2021 has been an eventful year for A Guy Called Gerald – real name Gerald Simpson – in more than one way. It’s been the year he revealed to the world he’s never been paid a penny for the success of 1988 single “Voodoo Ray”, or anything else which he put out on Liverpool’s Rham! Records in the early 90s.
At the same time, he made allegations that a man called Barry Lancaster Smith was illegally making money out of his productions – this case is currently in the hands of solicitors. Weirdly, the new Rham! Records couldn’t get hold of him to pay royalties due, but had no issue knowing where to send a legal threat due to “harassment”.
Since then, a question often aimed at Simpson is whether he’s going to release some new music. After all, he frequently posts footage from his studio where he’s creating new material, but none of it ever appears in the stores. Why not?
Simpson has replied in a Facebook post, saying he feels he can’t. Elaborating, he says “over 30 years of commercial exploitation… has left me feeling empty”. He also cites he doesn’t think he needs the validation from anyone. But one comment has me both simultaneously scratching my head and wanting to shake his hand.
And it’s where he says “There are a few titles on Bandcamp but only if you want to support the strangest profession to exist under the sun”. Whilst I couldn’t agree more with the music business being a strange one – one that provides me with no end of material to write about – it suggests we might never see another A Guy Called Gerald release again.