Simon McBride


musical style: 

photograph of Simon McBride

As both a virtuoso guitarist and an Irishman (Hailing from near Belfast, Northern Ireland) comparisons are often made with Rory Gallagher and Gary Moore, though Simon sounds like neither in particular.

McBride started playing the guitar when he was ten. By age 15 he entered Guitarist Magazine’s Young Guitarist of The Year, a performance competition staged that year at Wembley Conference Centre, which he won.
Less than a year later, a few months after his sixteenth birthday, McBride was recruited by the Belfast-based metal band Sweet Savage, which reformed in 1994 without their founding guitarist, Vivian Campbell (Dio, Def Leppard), who McBride replaced. He toured with the band and recorded two albums, Killing Time 1996 and Rune[/abum] 1998.

After leaving Sweet Savage in 1998, he joined fellow Irishman Andrew Strong, who made his name in the 1991 cult film The Commitments and went on to establish a singing career. Playing with Strong was in stark contrast to Sweet Savage, involving mostly of soul, R&B and some pop songs. The change of musical style was a useful learning experience and closer in style to the rock and blues artists that had inspired McBride to start playing the guitar. He spent six years touring with Strong before leaving to pursue the idea of a solo career.

In 2008 McBride released his debut album, Rich Man Falling on Nugene Records, a boutique label with a specialisation in guitarists and blues-based artists. The album contains covers of Be My Friend originally by Free and the Jimi Hendrix song Power of Soul.

His 2010 sophomore release Since Then (Nugene Records) gained him nominations in the British Blues Awards. By this time he had opened shows in the UK and Ireland for Jeff Beck, Joe Bonamassa and US slide guitarist Derek Trucks. In autumn 2010 he toured the UK supporting one of his early guitar heroes, Joe Satriani. In 2011 he played major festivals including Glastonbury Festival, and other gatherings including a special guest spot at Don Airey’s Soul & Blues Festival in 2011 and 2013.

During a tour of the UK in 2011 each show was recorded. This resulted in McBride’s third CD release Nine Lives (Nugene Records), so called because there are nine in-concert tracks. The album also contains four solo acoustic tracks, one of which is an acoustic rendition of the title track of his 2008 release Rich Man Falling. A video of this track, cut to 1930s film footage, soon appeared on YouTube.

In 2012 he released "Crossing The Line" (Nugene Records) an album of mostly original work plus the Blood, Sweat & Tears song "Go Down Gambin". The album was recorded in Belfast N.Ireland and Maryland USA and mixed in New York by veteran producer/engineer Peter Denenberg. This album made several "best of" annual charts including that of Classic Rock magazine. Read more about Simon McBride on User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.

Gear used by Simon McBride

Simon McBride electric guitars

Simon McBride tube amplifiers

Simon McBride links