Thursday, 29 November 2012

TOTP 10/11/77 (tx 29/11/12): bursting at the seams

Noel's in a suit so he's in a serious mood. No, wait, that can't be right. The Jacksons' Goin' Places under the charts. Somewhat unfairly the photographer wouldn't wait to let Rita Ray get changed.

Obviously Den always dressed like that.

Tom Robinson Band – 2-4-6-8 Motorway
Not often we've started with a repeat visitor. Maybe Robin was impressed by the numbers punching the air, who respond in kind again along with a good proportion of clapping along at the start - though there don't appear to be a lot of people around this week - as the crane camera, given plenty of runway space, takes off, heads through a big cardboard ring and films Robinson, pink triangle badge again proudly worn alongside scruffy skinny school tie, from above. He seems quietly amused by the directorial concept. As you suspected they would eventually the first chorus sees a cut to a different band member with every number. The band seem to be playing totally live in accordance with the Musician's Union sticker on Tom's bass, going on Noel having to wait a moment or two too long waiting for them to pipe down.

Ruby Winters – I Will
First proper link and, dangerously, Noel's trying out a concept joke. "Here's a lady who used to be in the Four Seasons alongside Donna Summer". Takes a moment. Ruby's in a white room with a white piano, a white big chair, a white dress and, for stylistic variation, a red rose in her hand and a big pot of them next to the piano. "I remember when Bud Flanagan and Julie Andrews used to sing that" coos Noel. "I bet you do" retort a nation.

Roxy Music – Virginia Plain

No, hang on, that's not it. Reissued to promote a Greatest Hits, because reissuing songs that were hits five years earlier was pretty common then - we've only just seen Radar Love, remember - although Noel oddly doesn't mention it this is the iconic 1972 appearance of much costumage and glitter. You know the one.

No, hang on, that's not it either, and YES I CAN SEE HE IS. As well as all that there's lots of unselfconscious dancing from the audience so you can tell it isn't 1972. It gets cut off early, unfortunately. Well, look how many songs they're trying to pack into half an hour. If you count rundown and playout, thirteen!

Boney M – Belfast
And who could possibly pass up the opportunity of seeing this experience - "song" seems too reductive - again? Uniting Catholics and Protestants in common scorn.

Elvis Costello – Watching The Detectives
Or as Noel introduces him "the Red Shoes man", odd given Red Shoes wasn't a chart hit. As with Red Shoes Elvis is in full angry nerd mode, seeking out the camera as early as sees fit so he can stare it down, eventually leering right over the mike with full-on scary googly eyes for most of the second verse as if we committed whatever it is ourselves. Meanwhile Pete Thomas drums extravagantly mid-stage. "Watching all the detectives and things" is how Noel succinctly puts it.

The Bee Gees – How Deep Is Your Love
And then, Legs & Co ahead, Noel just goes for it. "This is where you have to get your rulers out and tape measures and your plumb lines and, ah, get measuring. Feel a bit silly now." What's he going on about? Presumably he's freestyling on the theme of depth, but - and maybe we've all seen too many DLT intros to bring this thought on - the mention of rulers was in an Adrian Mole sense. If it seems it couldn't get more obtuse Legs & Co oblige in what seems to be farmer's market chic - flat caps, waistcoats, check shirts, slacks, sensible shoes. It says here Flick chose the clothes herself to fit the mood, which makes you wonder what interpretation she saw in the song. Gill, Lulu and Rosie do a good line of thumbs jauntily placed into belt loops, I'll say that for the Pauline Sueless routine which involves a lot of conjoined fancy striding and even more pleasant grinning.

Kenny Everett & Mike Vickers – Captain Kremmen (Retribution)
This is the show we would have got had BBC4 not found the rushes for the 1973 show back at the start of October, for this reason. Strange this gets such attention, Kenny was on Capital at the time and didn't start the Video Show until 1978 so it would have meant little to the vast majority of the audience. Noel doesn't even try to place it in proper context, instead working around the theme of Star Trek and - hey! - Patrick Moore. Sadly it's only the video, for which Ken presses some buttons, holds a phone to his ear and hangs on visible wires in a spacesuit. Vickers for his part appears dressed as a WWII flying ace prodding an organ in big gloves. How odd this whole venture seems.

Santana – She’s Not There
"There's an interesting story about this record - you listen to it and I'll tell these two ladies the story" Noel ventures before turning and animatedly miming something to two ladies wearing Tom Robinson Band stickers. It's probably more interesting than the grainy enormodome live clip.

Tina Charles – Love Bug/Sweets For My Sweet
The orchestra sound like they're being chased by bees, which is a good start. Tina's an old hand at this now, when not stuck in the gantry, but with her either recent or ongoing pregnancy she's been forced into a billowing marquee of a black dress. No matter how much of her particular standing on the spot and swaying a bit charm she plays up she can neither hide the nature of the song, which counts as a medley only insomuch as two lines of the latter are inserted towards the end, or the move she really goes for in the later stages of swinging her arms around as if trying to take off like a helicopter. A large number of people at the front of the stage, so in the worst possible position to get quickly to the other stage and see the next act, are wearing the T-shirt of...

Darts – Daddy Cool/The Girl Can’t Help It
Behold, the three fashion styles of doo-wop.

Yes, of course Den's jacket is fully shiny. The editing team are really getting their worth out of their new equipment, this week forming a rainbow-hued small arrowhead which Noel follows around the screen. "Double top! Double top!" he obliges at the last. They're back in the studio with some changes, one being the pianist is actually on the stage this time, another that Den, who otherwise is his usual reserved self, has no room to extemporise for his solo spot, ending up rolling on the floor before towering over the front row. Two girls right at the front by his feet obligingly look, bored, in the opposite direction. One of them, it turns out, is wearing their T-shirt! There's gratitude.

ABBA – The Name Of The Game
Merchandise! Maybe.

"You should have a look what's written on the front" he teases, to which his new friend unknowingly obliges.

Well, that's confusing. "Aw, you let the secret out" Noel laughs for some reason, as if it were advertising or some sort of outrage he were trying to hide, then back to the world's least convincing staring competition. Noel lists all the places we can find him, thinks of a few more ("it's my turn to turn the globe round between programmes..."), and Rod Stewart sees us out.


Chris Hughes said...

My favourite bit of the chart rundown at the moment is the shot of Roxy Music all in individual coloured boxes, like The Brady Bunch.

I can't help wondering if the Ruby Winters video was the inspiration for The White Guardian's appearance in Doctor Who a few months later (Google him, he was all dressed in white and had a big whicker chair too).

I liked the classic direction on Tom Robinson Band, cutting to a different member on each number in the "2! 4! 6! 8!" sequence. Ace, that.

And of course, I enjoyed Legs and Co in their Country Life chic (that's Country Life the magazine, as opposed to Country Life the Roxy Music album, or indeed Country Life the butter.)

In the current climate, 'Sue' seems a rather unfortunate word to be displaying in close proximity to a 1970s Radio 1 DJ, alas.

Angelo Gravity said...

The Legs routine made me think of those chimney sweeps dancing with Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins, doing ChimChim Cheroo ~ a wierd juxtaposition with How Deep is Your Love.

But the highlight this week again for me were Darts ~ if that band can't put a smile on your face then nothing can.

Can't be long now before that first hoot of the bagpipes....

daf said...

What laboratory is developing these films? As with the Abba promo, this appears to be covered in cigarette ash and pubes!

BONEY M – Belfast
Unless Bobby knocked over the mike-stand on two separate occasions (not an inconceivable notion), this seems to be a repeat.
It's difficult to say whether this made things better or worse, (did it get any airplay in Northern Ireland?) . On the whole, their hearts seemed to be in the right place (unlike that mike-stand).

ELVIS COSTELLO – Watching The Detectives
Nice to see Bruce Thomas really sticking it to the man with those red trousers - take that grandad!

KENNY EVERETT & MIKE VICKERS – Captain Kremmen (video)
It's the lovely Kenny - but . . . BOO! Where's the chinstrap gone? Ah well, nothing lasts for ever (except dog's milk).
Featuring some of the most liberal use of the old CSO since Barry Letts was let loose on 'The Claws of Axos' during the Jon Pertwee years.

SANTANA – She’s Not There (video)
And now for something filmed from inside a sock. Carlos Santana (it's either him or John Oates - I can just about make out a moustache) shows up for a few bars, before realising he's put on the wrong guitar - or maybe he changes it every verse. After squeezing out a brief solo, it's all over

TINA CHARLES – Love Bug – Sweets For My Sweet (Medley)
The Ever reliable Tina, with the old Pops orchestra doing the musical 'honours' here (we'll miss them when they're gone . . . probably) The guitarist seems particularly pleased with that 'biddle-boddle' riff he's come up with.

(ABBA – The Name Of The Game (video)
I'm sure I've seen old Tidybeard do that link before somewhere - Top of the Pops t-shirt with it's back to us - turns round revealing 'Sue' on the chesticle area - Noel says "Oh you've spoiled it now." Spoiled what? Don't get it.

Arthur Nibble said...

Chris, loved the "Sue" joke. Boom boom tish!

A video-heavy edition, though strangely enjoyable for me, even down to the jaunty Jacksons track. Not a fan of theirs, but this started the show off nicely. Wonder how many tickets their impending tour will actually shift without the big fella?

Cracking TRB performance, with a saucy pouting Tom and a guitarist who found time to smooth down his hair during his solo (showoff!) and also try to sneer near the end but looked instead like he had a smell under his nose.

Ruby’s video looked like that painting of a white cat in a snowstorm. I thought she’d nodded off at first, and I’m sure she’d have played that piano for us if she could have found it. At least her rose clenching was less buttock-clenching than Renee and Renato.

You could tell that Roxy Music video was from a different era, almost a different planet, except the bassist seemed to have invented the TRB look - check that shirt / school tie combination again!

Elvis Costello may have been lucky to get on this edition, as he was actually a non-mover at 33, and I realise he’s like Marmite, but I absolutely loved this – as did the bloke stage left in the beige / yellow jumper in the pan shot, beaming and singing the chorus to the camera.

Great, The Heebeegeebees! Oh, no, it’s the other lot. Are my eyes failing me, or was Sue missing from the ensemble this week? The gals looked to me like alluring extras for “Steptoe and Son”. Could you imagine if John Travolta had worn that garb in “Saturday Night Fever”?

That Kenny Everett video was just weird, weird, weird. This stopped just two chart places shy of a chart rundown pic. I’d have loved to see that.

I didn’t realise Carlos Santana wasn't the singer on “She’s Not There”. Maybe it was a US / UK video speed issue, but this version was almost as fast as UK Subs.

Bless her, Tina was always available. Johnny Pearson must have been rubbing his hands with glee, ready to interpret this as only he could. Mind you, terrible segue with a truck driver’s key change.

Anyone else notice that Darts’ singer Ian could never, ever, draw a proper square when he did that action? The pianist played it so safe by keeping that far away from Den, I was surprised he didn’t have a crash helmet on for extra wussy protection. Extra points to Bob “Billy The” Fish, a squad player in the song’s vocals but trying to get as much attention as possible way over there.

THX said...

Tom Robinson was on 6 Music earlier this evening and explained he would make his songs as simple to play as possible at this time because he would hire the TR band depending on who was available wherever he was performing that night. So was the band who appeared with him here a bunch of session musicians? The guitarist certainly wanted to make a name for himself.

Ruby Winters, or was it Morticia Addams: "Do you mind if I smoke?" Seriously, where were those fumes coming from?

Obviously Brian and Michael watched Legs & Co this episode and thought, "There's our look!" Wasn't it Sue who was missing, though? Not the Sue with the T-shirt at the end.

The weird thing about the Kenny Everett Kremmen tune is that it doesn't really have any jokes in it, just campy lines. The video needed Cosgrove Hall to come to the rescue, but fascinating to see all the same.

Santana: why was the singer holding a loofah? If it wasn't a loofah, what was it? Film quality too poor to make out.

Did Tina Charles remind anyone of Demis Roussos? Without the beard, obviously.

Dory said...

The highlight of this week's show has to be Noel Edmunds himself. This I think is his last ever TOTP show except for the xmas special, as I think he bows out as a presenter at the end of 1977 to concentrate on other shows like Swap Shop. Shame to see him go from TOTP, as he does come across as the most polished and slick of all the presenters.

So to the performers, and the best has to be DARTS again, as they always put a smile to my face, as Daddy Cool is the first of many hits during 1977/78 where Darts would dominate the TOTP studio time and time again.

i thought Boney M were good, and that song Belfast which initially didn't cut well, seems to be growing on me more and more, especially with the cute lead vocal...who is she?eaddedri 7642

eightiespopkid said...

Dory - Noel has another year still to go. The 'last show' you are thinking of is the 1978 Christmas special.

Apparently there is a 2hr 40min window reserved for TOTP-related material to be broadcast on BBC4 on Friday 4th January. I wonder what that could be...

Arthur Nibble said...

Dart's Sax player Horatio Hornblower (real name Nigel Truebridge or something similar) wrote one of their best singles in my opinion, the top 10 hit "Get It". By that time, sadly, Big Den had hopped it.

THX said...

By the way, does anyone else think you could sing the lyrics of Stevie Wonder's Master Blaster to the tune of Watching the Detectives? I've never tried it, but it sounds possible.

Arthur Nibble (again) said...

How does Stevie Wonder like his doughnuts? Wi' jam in until the break of dawn! A new take on an old joke. Ah, but can you sing "Watching The Detectives" to Stevie's hit? Ay? Ay?

jazzyandy said...

Loved Roxy - but now that punk has been and gone from these reruns i no longer feel the thrill of it all. They all pale in comparison to the 1973 Everett edition from a few weeks back. Let's go back and have some more selected shows from 71-74 instead of the humdrum offerings of 1978.

Bamaboogiewoogie said...

Noel's hair is all lopsided this week looking less like Dill The Dog from The Herbs and more like Farah Fawcett Majors dragged through a hedge sideways.

The Jacksons - Ironically Going Places only went up 4 places to number 26.

TRB look like they're performing behind the Olympic rings (the BBC must have got them cheap after the 1976 Olympic Games). I wonder how many people got the meaning of Tom's pink triangle badge at the time?

Ruby Winters covering a song that was a hit for Billy Fury. Very brief video clip though, more of a foggy weekend than a whole Winter (that's a Noel-style pun). Her album sleeve featured the red rose she's holding on a white background, so she had a design concept.

I remember seeing the Roxy Music clip at the time and thinking how weird it was to be experiencing nostalgia at the age of 15. In the days before video and DVD it was a novelty to see old TV broadcasts and I felt the same when BBC2 showed the repeat of a whole Multi Coloured Sawp Shop from just a year earlier (someone mentioned this a few weeks ago). This is nostalgia for the nostalgia.

Legs and Co - I remember our art teacher at school Miss Jeffries adopted that country squire look, it was very popular at the time. Noel's comment about getting rulers, etc out was in response to DLT (I think) at the time who said the real title of the song was "How Deep is yours Love"? This routine is a lot more interesting than the official video which has the Bee Gees walking in front of some coloured lights.

Kenny Everett ironically making the worlds worst comedy record. Good video though in a bad way. I can see how this would lead to his Thames show as Kenny has to do a lot of 'acting' to make the thing funny.

I love Tina Charles' serious stab at a Northern soul song but it was a let down by a terrible performance. And why seque into a Sixties favourite? Because the first song was shite.

Funny thing about the Darts song is that you can hardly hear the "piano machine". I get the impression that the band handed out those Darts shirts at the start of the show and the ones wearing 'em weren't really fans of the group just the lucky ones who blagged them first.

Even the BBC were seemingly bored with ABBA by this point. The name of the game clearly was to squeeze quarts into pint pots.

Steve Williams said...

The studio looked enormous this week, or big enough for that crane above Tom Robinson at least. I think this is also the first show of the year not produced by Robin Nash. He certainly put in the hours.

Bits of the Captain Kremmen song remind me of Music Response by The Chemical Brothers. Maybe just me. As mentioned, as he was only on in London at the time, God alone knows what the audience would have made of it. The Santana video was presumably directed by the same person as the bizarre Demis Roussos video last year, or it was filmed by one of the band themselves, undoubtedly the lowest quality footage we've seen on this run so far, worse even than T Connection.

The thinking is that the Virginia Plain performance might only exist in the archives because they got it out for this re-release. I never worked out why Bryan Ferry had applied a huge J-cloth to the front of his piano.

And yeah, it was Sue on holiday.

Anonymous said...

New stage left/right/overhead backdrops as well last night,

But did anyone in scenic construction at any time, point out that when viewed from certain angles those wooden slats formed up to perfectly make the 'W' letter from the LWT ident?

70's Boy said...

Re Noel: yes, 1978 was his last year on TOTP, although he only presented three of the weekly shows. Lots of energy as one would expect from the Tom Robinson Band and Darts live performances, and I've always had a soft spot for Tina Charles (a cracking voice - and she'd had her baby by this time, incidentally). No Sue with Legs & Company (the full name, in deference to Noel) this week but nice to see that Noel had another one on standby.

Arthur Nibble! said...

If anyone remembers a recent thread which listed singles with exclamation marks in the title, I've discovered that Ruby Winters' single was pressed as "I Will!" on at least some labels, although the record sleeve doesn't show the exclamation mark. By quirk of fate, the same thing happened with her only other top 30 hit, "Come To Me(!)".

Mark F said...

@jazzyandy: They don't show ones from 71-74 because there are hardly any left. In fact I think the only reason that Roxy Music clip survives is because of it being used in 77 - the original has probably long since been deleted.

I think it's good that they're repeating these, as it helps to counter rose-tinted 70s nostalgia. To hear some people talk anyone would think that in 1977 the entire nation went out and purchased the first Clash and Sex Pistols albums. The reality, as we can see from these shows, is that even at the height of punk, vast numbers of people were still listening to Tina Charles, Showaddywaddy and the bloody Barron Knights!

70's Boy said...

To counter-argue Mark F, I would say that the popularity of the acts he disparages, and many others un-named, only goes to show that the rose-tinted nostalgia is fully justified; and that the comparatively minor roles played by most the punk/new wave acts is a blessed relief.

Arthur Nibble said...

The edition with the first showing of "Virginia Plain" was indeed wiped. The song was on three consecutive TOTP's in 1972 (performance / Pan's People routine / repeat of studio performance), but it didn't quite manage the same blanket coverage as, say, "Magic Fly".

Pauline's Dimples said...

Pauline was present and correct in the Legs & Company routine, doing the Lambeth Walk in the Del-Boy- meets-the-country-set gear.
The troupe was Sueless.

Bamaboogiewoogie said...

Funny to see Noel and Kenny Everett on the same show, they were never the best of pals mainly because he got Kenny's show when he left the Beeb in 1970 and stole his act. I remember they were on another show together and Kenny described Noels hair as "pure shredded wheat".

Simon thank you for including those Roxy Music spoofs. Johnny Vegas as Brian Eno is hillarious because he's so big and Eno's so skinny.

It's crazy to think that The Jacksons only got to number 26 but The Baron Knights made number 7. Britian was a strange place back then.

The stand-out performance for me this week was Elvis Costello. I like the way he's entering into the spirit of punk but doing it in a more restrained way. His staring at the camera freaked me out at the time but it all looks quite harmless now.

FishyFish said...

@eightiespopkid I've checked Digiguide and there is a slot shown for Pops on the 4th Jan. Two in fact - one from nine to ten, and then ten to eleven, which would correspond to the "Story of 197X" and "Big Hits" shows they've shown at the start of the past couple of years' repeats.

Most of the rest of the schedule for BBC4 on that night is down as TBA, so it seems promising for the continuation of the run that information has already been released to listings guides.

Arthur Nibble again said...

At this moment, poor Simon probably doesn't know whether to laugh or cry!

Note to self - must remember to watch "The Joy of the Single" which was on BBC4 last Friday.

Simon said...

I would warn DigiGuide isn't always reliable this far in advance - as you say most of New Year week is a blizzard of TBAs and as I recall last year the two Christmas shows were buffeted all around the schedule before ending up where they did. Also, if they're only showing Story Of and Big Hits, where's the first proper show going to go? I can't imagine they'd launch it, after all the fuss, at 11pm.

What would a recap be without misidentifying a member of Legs & Co, eh? Though Sue/Pauline is a stretch even by my standards.

FishyFish said...

@Simon That's true, although there is a 40 minute TBA slot at 8:20pm which could fit the bill (past years have had an episode sandwiched between the docs though IIRC).

I guess there's the chance (assuming Digiguide is correct) that they could just be showing the documentaries because they've already produced them, and then not show any weekly repeats thereafter. Hope not though.

Noax said... would be just like the Beeb to give us the 2 docos (and you just know the Hits of 78 one will be all the stuff we've seen hundreds of time) and then say 'there you go, you've had TOTP 78!'. Hope not, we'll see soon enough....

This week's show then, with Noel in a slightly subdued mood for some reason, and a great Jacksons song to start.

Tom Robinson Band - I thought the guitar man made a pretty good fist of staring down the camera, but on a show including Den Hegarty even winning this battle meant he wasn't going to win the war.

Ruby Winters - Fire! Fire! Her rose is on fire! Oh no, it's a ton of dry ice. Were The Stranglers in the studio next door wafting it in?
The song's alright I suppose, if nothing spectacular.

Roxy Music - You can't chop the end of this!! Gah, too many songs they tried to squeeze in this week. Thanks for posting the Kevin Eldon Big Train clip Simon, as that's the first thing I always think of when I hear this song now.

Elvis Costello - 'The Red Shoes Man'? Was that performance considered legendary at the time or something?!
Another good performance from Declan, though not one of my favourite songs of his.

Legs & Co - I should have mentioned this last week but only found out this week while watching the episode and reading the DVD booklet : the week before on the Wednesday, Gill was (for some bizarre reason) dubbing voiceovers as 'The Queen' for The Goodies episode Royal Command. So if she was absent last week - I can't remember - then that'll be way.
Not a very interesting fact but more interesting than this routine sadly.

Kenny Everett - I was looking forward to a comedy extravaganza as I'd never heard this before. So was surprised to hear an almost instrumental that wasn't funny at all. I bet that 'command deck' was in Doctor Who - my guess would be "The Invisible Enemy".

Santana - This video put me in mind of that famous footage of a rugby commentator (not Eddie Waring I don't think, possible Bill McLaren) trying to cover a game shrouded in fog. 'Some of the players are going backwards.....and some are going forwards'.
Not that I minded, I absolutely detest Santana with his tedious noodling. His comeback circa 2000 was about as welcome as a dose of the clap.

Tina Charles - What a weird song(s) that is yet again a waste of her talents. It's such a shame that she didn't get better songs.

Darts - Great once again.

ABBA - Is this 'Sue' the same woman Noel was pretended was famous the last time she was on and then said he hadn't got time to interview?
Either way, a rather unfortunate link a bit like DLT's a few weeks ago, though I'm confident that Noel is clean as a whistle and that his cosmic ordering will protect him from bad things.
(It won't, it's bollocks)

Simon said...

Re Gill and the Goodies: really? Everywhere else seems to credit it to the rather more actor-trained Sheila Steafel.

Noax said...

Maybe there's some confusion as I believe Sheila Steafel may have played (or voiced) The Queen in a different Goodies episode.

According to Andrew Pixley who wrote the booklet (and he's a TV archive expert so I have no reason not to believe him!) 'Gill Clarke, a dancer with the group Legs & Co, spent an hour dubbing the Queen's Voice on Wednesday 2nd November'.

She's listed in the uncredited cast section alongside Jeanette Charles who was a famous double for the Queen in many TV programmes so Jeanette presumably was 'the body' so to speak - not that you see much of her face in the programme, with Gill doing the voice!!

Andrew Pixley doesn't explain exactly why they chose her, sadly..

80sblokeinthe70s said...

2-4-6-8 Motorway
The band modelling the Rick Mayall 80s political student look here.Great record though.

The really good live vocal here made it for me - one of the best live vocals we've had I'd say.

Watching The Detectives
RE the Red Shoes reference I think it may have had something to do with it being the kind of "new wave" that Noel Edmunds liked personally. PS one of the Attractions is the writer of what is still strangely the definitive biography of Bruce Lee.It's ok but I can't believe a professional writer hasn't done one.

Captain Kremmen
I vaguely remember Captain Kremmen on Capital and must have seen this in 1977 but I always imagined the record would have had more of a story in it. Quite liked it though.

Virginia Plain - not one of the best examples for crowd shots but even on this one you can seem the extra energy of a 1972 TOTP compared to the Light Entertainment of around about 1975 and after.

She’s Not There
I also always thought that Carlos Santana sang this. And although the actual single and the video were both live this is not the same performance. The single though not particularly my thing is a very good quite distinctive performance and I can see why it was a hit.

Love Bug–Sweets For My Sweet
Yet another medley - it must have been the thing for a couple of months back then.I never realised how pretty Tina was (she looks great on the run down picture)incidentally there's a video on Youtube of her on a European pop show of about 4 or 5 years ago when she'd have been into her 50s but looks amazingly young.

I've sort of got used to Noel Edmonds now and as someone said he's at least very professional.

29 November 2012 22:10

Vintage Reading said...

Oh dear, Legs & Co were lost, LOST without lovely Sue.

Yay for Darts! Best band on the show and I'm not usually keen on doo-wap revival. In 78 they release the awesome Boy from New York City.

Old Applejack said...

Nice clip of DLT on Sounds of the Seventies last night. On BBC4. He's not that big a risk to viewers, clearly.

Simon said...

Just to prove what I said about DigiGuide, the latest update has added a half hour Pops on Saturday 22nd (without changing the description of the shows two days earlier, which is curious given assuming we're Savileless those take us up to the end of the year proper) and changed the time of the Christmas show. Sort-of-more importantly, 1978 has appeared on the 4th in Story Of and Big Hits form only, with no accompanying episode as yet. In fact, the programme at 7.30 on Thursday 3rd looks suspiciously like a series...

Richardr said...

" Kenny was on Capital at the time and didn't start the Video Show until 1978 so it would have meant little to the vast majority of the audience."

Whilst true, the radio series was syndicated to some other commercial stations at the time, each of which had a local monopoly in those days.

Simon said...

(Of course, we could just wait for Radio Times to come out next weekend for final confirmation of what all these shows are...)

Andee Bee said...

Big news

TOTPs:-The Story Of 1978 is listed to appear on BBC Four on January 4th 2013 at 21:25, the duration is approximately 50 minutes.
This is immediately followed by an hour of regular TOTPs,


Simon said...

I JUST POSTEoh what's the point.

Andee Bee said...

apologies Simon, I got over excited then

wilberforce said...

tom robinson: regarding using pick-up musicians for his gigs, i think the guitarist (danny kustow?) and drummer (dolphin taylor) who appeared here were permanent members of his band. don't know about the keyboard player though - as usual he pulls the short straw when it comes to prominence on stage. i played keyboards in several bands in the eighties and became all-too aware of being seen (or rather, being not seen) as the least conspicuous member of the band - in the end i packed it in in favour of playing bass as that was much cooler!

elvis costello: had this been 10cc or the police people would have been screaming "cod reggae!" from the rooftops, but because it's him he somehow gets away with such accusations (as do the clash)... talking of cod-reggae, i recently came across another great example that i bookmarked in the hope of getting an opportunity to tie in with a post:

kenny everett: what was the point of that? i know he released some kind of concept album featuring this character, but was that really the best they could come up with as a single?

santana: the reason carlos stopped playing half-way through the solo was because he broke a string! (you can see him pulling it off the fretboard). after that the hammond organ player had to hastily improvise whilst carlos changed his guitar... was film stock so expensive in those days that nobody either shot it again (assuming it was a specially-made video) or filmed the following night's performance (assuming it was footage of them on tour)? and i agree that this sounds like it was played on speed, but the fact is that (probably due to adrenalin or maybe performance-enhancing drugs taken beforehand) bands often play a lot faster live than they ever do in the studio... this was the record that really turned me on to santana, and especially the album that track came from ("moonflower") - it wasn't so much carlos' "noodling" that attracted me (let's be frank, the guy is a one-trick pony) as the exhilarating sounds of the hammond and percussion, neither of which i'd ever experienced in pop music before...

darts: although i've never been a big fan of rock n roll, i have to say this was by far the highlight of the show... and unlike showaddywaddy they actually have a sax player on display!

Bamaboogiewoogie said...

@80sblokeinthe70s - you're right about Virginia Plain standing out here but while the 1972 show it was lifted from had some great acts it also had its share of MOR stuff - Lyndsey De Paul, The Pearls, Mardi Gras, Roberta Flack - so the show hadn't changed that much by 1975.

Re Kenny Everett, because he broadcast nationally on Radio 1 up until 1970 (and had his own ITV series) and briefly again on R1 in 1973 he would hardly have been forgotten by 1977 but the Kremmen thing may have confused people. After the character appeared on his weekly Capital Radio show in 1977 it was published in a comic book (Captain Kremmen and The Krells) and when the Thames Show came along it was always an animated cartoon where the idea works much better.

Re Gill Clarke and The Goodies episode according to Sheila Steafel's autobiography she was in this episode so it's a bit of a mystery as to why Gill is credited.

malmo58 said...

Looking on the bright side, the lack of a regular episode on 4/1/13 might be because they're going to skip the DLT shows as well as JS. That makes a total of 17 weeks omitted (6 JS, 8 DLT, 3 with no episode), so even with the 12 Sky At Nights there's five gaps to fill. So TOTP 1978 to start with 5/1/78 on 17/1/13? Fingers crossed.

Arthur Nibble said...

Wilberforce, I can see your point re Elvis Costello but, unlike the shameless cod reggae of "Dreadlock Holiday" or Sting's similar embarrassing attempts at vocalising in a reggae style which doesn't work, the reggae-style rhythm of "Detectives" is used more as a framework for the film noir nature of the song. Hark at me, a regular Paul Morley!

MartS said...

Bumped into Andrew Pixley yesterday at the December meeting of the Kalidescope archive tv group in Stourbridge.

I mentioned his name had been mentioned in dispaches on here - and although he is aware of the BBC Four repeats, here is not a corner of the interweb he has browsed - so i'm passing on this message - re: the impression of HMQ by Gill on The Goodies.

"Gill was a friend of a production assistant who worked on both The Goodies and Top Of The Pops.

When they (Goodies) required an impression, the usual two (one of who was Janette Charles and has been used by the trio) were not available on the day of recording, so after a quick bit of thinking that is how Gill ended up on that episode"

Simon said...

Excellent work, thanks for that. Mention of Kaleidoscope reminds me that the BFI's Missing Believed Wiped is today, promising among other things "hitherto missing editions of Top of the Pops".

wilberforce said...

one suspects that gill (she is the posh-looking "gel" with long wavy blonde hair isn't she?) didn't have to work too hard on her brenda impression...

Elsterpie revolting against coffee table music said...

Mark F: in pure sales terms or chart numbers pink and new wave were dwarfed through these years by darts waddy etc, indeed we have the excremental mull of k coming up for a 9 week torture time at no 1. (McCartney, incredibky , would go on to make even worse records)

However some of those punk/new wave and especially diaco/ club recorss would influence others in a way that the likes of darts, the dooleys, showaddywaddy smokie etc never ever would.

The Darts were betterbut i am surpirsed how many on here Liked them

although the top 40 these days hardly has records as bad as we witnessed in the 70s, it also faetures less highs.
Some things dont change though. Utter garbage such as coldplay seems to sell by the skip yet i never find anyone admitting to liking them ( apart from my brother who has always had bad taste with sade and celine dion also featuring in his collection)

As above said...

Punk not pink

Noax said...

MartS - Thanks for confirming the info re Gill on our behalf.

I knew Mr. Pixley would be right - having read his incredibly detailed and excellent Doctor Who articles many times as well as other stuff such as The Goodies booklets, I would have been very surprised if he'd got it wrong!!

wilberforce said...

there may have been a lot of bad music in the 70's, but even the worst was better than the tuneless rubbish that passes for pop music these days - i watched an arena programme last week about how music inspires emotions, and unfortunately i was exposed to adele droning away with some instantly-forgettable shit not once but twice!

Arthur ' it were all Slade round 'ere when I were a lad' Nibble said...

I actually quite like Adele. At least she brings something slightly different - jazzy / R&B / bluesy - to the table. Yes, it's been done before, but at least it's not the lowest common denominator shite you get in the charts as a whole. I look at the new singles chart every week and recognise many successful acts but I've never heard their work. It's been that long since I listened to Radio 1 or Capital for a start.

Bamaboogiewoogie said...

I've been asked to contribute to a new book about Kenny Everett. The writer told me that he had recently spoken to Mike Vickers about the Captain Kremmen single. It was originally a track from a 1974 Standard Music Library album called Electronic Music (the title is Retribution). Kenny had used the track for the Kremmen episodes broadcast on Capital and Victory Radio and they decided to put it out as a single with Kenny adding the vocals.

As some of you suspected the video was made at the BBC the day before it was broadcast, so those probably are the control panels from a Doctor Who episode or Blakes 7.

FishyFish said...

The programme showing at 7:30 on 3rd Jan is (once again assuming Digiguide is correct) a repeat (though Digiguide doesn't bill it as such). It's part of a series that has been showing on Tuesday nights at 8:30, but that episode, "Brits at Play", was already shown on BBC4 a couple of weeks back, so it's possible it's just filling a gap and TotP will be back the week after.

Gah, the suspense is killing me! I wish BBC4 would just announce it one way or the other.

On another note, is there a list online anywhere showing which episodes of Pops have been wiped / are still in the archives.


Simon said...

Yeah, it is a repeat and I wouldn't suggest they'd start the rerun on the 3rd, but as it's part of a series, even one getting a second repeat, it'd seem odd just to show the one there.

Someone in a position to do so emailed Richard Klein yesterday and he was still giving the "no decision made yet, we need to be careful to ensure we get it right" line, which even given events seems a very highfalutin way of referring to some repeats, but given it's now been the subject of opinion columns in the Times and Guardian at least such worded caution so close to the end of the 1977 run is odd. He (the correspondent, not Klein) did speculate that the presence of the 1978 intro shows means they're ready to start the repeats if possible/given the go-ahead - after all we know the brand hasn't become toxic to the BBC from the presence of regular TOTP and TOTP2 over Christmas and all the At The BBCs they're currently doing (Slade At The BBC on the 21st!)

The other thing is since the launch BBC4 have never made a big thing in their publicity about the repeats - 1977 wasn't listed in the channel's seasonal press release this time last year or included on any of the programme information releases, we only definitely knew it was happening because a researcher cropped up on various music TV nostalgia forums seeking audience members from the time to take part in the documentary, much as we only knew they were planning The Story Of 1978 because someone who'd been approached to take part said so on a forum back around September. I've always thought it possible that Klein's problem with extending the run, as much as what's gone on (because he could have had the whole series hauled off the station immediately if he thought it was sufficiently tainted) is rooted in having to keep aside a specific length prime-time slot for the whole year, something which I believe they don't do for anything else (unless you count World News Tonight), to what from outside seems diminishing interest.

Arthur Nibble said...

FishyFish, the exemplary 'Popscene' website lists each TOTP episode by decade / year and mentions if they've been wiped or not or if, as in the case of "Virginia Plain", a performance from a wiped show still exists.

Funny how in the Abba video, whenever someone sings "What's the name of the game?" across the table, their spouse replies in mute Swedish.

Horatio Hornblower wasn't the only songwriter in Darts. It seems three of their hit A-sides were written by individual band members, the others being Ian Collier ("It's Raining") and George Currie ("Don't Let it Fade Away"). Heaven knows what Den Heggarty would have come up with had they handed him a crayon for composing.

FishyFish said...

Thanks Arthur.

FishyFish said...


Looking at the Popscene site, there are just three episodes available from January 1978 (one week was missed due to strike action), so I guess it's possible that we could see:

3 Jan - No Pops
4 Jan - Documentaries
10 Jan - Sky at Night (presumably)
17 Jan - 5/1/78 episode (Kid Jensen)
24 Jan - 19/1/78 episode (DLT - if they air it)
31 Jan - 26/1/78 episode (Kid Jensen)

I guess we'll find out for certain in the next few weeks.

eightiespopkid said...

Hopefully DLT will be cleared of any wrongdoing by 24th Jan so that would be good timing. Mind you, there is speculation that the remainder of his 1977 editions may be shoehorned in before the end of the month after all.

Simon said...

Ah, I don't think that's the case any more - there was a TOTP listed for the 22nd but that disappeared in DigiGuide's last update. As you suggest DLT's bail date is some time in mid-January so we should get a better idea on that front - maybe that's why they're delaying the scheduling decision?

eightiespopkid said...

Ah ok thanks for that. Is it true something has popped up on Christmas Day at about 10pm? People think this could be 26/12/77 rather than a repeat of 25/12/77 as its repeated at about 2am. If this was 25/12/77 yet again this would be its fourth screening in two days. I guess we need to wait and see, but its difficult trying to be patient at the moment, especially during a Pops-free week!

Noax said...

Re Kenny's video, I'm not an expert on Blakes 7 but Wikipedia says that Series 1 started filming in TV Centre in November 77 so maybe the bits and bobs are from that.

Doctor Who story 'The Invasion Of Time' was in studio on the 8th November that year but not on the 9th.

Simon said...

eightiespopkid: yes it has, but they repeated the Christmas shows on the 25th last year. The descriptions haven't been updated yet but it'd be odd to show the Boxing Day programme for the first time on Christmas Day. Though yeah, we can but wait.

FishyFish said...

It appears that the DLT / Tony Blackburn 1977 Boxing Day episode isn't being shown. The two episodes on BBC4 on Christmas Eve / Christmas Day are both shown as the Noel / Kid fronted episode in Digiguide now.