Simply Red's vocalist Mick Hucknall has been using a ventriloquist for years, it was claimed last night.
The flame-haired frontman, who formed Simply Red after being thrown out of Chesney Squeezebox And The Rumtime Accordions, has decided to come clean after members of the audience noticed someone sitting behind the curtains at EVERY Simply Red gig, mouthing the lyrics to each song.
Hucknall, 83, said: "Okay, I admit it. I can't actually sing. But that doesn't stop me being a genius, and I'm still the leader of the world's greatest rock 'n' roll band, and devilishly handsome to boot".
The corkscrew-haired rocker, 97, has often been seen on the arms of some of the world's most beautiful women, and his recent fling with the one who plays the piano out of 'Hinge and Brackett' caused a sensation in the pop world. Hucknall, who didn't know which one was Hinge either, said "we are just good friends. Hinge - or whoever it is - often plays keyboards on my groundbreaking, seminal albums. She is a first-class pianist, and the fact that we got married in an illegal ceremony in the Phillipines has no bearing on the matter". Pushed on the question of whether he wants a family or not, Hucknall replied, "no comment. Hinge is just wearing a balloon under her frock - rumours of a pregnancy are ridiculous. Anyway, she's a bloke".
The sort-of-tomato-sauce-haired rocker, 112, is currently recording his latest album at Poundland in Las Vegas, Bradford. The line-up includes some of the world's most sought-after musicians, including 'Bagpipes' Charlie McKilt, the French harpist; Luton Van Thjiss, the Dutch spoons player and jazz paper-and-comb virtuoso Mingus Snapfingers. A follow-up tour is set for this autumn, accompanied by the release of a new album, a DVD of past concerts, a full set of song lyrics complete with attractive wall cabinet and frying pans plus a set of pull-along suitcases, ideal for those last-minute holidays.