Yarns are a three-piece indie/folk group from Leicester and
Sheffield who like to sing and sometimes dance to Irish jigs. They
are fronted by Mr. John McManus (guitar, harmonica), with more than
adequate support from Mr. Johnny Young (violin, guitar, bass) and
Mr. Richard White (skins).
met a while ago – 2001 probably – all attending the fine
educational establishment of St. Paul’s Comprehensive School,
Leicester. It was here they learnt to twang instruments in a musical
fashion. 2015 came and
they individually buggered off to the far-flung locations of
Sheffield and Oxford, to read about Charles I and to further
progress in musicalness.
2016, John McManus somehow managed to blag his way onto a flight to
America and spent a year living in Washington D.C. Here he listened
to a ridiculous amount of blues and jazz. Standing in bar after
club, he watched grizzled men and women serve up the hurt and
injustice of centuries into soul-splintering 3 minute slices and
thought, “I wonder if I could do that”?
couldn’t. But he did write lots of things about stuff he could
write about: boring people, Leicester high street, things he
shouldn’t have done, Sir Thomas Wentworth. That sort of stuff.
late 2005 he returned and played his new songs to his musical
compadres. They liked and so John wrote some more and they began to
test the songs on other people in situations known as “gigs”.
Some of these happened at these places:
Princess Charlotte, Leicester (June 06, Oct 06 Supporting New
Mahon Pub, Oxford (April 2006)
Leadmill, Sheffield - supporting the Hazey Janes (May 2006)
Boardwalk, Sheffield (June 2006)
Shed, Leicester (August, October 2006)
well as sundry other cupboards and closets in Leicestershire.
Davies (Chief musical writer at the Leicester Mercury) attended one
of these gigs and had this to say about it: “stream of
consciousness lyrics, Dylan-esque harmonica and violins; rolling
thunder!” (June 2006) Which was nice of him. The Sandman magazine
also labelled our demo as “eminently listenable”, much to our
delight. Leen, on myspace said, “Dear
Yarns, I *heart* your band.”