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Sylvie Simmons Releases New Video 'The Thing They Don't Tell You About Girls'

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The song deals with unrequited love and despair.

Sylvie Simmons Releases New Video 'The Thing They Don't Tell You About Girls'

Sylvie Simmons is releasing a new video today for her song "The Thing They Don't Tell You About Girls," a deceptive track that features Simmons' gentle ukulele parts, bells, and gauzy vocals over a song dealing with unrequited love and despair, with Simmons' singing, "Since you're gone I keep away from bridges, trains and razor blades." The video features ladies at their best and worst - an exhilarating amalgam of vintage film and animation clips that alternately tug at your heart and make you laugh out loud. Simmons, a respected rock critic and author known for I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen, talks in depth about her new album, BLUE ON BLUE, which reunites her with producer Howe Gelb (Giant Sand).

The video, made by Ryan Sarnowski, includes the wry addition of the old "follow the bouncing ball" singalong to these deceptively dark lyrics.

Her unforgettable songs, delicate but sensual and bold, have earned unanimous praise and rave reviews, with comparisons to a young Marianne Faithfull, a punk Piaf, and a female Leonard Cohen - as well as a prime slot in the 2018 Ethan Hawke/Jesse Peretz movie Juliet, Naked, and shout-outs from fellow musicians including Rosanne Cash, Brian Wilson and Elvis Costello.

If her first album seemed to appear of nowhere, in a way it did. For three and a half decades, before coming out as a singer-songwriter, Sylvie - born in London and based in California - had been an acclaimed rock writer, and the author of books including her celebrated biographies of Serge Gainsbourg, Neil Young and Leonard Cohen. It was after touring around the world for more than a year behind I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen (her 2012 book which now has over 25 translations), singing his songs and accompanying herself on a ukulele, that Sylvie did the near-impossible and crossed over into writing and recording her own songs, with the encouragement and accompaniment of Gelb, who also produced her first album.

Seamless and beautiful, with its memorable songs and spacious, unexpected arrangements, once again it highlights her intimate vocals and intelligent lyrics that at first listen seem dreamy and gentle but hold hidden barbs and pain. As one writer noted, "These are songs that persuade us to curl up with them, then bite when we're warm and cozy."

The band on BLUE ON BLUE consists of Gelb, Thoger Lund, Gabriel Sullivan and Brian Lopez from Tucson, plus Australian Matt Wilkinson and Jim White (Wrong-eyed Jesus) from Athens, Georgia. Sylvie plays ukulele - an instrument she first started playing in 2005.

"I'd always thought of the uke as a toy", she says, "a little handful of happiness. But not any more. From the moment I picked it up, I fell in love. A ukulele has a sad, fractured sweetness, like a broken harp. And a modesty. It doesn't try to impress you, it almost apologizes for being there." Abandoning her piano and guitar, her songs "came through this tiny instrument with all their heartbreak and truth intact."

Watch the new video here:


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