A BACK garden in Bacup might not be the most obvious birthplace for one of East Lancashire’s most popular bands, but lovers of quality soul music have every reason to be grateful for a family party in the Rossendale Valley.

From that informal gathering about six years ago, the SoulTrain was born and now the nine-piece outfit play to packed houses bringing their own original brand of Northern Soul, Motown and Stax classics.

The SoulTrain’s next destination is Darwen’s Library Theatre tomorrow.

“I suppose it was just a strange quirk of fate that brought the band together,” said guitarist Steve Lindley. “I went to a party as a guest. I’d been in a band before with one of the other guests Lee Howson, some of the family started to play a few numbers just for fun, we joined in and from there the idea of the band was born.

“Lee was fed up with seeing supposed soul bands which were just cabaret outfits and it developed from there.”

For the first couple of years The SoulTrain was purely a rehearsal band before finally appearing live at a charity event in Rawtenstall.

Since then the band has undergone a couple of line-up changes but for the past two years the nine-piece – including the Union Pacific Horns – have gone from strength the strength.

“There is a wide age range within the band,” said Steve, “and we all have to juggle the band around things like wives, families and work, so it’s all about striking the right balance.

“I think we have got that now as we don’t want to push things too far so that people get disillusioned.”

The SoulTrain line-up is: Paul Stuart Davies on vocals; Steve Derbyshire on baritone sax; Tec Etchels keyboards; Lee Howson, trumpet); Steve Lindley on guitar; Anrdew Procter on saxaphones, bassist Gary Ward; Rod Wilsonon trumpet and drummer Dan Connolly.

The SoulTrain pride themselves on their authenticity, from their bespoke suits to the choice of music.

They play a number of classic Stax songs with the brass parts all painstakingly transcribed to match the original sounds.

Recently the band have also started to introduce Northern Soul numbers into the set.

“We have got a great response from people with these songs,” said Steve. “Northern Soul is usually associated with DJs but some of those songs played live are fantastic.

“We are getting a lot of people in the audience who were regulars at the great Northern Soul nights such as the Twisted Wheel or Wigan Casino and they really appreciate what we do.

“We do seem to have a great connection with our audiences.”

The SoulTrain, Darwen Library Theatre, Saturday, October 27. Details from 01254 706006.