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(AS) = All seated
(SO) = Standing only
(LS) = Limited Seating
(HH) = Half and half

Please note: irrespective of this if you can't stand and require a chair please ask to go on seating list when you book your tickets with box office. The cashier on the night of the show will have this list and organise a chair for you.

The Robin2 Hotel
THE BOOK -  Keepin' Music Live by Mike Hamblett
Live Recording Available
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A Top UK Music Venue
Classic Rock - Best Prog Venue
The Robin 2
20-28 Mount Pleasant
Bilston
Wolverhampton
WV14 7LJ

TEL: 01902 401211
FAX: 01902 401418

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Windmill Radio - The Prog Mill
Musical Exchanges

Testimonials

Steve Harley...

"The Robin 2 is probably the best all-standing rock venue in the country. Everything works, and a touring musician really only asks for that from a venue and promoter.

Mike Hamblett is a man who loves music as much as he respects the players, and that is a considerable amount. I play the Robin 2 in both my 3-man acoustic set-up and my six to eight-piece rock band. With the stage completely crowded, the energy of the packed room is special. I have many great memories of special nights there."

Steve Harley
www.steveharley.com Right Arrow

Hans, Germany...

"My name is Hans, Im 57 and Im from Germany. Last weekend I came to England to be your guest at the Dames Of Darkness festival.

It was a great idea to visit you, the festival was apsolutly fantastic. Thank you for this great weekend, I think Ill come back next year."

It started suddenly...

"It started suddenly, my interest in music that is. I was at a friend's house and his elder brother just happened to be at the piano. He was playing the George Shearing arrangement of 'East Of The Sun' and I had never heard anything as beautiful before. I was captivated in an instant. It was 1950 I was 14 years old, and bop (modern jazz) was slowly filtering its way across to us from The States. It was very much the 'new' music and little did I realise at the time that my interest in the genre generated that day would last a lifetime. It was so different from anything that had gone before. All I knew was that it suited me just fine. At that time there was a Musician's Union ban on American musicians playing in the U.K. But thankfully the ban was lifted during the decade and we were able to see all the artists in person, whose records we eagerly collected.

But for another defining moment in my life I would never have become aware of Mike Hamblett and The Robin. We were on holiday in Portsmouth and, as usual, I checked the local paper to see if there was any music going on in the area. I noticed a blues band advertised at a pub just up the coast. They turned out to be a Chicago-type blues quartet who concentrated on hard-hitting rocking rhythm and blues and they converted us both before the night was over. 'Let's see if we can find anything like that when we get home' my wife said. Well, we could and did.

I saw a blues band advertised at a pub in West Bromwich and we decided to go. I'm so glad we did, we struck lucky at the first attempt. We had started at the top British blues didn't get better than this. The band, from Edinburgh, was called Blues'n'Trouble. We would get to know them well and see them all over the British Isles for many years to come. Their gigs in Glasgow and Edinburgh were particularly memorable, they were idolised up there. We saw them often, all over the .U.K. for many years and became good friends.

So, now that my taste had widened slightly I took an interest in what was happening at The Robin. They booked tributes. rock and blues artists and ,with our new-found interest in the latter we started to go. It was a good, mid-sized venue, well run and patronised by locals and from farther afield
The Hamsters, a trio from Southend , were the first group we saw there. They specialised in music by Z.Z.Top and Jimi Hendrix and have a good following. We enjoyed their gigs very much.

Frank White one of the leading lights of the Sheffield blues scene was another top-class artist we appreciated very much indeed. And Luther Allison, a world-class artist gave us one of the best nights ever. The place was packed to capacity and I'm sure that most would agree that it was truly exceptional. A friend had loaned me a tape of one of Johnny Halliday's concerts where Luther guested on guitar. I wanted to ask him what it was like playing with the French icon. 'It was unbelievable' he said, 'I've never played in front of 100,000 people before!' Halliday was so huge in France he only did stadia.

Then there was the inimitable, ebullient Connie Lush, Liverpool's finest. Consistently voted top Female Blues Vocalist by readers of 'Blueprint' blues magazine, Connie and her band Blues Shouter (husband Terry on bass ) never fail to deliver. Good humoured, good natured and great blues make for a most enjoyable night out. They have to be one of the best groups on the circuit and we went whenever they were around. If you could imagine a cross between Mae West and Janis Joplin you would be close.
We were very happy that Mike booked F.B.I We had been seeing them often at Great Bridge where they had a residency. Our attention was attracted by their inclusion of Blues'n'Trouble originals in their repertoire. They were big fans of the band, especially Les Woodcock their frontman.

Easily our favourite local blues band, their emphasis was much on mid and up-tempo rhythm and blues. In a nationwide Blues competition organised by Bank's Brewery they were only one of four bands who reached the final at The Civic, Wolverhampton.

Can't fail to mention Big George and The Business , what a character he was. We had met George at a Blues'n'Trouble gig at King Tut's in Glasgow. He was so friendly, he even came round our hotel early the following morning to give me one of the band's cassettes. He had written his phone number on the sleeve 'you can stay with me when you are next in Glasgow' he said.

I wanted to greet him so I was at The Robin when they arrived .in the afternoon. George was slung over the shoulder of a band member. He was totally in a drunken stupor. He in was carried into the dressing room and deposited on a settee where he stayed until show time. Sound check. What sound check? They are a tight little group who cover most of the aspects of the blues and George has such a personality he communicates easily with his audience. An outstanding gig.

Dana Gillespie was another class act we saw. But it was one of the few occasions the Robin was unaccountably poorly attended. Dana has been at the top for many years, and had frequently been voted best female blues singer until the advent of Connie Lush. She is more experienced than most with over 60 albums released to date.

The most famous group I ever saw at The Robin was The Fabulous Thunderbirds, a hard-hitting blues/rock group from Texas. Fronted by Kim Wilson on vocals and harp on which he must be one of the best in the world. He really is phenomenal.- I've never seen anyone else in the same league.

I couldn't possibly forget Dr.Feelgood, the closest rivals in our affections to Blues'n'Trouble Unfortunately I only saw them with the great Lee Brilleaux once, but they have had a few successors, all of whom did a fine job, especially the current front man Robert Kane. I just love every one of their concerts Almost exclusively up tempo, they know how to 'rock the joint'and 'Down At The Doctor's', 'Back In The Night' and 'Milk And Alcohol' have remained firm favourites with Feelgood devotees. Rarely missed any of their gigs, after all these years the magic still works.

We were delighted when Mike booked Blues 'n' Trouble in 1992. All the members of F.B.I. were there and the place was packed. The dance floor was full all night just the way leader Tim Elliott loved it to be. 'Come on down and boogie' Tim would say. With such danceable band originals as 'Clock On The Wall', 'C.T.', 'Long Gone Man', 'Natural Born Lover', 'Honey Pot' and 'Tight And Juicy' it wasn't difficult to comply with his invitation. Paul Jones wrote in his liner notes for a B.B.C compilation cassette that 'Tim Elliott is the best blues singer we have produced'. They guested on his Radio 2 show a number of times.

I am so thankful that we heard them all those years ago at West Bromwich that turned us on to the blues."
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