Harpenden Public Halls – Feb. to June 2017 Programme


We have some great live performance and welcome the return of Chantel McGregor, one of the rising stars of the blues-rock scene, as well as stalwart Paul Lamb & The King Snakes. 80’s icon Howard Jones presents an intimate evening of song and story-telling, and we also have the world’s best tribute to David Bowie; his remarkable catalogue is covered in this spectacular two hour show. We are also presenting a rare performance by the Grimethorpe Colliery Band, whose story was immortalised in the film Brassed Off.

Grimethorpe Colliery Band
Sunday 19 February, 3.00pm SOLD OUT
Tickets £20.00
Formed in 1917, during the First World War, Grimethorpe Colliery Band is a British institution. National and British Open Champions on numerous occasions, the band’s contest successes remain legendary. These include 16 Brass In Concert Championship titles, 11 times Yorkshire Regional Champions, two English National Championship victories, four times British Open Champions and four times National Champion Brass Band of Great Britain. Grimethorpe’s diverse noted concert performances include those at the FIFA World Cup, BAFTA Awards, BBC Proms, Eurovision and London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony, together with a wealth of national and international television / radio appearances and professional recordings. The band has been the recipient of two gold discs, as well as a BAFTA nomination for its contributions to the global hit movie “Brassed Off” for which Grimethorpe was the focal point.

Danny Baker ‘Cradle to the Stage’
Friday 24 February, 7.30pm SOLD OUT
Tickets £20.00
“The stage has always been my first love. Let me put that another way. I have never done anything like this before in my life. However, to travel from town to town addressing a fabulous gathering of like-minded chums each night seems to me exactly what Shakespeare would have done had not the hefty rent at The Globe kept him in London. As a consequence, William Shakespeare toured about as frequently as Kate Bush. Well not me. I own very few theatres anymore and so I am now totally free to charge about here and there wowing the folks with my anecdotal back catalogue, games involving sausages and impressive six octave range. No two nights of this extravaganza will be the same. This is less of a boast than admission that a) I am hopeless at learning scripts and b) I still have no idea what I am going to include. Perhaps you can help? If you’ve read my books, watched the series based on them or, indeed, ever caught anything I have presented on television/radio then maybe you might contribute to the feast of reason and flow of the soul that I guarantee these evenings will contain. Questions like, “Did your friend really eat saveloys from a pith helmet” or “What was meeting John Lennon/Michael Jackson/David Bowie/Kenneth Williams like?” or, I suspect, most popular of all “How comes you’ve made so many rotten TV programs, Dan?”

Paul Lamb & The King Snakes
Wednesday 8 March, 7.30pm
Tickets £15.00
Paul Lamb and The King Snakes are today acknowledged globally as being amongst the very finest purveyors of Rhythm & Blues. Mixing traditional blues, R&B and roots-rock with a unique British perspective the band has come up with an original and invigorating sound that plays particularly well on stage, and are often heralded as one of the few remaining true blues acts that can be witnessed.

Howard Jones
Friday 10 March, 7.30pm SOLD OUT
Tickets £23.00
An intimate evening of songs and stories with Howard Jones.
It was in 1983 that Howard Jones first burst upon the contemporary music scene with his very English song-writing, pioneering synthesizers and thought provoking lyrics. He set out his manifesto in his very first single ‘New Song’. The lyrics called on the listener to challenge their preconceived ideas, to see both sides and “throw off your mental chains.”

‘New Song’ was recently used in a pivotal scene in Breaking Bad where Aaron Paul’s character Jessie Pinkman questions if he wants to “play by the rules.” ‘New Song’ peaked at number 3 in the UK singles charts. Along with ‘New Song’, The first two albums, Humans Lib and Dream into Action, brought Howard a host of hits including ‘Things Can Only Get Better’, ‘What is Love?’, ‘Pearl In The Shell’, ‘Like to Get To Know You Well’, ‘Hide And Seek’ (performed at Live Aid), ‘Look Mama’ and ‘No One Is To Blame’, which reached No.1 in the US. Howard has sold over 8 million albums across the globe and is one of a select group of British artists who have comprehensively broken America. Howard Jones solo shows are an intimate trip through Howard’s 30 year music career. Many of his best known songs were composed on his favourite instrument; the piano. Howard shares behind the scenes stories and reveals the inspiration behind the songs in these rare acoustic shows.

Oye Santana
Saturday 11 March, 7.30pm
Tickets £16.00 (standing only)
Oye Santana presents four decades’ worth of hits from ‘Black Magic Woman’ and ‘Oye Como Va’ via ‘Carnaval’, ‘Dance Sister Dance’ and ‘She’s Not There’ to ‘Smooth’, ‘Maria Maria’ and ‘Corazón Espinado’ – played with power, passion and perfection. Prepare yourself for guitar wizardry, keyboard mastery, astonishing vocals and powerhouse brass, and a rhythm section with more groove than you could shake a pair of maracas at. You’ll be open mouthed, we promise. But there’s more to Oye Santana than that. Every date we play is a show and every track is a fiesta – come and listen, come and dance, come and party.

Absolute Bowie
Friday 24 March, 7.30pm
Tickets £18.50 (standing only)
Celebrating the life and music of David Bowie.
There will only ever be one David Bowie, he was unique in every way and an inspiration to millions. Absolute Bowie, Europe’s Finest David Bowie Tribute continue to celebrate the life and music of the Starman with a spectacular show uniting Bowie fans across the UK.
The five piece has toured all over Europe for the last 8 years, faithfully performing the music of David Bowie with uncanny accuracy. The audience are taken on a journey experiencing the different personas of Bowie, from Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Sane through to The Thin White Duke and the late 80’s. “Absolutely wicked. As one who was there, watching AB put me back there again. For anyone who missed it or fans who want to relive it I definitely recommend it. As close to the real thing that you’ll get. Enjoy.” – Woody Woodmansey (Spiders from Mars)
Absolute Bowie has been voted one of the best tribute bands in the UK with their energetic (and theatrical!) stage show. Prepare to be taken from A to Z (Absolute Beginners to Ziggy!) with Stations to Station in between.

Rory Bremner ‘Partly Political’
Friday 21 April, 7.30pm SOLD OUT
Tickets £19.50
Britain’s best-known satirical impressionist is back! With Trump, Boris and Brexit fresh in the memory, Rory’s on a mission to make sense (and nonsense) of it all. (Good luck with THAT.) He will be joined by special surprise guests: some politicians, some comedians. Come and work out which is which!
Best known for the political satire show Bremner, Bird and Fortune which was, for nearly twenty years a mainstay of Channel 4’s comedy output Rory’s also won back-to-back BAFTAs for Britain’s Top Comedy Performances, three Royal Television Society and two British Comedy Awards. He’s guested on many of Britain’s top comedy shows on radio and TV, including Spitting Image, Whose Line is it Anyway, Have I Got News for You, Mock the Week, The News Quiz, The Now Show, and QI.

The Red Hot Chilli Pipers
Friday 28 April, 7.30pm
Tickets £22.50 (standing only)
The Red Hot Chilli Pipers are a genuinely unique experience – a fusion of
traditional pipe tunes and contemporary anthems – tracks include the likes of
‘Clocks’ by Coldplay, ‘Chasing Cars’ by Snow Patrol, ‘Let Me Entertain You’ by
Robbie Williams, Queen’s ‘We Will Rock You’, a rock medley of Deep Purple’s
‘Smoke On The Water’ and AC/DC’s ‘Thunderstruck’. Plus, ‘Flower of Scotland’,
‘Amazing Grace’ and ‘The Hills of Argyll’ get a look in too, Chilli style of course!

King King
Friday 19 May, 7.30pm
Tickets £20.00 (standing only)
Having scored three radio hit singles on Planet Rock with the songs Crazy, Hurricane, and most recently, Rush Hour, King King received a nomination for Best New Band at the 2015 Classic Rock Awards. King King followed up with an UK arena tour supporting Thunder.
They are a multi-award winning rock/blues band with a back catalogue to die for. King King are a wonderfully talented bunch, with a reputation for a chemistry that lies, not only between band members, but also between band and audience. They work the audience like stadium pros, yet there is also an intimacy and genuineness to their performance that makes the whole crowd feel part of the show.
King King are no ordinary band. What makes them way above average is the powerhouse rhythm section of Wayne Proctor on drums and Lindsay Coulson on bass, coupled with the dazzling fingers of Bob Fridzema on keyboards. This band underscores Alan Nimmo, a virtuoso frontman possessed of an almost impolite level of charisma and the talent to back it up. Nimmo’s full-blooded style, technical brilliance and impassioned vocals are infectious and instantly recognizable. There’s no smoke and mirrors behind this groups rise: just killer songs, performed with true passion, by a fist-tight line-up.

Colour of Noise + support
Thursday 1 June, 7.30pm
Tickets: £12.00 (standing only)
Colour of Noise are a Brighton-based band that have a passion for cranked-to-the-max, vintage-influenced sound, delivered with skill and abandon (especially in live performance) that is steeped in the tradition of the late 60’s British blues boom and early 70’s stadium rock. CoN’s founder, guitarist Bruce John Dickinson played in the charting hard rock band Little Angels between 1988-1994. CoN’s current line-up reunites Bruce John Dickinson with fellow Little Angel Mark Richardson (also of Feeder and Skunk Anansie) on drums. In 2016, the band played Download, Steel House, Ramblin’ Man, Wildfire (where they headlined), Hard Rock Hell, Stone Free, and Cambridge Rocks. They also supported Thunder, Dead Daisies, and Toseland. 2017 sees the band performing Ramblin’ Man and Camden Rocks as well as their own headline shows.
The Alter Eagles
Friday 23 June, 7.30pm
Tickets: £18.50
The Alter Eagles are an experienced, authentic Eagles tribute band. Formed in 2003, they perform the whole repertoire of Eagles tracks, from tasteful country rock – complete with full harmonies – through to hard rocking numbers, showcasing the Eagles’ trademark duelling electric guitars. The current set comprises material from 35 years of Eagles’ performances, up to and including 2007’s Long Road Out Of Eden.
Lauded for their accuracy, the Alter Eagles are a tribute to the Eagles, pure and simple and in a typical two hour set play many of the band’s greatest hits, including ‘Hotel California’, ‘Desperado’, ‘Life In The Fast Lane’, ‘How Long’, ‘Lyin’ Eyes’, ‘Take It Easy’ and ‘One Of These Nights’.

The Kilkennys
Saturday 1 July, 7.30pm
Tickets £16.00
If you haven’t heard of The Kilkennys yet then you are in for a pleasant surprise. Not only can these young balladeers sing but they are incredible musicians and performers and have been credited with keeping Irish folk music and ballads alive.
Over the past decade The Kilkennys have emerged from the traditional settings of the Irish pub scene as a group of musicians with the ability to reinvigorate traditional Irish music and ballads and take them to a new generation. From the humble beginnings of a bunch of young school friends bonded by their love of Irish music, The Kilkennys have toured the length and breadth of Ireland gaining recognition as one of the country’s hardest working bands. In recent years the band has conquered tour circuits all over Europe and have picked up the mantle left by acts such as The Dubliners and The Clancy Brothers.
Having shared the stage with world renowned Irish artists like Shane McGowan, Sharon Shannon and Finbar Furey and after countless performances to Irish communities all over the world, The Kilkennys have taken their music to an international stage and have become synonymous with modern Irish music.
They have successfully re-introduced Irish folk and ballads to a young audience while also winning the hearts of the more seasoned traditional music lovers.

Sons of Pitches
Thursday 6 July, 7.30pm
Tickets £25.00
The Sons of Pitches will be hitting the road again in 2017 with a brand-new specially themed touring show. It will have a unique, never-before seen flavour all of its own!
Following on from the incredible successes of their two 2016 tours, where they wowed over 40,000 very satisfied fans, they will be bringing their “SOPTV Show” in what will be their biggest ever UK tour. So settle down in front of SOPTV and enjoy what should be a great evening’s viewing.
The SOPTV tour will explore the highly entertaining world of television, through The Sons’ own inimitable style and vocal delivery. It’s a show that will entertain and amuse from start to finish. They will be bringing a complete televisual experience to the stage.
Come celebrate the world of TV in an A Cappella adventure from terrestrial to digital, from tacky to wacky, in full HD. Expect performances of your favourite TV Themes, sketches about panel shows, quiz shows and talent competitions, and more… all using the human voice. What will Midé cook up on our Masterchef beatbox edition? Will Joe Novelli receive four 10s for his Strictly Come Dancing performance?
The boys will even be handing the remote control over to the audience for the group’s trademark improvisation.
This will be the group’s first conceptual show since their smash 2014 Edinburgh Fringe hit ‘Boiler Alert’, which tackled the subject of film.
The Sons of Pitches will be releasing their all-new original album in 2017. This will be the first time you will be able to hear these songs live.

The Simon & Garfunkel Story
Friday 8 September, 7.30pm
Tickets £18.00
The Simon and Garfunkel Story’ tells the fascinating tale of how two young boys from Queens, New York went on to become the world’s most successful music duo of all time. Starting from their humble beginnings as 50’s Rock n Roll duo ‘Tom & Jerry’, ‘The Simon and Garfunkel Story’ takes you through all the songs and stories that shaped them, the dramatic split, their individual solo careers and ending with a stunning recreation of the legendary 1981 Central Park reunion concert. Starring Dean Elliott, leading actor from West End, Olivier award nominated musical ‘Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story, as Paul Simon, this Simon and Garfunkel tribute show also features a full cast of talented Actor / Musicians all taking you on a moving and powerful musical journey. Featuring all the hits including ‘Mrs Robinson’, ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’, ‘Homeward Bound’, ‘Scarborough Fair’, ‘The Boxer’, ‘The Sound Of Silence’ and many more, this is a show not to be missed!

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I have been a St. Albans resident for 25 years and run a local business, Verulam Web Design, who created and maintain stalbanslife. I originally moved up this way in 1987 to start a Ph. D. at the then Hatfield Polytechnic and have worked in London or locally ever since. I have 2 children who went to local schools and seemingly a deep need to live in a Roman town. Currently performing as Tom Petty in the tribute band Petty Criminals (https://pettycriminals.com) and in the American classic rock show Take It Easy (https://takeiteasyuk.com).