Syncopating Sandy

Syncopating Sandy (whose real name was Sandy Strickland) was a marathon piano player who toured the British Isles and the continent in his bids to break the latest world record. He visited the Music Hall in November 1956, apparently playing continuously for 157 hours (6 ½ days). A new World Record. During the night the music continued, but by licensing law the public had to leave at 11pm. Officials were trusted to see he didn’t ever take both hands off the keyboard. Some people had a suspicion that one of his assistants took over playing in the night when Sandy was sleeping but this was never proved. It is also reported that when nature called, he would play ‘Lady of Spain’ and a colleague would wheel across a commode while another pulled a screen round the performer. On 24th November 1956, The Aberdeen Evening express reported that Syncopating Sandy slumped into the arms of ambulance men at the end of his world record beating 157 hour piano playing marathon at the Music Hall. Finishing with the National Anthem. The 1000 strong crowd who witnessed the finale, burst into ‘For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow’ as he was helped from the room. More than 36,000 people paid to see Sandy during his marathon’.

DC Thomson


November 1956