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First published in April 2010, last updated March 2017


Roger (Sam) Simpson, ex the Librettos, passed away on 13th April 2010.

Link to a photo gallery including Roger in action at the Wellington Town Hall 1961/62


Roger - I have such fond memories of you spoiling me when I was very young and remember you living in what I thought was a castle in Plimmerton and sitting in your TV room with a raspberry soda fizz thinking I was a princess.  Although our families fell apart when I was young and our relationship discontinued, I still hold onto the fond memories and I am sad to not have seen you before you passed and also to say bye at your funeral.  Love you and may you rest in peace.  Hugs to Lynn and the family.  Your god daughter Dayna Carter and family xx
The funeral went very well with a good turnout and as expected was conducted with a musical theme.  During the service a video of the Librettos at a reunion weekend in 1996(?) at the Lower Hutt Town Hall was played with Roger, Rod, Lou Parun and Gordon Jenkins on stage.  Tributes during the ceremony were made by members of the family and New York New York by Frank Sinatra was played as was Amazing Grace.  As the coffin left the Chapel, carried by his brothers and Roger's sons, Mack the Knife by Bobby Darin completed the final goodbye (how very appropriate).  Those seen there included Neil Harrap, Gordon Jenkins, Bill Barrett, Brent Marshall and Dennis Thompson.  Probably would have been other musos and friends that you all knew but not easily recognised.  I'm sure Roger would have been very happy with his farewell. Rest in Peace Roger - Neville Male
I believe somewhere out there in the spiritual world there really exists a Town without Pity where they Call the Wind Maria and if you Didn't have a Dime to Play the Jukebox you could stroll over the Lazy River footbridge with "chunky" Clementine while at all times avoiding any altercation with Mack the Knife ... who's back in town.
I'm sure that Roger's spirit will be right at home alongside the spirits of two other great vocal talents who are already there, and whom Roger very much respected ......... namely ....... Bobby Darin and Gene Pitney - Neville Male
Paul Griffin has created a wonderful tribute to Roger.  <click here to view Paul's tribute *>
My sympathy's go out to Roger's family, cant make it due to work commitments, but my thoughts will be there.  Sadly gone, but we wont forget, another pioneer of the early rock n roll scene , in Wellington, which I was a part of in the early 60's 70's. God bless - Johnny Croot
He was always Sam, to me, we never called him Roger.  Although I didn't see him a lot in later years I shall always remember our times together making music with The Librettos.  Such fond memories of his singing (and our partying!) as teenagers in Wellington, Rotorua and Napier etc. (See my memories page!)  I've always thought of him as Wellington's answer to Bobby Darin.  
We were at Rongotai College together although Sam was a year ahead of me - and a prefect!  We used to go to his house, which was near the school, for a smoke at lunchtime.  We were eventually found out and ordered to stop under threat of expulsion.  
It was so nice to see Lynn & him again in Melbourne recently and relive the past by having a few beers together.  My very best wishes to Lynn and family - Rod Stone
Roger - Your Librettos were one of the first bands that fueled my flame to play music when you played at The Rutherford High School dance many many years ago.  That is still vividly etched in memory & I just want to thank you and acknowledge the fact that you with the other boys were a positive part of my musical Journey - Kevin Borich
Please pass on my deepest condolences.  RIP Roger. - Ray Columbus
Roger "Sam" Simpson was a great guy, one of the old team from the 60's.  We'll all miss him, besides, no-one sang "Mack the Knife" better than Sam! - Neil Harrap
Please pass on my condolences to Roger's family - Dinah Lee
Sorry to hear of Dave Diver, Roger Simpson, two greats in the NZ music industry - Dave Duffell
(click here to email me your tribute to Roger and I'll add it in -

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