♫ Holding Back The Years ♫

I was chatting with a dear friend from across the pond this evening, and we were talking about music, about how some songs traveled across the pond and became hits in both the UK and the U.S., while others that we never heard of here in the U.S., were big hits all across Europe.  What makes the difference?  Marketing surely plays a role, but what else?  Anyway, he tossed out a few titles to see if I knew them.  Turned out I did know 3 of the 5 he mentioned, and had, in fact, already played 2 of those 3 here on ye olde blog.  That left one that I knew and loved, and so tonight, we indulge in a bit of Simply Red!

Now, you guys already know that I am way outclassed when I’m talking music with any one of you, right?  Keith, Cheryl, David … Scott and rawgod for sure … most of you know a lot more than I do about bands, artists, and songs … I just know what I like, what stirs one emotion or another in me.  Thus, though this song takes me way back and I have always liked what I consider the slow, sensuous tone of it, and even though Simply Red has another that I like even more (I’m not telling which, for you’re gonna see it here in a day or two, but you’re welcome to take a guess) … I had no idea that Simply Red was a person, and not a group.  As my daughter used to say a lot … “Duh, Grannie”.

So, it turns out that Simply Red is Mick Hucknall, and Simply Red came about because of his red hair.  If I were to decide to become a singer at this late stage of the game, I guess I would be “Weirdly Grey”!  Hmmmm … 🤔 … 🤔 … OH WAIT!!!  People run for the exits when I start to sing!  The girls don their headphones.  The moggies run for cover!  I cannot sing!  How could I forget?

I did not find much background on this song, other than that Hucknall wrote it in his bedroom in his father’s house while still a teenager.  The song charted at #2 in Mick’s homeland, the UK, and #1 in the U.S.

Holding Back the Years
Simply Red

Holding back the years
Thinking of the fear I’ve had so long
When somebody hears
Listen to the fear that’s gone
Strangled by the wishes of pater
Hoping for the arms of mater
Get to me the sooner or later

Holding back the tears
Chance for me to escape from all I know
Holding back the tears
‘Cause nothing here has grown
I’ve wasted all my tears
Wasted all those years
Nothing had the chance to be good
Nothing ever could, yeah

I’ll keep holding on
I’ll keep holding on
I’ll keep holding on
I’ll keep holding on, so tight

Well I’ve wasted all my tears
Wasted all of those years
And nothing had the chance to be good
‘Cause nothing ever could

I’ll keep holding on
I’ll keep holding on
I’ll keep holding on
I’ll keep holding on


I said

It’s all I have today
It’s all I have to say

Songwriters: Mick Hucknall / Neil Moss
Holding Back the Years lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, BMG Rights Management

17 thoughts on “♫ Holding Back The Years ♫

  1. Pingback: ♫ If You Don’t Know Me By Now ♫ | Filosofa's Word

  2. This is a good choice Jill. Very moving song. Not an outfit I really cared much for, except for this song.
    (PS do us a favour ask Keith to check his spam. WP is at it again)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Glad you liked the song, my friend! You can thank David for it, as it would have been another year before my sad, old brain remembered it! I did let Keith know at 1:30 yesterday afternoon, and he responded about an your later that he would check. Did you hear from him?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Keith and I are back in contact.
        Thanks Jill!
        Sadly Jerry can’t find anything of mine.
        ‘Hello WP, allow me to introduce you to my Gunnery Sergeant Hartman impression……..’.

        Liked by 1 person

          • The annoying thing is Jill, I did nothing nor did they actually take any action against me. This is a classic computer malfunction with a random effect. I have seen this happen before in my Civil Service career, at least the staff at the front line told the public it was a screw-up and assure them it was not something they, the public had done.
            I will be having strong words with WP today.


    • You mean … they DON’T still dance ‘cheek to cheek’??? When did that stop? Sigh. I don’t belong in this world anymore, I swear I don’t! I remember my first dance partner … my dad! I would stand on his shoes as he waltzed me across the dance floor. Sigh.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This must come from my non-radio, non-TV years, when i was hiding away from the world in various corners of of married life, lol. I vaguely remember it, but I could not tell you who or when if you hadn’t told me the who part. The when part I got from David, as well as the song I do know by Simply Red. That one broke through the walls I had placed around myself!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I, too, have blank spaces, years that for whatever reason, I wasn’t hearing or listening to the music of the day. Ahhh … you must be referring to “If You Don’t Know Me By Now”, yes? That is my favourite of Simply Red’s.


      • Having looked back, I believe I know the song “If You Don’t Know Me by Now” much better by Howard Melvin and the Blue Notes from 1972, featuring Teddy Pendergrass on vocals. If you haved posted the Simply Red verson yet, I hope you add on the Blue Notes original. I wonder what 17 years of separation did for the production.


  4. Sorry to say this song doesn’t “keep holding on” for me. The songs I find memorable are seldom written by teenagers, but by the same token, very few teenagers wouldn’t be turned off by MY kind of music. It’s mostly a generational thing, no doubt, and I’m not knocking others’ taste in music — that’s just the way it is.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mmmmm … maybe only partly a generational thing, for I think I am older than you. But, no matter, for that is the beauty of music … we each hear it a bit differently and take from it what we will. And frankly, what appeals to me today, might not a week from now, depending on mood of the moment. That said, there are some genres that will not appeal to me today, tomorrow, next week, next year, or in my next lifetime!!! 😉


  5. Not sure where you got the ideas that Simply Red was not a group. They were very much a group when they formed in about 1979 but it’s true Mick’s hair was the reason for the name. I suppose one reason for the confusion might be that when they finally disbanded, Mick was the only original member left and could probably hang on to the name.It’s sometimes still used when he does a show with a backing band. This is one of my favourite records for years though they’ve done some good ones……..I wonder if your other choice might not be ‘If you don’t know me by now’?There aren’t many white groups can achieve a good soul sound but Simply Red did it in Spades.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ach!!! My bad! I looked at only one source, SongFacts, and made the invalid assumption, based on the brief bit of into they had, that Simply Red was an individual artist rather than a group. You are much like Ellen … a walking encyclopedia when it comes to music! (But not when it comes to Keebler elves 😉 )

      You obviously know me quite well ‘by now’, for you are spot on with your guess. Coming up soon …

      Cwtch Mawr

      Liked by 1 person

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