Friday, 24 February 2012

TOTP 17/2/77 (tx 23/2/12): after the spike

Hello, everyone following the Guardian mention/online link about to become quite confused. You want the next post down.

Ruby Flipper update! Now there's a factual concept that hasn't been exerted in thirty five and a half years. A newspaper clipping of their rejection has been unearthed dated 19th August 1976, the date of broadcast of their face-making meisterwork Let 'Em In and also, adding mystery to that previous side issue, the last week of Cherry's still unexplained break. Three and a half months it seems to have taken for the BBC to decide they were wrong. The BBC spokesman - offical quotes! - claimed viewers were missing the all-girl nature of the dancing, which maybe gives away quite something about their actual purpose by this stage.

And as we've brought up Signora Gillespie, something else I've stumbled across since we all last met in this place is her perhaps sole piece of choreography work, Enya's Caribbean Blue video from 1991. This is known because there's an lengthy making of the video feature (part two) to which she contributes, still with the Rapunzel-esque tresses of her heyday but with the crucial addition of a bumbag. Also, though it's not mentioned, one of the nymph-like figures in the video is a young Martine McCutcheon.

"Don't panic, you've got the right channel" asserts Paul Burnett. Not one of Radio 1's great and legendary figures, Burnett, despite being in charge of the Tuesday afternoon chart reveal and being DLT's sideman on Convoy UK. It's this intro that was used at the start of the Big Hits 1977 compilation, odd given it's his only appearance of the year - he seemed to be doing one Pops a year at this stage - and he's not a figure any casual viewer would ever connect with the programme's storied past.

Is that another new angle of the Rose Royce Cortina?

Suzi Quatro – Tear Me Apart
We're seeing a lot at the moment of what the glam stars did next once Chinn and Chapman had stepped aside - Slade, the Rubettes, Gary Glitter, Mud last year. Suzi of course was pretty much doing this stuff from the off (and this actually is a late period Chinnichap), but her swapping of leather for fringed jacket-cum-catsuit - the angles never make it entirely clear - while the rest of her band donned the black biker accroutement of her heyday perhaps just to tease us, demonstrated how she'd now willingly let her country side eke out. Yeah, another one. Having started with an alarmingly wayward note she never quite finds her new range but can still play a bass the size size as her, and her showmanship credentials are renewed quite apart from her looks deep into the lens and vigorous upper body shaking - that is when she's on camera at all, the director fascinated by closeups of the guitar - as she spends most of the break with her foot up on the piano. It's a wonder she isn't trying to play it with the heel. If it's a muted instrument, perhaps she was. Less than lucidly, Paul calls it "a new chart contender". Yeah, we'd assumed that already.

The Moments – Jack In The Box
Just because, Paul refers to this as "a Tony Blackburn record of the week... and it made the charts". No, surely it's Noel's selections that tend to stiff. It's matching powder blue suits all round it transpires as well as doing virtually all the singing Harry Ray is the only one into the art of movement to. At one point he nearly goes for a spin on the spot and gets halfway before thinking better of it. At another there's some impromptu knee bending. The director, confused, zooms in on the back of his head. Bunched up uncomfortably in the middle of the stage, Ray's bandmates strive to look interested.

The Brothers – Sing Me
There's a very awkward moment when the camera lingers on Paul while pulling away towards the stage as he gathers up the mike cord, looks downwards while grinning and looking mildly embarrassed as if in realisation that, given a national telly platform on the nation's pop conversation hotspot, "it's always exciting to see a new band in the charts" really was the best he could come up with on the hoof. Brown suits and very wide open lapels on yellow shirts are the dresscode this time. There's now a hand gesture developed for 'paper kite' and a tug on the cord for 'pull my string', so the time in the spotlight is teaching them tricks of stagecraft alright. At the back of the audience a woman wears a red hat with a remarkably broad brim. You know that 'Barry Manilow from above' cartoon gag? It must be like that.

Boz Scaggs – What Can I Say
"A fabulous thing" Paul labels it. Doesn't bother with the title, though. It's the overmanned video clip again. And they left it in the edit ahead of a song that isn't on again.

Thelma Houston – Don’t Leave Me This Way
Again Paul doesn't name the song, but he does stress that "we're very fortunate" to have her here as she has to go back to the US straight afterwards. Judging by her outfit - scarf around neck, functional white dress, notable lack of item (YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN) - she'd done most of the packing before arriving at the studio. The orchestra for their part sound like they're merely on holiday, leaving the little regarded on record Hammond organ player to do the heavy lifting. The funky bassline is apparently being played by osmosis. At least Thelma's giving it plenty, staring out the front row, shimmying, adlibbing and a huge note to near enough close. People are clearly impressed. Well, some are, a good swathe of the crowd not even waiting for the full fade out before racing across for the earthier delights of...

The Rubettes – Baby I Know
With Tony Thorpe singing, not Alan Williams, you're right. Chiefly of interest this time is bassist Mick Clarke, who is giving it one last go on his own in resuscitating the white flat cloth cap from their heyday. Is he intending to stand out further? Given how unrepossessing his colleagues look it doesn't take much.

Mr Big – Romeo
The mildly disturbing wild card from the last show has a video every bit as quixotic. One of the singers is only wearing an open leather jacket on his top half, which given they're serious minded AOR makes it all the more alarming he's liberally slathered himself in baby oil. The other one has a camera angle that exclusively films right up his nose. Loads of dry ice and backlighting and no small amount of visual tricks, one a kaleidoscopic Bohemian Rhapsody nod, Mr Big having toured with Queen.

Tavares – The Mighty Power Of Love
Legs & Co are in the studio with an audience, which seems rare these days. It's a 'see what's around' week, everyone in a different coloured leotard, a differently wrapped beige scarf and, for flavour, a tambourine, shaken and tapped against the other wrist vigorously throughout to reflect the instrument's position high in the mix on the record. Wouldn't that make a hell of a noise in the studio? Can you get tambourine deadeners? (Don't answer that) Maybe that's why the crowd aren't all that enthusiastic compared to earlier, though something clearly happens to Patti up front as she puts her right leg out in accordance with the choreography, makes a surprised face and glances down at where her foot was. "A beautiful performance", apparently.

Leo Sayer – When I Need You
Very hesitant, Paul. And this man read out the chart rundown. Not a man always given to dynamism, Leo, as he stands stock still at the mike in what appears to be an ice hockey jersey, hands actually in his pockets for a good two and a half minutes. Look lively, Leo, much as the song may not demand it and all the director can come up with is multiple panning shots. Perhaps knowing we need something for the big finish, the Earth Wind & Fire outro seems to be focusing on the audience without telling them. Some leave, some stand around chatting, a large camera is dragged into shot for no good reason and with only a couple of exceptions everywhere is a tableau of awkwardness and knitwear.

EDIT NEWS: A song we'll see again but not in this version, Manhattan Transfer's Chanson D’Amour given the Legs & Co treatment, worth a look not for Burnett's comedy French accent but the leg work and the country thematic costumes with a hint of Where's Wally - on the occasions Ruby Flipper had two routines a show one would almost always be lost, but they decided the other was superior? - and a song we won't see again, Les Gray's unbecoming solo cover of Groovy Kind Of Love in a white jacket producing a rose out of seeming thin air at the end. He makes about as convincing a loving balladeer as Danny Dyer would.

Monday, 20 February 2012

"You don't look like 'em, George!": the 1989 Brit Awards revisited

It's the Brit Awards tomorrow, a charade of an annual event but at least they seem to have given up on the primary 'anything can happen' promotional angle this year, which as well as suggesting nobody should be interested in the music and awards blithely overlooks that the things that did make a press impression didn't happen on camera (Prescott's soaking), should really not have happened if the production team had a clue what they were doing (Brandon Block's gatecrashing, Sharon Osbourne trying to wrestle Vic Reeves off the mike), had a significance well beyond the ken of the commercial sector it was being presented to (Bill Drummond's machine gunning) or all of the above (Jarvis - the show director missed it and the footage of his appearance didn't surface until three days later) More pertinently the awards weren't restored to live TV until 2007, the event having taken place the day before transmission since... well...

Television has surely never seen such a major abdication of sense as when Samantha Fox, her UK charting days already behind her, and Mick Fleetwood, thrown in at the deep end on the back of his band's revival a couple of years earlier and on the promise of international footage sales, were put forward as hosts of the 1989 Brits. It was doomed well before we saw a moment. Rehearsals went to pot, the cleaners wouldn't let anyone in for much of the allotted time, the autocue was out of anyone's eyeline, Fox was overly nervous, Fleetwood was overly pissed.

Marvellously, instead of the lead-lined vault you might have envisaged, the whole thing has turned up online. Let's walk through it together.

Part one: your hosts come on and do something that's either a knowing gag or a cockup before Fox reveals it to be a cockup - before they've even spoken - a namecheck for Bruce Springsteen silences the kids and Julian Lennon turns up a little late before the sight of four grown adults standing around sheepishly on live TV.

Part two: The Four Tops are repeatedly introduced and then Boy George appears anyway, before Fleetwood starts introducing George for the next award anyway. Then an exclusive video message from Michael Jackson gets lost, meaning the show underruns, leading to all sorts of malarkey come the end.

Part three: Fox so spectacularly loses her place/grip that she ends up having to admit it on camera. "Wind away!"

Part four: Mick misses his cue while personal grooming, then the director gives up during his intro. Alan Price comes on to introduce the Brits School, points to Kenneth Baker and watches him nearly get booed out of the building.

Part five: A glorious fiasco of silence and confusion right at the start with Bill Wyman, Ronnie Wood and Gary 'are you not going to have a look at the possibilities first?' Davies. Nobody remembers to mention what the award actually is. Get your feet off there, Bros. Our hosts then fail to co-ordinate their Def Leppard intro.

Part six: Some comedy is attempted. The Best Classical Recording winner gets the shortest shrift you've ever heard. Fox is given the line "it's still possible for a female to sell her songs and not her image" and delivers it without apparent irony.

Part seven: Ken Russell imposes himself as only he could. Fox gets totally baffled by a routine about the height difference. Phil Collins' speech threatens to never end.

Part eight: Tina Turner has to stop Annie Lennox walking off stage the wrong way. The silences are getting longer. The chairman of the BPI tells Mick he's "done a wonderful job for us tonight".

Part nine: Lifetime achievement winner Cliff Richard is introduced too early and then his big speech build-up payoff turns out to be telling off the whole audience. He then walks off right in the way of the shot.

Part ten: Randy Newman and 'The Mark Knopfler Supergroup' closes the event. Randy Newman! Ending the Brits broadcast in 1989! Randy Newman! And the song didn't even chart in the end. The thing doesn't even stagger to a dignified finish as the floor manager manages to mislead Fleetwood as to how to end once the size of the underrun is discovered. A fitting climax.

Thursday, 16 February 2012

The disappeared: 10/2/77

Just the four shows have been wiped in 1977, though there may be more that are unbroadcastable for whatever reason - UK Gold and Einsfestival didn't show a lot from this year, and at least one programme has had to be reconstructed from off-air clips. This one, DLT's first outing of the year, is definitely AWOL... at least in vision, as it exists as a hissy homemade audio recording and is preserved on YouTube: part one, part two, part three. That still means we have visuals to fill in:

Sailor – One Drink Too Many
Actually this, Sailor's last visit to the show, does exist albeit in quality little better than flickbook. Sailor have claimed they took the title a trifle too literally but you wouldn't necessarily know on this evidence, apart from they seem to have left the Nickelodeon behind and Henry Marsh has moved on from white suit and Benny Hill minor character glasses to anticipating the look of Andy Partridge from XTC. That set with the triangles at the back debuted last week for Gary Glitter and you'll see it a lot more this year. Not especially lunatic seeming, DLT.

The Detroit Spinners – Wake Up Susan
This must have been in the studio as the pace of the intro on the recording is noticeably slower than the recording. Awkwardly this was a 1976 hit in the States and in the meantime it seems they'd changed lead singer. Compare 1976 and 1977 live version versions, see what you reckon.

Kiki Dee – First Thing In The Morning
I've listened to three versions of this and can't work out whether it's meant to be a ballad or not. This seems to be orchestrally backed, which might explain it. Picturing something long, flowing and maybe taffeta. "It could be a top five sound" enthuses DLT. It was a number 32 sound.

Boston – More Than A Feeling
The video, though it'll be on again if you feel you're really missing out.

Brotherhood Of Man – Oh Boy (The Mood I’m In)
As will this, though not for a month or so. You might have reasonably thought we'd seen the last of them at the end of 1976, but their none too subtle shift into an ersatz Abba was instead first signposted here. There's not so much as a twist on the last line.

Bryan Ferry – This Is Tomorrow
"21 today, or to be precise a couple of days ago..." Does he mean the song? Because Ferry was a full decade older than that and his birthday's in September, and nobody would have believed he'd have been 17 when Virginia Plain was a hit. The video, and again we'll get a rerun.

The Racing Cars – They Shoot Horses Don’t They?
Won't be the Rhondda Valley's slowest finest's last visit either, even though the "top five, I'll be bound" single peaked at 14.

Heatwave – Boogie Nights
"They don't shoot ladies, fortunately" No, I should hope they didn't. Legs & Co at ease. "I've heard of wearing my heart on my sleeve but that is ridiculous" comments DLT and one can only imagine the clothing budget, especially as they've left in the extended intro.

Johnny Nash – Birds Of A Feather
First appearance in eighteen months years for the commercial reggae progenitor with the sort of performance that makes one wonder whether it was with a crack session band Jesse Green-like or whether he had to stand there awkwardly held to the orchestra's whims. There's some definite woodwind there.

Julie Covington – Don’t Cry For Me Argentina
Its only week at number one, meaning 7.30 viewers have missed its entire chart run. It was only the video again, but they've actually dragged Julie in to explain herself, claiming her lack of studio appearances was down to her lack of time - really? - and the need for a symphony orchestra. Johnny Pearson must have been looking daggers at her. Covington plugs Rock Follies "and, erm, that's it" before having to clarify the subject of the song, Evita having been released in 1976 as an album but not becoming a hit until the 1978 stage version. "She made her mark!"

Thursday, 9 February 2012

TOTP 3/2/77 (tx 9/2/12): ITMA

Oh, hang on, that's from the wrong show, sorry about that. (No idea who made that, by the way - Charlie Brooker was first to make its presence public but it has a ring of Peter Serafinowicz and Robert Popper about it, especially as one of the band names is similar to something they've used)

"Another half hour of super sound and view for you" promises a bouffant Kid Jensen, which is a lie right off the bat as the proper version is nearly 40 minutes long and would have been even then. Just about scans, too. New pictures abound this week, as Leo Sayer meaningfully observes himself back at us in a mirror and Gary Glitter looks like he's pinned against a wall by an unseen firing squad. Please, say nothing. More importantly, though, we have a second, head on shot of the Rose Royce Cortina, this time with the roller up. Can't say it's affected the looks much.

Thin Lizzy – Don’t Believe A Word
You again. As if this isn't the third time we've seen it we get the screen/dancing effect, which we must come up with a catch-all title for before next week. Of chief interest this time is a man in a brown sheepskin jacket, tie and tache who appears to be trying to bust out some proper moves irrespective of whether he actually can, whether that be to the music or just generally in life. A very quick cutaway to some shifting youngsters disguises the Noel-in-background moment. In a neat shot, and as if to save on the costs of operating the crane camera, Kid backannounces "their latest 45" - hardly latest any more, Kid, more 'current' - as off to the right a figure in silver appears on the performance stage making for a neat segue to... hang on, it's not...

Gary Glitter – It Takes All Night Long
Who says you don't get surprises on television any more? Even Calvin Harris tweeted his surprise, which at least means another covert celebrity viewer flushed out. In case you missed it there's a sort of backstory here, which is that when Jonathan King got cut out last July he complained to the papers (the Mail, bravely for him), about a month later as it happened, and the DG issued an apology ("his performance will not be edited out of any future repeat" - starting again, are they?) Even so, you'd kind of think they'd have played safe and left this year's three Glitter appearances on the unedited versions, especially as the Mirror caught on to the first one claiming he'd "be seen singing a 1977 number, believed to be I’m The Leader Of The Gang". Which was a 1973 number. Good work there. Anyway, Kid's enthused, stomping along to the intro even if he does leave the last word off the title. Gary's well past the point of pop reward here so seems to be morphing into some sort of creepy glam crooner affair, dressed in a suit possibly made of Bacofoil. He actually looks nervous at the start, such is the magnifying power of the close-up. Then he starts singing come-ons in the creepiest voice he can muster and making Carry On-randy faces directly at us. At one point, having spent much of the time between vocals with an arched back and a haughty provenance, he mock-airs his collar before staring straight down the lens and stage whipsering "what a night!" before prancing up some stairs and, frankly, shaking his arse. Also bear in mind he was only 32 at the time but looks deep into middle age, and you don't have to consider anything else about him to feel the black ice forming where warm blood used to be.

Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes – Don't Leave Me This Way
Knowing we need someone to stir the loins back into order, here come Legs & Co. "There's a whole lot of directives in the chart this week" comments Kid, possibly the most deathless thing he's ever said. Elegance is the watchword following last week's Victoriana, moving on a decade or three as the budget really gets pushed out once more. Evening gowns, opera gloves, drapes, even a big old chandelier. That does mean not much space to work in, meaning a fairly vanilla for their standards number involving lots of circling the external parts of the set, striding around in pairs and limbular expressiveness in a line.

Boz Scaggs – What Can I Say
Kid promises "a very special guest", so he'd better deliver. In the meantime a video of Boz and his huge band, including two drummers and one of the three backing singers having a tambourine to hand

The Real Thing – You'll Never Know What You're Missing
The camera stays on Kid for a long time after he's introduced the song as he looks progressively more concerned. As it's a slow smootchy one, with more than a nod to Homely Girl, and maybe having seen the Pips the other week they've dressed up in their wedding suits for the occasion, flowers in the lapel holes and everything. Chris Amoo, who always has to be different, has augmented his outfit with a huge explorers' hat that any church goer would insist he remove before the service. It seems to be a perfectly reasonable live vocal, Amoo giving it plenty of huge soulful exhortation throughout the last third to remind us of his frontman status.

Silver Convention – Everybody's Talkin' 'Bout Love
Repeat from two weeks ago of the bra'd up German Three Degrees.

The Rubettes – Baby I Know
And they say pop acts grow up too fast these days. Just three years after Sugar Baby Love, the Rubettes had reverted to their archetype as session men and gone ersatz country rock. They even look the part, Alan Williams sporting a receding side parting and Les Gray-by-way-of-Parker glasses. The Rubettes, unsurprisingly, are no Eagles. In terms of studio manufactured bands going their own way, they're some distance from the Monkees. This did however lead to the wondrous spectacle of the Rubettes UK trending on Twitter and people becoming confused. You would have to ask, wouldn't you.

David Soul – Don't Give Up On Us
Last time (until Christmas), thank goodness. Even crowd dance cutaways can't really save it. It's after this that Kid reveals his special guest, and "I didn't disappoint you"... Thelma Houston. Good, except she was pretty much unknown here at the time, promoting her first single as she was, her own Don't Leave Me This Way, presumably why she wasn't on to perform, unless that was due to her work permit or something. As with all guests she doesn't get to do much, merely name her single and announce the credits song, but like Terry Kath she adds an element of impromptu dance too. Unlike Kath it's a song you actually can dance to, Heatwave's Boogie Nights, and it actually looks like dancing rather than an acid flashback. Kid again wishes us "good love" to close. If that was his attempt at a catchphrase it really wasn't working out.

EDIT NEWS: Boney M and Leo Sayer, both of whom we've seen before and will see again. That's how editing these shows should work.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

TOTP 27/1/77 (tx 2/2/12): think pink

We're still very much in the teething stages of establishing what sort of pop musical year 1977 will be, and it really doesn't settle down for a few weeks yet. David Soul and Boney M may be emergent already, but around them is still a certain amount of mush and shots in the dark. The dark, coincidentally, is where Tony Blackburn was told his combination of lumberjack shirt and straight-from-the-bin-round brown jacket with big lapels would best work.

The brown Cortina, registration NCP 303P, must have had a thorough wash by now. Could the BBC not be bothered to ask the label if they had anything better?

The Brothers – Sing Me
Starting with recent Opportunity Knocks winners, which puts them on a level par with Bonnie Langford and Little & Large, who like these men also adapted their Knocks-conquering routine into reggae. You have to make time to watch their first Op Knocks if only to admire the harp and vocal trio and wonder how anyone was supposed to judge cting against music. The Quality Street Orange Crunch wrapped-coloured shirts have been retained now alonsgide scarlet trousers, albeit without the matching jackets for the full effect, and they're taking this post-Nicholas reggae to the masses with much less exuberant stagecraft, the instrument head waving and livewire moves having been used up at Hughie's behest. It's a litany of bad metaphor, from ships to kites, where obviously "I come down when you pull my string". Tony moves his shoulders in some approximation of rhythmic motion in the background. Tony is keen to mention that they actually are

David Parton – Isn't She Lovely
"Talking about singing things, here's a lovely song..." There's a link that wouldn't work on the page, and barely works out of the mouth. Yes, it's that man again, still with eyes firmly closed and expression forcefully pained. The boys one side of the stage bop about expectedly. The girls on the other side are nonplussed, as well they might be. And let's watch that mid-song break stagecraft in action: some very forceful handclapping, what seems to be him putting his fingers to the corners of his mouth in a 'smile, bastards!' motion with no great facial joy, going across to the other side of the stage only to find they aren't interested either, giving the rose from the lapel of his white suit jacket to a random girl, wandering off the stage to press two sets of flesh, and back for the climactic verse. The camera nds up focusing on a girl near the front who clearly does not want to be seen swaying to this song at all, especially not on national television with her mates watching. The director lingers on her to teach her a lesson. "Isn't she absolutely lovely" Tony renames the song before predicting it'll be a number one sound. Its imminent fall was inevitable from that moment.

The Eagles – New Kid In Town
Not the most immediate of songs to give the Legs & Co treatment to, which may be why Flick opted for the opaque. Hanging around outside mock Victoriana shop fronts, one of which advertises 'CEGARS', in frilly dresses, big hats, long gloves and fur stoles may not have been what Don Henley and Glenn Frey quite had in mind but the relaxed pace allows for some character work you don't tend to get in Legs routines. Patti alone pulls four different expressions in her first three seconds on screen. The loose story framework is surprise and intrigue at Lulu, who gets many solo routines in portraying, well, a new kid in town. At the end Sue and Pauline find acceptance of her anew.

Barry Biggs – Sideshow
The shoehorned into pink frilly suited effort from the pre-Christmas show. Given how much specialised editing has had to be done to cram as much as possible in this week it's a mystery why they didn't just leave this out...

Status Quo – Wild Side Of Life
...or this on its third appearance. As the intro, in which Tony asks of an overmade-up woman "it's your birthday today, isn't it Barbara?" before hijacking her low-key celebrations by mentioning it's his own birthday coming up (January 29th, in fact) and he's "looking forward to being a teenager", of course. Afterwards he appears to suggest he was having "a really good truck".

Mr Big – Romeo
Not the Mr Big who did To Be With You but a band who make Smokie look like Black Sabbath incorporating a man who just stops himself short of complete falsetto and a poodle-permed co-singer, both of whom consider "step back inside me, Romeo" to be a winning approximation of subtle kinship mentality. The keyboard player has an open leather jacket with nothing underneath, the bassist is sporting a Panama hat. It's a complete mess of imagery.

Andy Fairweather Low – Be-Bop ‘N’ Holler
Tony calls it "Be-Bop A Hula", which is something else. In fairness it's not a song heavy on either be-bop or hollering but does feature two drummers, one of whom seems to play nothing but rimshots, and Fairweather Low seemingly singing through a closed mouth - not in miming, in the sound of his voice. Just in front of Drummer Two someone seems to have turned the dry ice machine on full setting and just left it.

The Moments – Jack In The Box
For some reason as Tony introduces this video clip the camera focuses for a long time on an empty stage shrouded in artificial mist as if something or someone is going to emerge. And then they don't and the director remembers to cut to the clip. The three Moments are wearing pink suits! They wouldn't be allowed anywhere near the club lounge they're performing in today in those. As their fine range of facial hair and a tremendous tight afro soul up a storm - "it sounds like a game but it's a dog on a chain"? - the fake screen projection returns. Someone in a cardigan right in front of the screen could kill with the ferocity of his shoulder thrusts if he doesn't learn to control them properly, but the producer's not thought this bit through as to the side of the screen we get to see people emerging from backstage. Two appear to be being marched out. Two others, sitting down throughout, embark on a play-fight. Eventually someone who looks like he'd be in Madness in three years' time starts hopping from foot to foot. Meanwhile back at the Moments an older woman sitting on grinning appears for a couple of seconds and disappears again without explanation. Tony mentions it was his record of the week, not wanting Noel to have oneupmanship.

The New Seekers – I Wanna Go Back
"We haven't had a new record from the New Seekers for a long time" Tony confidently states. Seven months, Tony, that's how long before they'd last been on the show. A classic Pops trick sees Eve Graham's head merged in over the hole in an acoustic guitar being plucked for the intro. This line-up involves two acoustic guitars, an inaudible electric bass and a lot of swaying from foot to foot in time, not to mention a hell of a truck driver's gear change. Are they playing this live? It cuts off early, and not before time.

David Soul – Don’t Give Up On Us
"Do you like David Soul?" "I think he's lovely, yes". That's fortunate. Video, clearly, a quick goodbye and Rose Royce play us out.

EDIT NEWS: Ten songs in half an hour! No, it didn't really flow well. Should have been two out, really, to stop the piecemeal mid-song cuts and repetition but just Julie Covington again. We've seen a suggestion this has been cut twice - and the week it went to number one has been lost, though she's on again at Christmas - because of Argentina's current Falkland sabre rattling, but that seems somewhat hasty. Maybe it's been cut because the montage they're using is so deathly dull.