Wigan star of Peaky Blinders to sing at intimate pub gig

A Wigan actor known for his role in a hit TV gangster drama is taking music fans back to the clubland era with an intimate pub gig.
Landlord Ian Williams, promoter Alan King and staff member Sean DwyerLandlord Ian Williams, promoter Alan King and staff member Sean Dwyer
Landlord Ian Williams, promoter Alan King and staff member Sean Dwyer

Kevin Metcalfe, best known for playing Scudboat in BBC programme Peaky Blinders, will sing some of his favourite tracks at The New Charles Dickens in Swinley later this month.

Other news: Someone has destroyed a Manchester Arena attack memorial tree just days after it was plantedKevin also used to sing under the name JJ Shannon and comes from a family steeped in the Wigan club scene.

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He will offer a nostalgic trip back in time for music enthusiasts though probably not as far as 1919, when the TV show that made his name is set.

Kevin Metcalfe playing Scudboat in Peaky BlindersKevin Metcalfe playing Scudboat in Peaky Blinders
Kevin Metcalfe playing Scudboat in Peaky Blinders

His appearance with a microphone at the Upper Dicconson Street watering hole gets off to a spectacular start a new promotion of retro music evenings called Tribute Night run by Wigan promoter and DJ Alan King.

Alan said: “Kevin was in the original two series of Peaky Blinders but prior to that he sang. He’s a Wigan lad born and bred and his dad used to be a doorman at the old Riverside Club.

“He’s going to sing songs from the actual show and some of his old favourite tunes. He’ll probably mix it up a bit but I haven’t seen his song list yet.

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“He’s a fantastic singer and entertainer and people will have a great time.

“He’s also done actual Peaky Blinders nights down in Birmingham and that area where everybody goes dressed up. If anyone wants to do that in Wigan they’re quite welcome.

“We’re absolutely made up Kevin is coming to sing at The New Charles Dickens, we’re very privileged to have him.”

Kevin became a familiar face on TV screens as a member of the gang at the centre of the lavish historical drama about a criminal group led by their ambitious boss Tommy Shelby.

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His background in Wigan’s clubland is something he shares with promoter Alan, whose father Mike Raymond performed on the town’s stages for decades.

Alan admits he would like to bring back something of that time with Tribute Night, which will happen once a month.

He said: “You used to be able to listen to all different kinds of music in Wigan. Now if you go to King Street they are all chasing the same pound playing exactly the same thing.

“I want to bring back some of that old nostalgia and party atmosphere you used to have.

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“I grew up with my dad rehearsing every Sunday afternoon in the kitchen. As I got older I would travel round with him and help him with the equipment.

“He was singing in clubland for about 45 years and even when he went blind that didn’t stop him. He finished off his career doing the old folks’ homes of an afternoon.

“That’s where I got my love of music and working with live artists from.”

Alan already runs a night at the pub spanning the ‘60s to the ‘80s and was asked to do Tribute Night by owner Ian Williams to complement its other music evenings which include regular Northern Soul events.

Kevin Metcalfe is singing Tribute Night at The New Charles Dickens on Saturday, February 23. To find out more search for the group Charles Dickens Retro nights on Facebook.