Club Review by The Teesdale Mercury

Mickleton goes live with music club revamp Teesdale’s top live music club has marked 15 years of gigs with a new name. Mickleton RnB Club has been re-branded as Mickleton Live to reflect the variety of music genres it presents now. The club was founded 15 years ago by Steve and Sue Brown with John Carrington and Judy Caplin who all live in the village but were frustrated by the distances they and others had to travel to enjoy good live music. Since then the club has brought world-class singers and musicians to Teesdale with performances that have drawn lovers of live music from across the North-East and much further afield – including some from overseas.

The first band on stage at the club was Darlington’s East Side Torpedoes – now the Smoking Spitfires – and since then, some performers who have played Mickleton Village Hall have gone on to global renown. Imelda May entertained audiences several times as support singer to Mike Sanchez, himself an internationally celebrated singer/musician.

Organiser Sue Brown said: “It was very challenging and exciting when we launched Mickleton Rhythm ‘n’ Blues 15 years ago. “Since then we have been able to host some wonderful singers and musicians.
“We believe that the name Mickleton Live now better represents the range of music we present because it is not focused solely on rhythm and blues. We embrace rock, jazz, folk, swing and other popular genres.” She added: “We are conscious that people’s tastes are broader and change. We believe some potential lovers of live music may get the wrong impression from the current RnB label, so they won’t know the range of what we present. “I think the audience has changed over the years. We used to get a lot of people coming across from Darlington and other clubs have come about because of Mickleton and what we do here. “Because of that, it means these people don’t come back here and so our music has changed. “We get some people who have come to virtually everything we have put on, while the village tends to like the off-the-wall and more raucous type events, such as Urban Voodoo Machine,” she said.

The village hall features a state-of-the-art sound system, full bar and pie and peas suppers. New for this season is the pay-on-line facility for tickets. Ms Brown added: “The professionals highly rate our venue and the name of Mickleton emerges when the stars chat together in dressing rooms around the globe.” The club is run by volunteers and all proceeds from tickets sales and the bar are re-invested in the village hall.

Ticket Master
Sue Brown, Old School House, Mickleton, Barnard Castle, Co Durham. DL12 0LQ Telephone: 01833 640854