CLASSIC CLAPTON, the world's No1 Eric Clapton tribute band featuring front man Mike Hall, are to perform two shows in the North-East.

They will perform all of EC's classic songs, including Wonderful Tonight, Tears in Heaven, Crossroads, I Shot The Sheriff, Lay Down Sally, Cocaine and of course Layla! There will even be an unplugged segment.

The band was formed in Newcastle in 1985 long before the term “tribute band” was invented and named themselves ''After Midnight'' after Clapton’s first solo hit.

Loading article content

In the past 32 years, After Midnight have since become one of the best-loved bands on Tyneside. In guitar/vocalist Mike Hall, the band possesses a front man who not only looks like Eric, he sings and plays guitar like him too! Mike has met Slowhand twice, and received a message of encouragement from the guitar maestro (written on a Concorde menu).

In 2001 they embarked on their first extensive tour of UK Theatres. They called the tribute show Classic Clapton. Since then, they have continued to perform throughout the UK & Ireland including concerts at The Royal Festival Hall, London and a triumphant appearance at Glastonbury Festival in 2002. In the past few years they have performed numerous concerts in Europe including Spain, Estonia, Holland and France.

In 2009 they appeared for the first time in Mumbai. A 10,000 mile round-trip for one gig but it was a great experience. They were invited back for 3 more concerts in India in January 2016. This included performing in front of 3,500 people in an open air sports arena in Mumbai. On March 18, this year, they appeared in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

As well as Durham-born Hall, the band comprises Paul Warren (keyboards/ backing vocals), Danny Davison (drums) and Dave Robson (bass guitar /backing vocals). Dave is a former member of chart band Geordie. In fact he was with them at the time Brian Johnson left to join AC/DC. Mike, Dave & Danny are all original members of Classic Clapton. Paul joined in 2007. Paul is from Darlington and Danny & Dave are from Newcastle.

* Whitley Bay Playhouse, Friday, April 21, 7.30pm. Tickets £15 on 0844 248 1588, on-line at www.playhousewhitleybay.co.uk and from Ticketmaster.

* Redcar Blues Club, Redcar Citizens Priory Club, 104 Lord St, Redcar, Saturday, April 29. Doors open at 7.30pm. Band on stage at 8.30pm. Tickets £12.50. Call Geoff Taylor Tel: 07956 812706 or www.redcarbluesclub.com

www.classic-clapton.com