Organ grinder is to star in TV show

nrhn 080312 Patrick Cooke alongside broadcaster and musician Jools Holland.
nrhn 080312 Patrick Cooke alongside broadcaster and musician Jools Holland.
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An ORGAN grinder from Crich is to appear in a London themed musical documentary alongside piano legend Jools Holland.

Patrick Cooke and his sons often entertain the summer crowds at Chatsworth House with his 19th Century designed street organ.

But this week retired Patrickswapped the stately home for the streets of Camden Town, to film a one-off BBC2 show called The Sounds of London alongside former Squeeze pianist Jools Holland.

The organ, a mechanical music playing device, was popular on the streets of the capital for bringing dance hall songs to the masses in the days before radio.

Patrick said: “I had to play a typical piece of London music, so I chose the Lambeth Walk.

“Jools commented on it and listened for a bit. He asked me a few questions about the street organ.

“The pleasing thing for us was that the show recognises the organ grinder as an art form.

“Jools was quite impressed with the organ itself.”

Patrick said BBC producers contacted him out the blue last month through his website.

The show itself is to be one of a series of short films about London’s history in the run up to the start of the Olympics on June 21.

Patrick filmed in the capital for a day last week and even got to watch on as Holland and Madness frontman Suggs performed a duet yards away from him on Camden Market, as part of the show.

The Crich man, 67, of Ilks Cottages, has been running Cooke and Sons traditional Organ Grinders for 15 years and now has a fleet of four Victorian organs.

Patrick and his sons, Christopher and Matthew, take the machines to stately homes, city centres, small towns, village fetes, weddings and private parties, but he insists the family does it as more of a hobby than a business.

“It’s such a happy sound,” he said. “It always brings a smile to people’s faces. Music in the streets lifts the atmosphere.”