Where the entertainers come to be entertained ...

Where entertainers come to be entertained ...

Hi, following requests for another night of musical mayhem, we have acquired the use of The Tavern Pub at The Hallgarth Manor Country House Hotel at Pittington, about 3 mins from the A1(M).

Click for directions

The evenings are held fortnightly on a Tuesday and we kick off at about 8pm, although early arrival is advised as it is already very popular.

We’re looking for all entertainers in Acoustic / Electro acoustic style and we’ll have a PA with mikes, effects and a couple of small acoustic amps. Also there will be bass gear and Uncle Colin as resident backing guitar/synth. It’s a lovely little venue so please come along, strut your stuff, and have a laugh.

Hope to see you there, Regards

Jim Tait

Just a taste of what is in store ....

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Christmas Evening with the Stars (well it was a clear sky)

A special thank you to everyone (and Davy Hodges) who showed up last night at Mayhem at the Manor. What a great night, good music (and plenty of it!) good crack and best of all, that wonderful Hallgarth atmosphere where everybody’s there to have fun with their friends. Our lack of egos and Divas makes it a relaxed place to be and can I hope that you all continue to support this fortnightly bash for as long as we can. Special thanks go out to the Management, who have trusted us with their antique chairs and supplied us with excellent “drinking food” throughout the year. Thanks to Col and Stew for their tireless support and to Alan Prudhoe for his continued presence and the fact that he keeps the Spennymoor Rievers in control. Malcolm the Camera deserves an Oscar for his Videos and cracking ’50s songs and so on. It would be too long-winded to go on mentioning everyone so you all know who you are. Really good to see Alan Leightell with Marie last night, let’s hope they make it a regular visit. Keep your eyes on the website as Mr Prudhoe uploads Mr Rocks’ Videos.

Merry Xmas Everybody and see you all on the 4th January 2011, same place, maybe starting a little earlier if we keep having numbers like last night!


Monday, 29 November 2010

Tuesday 7th December at The Tavern at The Halgarth

Well Hello! Following my successful tour of Quaker Meeting Halls in Bangkok I have returned safely from 84 degrees Fahrenheit to bloody freezin’ and 3 foot o’ snaa.
Firstly, a great big thank you to Big Al Prudhoe for his dedicated efforts to host the nights, albeit hampered by his cold and snotty nose. Al, you’re a star!
I’ve heard certain rumours from participants that Malcolm Rocks never ceased trying to take over the night by not stopping between songs but I will have words with him (when he stops that is).
Please try to get in for the 7th December as we only have that one and the 21st Dec left this year. I’ve been promised Xmas Fayre by the management which will consist of sausage rolls and home fries (they’ll be iced). Let’s have a couple of great nights to go out on (the 21st will be our Xmas Party night so try to get a Xmas number or two together).
Before then, do me a favour and get your bum along, and your friends bums, on Tuesday 7th December at The Hallgarth Manor, Pittington, Nr Durham.
See you all on the 7th !!

Best regards,


Thursday, 25 November 2010

This the life.......

What a great way to relax. It doesn't get any better than this.

Excellent music in the company of good friends and accomplished performers ... and with free pizzas and chips this week - which were outstanding.
Our regulars were all fantastic, as usual, and it was great to welcome Colin and Joy, "Fingers" Eddie and lovely Angie back again.
All captured on video by our singing cameraman - SuperMalc.

Thanks to everyone who took part.
Looking forward to the next one when "The Boss" will be back in charge.

Big Al

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Roll up..... Roll up .....

Music at the Manor once again Tuesday 23 November 2010.
We have scoured Ages People's Homes, Prisons and other assorted hostelries to obtain an unbeatable line-up of entertainment for your delectation - and it is all FREE.

See you there!!

Big Al
(in the absence of Big Jim - who is  still on the run ..... errrr ...I mean away on business)

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Mayhem at the Manor - The Sequel

Hi Everyone,

Looking forward to seeing friends old and new at the next Music at the manor on Tuesday 9th November 2010.

Big Jim is away on business (probably drying out again), but we hope to have the usual mix of top class entertainment and banter.

Everyone is welcome, whether performing or not, but get there early if you want a seat.

Big Al

Friday, 29 October 2010

26th October 2010 - New Faces, Old Faces ...... What a night it was !!

What a great night again ! A super turn-out and great to see our newbie, Andy doing a great little set and arousing the girls in the Smoggy group. We had some great visitors and it was really good to see Leah O’Neal back in our midst. Great girl, great voice, who cares if the key’s right or not, she just gets on with it. Don’t forget we need all your support next night which is the 9th November when I will not be with you all due to circumstances beyond my control but you will be in the extremely capable hands of Alan Prudhoe, who with Col and Stewy will whip you all into shape (with the help of Burgomeister Rocks). Thanks again to all performers.
So have a great night and keep watching the website for YouTube excerpts.Especially you Leah !!
See you soon,

Jim Tait 

Monday, 25 October 2010

Let's do it again .....

Hi everybody, looking forward to seeing everybody tomorrow night at the Hallgarth Manor (26th Oct) Everybody welcome so get in nice and early before the rush!
See you all there.

Jim Tait 

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

'Twas a braw bricht moonlicht nicht ....

Thanks everybody for making last night a real success! How were we to know we were about to entertain 28  passengers from Glasgow’s answer to Coach Trip?
It made it all worthwhile when they told us at the end of the night that they go on a lot of coach trips and that last night had been the best entertainment that they’d ever had!
I must agree, you lot really showed them what we were all about! Really sorry that some of our regulars missed it, it was a different sort of night to say the least.
Try and make the next night which is on Tuesday 26th October, same time, same place and let’s see who we get in this time.
Thanks again to all participants and a special TA ! to Davey Hodges who did an outstanding job, stepping in at the last moment to cover on electric guitar for Colin, who unfortunately , wasn’t a lot better this morning when I called him.
I’ll send out a reminder before the next debacle so hang in there and mark up your diaries for Tuesday 26th October and Music at The Manor.


Sunday, 10 October 2010

Tuesday 12th Oct - Mayhem at The Manor

Good morning everybody and a special invitation to anyone who hasn’t shared a night with us at The Village Tavern, attached to Hallgarth Manor Country House Hotel at Pittington, Co Durham (just off the A690 and follow the signs.) We’re back this Tuesday 12th October in force, so get along and enjoy some real ‘live’ music (no tracks allowed!).
We need singers, instrumentalists and plain old audience-type people to add to our already good numbers so if you know anyone who might like a night of jollity and good music plus free food courtesy of the management, come along this Tuesday when we kick-off about 8pm.
Lokoing forward to seeing you and don’t forget : there are no such things as strangers, only friends that you haven’t had the chance to insult yet.
Thanks to all who attended the charity show at The Cumby Arms on Sat night ! What a great night! Alison and Barbara raised £1040.

Jimbo, Big Al, Stewy, Col, the Davy’s, yodelling Geoff, sensible Jeff, Netty Sneck, Gastric Band + Ange and all connected including the Legend who is Malcolm Rocks and Greg and Mrs Greg
Jim Tait 

Friday, 1 October 2010

I'm back .,.... to let you know I can really shake 'em down ....

Hi everybody, 
Well, I’m back from hols and really enjoyed them but missed the Hallgarth, especially as Big Al said the food was even better than usual! Thanks again to the Management for allowing us to create the best Live Music Venue in the North. Thanks to Paddy MacDee for his mentions on BBC Newcastle and the guys at The Informer for their support. We’re all back on the 12th October for another fun-filled frolic (provided I can find my PA and guitar that is).
Lastly, a huge thankyou to Big Al for doing an outstanding job in covering for me but he’s outstanding anyway!
Let’s keep this going while we’re on top and show the North-East what “Live “ music really means.
See you all on the 12th October.
Please make sure you’ve got your tickets for the Charity Show at Heighington (Cumbie Arms) on the 9th Oct. I am genuinely led to believe that there aren’t many tickets left.

While I’m at it, don’t forget the 30th October at The Zazz Supper Theatre in Houghton-le-Spring . I can guarantee the best night you’ll have for a long time with Rudi West and Mark Allen. The tickets are supposed to be £12 but all friends of the Hallgarth and their friends and relatives are entitled to a special price of £10 (includes your bait!)
We’re really trying to get this venue up and running and it’s a superb venue so give ‘us a hand and come on the 30th!
I’ve attached a flyer so have a gander and ring the box office or just get back to me. (I’m compering!)

Jim Tait 

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Jim is fine.

Sorry if the title of the previous post alarmed anyone.

Jim is alive and well. He is just having a few days well earned holiday in Italy.


PS: We are still prepared to consider cash offers for any of his gear though.

Life without our Jim ....

Hi Everyone

Well we just about managed to get through the evening without our Jim.
One of the good things about the Manor is that every evening is different.The atmosphere this time was quieter and more refined (well it would be wouldn't it, without James) and I could not help noticing that the usual bevy of gorgeous young blondes was absent.
Happily, this was more than made up for by the lovely young brunette who kindly offered to sing in the shower for us.Hope she is there next time when we have had an opportunity to arrange a king-size shower cubicle.
I did get the chance to speak to one or two of the hotel guests, who joined us and thoroughly enjoyed the evening - with very complimentary comments about all of the performers.
The free buffet, if anything, was even better than usual for which thanks must go to the hotel management and staff.

I'm looking forward now to the next one on 14th October 2010 when we will once again be delighted to welcome friends old and new. If you haven't been yet -  try it - You will be happy you did.

Big Al
(standing in for Our Jim)

Friday, 24 September 2010

Roll up... Roll Up .....

Hi Everyone
Next Tuesday 28th September 2010 is another Music at the Manor evening - where entertainers go to be entertained.
I have been asked to take over compere duties,  as Big Jim is currently undergoing rehab at the Priory for Sanatogen and Phyllosan addiction.
But the show must go on. We had hoped to have a erotic speciality double act for you, but apparently the donkey has died, so we will continue with the usual format of showcasing the talents of our own friends and members.
Admission is free and everyone is welcome - whether performing or not.

Anyone requiring backing from our excellent resident orchestra (Stu and Colin) please inform Colin of the songs, keys etc. as soon as possible on c.microclean@freeuk.co.uk

We kick off around 8pm as usual, but I would advise everyone to get there early, as the last few nights have been absolutely chocka.

Really looking forward so seeing you all there.

Big Al

PS: We will be happy to consider cash offers on the night for any of Big Jim's sound equipment, guitars etc.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Mayhem at the Manor

Hi all, another stonking night at TheHallgarth Manor. At this rate we’ll be starting at 7.30 to get everybody in and singing/playing! Nice to see Rudi West and his African Parrot in attendance and Big Sol Walker (might be able to persuade him to get the old accordion out one night!) I’m missing the next music night on the 28th September so Big Al will be taking over the role of compere and insultor. We came to the conclusion that it might be better to do 2 numbers per person (Malcolm take note!) so everybody gets a fair crack. Don’t forget, Tuesday 28thSeptember (Big Al will probably send you a reminder, that’s why I’ve put all the email addresses on the top!)
Have a great night and see you all in a month.

Jim Tait 

Saturday, 11 September 2010

It's that time of the month again ......

Hi, we’re round to Tuesday at The Hallgarth again and next Tuesday the 13th’s the night. It’ll be great to meet up with everybody again for a night of Musical Mayhem, all presented with the minimum of taste. I’ve received an official request by an attendee to have a programme of songs and artistes issued on the night and in reply I’d rather stick pins my eyes to the tune of “Mr Blobby”. Everybody welcome so tell your mates or just bring them.
See y’all Tuesday night.

X (big kiss for D.H.)

Jim Tait 

Friday, 3 September 2010

31st August 2010

Thanks everyone for another superb night last Tuesday the 31st August. It seems we’re attracting more and more couples and loads of young people! I think it’s Col and Alan Prudhoe who are attracting them all. Great comments about the food again but it seems the Yorkshire puds and gravy are still favourites so far. Thanks again to Cecil B. de Rocks for outstanding work on Video and stills production and I’m selling strips of Eddie’s chewing gum to assist you all with your finger pickin’.
Great News, my backing band are coming back to The Lancastrian Suite next May 6th  (Friday) so mark your diaries (when you get them).
Next music night is Tuesday 14th Sep so try to get there. Leah lied again and didn’t show up so I’ve cancelled her work for the next 5 years.

Email for Col, just give him the song title and key:   c.microclean@freeuk.co.uk

Clips to follow on:

Kind regards,

Jim Tait 

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Tuesday Spectacular

Hi everybody, just a reminder about this Tuesday at The Hallgarth (August 31st) Be there or be round! Just back from Isle of Wight (got some new gags)

Jim Tait 

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Standing room only at the Manor .........

Thanks everybody for last Tuesdays at Hallgarth Manor, the music was great and the “crack” was superb. Really good to see some new faces and didn’t they do well !
The food seems to be well sorted now so a big thank you to the management who just let us get on with it. I thought we might suffer a little not having any percussion but it let everybody try stuff from a different point of view. It’ll be good to have Mike and / or Kevin back with us when they can make it. Thanks especially to Angie for adding a touch of glamour to the night and thanks to Dave Hodges for reminding me that money isn’t everything. Seriously, we seem to have a success on our hands so let’s just keep it good friends and go on enjoying it. Don’t forget Big Al’s wonderful websites and Malcolm (not sure how to spell his surname) for his great camera and video work.
See you all on the 31st August, in the meantime, I’m off to the Costa del Isle of Wight for a week with Rita and Geoff and his pardner Evelyn so we’ll be researching local talent at Sandown Royal British Legion and Compatriots of the Great War Social Club and Literary Institute Ltd (actual name!)

Be Happy (and short)

Contact for Colin for backing is   c.microclean@freeuk.co.uk

Click here to go to  Our Channel on You Tube

Goodnight Irene,


Saturday, 14 August 2010

Tuesday 17th August 2010

Hi everybody, well, nearly Music at The Manor Tuesday here again! Next Tuesday 17thAugust sees us back again for a night of music and good humour. For all of you who wanted to let Colin know what you’re doing please try to let him know by emailing your songs and keys to him on c.microclean@freeuk.co.uk or call him on 07977113981.
I’ve had Matt Marriot on email (he was the amazing player who opened for Albert Lee last March, check him out on Youtube) and he’d like to come to one of our “soirees” in Oct or Nov on his way to or from Scotland. I told him he’d be welcome but he’d have to watch out for the Spennymoor and Gateshead Mafia. (you know who you are!).
As you’ll have noticed the Management at the Hallgarth insisted on putting food on and it seemed to go down well when it was split between the performers and local lads and lasses.
Don’t forget to tell your pals and anyone who wants a good night out and don’t forget to check-out the websites.
See you all Tuesday night. Music normally starts about 8pm but just get there when you can.
Hope you enjoyed the Tommy Emmanuel clip. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hU-3_D26mUg
If you’re on hols or going, have a good time.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

You don't know what you are missing ......

Thanks everybody for last night, special thanks to Big Al who’s always there when asked, A real star!!!
Please tell all your pals to come on the next night on Tuesday 17th August. I know it’s hols time but if you’re not away, get yourself to The Tavern at The Hallgarth Manor, Pittington, near Durham.

See you all on Tuesday 17th August  GET IT IN THE DIARY NOW !!

Kind regards,


Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Latest News

Hi Everybody, Great night again on 20th July. We’ll be back at the Tavern at The Hallgarth Manor on Tuesday 3rd August. I’ve asked the Management to knock the sarnies and taties on the head as there was a little frissant with a couple of locals and a member of the staff. I’m sure you’ll agree that we don’t need any of that spoiling a great night. No grub, no bother! Great to see a newbie (Patrick) who’s realised it might be better to do a couple of other people’s songs , then do his own. Remember to email Colin if you want him to put some backing into your renditions and don’t forget to tell him the key! Spennymoor rules again was the cry so let’s have some more from the Northern end of Durham.
See you all on Tuesday 3rd August

Last week at……………………

Jim Tait 

Saturday, 24 July 2010

We now have a group on Facebook ..............

Why not join now and be kept up to date with all the latest news and views at Music at the Manor?

Just click this link:
Music at the Manor on Facebook

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Thanks again ......

....... everybody,performers and audience, for Tuesday Night. That pub was really rockin’! No need to thank individuals except my mate Malcolm Rocks who held his position while all about him were bumping and pushing. The great news is that Big Al Prudhoe, the Terror of Tudhoe (rhymes eh?) is going to produce a web site for us using photos by Malcolm and gossip from anybody! Thanks Alan, you’re a star. The next meeting will be Tuesday 2oth July so get it in the diary now !! Girls, take note, we need you !!

See you soon,

Jim Tait