Thursday, 3 November 2011

TOTP 21/10/76 (tx 3/11/11): this competition is now closed

Parish notice first: were you in the audience for a TOTP recording in 1977? A BBC4 team are putting together the launch documentary for next year's rerun fun and want to hear from you if you were, by emailing david.maguire(at)

"Ello darling!" Yeah, of course he'd start like that. Well, here's a turn-up, it's Ed 'Stewpot' Stewart. He was a very occasional visitor to the presenting roster, doing thirty shows between 1968 and 1977, of which still exist... wait for it... three! The last show of 1971 (for which he wears an eyepatch for some reason), a last hurrah in September 1977 and this one. In fact having done 21 shows in 1971 and 1972 he had a three year gap before returning for three in 1975, two in 1976 (a second in December - wiped, of course) and a last hurrah in September 1977. This latter period coincides with his time on Crackerjack*, and he did Junior Choice until 1980, and indeed still does on its annual Christmas Day morning revival on Radio 2. Is he proud of that CV? Will he lose his bearings and attempt to introduce Windmill In Old Amsterdam? Let's see.

Making a return to the countdown is the black and white cutout, this time of Lalo Schifrin smoking a pipe - that was the best promo shot that could be offered? - against a lurid purple backdrop. That sort of low-tech associating got us through that troubled decade together.


Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel – (I Believe) Love's A Prima Donna
Some rousing organ from a man in the early stages of attempting to look like Roy Wood shepherds in Harley in a red suit, casually leaning on the mike stand before launching into a full set of studied interpretative gestures, never losing eye contact with the camera. So the director decides to test him on that with three sudden and unrepeated wipes to other angles. He nearly misses the first, immediately catches the second and decides not to bother with the third, intenion of staring into your very soul denied. The latest of several things we haven't seen for a while to turn up this week is the punctuative intercut shot of some lights rotating. Unusually, it's the lights rather than the lens that are rotating, though you have to say the studio could do with jazzing up in that respect, it's either moody spotlighting or full-on. As we enter the final stages the guitarist, who looks a bit like Art Garfunkel, comes over to have an arm draped round them Mick Ronson-style, except the effect this time is somewhat different and, had Boy George seen this one instead, might well have turned him straight. "Some lovely guitar work in that as well" Stewpot offers before somewhat ungrammatically suggesting "before you can say Cockney Rebel that'll be up in the charts, I'm sure". It peaked at 41, outside the countdown range. Ah, the TOTP presenter kiss of death.

Demis Roussos – When Forever Has Gone
There's a big announcement and big thread running through the show this week as Stewpot promises a competition, one which "everyone watching this evening has got a chance of winning", as if someone unaware of it might guess the address and question. "Get a pencil and paper within the next fifteen to twenty minutes" he further advises. Now, you know how sometimes Jimmy Savile (RIP) will just carry on for ages at the end of an intro because the timings aren't as they should be? Stewpot seems to have a similar problem here, in that he finds himself needing to string out an intro because the music isn't coming in, but instead of spewing forth filler babble he finds himself going uncomfortably staccato. "Lots of good records. Lots of lovely people on the show. And what better. Next. Number two. In the charts. Demis Roussos." It's like his circuitry was breaking down. This is a different performance to that made at DLT's table side and amid shots of a vast space-like blackness perhaps borrowed from Whistle Test after being shorn of their logo it's the grand return of the Noddy Holder's Hat Memorial many mirrored stage backdrop. Standing here stoutly, someone comes up with the idea of training three cameras at him, one profile, two from either side of the face, capturing every glance aside. He gives his all, we'll say that for him.

Paul Nicholas – Dancing With The Captain
Stewpot is flanked by two young blonde girls in ties, white trousers and untucked shirts, looking vaguely like sailor costumes in fact. "You might recognise two of the faces here" - actually, Ed, there's only two people there, so in that you're asserting nobody recognises your face - "they're two of the daughters of the Beverley sisters, Teddy and Joy", pointing to each in turn. Teddy and Joy were two of the actual Beverley Sisters, so clearly their daughters didn't deserve publicly given names yet. I have consequently no idea if these are the precise daughters of Teddy and Joy who formed a close harmony group called The Foxes,, but from the matching dress you'd imagine so, which would explain why, even in 1976, anyone bar Ed Stewart should care about two of the daughters of the Beverley sisters being introduced to a Top Of The Pops audience. Why might we recognise them anyway if the best Stewpot can come up with is identifying them by their mothers? You might go on to rhetorically ask why a 1976 Top Of The Pops audience should care about the bloke from Godspell prancing in a bowler hat singing about having a party on a ship, but such is pop life. In fact how Stewpot actually ends is "...Teddy and Joy. Here's Paul Nicholas!", so clearly he can't come up with much either. Paul's back in the studio, white jacket and bowler as per, nobody else out to help him this time. This means he has no fallback when he finds he can't help himself on the ad libs. All I'll say is the captain seems to have developed a Jamaican accent. Reggae like it used to be, indeed. Audience members try their best but Nicholas still effortlessly laps them for enthusiasm at this stuff. Orchestra and overmiked Ladybirds make a mess of this, by the way, though it proves they had a specialist penny whistle player.

Rod Stewart – Sailing
Stewpot, sitting at a piano briefly wearing a top hat with an unidentifiable picture in it, reminds us of the pressing need for pencil and paper before promising "lots of good sounds and lots of good sights". If we hadn't been primed by its first appearance his next statement would make for a spectacular non sequitur: "A lot of you saw that marvellous documentary on the HMS Ark Royal. Here's Rod Stewart again". This is the proper video, shot in cinema verite style as Rod in various combinations of often open shirts and tennis shorts wanders around a barge, looks pensive on an aircraft carrier, hangs around with a blonde woman (EDIT: Britt Ekland! Of course!) and talks to some people.

When that's done, we get to the burning issue. Stewpot declares himself "a thorn amongst six roses", the new TOTP dancers. They even get to introduce themselves, all in cut glass RP. Now, given Ruby Flipper (three of whom made the leap across, of course, not that they're treated any differently) were just introduced as if we should know them and have now been got rid of like so much Greek currency this seems effusive, but then again Pan's People did eight years' service and then as far as viewers could see were just handed their cards without warning. Someone must have got the unions involved. The competition is to give them a name, the required details of your postcard entry - Stewpot just said get some paper earlier, if we had to go to the extra expense of a postcard he should have said so - displayed on the time honoured huge replica complete with cartoon of a stamp - 'DANCERS COMP.' via BBC Television Centre W12 8QT, of course. All entries must be in by first post 1st November and "a set of judges" will make the decision, the winner somehow giving the group their name "formally". By decree? How does that work? It's something of a surprise all this made the edit, actually, with modern BBC compliance structure you wouldn't have thought a repeat could go around giving out addresses.

John Miles – Remember Yesterday
Oh blimey, another man and his piano and his earnest plaintiveness. Miles is wearing far too tight a shirt and far too shaggy a blonde haircut for a man of his balledic standing. As is his trademark it changes pace between the verses and chorus, it being unfortunate that both speeds are pedestrian.

Average White Band – Queen Of My Soul
"Some lovely girls around me" - does that count the bloke at the back? - "we've got some lovely girls for you now". It's the debut of Dance Troupe To Be Named but not that auspicious a beginning, stuck out on a tiny stage in tops that are attached to long bits of fabric they have to keep hold of throughout. All six get their turn at smiling at their own close-up twice over before some spinning and general veil waving. Still, it's something to build from.

Climax Blues Band – Couldn’t Get It Right
Or as Stewpot goes and calls it, Gonna Get It Right. No, that's the exact opposite. The Musician's Union demand to re-record everything before air really drives a coach and horses through this one that no amount of green flare solarisation or the tremendous volume of hair on show can cover for, as the groove develops leaden boots and Colin Cooper sings the whole thing as if he has other things on his mind. Perhaps it's the saxophone he holds onto like a pacifier throughout. Buy a strap, man. When he does actually play it it's both in melodic tune with and in the mix completely overshadowed by the guitar solo so ends up pointless.

Pussycat – Mississippi
"Time to introduce our number one, and who better than the number one boxer in Britain and Europe, Joe Bugner!" Well, Stewpot, there's you, given that's what you're there for. Bugner had in fact won the British and European belts off Richard Dunn nine days earlier, a year after being KO'd by Ali, which supposedly made him ideal for going "Pussycat, Mississippi" as if he wasn't expecting to be asked. And, bar a wave, some standing around looking useless and the regulation comedy sparring on the fade to the video - Crazyboat again - that's the whole of his contribution. Hope he had other things to do within TVC that day.


True Britt said...

Rod wasn't hanging around with any old blonde woman, that was Britt Ekland, his "main squeeze" (as she must have been termed) at the time.

Simon said...

Ah, thanks. I knew it'd be someone famous I didn't recognise, I was essentially leaving it for someone to tell me in comments.

gervase_fen said...

There are two number 11s in the chart rundown! Did The Real Thing and Smokie sell in identical quantities that week?

Erithian said...

The Rod Stewart "proper video" is in fact a splice between the video shown the previous year and a few shots from the "Sailor" docusoap about the Ark Royal which revived interest in the song. I was always fond of the shot in which Rod leaned moodily against a wall while a girl is on the phone in an upstairs window going "I'm telling yer it's him, not a word of a lie Rod bleeding Stewart is outside our house!"

Neil Barker said...

Ed Stewart also hosted 22/6/72 which exists at the BBC though wasn't found until 1999 (at BBC Scotland I believe).

I think Steve Harley's keyboard player might have been a young B.A. Robertson though I'm not 100% sure.

Stegron said...

The saxophone-draped lead singer from Climax Blues Band: is that Kevin Eldon in a wig?
Nice to see Stewpot this week, although my only memory of him is from his News Desk in Look-In comic. And doesn't he look utterly befuddled during the Demis Roussos link?
Steve Harley: you can almost hear the director saying 'Smug get, I'll show him!' just before those three wipes put him off his stride.
At least Legs &... Sorry, I mean Not Yet Named Dance Troupe get an actual intro. Can't wait to see the formal naming!

Steve Morgan said...

Well! what a disappointing show this week. I was looking forward to seeing a different presenter in "Stewpot" but he injected no excitement into the show at all, not even when he announced the competition, in fact the whole thing lacked atmosphere from start to finish.
I was about to point out about the Rod video being a splice, but Erithian got there first, well spotted mate.
Best performance this week? Demis, he gave his all, one would have expected a push to number one the following week, but 'twas not to be. Never mind.
Oh! by the way, not moments before I turned over to BBC4 I'd been watching that Celebrity Antiques thing on the HD channel, who should turn up on there but that old celebrity antique herself, Britt Ekland, as she is today, all botoxed lips and everything. It was quite a startling sight let me tell you, almost put me off me tea. it did.

Matra Rancho said...

Stewpot was magnificent, I'd have loved to see more of his episodes, quite aside from his repeated concern over us having a pencil and paper ready. I particularly enjoyed the moment when, as he back-announced Cockney Rebel, he was staring wistfully off into the middle distance when he said "..lovely guitar work on that..", as if he was remembering a guitar riff he once loved and lost.

Steve Williams said...

I like the way the fact that there were new dancers was considered a poor second to the fact they were having a competition. In fact given Stewpot specifically said they were going to be on "next week" I wonder if any viewers thought they'd be formed specifically for the competition.

The Climax Blues Band must have the only singer/saxophonist in the history of pop, the two roles seem mutually exclusive. And the sax solo was completely inaudible anyway. I also liked the drummer (who in all the pictures of the band I've seen appears about three foot taller than the rest of the band) wearing that textbook wacky drummer outfit, a Mickey Mouse T-shirt. Not crazy about Cockney Rebel because there wasn't enough of the bassist's dancing.

The studio looked massive this week, nice to see the mirror set making a comeback. Joe Bugner's appearance was spectacularly pointless, maybe Stewpot had met him while filming some public information films.

Chris Brown said...

I think the woman in Quarterflash sang and saxed, although I presume they never made TotP as the single didn't crack the Top 40.

Arthur Nibble said...

Good spot re the two number 11’s, gervase_fen. Smokie should have been at 12, but the single does make number 11 without any artificial ingredients in the end.

Not much to say about this show, as it’s the worst of the re-run so far for my liking. I wouldn’t have liked a single one of these songs back in the day, and only now do I have a shrugging respect for maybe two of them. So much for the law of averages where you think ‘This song’s crap so, with any luck, I’ll like the next one’. In my case, this would have been the musical equivalent of buying a bag of Revels and finding it consisted totally of the orange and coffee ones.

Stewpot tackled his duties as I’d have expected, a kiddies’ presenter playing it nice and safe. CRACKERJACK! At least Eddie Boy gave Noel a run in the sartorial stakes, and he was still a pleasant change from that ha-ha-hilarious DLT.

Stewie was a bit presumptuous about our recognising the sprogs of The Beverley Sisters. True, they were big in their day and they were probably still on light entertainment shows of the time featuring the likes of Max Bygraves (you kids don’t know how good you’ve got it these days) but they were never anywhere near TOTP, the last of their six hits being in 1960. The hep cats wouldn't have had a clue about them.

Somehow, I found it deliciously ironic that this edition had the competition to name ?????? (as shown in the end credits) where you had to write in to Television Centre, just at the BBC’s jumping ship and moving everything it can oop North.

Simon said...

Extending the definition of pop, I know, but the cult ska-punk band Capdown had a singer/saxophonist. Extending it further the Piranhas' Boring Bob Grover was a singer/trumpeter.

wilberforce said...

with regard to that amateur-hour hack-job they've done on the lalo schifrin chart rundown pic, you wonder what kind of clods the bbc employed... oh yes, i've remembered - their relatives!

quite a lot so say about steve harley/cockney rebel, although surprisingly none relates to the bassist: the percussionist is once again gulity of playing air congas, whilst the drummer is obviously locked in a contest with his counterpart in the climax blues band to see who can mime their already-recorded parts in the most accurate and earnest manner (he wins thanks to the quasi-religious breakdown in this instantly-forgettable number) - personally i prefer the guy from the rubettes' approach... as for harley himself, at one point he gives his highly-suspicious hair a tug as if trying to prove he's not wearing a wig, and i've suddenly realised that the guitarist is a dead-ringer for les dennis doing his impersonation of mavis from coronation street ("ooh rita i don't rightly know")...

whatever you think of paul nicholas's music (and here even the frantic clavinet playing can't save this sinking ship) you can't deny that he was a good-looking geezer, and a youthful looking one too (in his thirties by this point) - i wondered about the odd-shaped stage he was performing on, but it became clear later on...

... that it was probably specially built for the new six-strong TOTP dance troupe! but should it henceforth be referred to as the "sheriff's star" stage or the "chinese checkers" stage? lulu appears to be much more at ease now no longer the "baby" of the group (in terms of experience if not age), but when it comes to the newcomers, two of them have that home-counties horsey-gel look about them that was prevalent in their pan's people predecessors - the obvious exception being pauline, who is not only cuter than them, but also possibly the sexiest and best-looking one of the lot! (as one who has a fascination with the "ethnic melting pot" can anyone enlighten me as to her background?)... as regards the music, AWB did a lot to debunk the myth that you had to be black and american to play soul and funk music credibly - hamish stuart was a fantastic singer musician and songwriter, so i thought it was rather sad when some years later he prostituted his talent playing in paul mccartney's touring band (what must he have made of mrs macca?!?)

the climax blues band TOTP re-recording didn't sound that bad to me, but then again i haven't heard the original one recently - i did think that the TOTP version of fox's "single bed" actually grooved a lot better than the official release!

just one more observation: in the pussycat song there's a line that goes "and someone plays the honky tonk guitar", and indeed at that point a pedal-steel can be heard, but in the video there's a shot of some guy plucking away on a bass! either the director was having a laugh or was an ignorant prat...

Anonymous said...

When Bugner came on I thought 'Bloody Hell, it's Brian Jacks!'

Noax said...

I was looking forward to seeing Stewpot but like most have said it was a bit disappointing - most of the time it looked like he was struggling to find the camera, the autocue or both.

I did notice that the picture quality was very good this week so I presume this edition was looked after in the archives, maybe because of the new dancers debut? Speaking of which, strange that Ed got this gig really, you'd have thought someone like the late Jim (that doesn't sound right somehow...) would have been given the honour. Perhaps he was running a marathon.

Not very impressed with the song selection this week either, so this shouldn't take long.

Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel - One good song, and this isn't it. Steve Harley just annoys the hell out of me.

Demis Roussos - When did we last see that stage? Or to put it another way - how far in advance did they record this?! Before DLT's 'comedy' banquet presumably.

Paul Nicholas - Marginally better than the last performance in terms of sound, but I'd still prefer the actual recording being mimed to.

Rod Stewart, John Miles, Average White Band - All dreary with nothing particularly interesting to watch. Unless you like big boats, keychanges where the key doesn't actually change, and flouncy outfits respectively

Climax Blues Band - At last, a good song! I didn't think the performance was too bad either, though the mixing was a bit off. Interesting outfits on display as well, and they're not a pretty lot so if ever there was an act to display 1976 as most people remember it, here they are.

Pussycat - Hooray! Still not bored of it yet, give it another week. I have a funny feeling that Joe Bugner wasn't a fan probably, more of a Lalo Schifrin fan with his manly pipe I expect.

SG said...

I'm pretty sure Climax Blues Band were playing and singing live. A few bands seem to have done this on these re-runs.

Kept thinking as Rod Stewart was flouncing around the docks on what looked like a cold grey day......I wonder why he moved to Los Angeles??

Wellieman said...

The "Art Garfunkel/Les Dennis-lookalike" in Cockney Rebel is of course Jim Cregan, very shortly to jump ship to Rod Stewart's band. Check him out laying down the groove when Rod asks us if we think he's sexy! Ahem.

But his party piece is a mighty fine acoustic guitar solo... other examples being on "Come Up and See Me" and Rod's "I Was Only Joking".

Arthur Nibble said...

Wilberforce, Pauline Peters is/ was from Burma (or Myanmar as I think it's now called). She'd been a West End stage regular before joining ?????? and she was 24 when recruited. The things I research to please you lot! :-)

Nicola said...

Love Rod Stewart but he sure loves himself in that video.

Are we supposed to believe that Pussycat are really aboard a Mississippi steamboat? And why do they not only have holsters but guns!

When does punk start? Wasn't that '76?

Erithian said...

Nicola - "New Rose" by The Damned was released the day after this TOTP was broadcast! Don't hold your breath waiting for them to be on the show though.

Simon said...

In case you missed it TOTP's relationship with punk was laid out in the 9/9/76 recap in September. Though let's not get hung up on punk as changing everything in the mainstream - the 1977 Christmas shows still feature David Soul, Manhattan Transfer, Julie Covington, Joe Tex, La Belle Epoque, Deniece Williams, ELP...

wilberforce said...

blimey, looks like we've finally got a lady to join in with our banter ...unless it's a geezer in disguise ha ha! not only that, but one who apparently likes jane austen novels - probably not the usual kind of thing us contributors are into...

ps - arthur, thanks for the info on new dancer pauline - according to IMDB she had a bit part in "tenko" as a character called "minah" (at a guess one of the locals rather than one of the prisoners...?)

Mrs Anthing said...

Sadly I deleted this episode before I read the blog because I would like to have gone back and checked out the rotating lights seen in the Demis song.
I work in entertainment lighting and one of the joys of these repeats has been to see models of light long since condemed to the dustbin (or at least dusty village halls)being used.
It wasn't until 1981 that the first proper controlable moving light made its debut, up to then it was simply people bolting motors onto whatever they could find to acheve that effect. We have become so used to seeing entertainment shows with huge moving light rigs and LED screens that by today's standards the old Pops look dull and underlit in comparison, but that was how everything looked in the days before Vari*Lites, colour changing technology and DMX control.
By the way, despite all my geek level interest in old TV and lighting gear I am in fact a lady too.

Wellieman said...

Shame The Damned are not going to be on. Does anyone know when the Sex Pistols' "Anarchy In The UK" will be on? Must be sometime soon.....

Simon said...

Not with the BBC ban it won't be.

Incidentally, anyone wanting to know more about Ed Stewart is guided towards his 2005 autobiography Out Of The Stewpot. Here's Danny Baker's fulsome review.

Neil Barker said...

On the 9/12/76 edition, when "Anarchy In The UK" entered at number 43, TOTP had Tommy Hunt on instead (No.44). The following week the Pistols climbed to 38, but Jesse Green got on instead at number 50. However, that show has been wiped, so even if they had appeared that week we wouldn't be able to see it anyway. "Anarchy" was a non-mover on 23/12/76 but John Christie was on at 44 instead.

Steve Morgan said...

Those of us who disliked Simon May's piss poor vocals on Summer of My Life the other week will recoil in horror when we eventually get to see and hear the awful John Christie record. I hate it with a vengeance, it was a single my sister bought and I had to suffer it all through Christmas and New Year of '76 '77. I despaired of my sister's tastes I really did, still do, but we laugh about it a lot.

Neil Barker said...

Noel was almost as bad as Blackburn with his predictions on the 23/12/76 edition, but we'll all discuss that when we get there I suppose.

wilberforce said...

can't say i remember john christie at all so i've got that one to look forward to - sounds like a late contender for "worst vocal performance on TOTP in 1976"...

i too always thought my sister had terrible taste in music - in fact, anything she liked i instantly disliked just for that reason ha ha!

i have dredged up a recollection from the early 80's when i met some guy (on a territorial army training course of all things) who claimed to have been a member of the climax blues band, but of course back then there was no internet or anything to find out if he was a bullshitter or not... can't say i recognised him on this TOTP performance, but then again it was a long time ago now...

btw, with regards to the lady who is into jane austen, i forgot to mention i'm more of a bronte sisters man myself (not really - sorry, just kidding!)

Nicola said...

wilberforce, hi. Well I don't know about 'lady' but I am of the female persuasion! Very much enjoying the witty posts and knowledgeable banter in the comments box. Funny without being snarky. I do like Jane Austen but I also have a taste for soft-core punk. Sham 69 anyone?

Noax said...

Sham 69 always gave good Pops I think, looking forward to them being on.

As for that Ed Stewart book, it sounds quite extraordinary. Steve Coogan could probably have copied some of that for his Partridge 'autobiography' without anyone noticing! Strange that I never saw it in the likes of The Works going cheap though, I quite fancy getting a copy now.

MartS said...

There was a very sharp edit in the 'competition corner' though.

It's just before he gives out the address (and the much missed W12 8QT postcode) - and I thought the address read out was what had disappeared from the 2011 broadcast.

Would love to know what went missing.

Ed Stewart was the star 'turn' on a cruise I was on recently.

Still looks good for a man of 70 - although walks with a noticable limp (hips apparently) and unlike another cruise I was on when he was also on board a few years ago - at least this time he wasnt politely asked to leave one of the bars for being 'tired and emotional'.

Ed will be back on Radio Two this Christmas Day at 8am. High profile slot, eh?

Simon said...

I think that's the time the one-off Junior Choice was on last year. As I recall it's never quite as fun as you'd imagine as his links last about six minutes each.

The editing was quite awry at times on what as far as can be told was original broadcast, but by his choice of words the address given out was the first time he'd read it. The Einsfestival broadcast isn't on YouTube in full so I don't know if that had any more - I know UK Gold edited that whole bit out when they showed it in the mid-90s.

Simon said...

Actually he must have tightened it up last year, the page for the Christmas 2010 Junior Choice is still lurking on the BBC site and features 23 songs. Einst├╝rzende Neubauten missed out again.

Wizzard — I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everday
Mandy Miller — Nellie The Elephant
Father Abraham & the Smurfs — The Smurf Song
Randy Travis — Jingle Bell Rock
Alma Cogan — In The Middle Of The House
Peter, Paul & Mary — Puff The Magic Dragon
Harry Belafonte — Mary's Boy Child
Bernard Cribbins — Right Said Fred
Mel Blanc — I Taut I Taw A Puddy Tat
The Playmates — Beep beep
Rolf Harris — Two Little Boys
Showaddywaddy — Hey Mr Christmas
The Seekers — Morningtown Ride
Frankie Howerd And Billy Ternet And His Orchestra — Three Little Fishes
Ronnie Hilton — A Windmill In Amsterdam
Bing Crosby — White Christmas
Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band — Floral Dance
Keith Michell — Captain Beaky
The Muppets — Halfway Down The Stairs
Benny Hill — Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West
Jackie Lee — Rupert
Blair, Henry And Ray Turner — Sparky's Magic Piano
Terry Scott — My Brother

wilberforce said...

what exactly does stewpot do as the "star turn" on a cruise ship? does he sing or dance (presumably not the latter with his dodgy hips) or anything? or does he just play records? whatever he does, it doesn't say much for the cruise line if he's the best they can get for the punters...

i remember listening regularly to "junior choice" as a youngster (it wasn't my choice - other family members wanted it on), and god knows how it got on the show in the first place, but due to public demand stewpot often played an interesting mildly-psychedelic track (although i wouldn't have described it as such at the time) called "green tambourine" by a band called the lemon pipers, that of course stood out like a sore thumb amongst all the usual novelty stuff...

rob said...

Has anyone noticed how much Vernon Kay looks like Ed Stewart?

MartS said...

Ed WILL be on Radio Two at 8am this Christmas morning. Ed plugged it massively in one of his two appearances on the ship. I actually feel sorry for him because A) It'll be live and B) He'll have to drive from his home in Surrey upto BBC Birmingham and the Mailbox studios.
Quite why either a) It can't be live (or voicetracked as it's known in the radioworld) is beyond me or b) The show can't be done 'down the line' at Broadcasting House, BBC Surrey or even via ISDN from his house (A la DLT on whichever Gold station he's on these days) remains a mystery.

What does Stewpot do on a Cruise Ship? Well, he makes two 'proper' apperances. He is booked as a 'after dinner speaker'. I.e he appears twice in one night (for each sitting of dinner) in the main performance theatre, and does 45 mins or stories and amusing anicdotes about his life.

Then a couple of days later, he'll be interviewed by the cruise director about his life - and answer soft questions from the passengers (i.e why does Radio Two play such rubbish these days?)

On some 60's and 70's music theme cruises, he'll be on board as the host, and will introduce the other performers and do the interviews and Q and A sessions.

Bloomin nice work if you can get it.

Sno1973 said...

Belatedly viewed this edition and was wondering if anyone else spotted another unusual edit in the show. In the opening panning shot from Ed to the Paul Nicholas performance there's what appears to be a jump cut. Maybe my V+ box or the TX had skipped a few frames(?) On viewing it again an entire row of audience appears to change into a completely different group of people but the camera angle and shot size barely changes. Perhaps an edit to cover a retake? If this is the case, it's bravely and skillfully executed over a moving shot using the unweildy editing technology available in 1976. Liked the superimposed waves more than the song though.

P.S: Thanks for a very well written, well researched blog that I'm enjoying as much as the TOTP repeats.

Bamaboogiewoogie said...

That cut out of Lalo Schifrin was weird, could they not find a decent colour photo? I suppose it was either that or a pic of a shark.

Seemingly Smokie were at 12 and The Real Thing were at 11, not sure why there was a mix up with both at no 11.

Wasn't that Rod Stewart video partly filmed in France at the same time as that documentary where he gets interviewed by a rude French DJ who says his music is rubbish?

The Dancers Comp. (why did they shorten it on the card?). They should have changed the postcode to 6QT (six cuties - geddit?)

The lead singer of The Climax Blues Band reminded me of a long-haired Richard O'Sullivan in Man About The House.