The Music Of Jim Simmons
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The Music Of Jim Simmons

Band Pop Singer/Songwriter


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EP release coming soon...



Sometimes admiring music from a distance can breed inner curiosity and in avertedly stir up a creative muse. In the case of Chicago bred/Nashville based troubadour Jim Simmons, that unexpected ride began back in high school when he scored an internship with the Windy City’s Edan Concerts (one of the country’s leading promoters who’s booked everyone from Switchfoot to P.O.D. and literally everyone in between). What started out as stuffing mail order tickets in envelopes and runner responsibilities eventually blossomed into a staff position, complete with concert bookings, contracts and hosting appearances that have seen him introduce just about everyone in the modern day music industry to crowds upwards of 30,000.

“I’ve always been an avid radio listener and CD buyer pretty much every Tuesday of the year, so I figured why not get on the front lines and match up my personal tastes with a job I could be passionate about?,” says Simmons, who may have just tipped into his twenties but has more behind the scenes experience than many will rack up in a lifetime. “I basically learned the concert industry as an intern and worked my way up, but along the way took in so many amazing stories and personal moments with the artists. To have seen Skillet during their earlier years and now see them signed to Atlantic was amazing and the same with Switchfoot in their mainstream crossover. The Chicago band Sleeping At Last has also been really inspirational to watch, especially after having them at our shows for so many years and then seeing Billy Corgan [from the Smashing Pumpkins/Zwan fame] get on board to help given them an even bigger national platform.”

And as single stage announcements led to hosting slots for entire shows and finally full-fledged festivals, Simmons couldn’t help but get hooked on the crowd’s roar, but not for the most obvious reasons. Sure, he found himself snapping photos with new found fans of his witty banter and ability to rev up an audience, but in the process, also met a lot of people weighed down by problematic circumstances.

“The more I found myself in front of crowds, the closer I got to people individually off the stage and saw what they were going through,” continues Simmons. “In one sense, I felt honored that they wanted to share their situation with me and ask my point of view, but at the same time, I wanted to offer them something to take away from the interaction that was more than merely a word or two of advice. At that point, I became really serious about putting my pen to the paper and digging in deep to the art of songwriting.”

And as the ongoing duties of the burgeoning concert promoter continued, Simmons’ soon found his passions shifting towards the artistic side. Between marathon writing sessions, becoming a self-taught guitarist and two years of vocal lessons, he got up enough guts to lay down a few songs in a home studio, burn them to disc and submit it to his boss at Edan Concerts under the guise of being a potential opening act for the company’s future bookings.

Not only did Simmons pass the test with flying colors, but soon found himself on stage as an actual entertainer on high profile opening slots for the diverse likes of Pillar, Project 86, Hawk Nelson, Falling Up and The Fold. Add in several additional shows outside of Edan in the diverse likes of Chicago’s renowned Wonderland Ballroom, Heart & Soul Café, North Beach, plus the area’s VFW circuit (also Fall Out Boy’s famed stomping grounds) and Simmons truly let his music do the talking.

“It was really exciting branching out on a local level, but the more and more I talked to other artists and people in the industry, the more and more they kept telling me to move to Nashville,” Simmons admits. “I’d been down there before for meetings and even recording sessions and love it every time, so I finally took the step of faith and packed my bags for Music City.”

Armed with a few guitars, some studio equipment and the newly recorded EP Essence of Existence, Simmons did just that, branching out his grungy acoustic sounds on the open mic circuit, planted himself in additional songwriting sessions and rebuilding a brand that’s already found fame in Chi-town.

“It’s been a really exciting ride that I seriously never would’ve expected, but yet it feels so natural,” Simmons sums up. “Being in Nashville puts me right in the center of the action and makes me even more plugged into a scene that I’ve been passionate about for as long as I can remember. Between the new listeners I meet along the way and what I learn from the masters, I’m even more excited about music making and taking this journey to the next level than I ever have been before.”