Not to be confused with the modern British artist/producer/DJ with the same name, the Victoria, BC native first got a taste of the rock life while with The Marquis in 1967, which featured Jerry Adophe (later of Chilliwack and Jim Byrnes), Len Knoke, Norm Piercy, and Gary Garraway. They toured BC while playing the popular covers of the day and graduated to the ‘B’ circuit across western Canada until they broke up in ’69.
He struck out on his own, becoming a mainstay on the Vancouver circuit while writing material. He continued on the road across BC and the prairies when he hooked up with manager Howard Leese in ’72. After signing a deal with Columbia Records, they went into the studio with producer Mike Flicker, and the result was IT WOULDN’T HAVE MADE ANY DIFFERENCE, on the shelves in May of ’73.
None of his singles were ever released Stateside, but the title track, backed with “Lovelight Suite,” made a decent impression on the charts at home, cracking the top 40 for a month. Like the title track, “Just One Victory,” was written by Todd Rundgren, but didn’t make it past #65 . A third single was cut, “One More Chance,” backed with “Name of the Game,” which also stalled short of the top 40.
He released his sophomore record, ONE NIGHT LOVERS in early ’76, after the label tested the market with the pre-album release of the title track, written by Paul Davis. It peaked at #35, and was followed by “I Need A Harbor For My Soul,” backed with “I’ll Comfort You,” which entered the charts and exited just as fast. Produced by Bob Gallo, the record followed in its predecessor’s footsteps – light pop with easy production, strong harmonies, and occasional string arrangements.
While record executives were pondering Middleton’s future for him, they re-released “It Wouldn’t Have Made A Difference” on several singles, usually with tracks from the second album backing it. But by late ’76, they opted not to extend the invitation for him to cut a third record. He continued on the local area circuit for a few months, but eventually packed it in.
After all but disappearing from music, Middleton resurrected his old group The Marquis in 1990 for a reunion and fundraiser for a boys’ soccer team, then occasionally crawled out of the basement again off and on for the next few years. He still occasionally makes appearances on the west coast, playing blues and jazz festivals, as well as the occasional club dates. By the mid ’00s he’d all but retired from the music business, and was working with Canada Post.