Sheffield retro: 9 nostalgic photos reliving the glory days of Peter Stringfellow's King Mojo club
Ike & Tina Turner, Stevie Wonder, The Who, Small Faces, Pink Floyd and Jimi Hendrix were among the artists who performed there, writes Neil Anderson, author of ‘Dirty Stop Out’s Guide to 1960s Sheffield’
He might have left Sheffield in 1969, but his enthusiasm for the years that preceded it stayed with him for the rest of his life.
I had the privilege of getting to know Peter Stringfellow following the numerous interviews I did with him. Despite his advancing years, talking about life in the sixties made him light up with the enthusiasm of a teenager.
His Sheffield legacy is assured, and anyone who attended his King Mojo club can attest to that. Mention it to them, and they'll regularly become giddy with excitement as they reminisce.
This venue, on the face of it, didn't sound as though it had the making of a world-beating, late night rock'n'roll club. It:
* only served soft drinks
* had members as young as 13 (it was described as a 'teenage club')
* was based in suburban Burngreave/Pitsmoor (rarely referred to as an entertainment Mecca)
* only lasted three years
* had a big picture of the Queen hanging in the reception (the landlord was insistent that it stayed).
Yet, King Mojo remains one of Sheffield's most famous and coolest venues, an image that transcends generations.
In fact, its legacy seems to grow with time. The artists who performed there read like a virtual who's who of cool – Ike & Tina Turner, Stevie Wonder, The Who, Small Faces, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix... the list goes on and on. People traveled from across the north of England to be there; one chap even walked from Mansfield every single week!
The interviews I conducted with Peter Stringfellow, scores of King Mojo-goers, and people who frequented venues across the city during the decade ended up in the 10th-anniversary edition of my 'Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1960s Sheffield'.
I was thrilled that so many people shared their memories and photos from a decade that held so much significance for anyone entering their teenage years and beyond.
From the teenage clubs (including the renowned Esquire) to the numerous coffee bars, the rise of cabaret (think Cavendish on Bank Street), and other venues like the Locarno, Heart Beat, and Penthouse (Peter and Geoff Stringfellow's last venue in Sheffield).
I've been truly thrilled by the reaction to the book.