Originally developed by ABC as Riverboat Shuffle, but a name change was required to avoid confusion with another show called Riverboat.
ABC had hired a Mississippi riverboat, named 'Cottontail', and moored it by their London studios at Teddington Lock which would become the home for some of Britain's top jazz talent during the tapings on August 2nd, 4th, 9th and 11th.
The show had booked British jazz acts like Acker Bilk, Humphrey Lyttelton, Alex Welsh, Kenny Ball, Bob Wallis, along with skifflers Chas and Shirley McDevitt, singer Matt Monro, Don Reenie and rocker Dickie Pride, with the possibility of a few folk singers added nearer recording time. Kenny Baker's Swamplanders were the resident jazz band.
Steamboat Shuffle would be ABC's introduction to Robert Feust, a talented designer, who would later work on ABC's The Avengers, before becoming a movie director.