Monday, 26 September 2011

The disappeared: 16/9/76

There's a little awkward patch of wiped shows here. From September to before Christmas 1976 six shows out of 17 have been wiped, and while it's not actually as bad as that sounds - there's an unbroken run of seven weeks after this, for starters - here two shows out of three have been lost, meaning in BBC4's timeline there's a lot of repetition between last week and this one coming. One artist ends up on the repeats three weeks in a row, earning them an unfortunate 5000 Volts-like consistency. In better news, we here get to skip a week of Noel's free associating.

Tommy Hunt – Loving On The Losing Side
Hunt had been in the Flamingos of I Only Have Eyes For You fame and a good decade or more on had a shortlived spell as a Wigan Casino favourite, which with its string arrangement can only mean a well meaning visitor to our shores being held to hostage by Johnny Pearson.

Tina Charles – Dance Little Lady Dance
Speaking of which, I believe this is the performance for which she got to her run-through and discovered the orchestra were playing it at twice the speed of the original and she couldn't stop because she feared getting a bad reputation and never being asked back. Which she was, which demonstrates something about grinning and bearing it.

J.A.L.N. Band – Disco Music (I Like It)
Blunt. This slab of British disco was on the TOTP2 repeated special a couple of weeks ago and will be on the show again.

The Real Thing – Can’t Get By Without You
Two appearances for this perennial lover's soul favourite, both wiped. Again, we can only imagine who got the mustard coloured waistcoat this week.

Jesse Green – Nice And Slow
Someone must have really fancied this song's chances, this is its third of four appearances and it still never got above number 17. It's not like he was in the country for ages either, this is a repeat of his one studio visit, as is the next showing.

Pussycat – Mississippi
Losing out to the wiles of the archivers twice in a row! There's always a next time.

Starland Vocal Band – Afternoon Delight
Unlike for the Starlands ("they suck!"), who do a Can't Get By Without You. Shame Afternoon Delight never followed Morning Glory onto the show.

Gheorge Zamfir – Doina De Jale (Light Of Experience)
This is that strange entry denoted in the rundown by a man playing pan pipes, which became a hit after being used by a BBC religious programme called The Light Of Experience, described by the BFI site as "Series in which people relate experiences which have changed their lives". It's Ruby Flipper's turn for the week but the record seems a slight thing, surely far too slow and hesitant a melody to get much more than vague arm waving while crouched in blowsy sheet dresses out of.

ABBA - Dancing Queen
At least for sanity's sake we miss two of the six weeks this spent atop the pile.


Arthur Nibble said...

For no other reason than it’s a Monday and I’m fed up, I’ve been doing a bit of anorak-style analysis and I’ve noticed that three songs miss out completely on BBC4 coverage due to the run of four wiped shows in November and December of 1976 though, thankfully, all the acts had more than one hit. No need to look away now as I’m not naming them but...

One double-wiped song’s a guilty pleasure that many will be sad to miss, another is a soulful slowie that, personally, I’ll be sad to miss, and one very unfortunate act - who were on as much as 5000 Volts with their last hit - have lost all three showings of their final hit to the tape scrubber, though they return once more with a ‘breaker’ that never broke. Two other acts miss out during this run but stick around in the chart long enough to appear in 1977. I’ll get my coat!

Erithian said...

I never watched the Light of Experience programme, but “Doina De Jale” was absolutely lovely, something to totally chill out to in the late summer (the B-side was a dance tune played at breakneck speed). “Sounds”, which was promoting punk for all it was worth in ’76, published a photo of Gheorghe Zamfir with the headline (IIRC) “Este homul acesta viitor rock’n’roll-ului?” (Romanian for “is this man the future of rock’n’roll?”)

Pity we miss out on the Starland Vocal Band entirely, and do we get to see Rod’s “Killing of Georgie” at all? His big hit from the year before is about to return to the chart thanks to what we’d now call a docusoap.

Wellieman said...

Dear Arthur, I think I know what one of the three missing songs is. In fact it's one of my favourite Xmas tunes, despite being a well-known cover and nothing at all to do with Christmas. But it has got a wonderful extended fade-out complete with masses of jingle bells and Christmasey vibes. I spent many a night trawling YouTube trying to find the TOTP version of this to no avail. The only version available appears to be from Supersonic which, annoyingly, stops dead just as the yuletide themed ending is about to strike up. Good job we got to see their earlier hit and overdosed on it a mere, ahem, four times earlier this year.

Noax said...

Arthur - I think I may have an idea what the 'soulful slowie' might be but have no idea on the Xmas song, which is annoying me.

As for this missing show, I'm itching for Pussycat (steady!) but know I'll get my chance soon, and it is a shame that we won't get any Afternoon Delight. I think that's enough double entendres for one paragraph - if I see any more I'll have to whip them out.

Never heard the Tommy Hunt song either and probably never will now!

Arthur Nibble said...

Noax, the 'Xmas song' isn't a Christmas song at all, it's a cover of an old standard made to sound a bit festive. As for Tommy Hunt, try this...

Arthur Nibble said...

Erithian - agree about the Starlands and, sadly, you won't get to see 'Georgie'. Its only TOTP showing was this wiped one and, although it reached number 2, TOTP seem to had got cold feet about playing the song due to its subject matter. I guess the BBC were waiting for safe-as-houses singalong 'Sailing' to chart so they could focus on that instead.