Wigan singer has international fan base after garage roof performance
A singer who decided to perform on his garage roof to entertain his neighbours has gathered an army of fans around the world.
More than 20,000 people have now watched a video of Matt Ashton’s show during the coronavirus pandemic.
He wanted to do something for his neighbours in Aspull, but had no idea that people across the globe would enjoy his songs.
Matt, who is a drama teacher at The Westleigh School, said: “It wasn’t meant to be that. It’s been humbling. I have just logged on and we are over 20,000 views.
“Facebook is so clever and it has gone all the way to Auckland in New Zealand, to Australia and Kuala Lumpar. Someone told me they live in Euxton and heard about it from someone in Arizona.”
The idea for the show came in a WhatsApp group set up for people living in the area and Matt says it “snowballed”.
He has worked as a singer since 2002, initially in pantomimes and musical theatre before moving into pubs and clubs, corporate functions and more recently weddings, birthday parties and other celebrations.
He was inspired by the video for U2’s Where The Streets Have No Name and got onto the roof of his garage to sing.
The 39-year-old performed a range of songs by acts including George Michael, Robbie Williams, Take That, Bryan Adams, Jerry Lee Lewis and The Proclaimers.
Neighbours turned out in their droves, sitting on their own roofs, in gardens and in their car boots to watch.
His performance was also streamed online for people in other areas to watch in their own homes and more viewers continue to enjoy it.
Matt, who is married and has two sons, said: “It’s gone crazy. I have had some wonderful and really nice comments. They said it was a really selfless act.
“I knew I can sing and people say it’s good fun watching, so I thought I could help out 20 or 30 neighbours and it’s turned out to be 20,000 views.”
His show proved to be such a hit that Matt has been inundated with requests for a repeat performance.
He said: “I have had a lot of comments from my kids saying are we doing it again and other people’s kids asking if we will do it again every day.
“I didn’t assume everyone would like it so I asked permission through the group to see if my neighbours minded, because they would be getting the sound from it. Out of respect to them, I have said that if we are still restricted on May 1 I will do it again.”