Arthur Spring Elections 2024
Miracle Territory April 20th
Severn Court (October-August)
Theatre Trent 2023/24
Arthur News School of Fish
The Mickies performing at the Historic Red Dog. Photo courtesy of The Mickies.

Meet the Locals | So…Who The F*ck are The Mickies? 

Written by
Irene Suvillaga
and
and
December 15, 2022
Meet the Locals | So…Who The F*ck are The Mickies? 
The Mickies performing at the Historic Red Dog. Photo courtesy of The Mickies.

Sex dolls, jagger shots, pogoing crowds, loud music, flying underwear and aroused old ladies. These are some of the things that cross my mind when I look back at some of their shows, and it always puts a smile on my face. 

After only being introduced to the Peterborough music scene a year ago, the Mickies have taken over as the embodiment of the city’s punk rock scene…with a twist. 

Previously described as ‘‘Alice Cooper meets the Headstones with a dash of Ramones” the Peterborough-born rock band doesn’t belong to a specific genre. Staying true to the punk DIY ethos, the rock band also flirts with grunge and hard rock. 

My first experience with the Mickies was during one of their concerts at the Red Dog in 2021. Being a long-time fan of the Sex Pistols, the Misfits, Ramones, the Clash, among many other pioneers of the punk rock movement of the seventies and eighties, I had big expectations. 

And let me tell you, they did not disappoint. 

As I entered the bar’s red dim-lit room, the foggy air was filled with a bittersweet scent of spilt cheap beer, subtle cigarette smoke and an electric feel that seemed to possess me. As the fast-paced, hard-edged melodies rang in my ears, the glorious growl of guitars and the singer’s raspy voice suddenly sparked a sense of unmatched liberation and adrenaline. I was captivated. It was a misfit utopia. Bold. Messy. Iconic. 

I suddenly became immersed in the scene as I was sucked into the mosh pit. My body seemed to lose itself, my mind drifted into complete stillness and body slamming suddenly felt like an intimate form of human contact. I was immediately bewitched by the cathartic, arcane energy of the band in front of me. 

This was something that I have never witnessed before. All I could think at the time was, “This is incredible. You don’t see this anymore. Punk is not dead.”

I had the pleasure of interviewing 27 year-old Adam Tairo, lead-singer and songwriter of the Mickies, as well as 24 year-old James Mitchell, one of the band’s lead guitarists. As I sat with them one night, drinking a cold beer under a clear moonlit night, we talked about their lives and the genesis and evolution of the band.  

Throughout our conversation, amidst their laughs and a couple of friendly punches here and there, I could immediately tell there was an organic chemistry between them. A sense of brotherhood, trust and an equally chaotic, reckless energy remained intact throughout the night. It was the perfect synchronization of professionalism and frivolousness - with a hint of batshit crazy. 

As we began our interview, I asked both band members about their music background and their personal connection to punk and other forms of rock. Both band members expressed intimate memories of their deep connection to the genre and its sub-genres that opened the gates for their passion for music and bold acts. 

“How did you get exposed to punk rock?”

“My older sister. She actually made me a mixtape. And I brought it to school in grade one. And I had the Misfits, Pantera, the Sex Pistols, Ramones, a bunch of other shit that I can’t remember. And it was actually confiscated. And that’s when I knew: this is something cool,” Tairo reminisced. 

“So for myself” Mitchell responded, “I got exposed to punk rock, I guess, also through my older sister, she listened to American Idiot. So just around the time I started playing guitar, I was trying to get into skateboarding too, but barely learned how to ollie and I wiped out… but all the music that came with skateboarding just stuck with me. And from there, I started getting into blues, a lot of blues. And then that kind of, I think, translates a lot into kind of like an amalgamation of like blues and punk rock and rock you know, comes out in songs that we write.” 

“Yeah, we’re not like a straight up punk band, but we're also not like a rock band.” Tairo added, “It is more like rock music with a punk flavor… yeah. And a punk performance to it. We have the classic punk drumming but then also all the nuances of jazz, blues, rock, all other shit.”

Beyond merging the untamed freedom of self-taught musical abilities, and the technical discipline of formal training that give birth to the band’s organic spur of feral guitar riffs, accompanied by soul-stirring drums and hypnotizing bass, amplified by the full-throat, unapologetic singing of self-penned, soulful songs.

The Mickies’ idiosyncrasy is born out of their innate, unflinching and rather theatrical trailblazing live performances. 

Unlike other musicians or bands who remain static on stage, the live experimentation of a Mickies’ show involves half-naked singer Adam Tario spitting beer into the crowd while simultaneously slamming against the other band members or pouring beer over Mitchell during one of his mesmerizing solos. The Mickies are one entity, with no one following or guiding. Rather, they are one wicked and psychotic body that harmoniously deconstructs the rules of theater and classic performance, capturing a long-lost punk tradition of liberating rage, frustration and full-blown insanity.

“My thing is, give people a reason to fucking come back… or never come back!” Tario exclaimed.

Mitchell followed, “yeah. Sounds corny but it's like you are playing tennis with energy. You throw something at them, they throw something back at you. And whether it lands or not, you can keep that ball moving. And it becomes something greater than the sum of its parts.”

“[The band] it's become like, it's become its own animal. Now, when I am going to play a gig I am like ‘oh fuck, its a Mickies gig’ like, ‘I gotta get into the Mickies mindset now.” Tairo continues, “I want people to think I am on drugs. But I don’t do drugs. But I want people to think I am lying about that… But also, I don't want anyone to think that all you gotta do is be crazy. You got to practice first, and get it all down, and then go crazy.” 

From flying merch underwear, to someone’s cowboy hat, to sex dolls and beer, the band provides its audience with a sort of unconventional spiritual experience that allows them to exorcize the monotony and dull formalities out of their daily lives. And they do this by setting the stage in a way where the band and its audience become one big fucking amalgamation of unhinged, hardcore authenticity. 

Peterborough is known to be a predominantly  conservative community. Outside the grid of the city’s downtown lies a rigid social space and a static status quo that excludes any collective constructed notion of unfamiliarity and unorthodoxy. Like many hard and punk rock bands before them, the Mickies were born and have thrived in the margins of its own context, and brought to light the fact that Peterborough needed its own anti-socialite symphony of rebellion, fun and controversy.

“I think if the Mickies are rejecting anything, or I am rejecting at least, personally, is the status quo of the music industry, and of how people present themselves as bands. And you are right, I am also rejecting the idea of a status quo at all. Fuck that. Everyone is welcome to a Mickies show. Except for dicks.” Tairo stated. 

“Or Nazis… or homophobes… or racists.” Mitchell concluded. 

Arthur Spring Elections 2024
Miracle Territory April 20th
Severn Court (October-August)
Theatre Trent 2023/24
Arthur News School of Fish
Written By
Sponsored
Arthur Spring Elections 2024
Miracle Territory April 20th
Severn Court (October-August)
Theatre Trent 2023/24
Arthur News School of Fish

Heading 1

Heading 2

Heading 3

Heading 4

Heading 5
Caption text

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

"Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system."
  • adfasdfa
  • asdfasdfasd
  • asfdasdf
  • asdfasdf

Heading 1

Heading 2

Heading 3

Heading 4

Heading 5
Caption text

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

"Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system."
  • adfasdfa
  • asdfasdfasd
  • asfdasdf
  • asdfasdf