The band was formed in 1985 in Newcastle upon Tyne long before the term tribute band was invented, and named themselves ''After Midnight'' after Eric Clapton's first solo hit. Their ability to re-create Clapton's electrifying stage performances really caught the audience's imagination. 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!
In 1999, Mike won a national look-alike competition held at Madam Tussauds in London. Mike has met Slowhand twice, and even received a message of encouragement from the guitar maestro (written on a Concorde menu).
TYNE TEES TELEVISION were so impressed, they made a programme about them, called 'COVER THEIR TRACKS'. They filmed the band's concert at Newcastle Opera House in front of 600 ecstatic fans. It was shown in August 2000 and received rave reviews, leading to national recognition.
In 2001 they embarked on an extensive tour of UK Theatres. They called the tribute show "CLASSIC CLAPTON". Since then, they have continued to perform throughout the UK and Europe 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 and Holland.
In July 2009 they appeared at St Andrews Auditorium in Mumbai. This was a great concert - it sold out and apparently many people were turned away. There were quite a few Bollywood stars & celebrities in the audience. A 10,000 mile round-trip for 1 concert, but it was a great experience.
In the past 25 years CLASSIC CLAPTON have become something of a rock institution.
The band has released three albums. Firstly THE MUSIC OF ERIC CLAPTON contains brilliant cover-versions of 17 Clapton Classics. Their second album is a live double CD ''CLASSIC CLAPTON Unplugged'' recorded at Belfast Waterfront Hall. In 2005 they released their third album CLASSIC CREAM featuring 20 songs by the sixties supergroup.
CLASSIC CLAPTON comprises 4 excellent musicians:- Mike Hall (lead vocals/guitar), Jim Dobson (drums) and John Forster (bass guitar/backing vocals). John played in a band with John Miles when they were both up & coming musicians. On keyboards/backing vocals is Paul Warren. Paul is an experienced and talented jazz musician.
Eric Clapton has been a major international star since the mid 1960 s, when he revolutionised electric guitar playing with virtuoso performances in John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. He has won an incredible 19 Grammies and is the only triple inductee into The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame (as a member of both The Yardbirds and Cream and also as a solo artist).
Eric Clapton's recent tours unfortunately have visited only a limited numb