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Scatman John

"John Paul Larkin" (March 13, 1942 — December 3, 1999), better known as "Scatman John", was a famous stuttering jazz musician who invented a unique fusion of scat singing and disco, best known for his 1995 hit "Scatman (Ski-Ba-Bop-Ba-Dop-Bop)". As he liked to say, this was a process of "turning my biggest problem into my biggest asset." He received 14 golds and 18 platinums for his albums and singles. He was also the recipient of the Annie Glenn Award for his outstanding service to the stuttering community, and was also inducted to the National Stuttering Association's Hall of Fame. He died of lung cancer at his home in Los Angeles, California at the age of 57.

Born in El Monte, California, he suffered from a severe stutter "since he started talking", which led to an emotionally traumatic childhood. Even at the peak of his success in 1995, journalists reported that during interviews he "hardly finishes a sentence without repeating the phrase at least six or seven times". At age 12 he began to learn piano, and was introduced to the art of scat singing at 14 through records by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, amongst others. The piano provided him with a means of arti...

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