Today, we bid a very happy birthday to this blog's backbone, the man who kept the fires aglow and the posts a'coming, my friend and yours, Mr. Steve Simels.
A sharp-as-hell observer of all things musical, cultural, and political, Steve has been wowing us with his words for fifty years.As many of you have noticed, Steve has been scarce around here lately. He's been dealing with a serious health problem for the last few months, and has been largely incommunicado.
I share with you this post from his partner, Wendy (pictured with him here) :
Tomorrow is Steve's birthday. I haven't posted anything about this, but he is having serious health issues and isn't home. It would mean a lot to me if you could send good thoughts his way ... thanks.
And so mazel tov and many happy returns to our fearless captain and a a wonderful person: Steve.
A sincere Happy Birthday wish Mr. Simels.
Very sorry to hear of your health struggles.
I have been a reader of your work since SR (I have all my copies still).
You have taught me, amused me, and confounded me in equal measure. But I learned to trust and respect your views on most everything musical. A good portion of my personal Hall of Fame includes artists you brought to my attention and advocated for in your way. Its a loving list.
I even once had a late night phone chat with you following one piece in SR where you were mercilessly hard on the post Beatles legacies of the Fabs.
I look forward to your book.
So I wish you a full recovery from what ails.
I was worried about your absence. Look forward to your return.
Thanks. Always appreciate you.
Hey Steve, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
I’m sending you out some love and healing energy…think loud 12-string, Richard Thompson!
Happy Birthday, Steve!
Sadly, I checked with Doordash and Instacart and neither will deliver hookers and blow.
Happy birthday, Steve! Thank you, Power Pop, for the news, though we wish for Steve a full recovery! This is an important place for many, so thank you for the new posts, too.
Get. Well. SOON!
Happy Birthday Pal!
Thanks, Mary. Means a lot ... Wendy
I don't know you except through reading this blog.
I appreciate your humor and your fight in keeping great music alive.
Be as well as you can be. There are people out here you don't even know who care about you.
Happy birthday and wishes for a full recovery! I've been reading you since the Stereo Review days and was worried about your sudden absence from these pages.
Steve - Happy Birthday and a get well soon! We really need you here.
Thank you so much for this update. I don't think I've ever been so worried about someone I've never met face to face, but I knew if Steve wasn't posting, something was amiss. I send birthday greetings and healing vibes.
Happy Birthday and get better soon! We miss you, Steve.
What everyone else has said, amplified to 11.
You are a valued friend to all of us Steve. Please get well
Steve Simels and other writers for SR Magazine were a huge influence on my music taste and the music I have listened to most of my life. I'm 61 now and started reading Steve's reviews when I was 11 or 12 years old. I wish I knew Steve personally so I could tell him how important he is to me.
Happy Birthday Steve and get well soon!
Happy Birthday to the best reviewer in the business. Be well, Steve.
Happy birthday and please take care.
spun "the funky western civilization " and drank a tasty beverage in your honour. happy birthday and get well soon. greatly missing the snarky discourse you provide.
Happy Birthday Steve from a fellow October 21ster and long time reader/follower of everything that you’ve reviewed. Like everyone else, I miss you Man! Get well soon. Phil
Have a quick and complete recovery from your illness, Steve.
Happy Birthday, Steve! Sorry to hear about your illness, I hopw you're well soon. I'm looking forward to your return and your book!
I'm not a robot.
Happy Birthday Steve, and sending energy for a speedy recovery. 🎂🍨🥂
I remember reading you in STEREO REVIEW. Happy Birthday, Steve!
Bon anniversaire and get well soon, Steve. Sending healing thoughts your way.
Happy Birthday. Hoping for your recovery. Postive thoughts sent your way.
Hugs and kisses man.
Get better Steve. Glad you are still with us, keep up the fight.
We miss you.
Happy birthday old friend! Hope you can enjoy an elitist chardonnay and some kicking tunes. Hang tough, and best wishes.
Happy Birthday Steve. You are missed. That shitty little blog is shittier still with you not around. Take care and get well soon.
Ursus Americanus aka Shared Humanity
Happy Birthday, Steve, from one Steve to another!
I have been reading your work since your beginnings at Stereo Review -- your piece on Procol Harum in late 1972 was your inaugural effort there, I believe. Your passion, acerbic wit, and deep musical knowledge made the magazine essential reading for me every month. You even published my fan letter to you in the magazine (April 1976). You have pointed me to so many great artists and sharpened my own critical faculties. I was delighted to find you on this blog a few years ago after many years of not finding you anywhere.
I'm praying for your speedy recovery. I'm sure the Shady Dame is taking the best of care of you. I look forward to your taking your place on "this here blog" and hearing of your further musical exploits.
P.S. I can't wait to read your forthcoming book!
Happy Birthday Steve! Wishing you a speedy recovery. Keep rocking, my friend.
I remember when Steve started writing at Stereo Review, so it was a distinct pleasure finding him on the interweb. The man knows his stuff and has started me on many of my favorites over the decades. I hope you prevail, Steve. Keep plunging on.
Happy birthday and hope you are feeling better soon, Steve.
Steve, you published my letter to you in the May 1976 issue of SR, not April. I just looked it up :-)
Get well soon!
Happy birthday Steve.
And please get bette
Hope you have a GREAT BIRTHDAY! When I first saw you commenting on Eschaton, I thought "Wow, is that the SAME Steve Simels that reviewed music and records in Stereo Review magazine?" It turns out you are indeed the SAME (and only!) Steve Simels whose reviews I so enjoyed reading when magazines were a thing! Happy Birthday, again, and get healthy again!
Happy Birthday and get well soon Steve. Finding this blog years after I started reading your reviews in Stereo Review instead of going to college classes changed my life. I remember someone chastising you for NOT including Raw Power in your list of the 10 greatest records ever made and you said it would without question be number 11. The teenage me went to the local Sam the Record Man and procured it for $4.99 and it did what stuff like that is supposed to do. Thanks for that and everything else and here’s to another trip around the sun and feeling better soon. Cheers!!
Happy Birthday and all my best hopes as you work through your medical issues.
Been an admirer of your critical ear since Stereo Review. Like many of the commenters before me SR was a large part of my outside reading material in college.Always kinda liked it when you raved over a record that I was raving about to my dorm-mates. It seemed to make me feel smarter than I actually was. Hope to get you back on here soon
Happy Birthday and best hopes from Spain, Steve!!
Happy Birthday best wishes!
Wishing a Happy Birthday and Get Well Soon. This particular internet troll misses him.
- Merkin Patriot
Happy Birthday, and good luck with your medical stuff.
To paraphrase one of the best contemporary writers I know, "This serious medical stuff is really beginning to piss me off."
The original, by the way, is one exceptionally good line.
Best to you Steve. Keep up the good thoughts and know that folks value your many contributions whether surly or brilliant, dyspeptic or right on. Never flinch, never falter, always up for the exchange.
OMG just a mention of your name brings me a smile. Your Stereo Review articles were seminal to my cultural education. To have rediscovered your continuing presence has been a gift. Happy Birthday.
Merry b'day, Steve!
I read Stereo Review years before you came on-board, at the impressionable age of around 12 due to my keen interest in audio. When you arrived it was like finally a rock reviewer I could learn valuable information on what I could trust. Trust meant buy with my very limited funds. You helped shape my evolving love of music more than any other reviewer I had found. The respect for you grew with every issue so much I'd try to read your reviews and musical editorials first, before the very interest in the actual audio gear! Finding your blog on the web filled that gap I suffered after you left and SR morphed into a far inferior publication. I absolutely love your blog. That said, your health is far above all of the above. I wish you a full recovery on this your birthday. Your blog brings joy as it celebrates our common interest. That joy is important to countless folks like myself. Get well soon.
Since 'thoughts and prayers' are mostly useless, have some PILLS
Happy birthday and get well soon.
Happy birthday, Steve. Feel better soon!
I hope Steve bounce back here soon. He is a real mensch!
Happy birthday Steve! May your power be popping ASAP!
Belated Happy Birthday and a quick recovery to you, Mr. Simels!
Happy Birthday, Steve.
I'm yet another of the many folks unknown to you who have enjoyed reading your stuff for years. I started following as a teen when you wrote for Stereo Review and was delighted to find you again on the Internet in more recent times.
You've turned me on to so much great music. One of my favorites that stands out is Procol Harum's Grand Hotel. I might have eventually found that one on my own but unlikely that I would have stumbled onto, say, Tonio K.
You've brightened my life. I thank you.
Looking forward to your return.
Let me weigh in as another adolescent Stereo Review reader who enjoyed your material back then, and was delighted to find you in this century. Get well, come back, and share your musical pleasures with us again!
Sending good thoughts -- no, great thoughts. Belated Birthday wishes as well. Get well soon.
Get well soon, Steve. Remember, I still want to meet you and buy you a drink.
Your pal in Toronto,
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