Diamond Simon, founder of Diamond Simon and the Roughcuts - Austin Texas Blues and R&B Musician

Diamond Simon's Austin Texas Blues Page

'Diamond' Simon is founder, director, singer, guitarist, leader and workhorse of the fabulous Diamond Simon and The Roughcuts Blues and R&B band, keeping the blues alive in the new millenium in Austin, Texas.
Diamond Simon - An Austin Texas Blues and R&B Guitarist, Singer, Songwriter and Musician  

Born in England - 'a merry man from Nottingham' - Simon's musical career started playing flute in the junior high school brass band and singing for pocket money in the local choir. Simon got his first guitar - a Spanish classical guitar - at the age of 8, and by 14 was performing on electric guitar at parties with high school buddies.

Simon arrived in Austin in '84 after a 5 year stint as a drummer in London and the Bay Area of California, including playing with David Lowrey in Box of Laffs in Santa Cruz California, Shake Appeal also in California, Austin's own Texas Dogs (including at the infamous Beach Club Caberet), and various UK bands in London and Brighton.

Simon was seduced back to blues guitar by the local Austin music scene. Several years of regular attendance at local blues jams followed, including the 'Thundercloud Subs Beer Garden Jam' (where he first met 'Dangerous Dave', Walter and many others), Walter Higgs Sunday Night 'Blues Party', first at Joe's Generic Bar, then at 3'11 Club and now at Friends on 6th Street, Ray Howling's Blues Jam at 'The Saloon' (where he met Steve Manning and others), and the Thursday night jam at 'Texas Bar and Grill'. 'Diamond' had a long way to go!

1989 Fender '57 Reissue Stratocaster
1997 Gibson ES-335
1996 Takamine Accoustic
2005 Vox Ac15 w/Celestion Blue
1994 Fender Blues Delux (40 watts)
1981 Fender 75 w/12" (75 watts)
Vox 'Wah Wah'
Ibanez 'Tube Screamer'
Alesis 'MidiVerb'
Alesis 360 Compressor
Pearl 'Export' 5 piece



Simon was weaned on the '60s British blues scene including Eric Clapton, John Mayall and Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac. Early Texas blues influences included Thomas 'Master Blaster' Alexander, Appa Perry (Appa's 'Blues Power', Jim Talbot Band), Tom 'TBone' Kelley and Walter Higgs (Walter Higgs and the Shuffle Pigs, Guitar Lynn), as well as the golden greats of blues guitar like BB King Albert King, Freddie King, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Jimmy Vaughn of Fabulous Thunderbirds fame, T-Bone Walker and Magic Sam. Other influences include the seminal Wilson Pickett and on the lighter side The Blues Brothers featuring the horn arrangements of Tom 'Bones' Malone.

Big Thomas Alexander, Appa of Appa's Blues Power, and Walter T Higgs of the Suffle Pigs


The 'Master Blaster' Years

In 1990 Simon joined Big Thomas (aka 'The Master Blaster') Alexander's Junkyard Blues Band featuring Big Thomas on Drums, Appa on Bass and 'The Creep' trading guitar licks with Diamond Simon. The band played South Austin and surrounds, and recorded the namesake 'Master Blaster' album at Parrot Tracks Studio in '91 including the hit singles 'Master Blaster' and 'Back to Delle Valley'. The Junkyard Blues Band lasted through until 1993 when Appa left to join the Jim Talbot Band, but the spirit lives on in the form of the Junkard Jam re-uinon held in June of each year. Big Thomas Alexander is still a frequent visitor to Roughcuts gigs, and as recently as 2004 recorded the hit single 'Woman I Aint Gonna Drink No More Whiskey'I Aint Gonna Drink No More Whiskey by Big Thomas Alexander and the Roughcuts (Sunnyland Slim) with Diamond Simon and the Roughcuts at Placid Sound Studios.

To be continued .... this story is still being written!


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