The barn rock phenomenon

Jeff Warwick, Jamie Williams, Warren Digney and Andy Warwick
Jeff Warwick, Jamie Williams, Warren Digney and Andy Warwick

You’ve heard of barn dances before – but have you ever heard of barn rock?

A new four-piece Leyland band is taking the barn dance scene in Chorley by storm with its unique twist on the favourite classics.

Madden’s No.1 is made up of Jeff Warick, 55, his son Andrew, 26, his mate Warren Digney, also 26, and pal Jamie Williams, 50.

Named after an illegal prohibition era beer, Madden’s No.1 specialises in Ceilidhs, Hoe-Downs and Barn Dances.

Lead melodeon player Jeff describes the band as ‘bringing together the Jazz-fusion influences of guitarist Jamie, the progressive rock style of bass player Andy, and the metronome beat of drum virtuoso, Warren.’

The group came together about a year ago, but only started taking on work earlier this year, and are already a massive hit in places such as Rivington Barn.

Jeff, who works as a graphic designer and teacher at Preston Prison, along with Jamie, said: “I used to play for the Old Pequliar Band but decided to leave to concentrate on Madden’s No1, and it’s going extremely well.

“My son Andrew had always been more interested in rock, so we just decided to see how it went to bring the two together, and now we have more of a ‘barn rock’ sound.

“I play the melodeon through an amplifier.

“We play the normal dance tunes which people will be familiar with, but we rock them up a bit.”

Jeff played with his last band for 33 years, so knows the circuit well, and is pleased that son Andrew has taken to the style ‘like a duck to water’.

“I think people expect this type of thing to mainly attract older people,” he said.

“But it’s really not like that.

“Andrew and Warren are in their 20s – they have been playing together since they were kids – and Warren used to fill in for people for the Old Pequliar Band too.

“Andrew works at Currys and Warren is a supermarket manager, but they enjoy doing this in their spare time.

“We rehearse once a week.”

Now, the group is looking for someone in the local community to do impressions of a whispering Bob Harris to introduce the band at dances.

Contact Jeff on 01772 434461 to book the band for an event, or to get involved on the Bob Harris front.