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.



What a summer!

Monday, July 20th, 2015

Whew! Is it sweltering where you are too? It’s turning out to be quite a summer, in so many ways. First, the touring. After her performances in Bogota,  S.America Sylvie did a handful of shows in California then flew to Scandinavia  where she played three concerts in Norway – way up in the north of the country, and also in Oslo (pictured below, where the musicians included American singer-songwriter Luke Elliott and Norwegian poet Havard Rem, who translated Sylvie’s book I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen) – with a few days off to climb a mountain and take a fishing boat out into the Norwegian sea and catch an enormous cod!

Now she’s headed back to S.America again – Chile this time, to play a concert with Chilean musician Matías Cena and be interviewed onstage by Santiago journalist Alfredo Lewin. And after that it’s back to Scandinavia! Three shows in Denmark as part of the Aarhus festival, one of them sharing the stage with Howe Gelb and Giant Sand,  Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth and M.Ward. Check the Tour page  for details of these and also some local shows.

Despite all the traveling, Sylvie has kept to her resolution to Tweet her book Serge Gainsbourg: A Fistful of Gitanes every day, a dozen or so tweets at a time, with the occasional commentary and picture! At last glance she was four chapters and around 700 tweets into it. Join her on Twitter or if you want the whole book, which  has been updated and is available as an e-book/kindle  after a long time out of print, it’s here:


Sylvie has also been compiling an album, The Rough Guide to Americana: Vol 2.’ The first volume, coincidentally, came out the same year as her Serge Gainsbourg book, in 2001, and featured then-unknown artists, now highly-acclaimed, like The Handsome Family, best-known these days for their theme song to True Detective Season 1. Season 2’s theme tune is a Leonard Cohen song!!

And of course she’s still writing about music. Here’s an essay she wrote on Iggy Pop for Radio Silence magazine and book – part personal story, part critique and the second in her series of heartbreak albums , ‘The Best Part Of Breaking Up’.  Read it here: http://ht.ly/P3Cr6

Encore 2 Oslo

Record release!!!

Tuesday, September 9th, 2014

thumb_325_tmp_2F1406584129656-s1lgcijko7n1att9-fc3b6f2f0bcaf468a745532b0d6364cf_2FLITA122_SylvieSimmons_SylviejpgSylvie has signed a recording contract with Light In The Attic – the renowned US record label that’s released albums by legendary musicians including Jane Birkin, Serge Gainsbourg, Lee Hazlewood, Karen Dalton, Rodriguez, Mercury Rev and  Kris Kristofferson! They will release her debut album  –Sylvie  – on 28th October in the US, UK and Europe. The  album – 11 original songs and one cover song-  was recorded at Wavelab Studio in Tucson, Arizona with Howe Gelb of Giant Sand producing.  Here’s a peek inside at the lyrics booklet.Sylvie cd InsertAnd here’s what some celebrated names are saying about it: “Fragile and fearless, direct and poetic, timeless and absolutely beautiful.”  –Devendra Banhart

“Sweet music just like Sylvie.” – Brian Wilson

“A lovely voice, a unique voice, the kind of voice that people will get into- that they’ll want to get into.” –Bob Johnston (producer of Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash)

And here’s a song to listen to.