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Baker's Dozen

Oooff, Ken! It's John Shuttleworth's Baker's Dozen!
Luke Turner , January 22nd, 2020 09:02

As he prepares to head off on a major UK tour, South Yorkshire's finest electronic artiste John Shuttleworth delves into his dusty loft to find 13 favourite records, from Harry Secombe to The Beatles, Mrs Mills and Leo Sayer


Sparky’s Magic Piano
I was given this record by my next door neighbour and sole agent Ken Worthington when I was in the doldrums professionally, and Ken hoped that playing this would rekindle my desire to become as good at playing (and smiling!) as Richard Clayderman. The dramatised story on the LP is this: Sparky - a young American lad is taking piano lessons but making frustratingly slow progress. After one lesson he falls asleep and dreams that his piano is magic and can play brilliantly on its own, allowing Sparky to take all the credit. The piano talks to Sparky in a strange musical voice (it sounded like Herbie Hancock to me but I don’t think it was) and together they fool Sparky’s mum and dad, his piano teacher and eventually the whole world that Sparky’s really good, whereas in fact he’s still a bit rubbish, which he realises when he wakes up and finds out his piano isn’t magic at all and it was all just a dream. Listening to this album has made me appreciate my Yamaha organ all the more, because although my keyboard doesn’t talk to me, it does boast the fun rhythm and fantasy flute (number 66), oh and it’s got sound effects like a car horn, a monkey and a cockerel. Now that’s what I call a magic piano!