  began to celebrate its first-time release as a digital book, came to an end today – nine months and 3232 Tweets later!  You can check out the closing moments @sylviesimmons and if you want to read it piece by piece you can follow the numbers right back to number one.  The final #SergeTweets turned out to coincide with Holocaust Memorial Day. Gainsbourg, who was a child when the Nazis invaded Paris, never forgot the humiliation of having to wear a yellow star marking him as a Jew.

Here’s a link to the expanded edition of the book:

March 2nd 2016 will mark the 25th anniversary of Gainsbourg’s death in Paris, aged 62. Sylvie is hoping to set up a tribute show soon – so please keep checking the Tour page for details.


Wednesday, December 9th, 2015

Sylvie has written the third and last installment of her trilogy on heartbreak albums for Radio Silence.  The album this time is Jeff Buckley’s “Grace”. But these are not simply album reviews, these are essays in which the story of the album relates to a personal story of heartbreak in Sylvie’s life.

The trilogy – which also includes her previous essays on Bob Dylan’s “Blood On The Tracks” and Iggy Pop’s “Avenue B” – will be published in the book edition of  Radio Silence, which should be in the stores soon.

Meanwhile, you can read them online for free here:
mirror NV



Numero Un!

Tuesday, December 1st, 2015

Some great news just in from France.  The UK  version of  Sylvie’s book  I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard is number one in the music ebook charts!!  Meanwhile, we’re still doing all we can to get a French-language version published…. fingers firmly crossed!




Wednesday, November 4th, 2015

Chile bootleg sleeve

In August this year Sylvie played a concert in Santiago, Chile, accompanied by Chilean musicians Matias Cena on acoustic guitar and electric guitarist Diego Alorda. In the early hours of morning, drinking Pisco Sours at the party after the show, Matias and Diego suggested the three of them go into AlgoRecords Studio, owned by their friend and legendary Chilean rock musician,  Perrosky, and play the songs through once again and record a bootleg.

Since Sylvie was leaving the next day to fly back to San Francisco, on a rainy album, after a couple of hours’ sleep, the three went into the studio and, with no rehearsals, just started playing and singing together, and Perro captured it all on tape.

“It was a cold morning”, Sylvie told  Chilean newspaper El Mercurio, “which is why we’re all dressed in coats and hats – but everything else was so warm: the atmosphere in the studio, the little paraffin stove Perro lit for us to warm our hands on, and the camaraderie with Matias and Diego. My Chilean concert was the first time I’ve played as a trio with two guitar players (as opposed to a guitarist and a bass player or something else) but with one being acoustic, the other electric, and each having a distinct tone and style, I loved the effect. I think we captured a real intimacy – a very sleepy intimacy after so little sleep – but it suits the songs so well!”
Algo en Algo,  the Bootleg album, is available free to stream or download here:
Track list:
Midnight Cowboy
Hey That’s No Way
Hard Act To Follow
My Lips Still Taste of You
Bird on the Wire (with Spanish verse)

Got her MOJO working!

Monday, October 26th, 2015

A triple helping of Sylvie in the year-end issue of MOJO (dated December 2015, #265).CR8dkoFUYAAdy0R

First of all there’s the cover story: Sylvie’s 15-page  exclusive interview with Elvis Costello.  Then there’s her essay on Bob Dylan in “MOJO Music Guide Volume 1”, a free gift with the magazine. And there’s also a live review of Sylvie’s concert with Howe Gelb and an incredible line-up in Denmark at the Aarus Festival! For more photos from the show, including the grand finale, scroll down to the last news entry below.Howe Sylvie etc mojo


And the winner is …

Saturday, October 24th, 2015

Well, we don’t know who the winner is yet –  but we do know that Sylvie’s debut album Sylvie,  produced by Howe Gelb and released on Light In The Attic Records, has made it onto the ballot for Best Folk Album for the 58th Grammy Awards!!  Voting in the first round begins this week, so we’re crossing our fingers and lighting candles that she’ll make it to the next round!

Here’s some photos from a show Sylvie played with Howe and Giant Sand at the Aarhus festival last month. There was an amazine line-up  onstage in the grand finale – including M Ward, Grant Lee Phillips,  Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth,  Bob Dylan bassist Tony Garnier, Maggie Bjorklund,  Giant Sand, Howe and Sylvie and more.

Midway through the encore – a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “A Thousand Kisses Deep”, with Howe, M Ward and Sylvie on vocals, Howe led Sylvie in an impromptu tango during an accordion solo, while managing not to knock over the violin players!

Grand finale


Sylvie at Howe etc show

Sylvie and Howe Town CalledDance finale copy


Sara and Sylvie

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

Tonight in San Francisco: Sara Bareilles in conversation with Sylvie Simmons, onstage at the JCC about life, music, musicals and her New York Times-bestselling memoir Sounds Like Me. SOLD OUT


‘Adios’, Chile… ‘Hej’, Denmark!

Thursday, August 27th, 2015


Sylvie spent the last two weeks back in San Francisco after a short but super-sweet trip to Chile where she performed to 500 people, made a TV appearance and did three radio shows (with Chilean’s best-known DJs Alfredo Lewin and Hernán Rojas) and, on the morning of her long flight home, went into a studio to record a bootleg album with her two Santiago accompanists, Matías Cena and Diego Alorda, with Alejandro ‘Perrosky’ Gomez at the mixing board.

Now she’s off to Scandinavia again – Denmark this time – for the amazing Aarhus Festival. Sylvie has three events, each of them different: she’ll start with a Leonard Cohen-related appearance at Kristian F Møller book shop on August 31st; then on Sept 1st she’ll be onstage interviewing the festival’s keynote speaker, the legendary Jac Holzman. And last but by no means least, she’s playing a concert with Howe Gelb (who produced and played on her album ‘Sylvie’) and Giant Sand, Grant-Lee Phillips Steve Shelley (Sonic Youth) and more in what will be a very, very special evening!
Full details of tickets, times and dates are on her tour page.

A Fistful of Serge Gainsbourg

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

There’s a brand new excerpt from ‘Serge Gainsbourg: A Fistful of Gitanes’ in the influential UK web magazine The Quietus – the chapter on Gainsbourg’s best-known song, the sexy and controversial Je T’Aime…Moi Non Plus and the lovers who inspired it and sang it. You can read it here.

For anyone who missed US webzine Salon‘s excerpt from Sylvie’s acclaimed biography of Gainsbourg – this one about how a shy French Jew, forced to wear a yellow star by the Nazis as a child and mocked by prostitutes in his teens, became the sexiest man in Paris – here’s a link.

And here’s an in-depth interview with Sylvie – in English and in French – about her and Gainsbourg and how she came to be his English biographer.


More music!

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

Here are two new music clips from Sylvie’s concert at the Kulturhuset in Oslo, Norway on 5th July: Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye’, featuring Syvie on uke and vocals and Freddy Holm on impromptu mandolin.

And a live version of Sylvie’s song ‘Midnight Cowboy’ with Freddy on violin this time and Simen Rem on guitar.

Sylvie’s spent the past two weeks writing and demoing new songs. And now she’s preparing for her trips to perform in Santiago, Chile in early August and  in Aarhus, Denmark at the end of the August. Check her tour page for details, including on an amazing upcoming show with Howe Gelb, Giant Sand, Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth and M.Ward!