Time to bulk order the hairspray, the Simple Minds tour is coming to Dubai…

Like hair-lacquered quiffs, shoulder-padded suit jackets, Wall Street trader commissions and the very first mobile phones – Glaswegian rock band Simple Minds, were almost impossibly big in the eighties. And with the retro-revival fever of recent decades – their music, and fashion, have been enjoyed by new generations of fans.

And Simple Minds will be riding this nostalgia wave all the way to Dubai’s Coca-Cola Arena for a one night stop on their 2024 Global Tour. They’ll be ‘live, and kicking’ off the retro reverie on Saturday, February 27, 2024. Tickets are live now on the coca-cola-arena.com website, with pricing from Dhs195. However, if you’re a fan from the original era you may want to look at adding retinol to your skincare routine. It’s OK, I can say it, I’m one of you.

A simple life

What is, almost certainly, their biggest hit ‘Don’t You (Forget About Me)’, was used on both the opening and closing credits, of the seminal era-defining movie, The Breakfast Club (Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald and Emilio Estevez), cementing it in the minds of cinephiles as well as music fans. But that’s not where their musical legacy ends.

You may also remember them from such hits as ‘Alive and Kicking’, ‘Belfast Child’,Glittering Prize‘, ‘Someone Somewhere in Summertime‘ and ‘Waterfront‘.

February 27, 2024, tickets from Dhs195. coca-cola-arena.com 

This Simple Minds gig is just the latest in a 747-Jumbo load of nostalgic music acts hitting the stage in the next few weeks. These are just some of the big ones…



Locked, live, loud and fully loaded with 90s indie music revelry – The Irish Village will be jumping to the sounds of the Stereo MCs, Fun Lovin’ Criminals, Toploader and Dodgy this November. The one-night, what sounds suspiciously like the nominees in a category at the 1996 Brit Awards, festival will mean we get to hear tracks like Scooby Snacks (Fun Lovin’ Criminals), Dancing in the Moonlight (Toploader), Good Enough (Dodgy) and Connected (Stereo MCs) – all without sharing your Discman headphones.

Irish Village Dubai, Al Garhoud, Dubai, Nov 4, 9.30pm onwards (doors open at 7pm), prices start from Dhs175. ticketslover.com

Bryan Adams

Bryan Adams 

We reckon Canadian singer-songwriter Bryan Adams knew exactly what he was doing when he penned the song Summer of ’69. It’s a legitimate sing-a-long anthem, a wedding DJ mic-drop, and that’s just one jukebox selection in his dizzyingly vast discography. Everything I do, please forgive me, Heaven – there are 15 studio albums worth of material for fans to celebrate/incoherently scream back at Mr Adams.

Coca-Cola Arena, City Walk, Dubai, Nov 4, ticket prices start from Dhs199. Tel: (800) 223 388. coca-cola-arena.com

Metallica Tribute Show With Orchestra


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Heavy metal heavyweights Metallica have been thrashing out arena tours since the early 80s, but their immovable rock chart presence became an unstoppable force in the 90s. And although this Dubai gig at The Agenda is not the real McGovney (it’s a tribute act called Garage Dayz), it does feature the symphonic backing of a Palladium Orchestra. Exit light, enter night, take our hand they’re off to never winter land.

The Agenda, Media City, Fri Nov 10, 7.15pm, tickets from Dhs295. dubai.platinumlist.net


busted and sugababes dubai

Allegedly, one of the star acts of this 00s revival gig has been to the year 3000. Their debrief of the temporal tourism reveals that not much has changed, except for the fact we live underwater, and that one of your great great great granddaughters is relatively attractive. Yes, it’s pop-punk outfit Busted, back with the original line-up and hitting the stage at Bla Bla in November with the (also original line-up) Sugababes, Vengaboys and Snap! Radio DJ Chris Moyles, as host, pushes the button on a Royal Rumble of bubblegum nostalgia.

Bla Bla, The Beach, JBR, Nov 18, from Dhs449, Tel: (0)4 584 4111, livenation.me

Cele Retro Fest

Cele Retro Fest Dubai

Co-headliners of this throwback-apalooza, Haddaway released his seminal hit ‘What is Love?’ in 1993. Making it *checks maths* thirty years old, and enough to elicit a “baby don’t hurt me” from anyone who can remember the original release. He’ll be joined by fellow 90s Eurodance scene pioneers Dr “It’s My Life” Alban, Ice MC, and Turbo B from Snap (Rhythm is a Dancer).  It’s all going down at Emirates Golf Club at the end of November, meaning they really are bringing ‘back nine-tees’.

Emirates Golf Club, Sat Nov 25, tickets from Dhs200. dubai.platinumlist.net

The Magic Of Michael Jackson starring Ben Bowman

There are few characters that had the impact on the 1990s that Michael Jackson did – the troubled, controversial, but unquestionably gifted King of Pop, was never far from the top of the charts or newspaper headlines. Though his heyday was arguably in the 80s, his 90s catalogue included Black or White, Dangerous, Heal the World, Earth Song, They Don’t Care About Us, and You Are Not Alone. And though the real Micky J is no longer with us, the magic of his music and dance performance will be given life on the Coca-Cola Arena stage by ace impersonator, Ben Bowman.

Coca-Cola Arena, Sun Dec 17, from 8pm, tickets from Dha140. dubai.platinumlist.net