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The Barleycorn

The Barleycorn

… a short history

image The Barleycorn was formed in 1971, in the North of Ireland and reined for many years as the top rebel ballad group. The Barleycorn were far from a one-note rebel band, as the group recorded a wide range of ballads and tunes, many reaching the top of the Irish charts.

The original group consisted of Paddy McGuigan, Liam Tiernan, Brian McCormick and John Delaney. Over the years the band saw many changes in its line-up, including stints featuring Paddy Sweeney and the late, great Derek McCormack, with John Delaney as anchor throughout the group's entire life span.

In January, 1996 "The Barleycorn" played its last gig. John Delaney moved Cleveland, and after the demise of "The Barleycorn", teamed up with Alec DeGabriele to form the " New Barleycorn".


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John Delaney
1971-1996
Brian McCormick
1971-1983
Liam Tiernan
1971-1981
Paddy McGuigan
1971-1975

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Paul Anderson
1975-1981
Paddy Sweeney
1981-1988
Derek McCormack
1983-1996
Dennis O'Rourke
1987-1990
Maurice McCarthy
1990-1993

  • Notes
    • The above dates (as a member of the group) are based on recordings, and other sources.
    • Please let me know if you have more accurate information.