North East rock fans are in for a rare treat this week when not one, but TWO of the founding members of blues rock legends Free take to the stage in the region.

First up is frontman Paul Rodgers with the Teessider playing to a sell-out Newcastle Metro Radio Arena crowd on Tuesday in his role as Queen’s new vocalist.

But of even greater interest is an appearance by former Free and Bad Company drummer Simon Kirke – at the legendary Durham City venue that spawned smash hit All Right Now.

Kirke will team up with local tribute band Freeway at Dunhelm House this Friday – a gig sure to bring back memories for the super cool sticksman.

“Free were huge in the North East before we made it big nationally,” he said. “The fans there loved us but at that particular Dunelm gig we were a bit flat. We left the stage to the sound of our own feet and we didn’t like that. The fans would normally be screaming for more. We decided there and then we needed an up-tempo song to put that right.

“And so it was that backstage, that night, Andy Fraser our bass player and singer Paul put together All Right Now. Andy soon had the riffs worked out and Paul came up with the words. That song changed our lives.”

Kirke will be playing his own set with former Foreigner guitarist Larry Oakes, including new songs and classics from the Free and Bad Company back catalogues before joining Freeway who will be playing a full electric set.

“Anyone who saw Simon when he first played with us last year on several dates will know what a great night is in store,” said the band’s lead guitarist John Buckton. “It means so much to us as Free fans to have him join us and give us his stamp of approval. It is just brilliant to have him join us on stage to play some of his own favourite Free songs.”

Tickets for Dunelm House are available at £14 ONLY from or phone 07704 154442.

Kirke and Freeway are also playing the following UK November dates:

Sunday 9th, The M Club, Crewe, Tel: 01270 216 785 ;
Monday 10th The Irish Centre, Leeds, Tel:0113 248 0887; Tuesday, 11th The Stables, Milton Keynes,
Tel: 01908 280800; Thursday, 13th The Marine Hall,
Fleetwood, Tel: 01253 77 11 41; Friday 14th Rudiblues,
Rotherham, Tel: 01709 37 88 53 ; Sunday 16th, Inn at
Lathones, Fife, Tel: 01334 840 494