Friday, 28 December 2012

An announcement

As you may know by now, Top Of The Pops on BBC4 continues into 1978 with the launch on January 4th and first show proper, 5/1/78, on the 17th in the usual slot.

Yes It's Number One will, however, not be following suit.

I've decided to step aside from TOTP blogging (bar the last three days of On This Day, obviously) after quite some months' thought and consideration - not because of recent events or feedback but due to wanting to spend more time on other projects without an extra blog commitment of this size getting in the way, and more directly before it grows into an outright hindrance. Over these 21 months and 64 shows the appeal of recapping every week has for me palled - there's only a finite amount of new things and means of phrasing that can be written, and the self-imposed rigmarole of prepping the posts, looking up playlists and details, watching and rewatching clips and then detailing everything to the detail to which you've become accustomed has taken a lot of the fun out of the TOTP repeat watching experience which was the point of starting the blog at all, and consequently taken the entertainment out of the blog maintaining to the extent that it's increasingly feeling like a chore. The point where I'd need to commit to another full year seems like a good place to break off and, while I'll doubtless still be watching the shows, not give myself the extra workload around that half hour. If anyone else wants to pick up the Pops-blogging slack from here, do so by all means.

So... thank you to BBC4 for the programming idea and the continued support, and more directly thanks to everyone who read the blogs, supported it in various ways, posted comments and got a great little community swapping ideas and knowledge going down there. From this blog though, goodbye and good love.


EDIT: reliably informed in the comments that you should now keep an eye on It's Top Of The Pops!

59 comments:

charlie cook said...

Sorry to hear this Simon. The blog has enhanced the fun of the repeats, but I fully appreciate your reasons. Good luck with your future endeavours.

And if anyone else is taking up the mantle, please let us all know :-)

Ben Baker said...

Bah, sorry to hear also. Who will inform me of excised pederasts now?

Erithian said...

Well, we've had many a cricket metaphor on here for the times the threads have passed 50 and latterly 100 comments, but the reception as you walk back to the pavilion should match that for Botham and Willis at Headingley '81. What a fantastic innings mate, and you were consistently one of the most readable corners of the web.

There have been hints post-S****egate that it was getting to you a bit, so it's not entirely surprising that this has come to pass. Hope you will be able to hand over the torch to one of the regulars (I'll let the candidates nominate themselves but they know who they are!) And now I'll just move aside and let Aggers hand over the man-of-the-match champagne.

Arthur Nibble said...

Bugger – and that’s putting it as mildly as I can.

What with the disappearance of Ceefax, the passing of luminaries such as Gerry Anderson and our old sparring partner Patrick Moore and, in my case, the folding of fellow blog Steve Does Top Of The Pops, this feels like another light going out and another page of innocence and enjoyment disappearing from the book.

Without going into detail, for various family and work-related reasons this has been the roughest year of my life and, for much of the last twelve months, only two things (apart from alcohol) have kept me sane – going to football and this blog. It sounds daft to say that Yes It’s Number One rekindled some sort of excitement and allowed a spark of youthful innocence to return to my world, but it did. It pushed the harsh reality of life into a dark corner every once in a while, and all the better for that.

I fully understand and appreciate the reasons, taking into account the endless man hours compiling the details and keeping us informed and entertained (and sometimes keeping us in check!), and also the wiped episodes and loss of other editions for less savoury reasons were blows to the punchbag at the time, but I was hoping against hope things would continue. Secretly, I’d been worried about the gap until the next edition of TOTP and what would happen in any event.

The loss of this blog will leave a huge hole in my life, one I never thought existed in the first place. It also means my personal midweek void will now stretch to the weekend and beyond (taking into account the loss of interaction with my mates on this forum), assuming no-one will be brave or enterprising enough to take up the mantle, and I’m not sure anyone would want to in any case.

Simon, thanks for everything. Happy New Year to you especially, and also to everyone who’s been involved in this delight. I wouldn’t have missed it for anything.

THX said...

Ah well, all good things must come to an end, and it has been good. Thanks for the laughter, the thrills, the tears (maybe not tears) and at least we'll have the repeats to keep us warm on Thursday nights. It was fun while it lasted. Have a happy new year, everyone.

Simon said...

Thanks for all your work on this. It's been entertaining to read. I write a chart blog myself so I can appreciate how much work you have put into it. Enjoy the extra free time you get!

Paul said...

Fully understand your reasons for pulling out. Hopefully you can enjoy whatever you do next a little more....at least until that becomes a chore too!!!

70's Boy said...

It's sad that the end has come, but it's been fun while it lasted. Many thanks, Simon, for much enjoyment and many smiles.

drongo said...

thanks for all the hard work Simon, it's been fun.

Steve Morgan said...

Ah well! All good things etc. etc. But thanks Simon for all the laughs along the way, I haven't contributed to every blog here but it's been good to interact now and again with fellow Pops fans. Glad to see though that the repeats will continue into '78, perhaps someone else will take up the mantle, jolly hard work though it will be.
Heppy new year to you and everyone, perhaps we'll meet again in some other corner of the net another day.

Mark said...

Thanks for all your efforts Simon!

babblingmouth said...

Simon, you will be missed, matey. xx

Robbie said...

Sorry to read you're stepping down Simon. Your blog enhanced the TOTP experience so you will be a big miss.

Take care - and good love indeed!

Rob

AndyMac said...

I've only contributed a couple of times but would like to add my agreement to all that has gone before. A perfect companion to the weekly repeats. Thanks for all your efforts.

80sBlokeInThe70s said...

Very sorry to hear you're closing it down but understand your reasons perfectly. I've had a great time reading it and you've attracted a group of pretty down to earth, laid back posters who have made a great blog even more a pleasure.
Thanks.

Chris Retro said...

Marvellous work Simon, many thanks for the past 20 months. For everybody else - save "itstotp.blogspot.com" in your favourites and watch that space, covering 1978 has to be done by someone - as it was the year I really got into TOTP and chart music (albeit only as a 4/5 yr old) I figured if someone has to do it, it might as well be me!
I just hope I can come close to echoing Simon's achievements with the 1976/77 coverage.

Noax said...

Simon - very sad to hear that you've decided to call it a day, but I totally understand.

Thanks for all the hard work that you've put in and all the fun you've given us.

I don't know where I'd be without somewhere to post nonsense about old music so thanks to Chris Retro for picking up the baton. Not just because if no-one else had offered I would have felt obliged to give it a go myself which would have been awful because -
a) I have no clue on how to create and maintain blogs.
b) I probably wouldn't have the time to do it properly.

Simon, are you posting something special to close, maybe your favourite clip from the last couple of years?

wichita lineman said...

Simon, I'm very sad to read this. The blog has really enhanced my TOTP enjoyment. Good luck with your future projects, and thanks for all your work.

Arthur Nibble said...

Bloody Hell! Thanks to Chris for taking up the mantle. Completely unexpected on my part. My only words of advice would be to do it your own way - be yourself and let us get a flavour of your own personality - and don't try to replicate Simon, because that man's unique. Oh, and be patient with the verbose and post-happy members of the clan!

I hope Simon bows out either with a best of the rest, similar to the list of valuable bit-part no-chart players he mentioned recently, or with a collection of his favourites that we may not have seen yet. Simon, don't leave in a low-key manner...please indulge us by bowing out with some poptastic fireworks for auld lang syne.

Simon said...

Thanks everyone (and everyone else reading). It's been a blast.

Noax: I thought about something else at the end to counteract this post's explanatory nature, but I think it should stand as it is. Now I think about it I might add one before it with few links to favourite posts, though.

Chris Retro: excellent, I hoped I wouldn't just leave this community spinning in mid-air. I'll keep an eye on it.

Darren said...

Thank you for all your work over the last 20 months Simon, your blog has been enjoyed immensely!

hackiedj said...

Thanks for your enjoyable blog Simon, much appreciated

charlie cook said...

Thanks to Chris retro - bookmarked!

Neil said...

Sorry to hear this, Simon! I really hope someone else decides to take up the mantle. I'd do it myself but I don't think it would make for a particularly interesting read - just a load of facts and figures.

Erithian said...

Very good news that Chris is taking up the reins. I was going to suggest, in order to minimise Simon’s workload while keeping this community going, that he could do regular “open threads” as he did when he was away from the telly of a Thursday so that the rest of us (and Simon himself when he felt like it) could chip in.

Chris, if you’re going to bring your own style and approach to the 1978 project, then that’s good, but don’t forget the structure and design of YIN1 is in place and fully functioning, so if starting from scratch is daunting I’m sure you and Simon can work together to get your material online. Best of British mate.

And to my near-contemporary Arthur: very sorry to hear it’s been a rough time for you my friend, and I’m glad the community on here has helped you. Your contributions are always a delight, as is your way with variations on your name (“a bit of that sort of Arthur” etc) – in fact you seemed the prime candidate to take over, although I guess time is an issue for all of us! All the best bud and see you on ”It’sTOTP”. Happy New Pops everyone.

Dory said...

Thanks Simon for your good work, I guess many of us took it for granted every week to have your regular feed.

When Chris takes over, it would be great to continue to receive the 1978 TOTP shows with DLT and JS when BBC4 still decide not to show them, as it would complete all the existing shows not wiped.

Happy New Year to all, and as Rose Royce said in 1978....'I'm wishing on a star.'

Simon said...

I did think about making it open threads alone but really the blog's been about the wealth of proper recap writing, plus I don't think people notice lines of debate as much if they're confined to comments boxes.

Hopefully once Chris' blog is underway Neil can find a way of contacting him as and when if he wants to continue putting videos up to cover lost weeks, though it should be stressed that that won't cover every skipped week, only those UK Gold showed.

A bit of that sort of Arthur said...

Erithian, thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated. I didn't think I'd be the prime candidate to take the baton, unless my propensity to ramble made me look like I knew what I was doing! I can't run a blog to save my life, I recently had trouble for a week just trying to re-register on YouTube and, even if I was technically proficient, I sit in front of a computer at work all day analysing documents and figures and doimg more of the same would have done my head in! ;-)

Zygon said...

So long and thanks for all the fi...sorry Fun.

Love to you

Bamaboogiewoogie said...

You go away for a couple of days and when you get back everything's changed (sob). I only discovered this blog in June this year but enjoyed catching up on all the old entries and always tried to add my comments and snippets of info every week since then and I even added comments to some of the old entries (a bit sad I know).

Simon your blog will be sorely missed here as well but I'm sure Mr Retro will be equally as good as our Toppy Poppy blog master (look at me sucking up like a teacher's pet).

Having written some articles for Record Collector magazine over the years I would love to do a TOTP blog but like some of the others here I'm not technically up to speed with how a blog is put together so I won't throw my hat into the ring.

Chris can I make the same suggestion as I made to Simon that on the missing week (12.1.1978) when there was a BBC strike that we make up our own show based on who was in the chart that week. I used to make up my own chart at the time and I would love to be Robin Nash for a day.

wilberforce said...

i'm sure i'm not saying anything that hasn't been said already:

thanks simon for your time and effort - like others i'm disappointed you're chucking it in but understand why (when something that starts out as fun gets too serious it can take the shine off it) - hopefully you will make some future contributions to the "replacement" site

also thanks to chris (and a sigh of relief) for taking up "the poisoned chalice" - like others, i thought about it but have no experience of running blogs (nor any real desire to learn how to!)

hopefully all the regulars will be on board chris's new site once it gets up and running...

Old Applejack said...

All the best Simon, and thanks for the fun over the past 20 months.

Hope to join the rest of you on the other side.

We'll play out with Gloria Gaynor and 'Never Can Say Goodbye.' Good love.

FishyFish said...

Thanks for all the time you've put into this Simon. I've not often contributed to the feedback, but I've read every recap, and most enjoyable (and informative) they've been. Looking forward to Chris' continuation.

Here's to a great new year of Pops!

Will said...

A long time lurker here who's been meaning to break cover for a while.

(Why haven't I? Well, I suppose watching these repeats brings back such personal memories of being a 6-7 year old child I don't feel I could possibly share these with the rest of the world. By coincidence I started watching TOTP in April 76, hardly missing a week for the next 30 years. This project has allowed me to retrace my steps to the farthest flung shores of my musical memory and has unearthed many other contemporaneous thoughts, feelings and fears I experienced during 76-77. In effect, it's been a form of time travel and I always feel weirdly disorientated after watching the Thursday night BBC4 repeat.)

But...that's not I really wanted to say. Like everyone else I want to say a big thank you to Simon for this blog. It's been one of the most entertaining things I've read on the 'Net over the last couple of years and I've enjoyed it immensely. I hope you enjoy a well deserved rest and yes it's fantastic news that Chris Retro is picking up the reins.

Andee Bee said...

Thanks Simon for the fun, will miss the wit....

don't forget if you need a dose of your favourite Dance troupe then head over to OFTD's (shameful plugging on my behalf)

Arthur Nibble said...

After your help over the months, Andee, I think the plug's deserved! Still can't believe BBC4 cut Cherry's beautiful solo routine to Dorothy Moore's "Misty Blue" from the early edition.

Andee Bee said...

no worries Arthur, I have a good copy of that routine....from BBC4, worst causality was the final Pans People routine chopped (Silver Star)by BBC4

Martyn Wilson said...

Sorry to read your ending the blog, it's been a great source of info and has introduced me to Contempt and Joy sarney (both of which i managed to source and purchase)plus some great lesser heard hits. Will miss the comments from Arthur Nibble and co but will continue to watch the shows.
All the best,
Regards, Martyn

Simon said...

While leaving this as the blog's final word, in case people ask, I've added a couple of proper round-up posts, one for the best posts, and just now another for my favourite (or 'favourite') thirty moments from 76-77.

DSP said...

I've only commented occasionally, but read every week since I found the blog. I quite understand wanting to knock it on the head, public journals are a lot of work - doff of imaginary hat to you , sir!

I've enjoyed your posts, and the resulting comments enormously, this published body of work will remain testament to your dedication to the cause of many of us reliving some of the best television of the last 35-7 years (...)

Godspeed, and I wish you well with your future projects.

Vintage Reading said...

Aw, sorry you are packing it in Simon, but I know this blogging lark can be time-consuming and you're going out at the top of your game.

Thanks to Simon and all the regulars here. Hope to see you on the other blog to debate the 'Waddy, lovely Sue and why punk had to happen!

Simon said...

Just to say now we're on the verge of the 1978 launch, the link to the apparent spiritual successor to this blog - itstotp.blogspot.com, remember - is now linked at the end of the blog post, and to guard against spammers, timewasters and suchlike comments now go through moderation.

bamaboogiewoogie said...

I can't seem to post to the new blog, anyone know how to sign up?

Steve Morgan said...

It seemed no different posting to that than to this one Bama.. in fact I seemed to have less trouble posting there, with this one I always had to copy the link so I'd get a full screen, sign in every time, post the numbers and letters, copy my own post in case I lost it, and then had to enable an e mail link so I knew I'd got a reply. Thankfully it seemed easier.

wilberforce said...

oh dear... (in my ignorance) it seems that comments on chris retro's new "totp 78 and beyond" site can only be left by those who are registered with blog sites already...

i have no inclination to join any such blog sites (nor indeed any idea of how to do so), so unless chris opens the comments box up for all- comers in the way this site has (had), then that's it for me i'm afraid...

will of course continue to watch the shows and read the comments left on his site, but until such time chris makes it open i will have to remain merely an interested observer. should anyone wish to communicate with me in future on a private basis, then they can contact me via my own website (click on the "wilberforce" name in this page to access it)

daf said...

Me too!

I'd like to comment on the new blog, but can't as I haven't joined one of the 'options'.

Anyone know what's the 'least worst' of the options to sign up to - baring in mind I'd rather my email address wasn't hawked to all and sundry.

Dory said...

Best to use the googlemail option. you only need to open a googlemail email account, which is free, and then with a new googlemail email address and password to hand, put your comment that you want to submit on the new TOTP site 'yes its top of the pops', choose the scrolldown option googlemail, and then enter your googlemail email and password. You then get asked what your blog name is. choose one, and then your in!
it will never show your email adress, only your nickname.
For example mine comes up as Dory, but not my full email address. It does work, and it's easy.
Good luck.

Arthur Nibble said...

It took me about 20 minutes to get one of the options to work on Chris's site (thankfully I have a gmail account that I'd forgotten about!) and the only other problem I had was remembering to scroll down to find the security boxes to fill in before my message could be sent. Chris's site has one advantage for me, in that it allows you to edit the comments before sending, thus getting rid of bad typing, an option I couldn't find on this site. I fully expect to see old mates Wilberforce and daf on the new site pronto. No excuses! ;-)

Dory said...

It seems that all the old favourites in this blog
site are men, with names like wilberforce, arthur nibble, hoax, etc.
Are there any women who post comments, or are they not fans of TOTP, or do they think we're all a bunch of bored people in front of a computer all day, instead of doing something worthwhile?
Anyway, I'm male, and I think this site is fab.
No excuses ladies, join in the banter.

bamaboogiewoogie said...

Thanks for the help, I managed to work out how to do it in the end. Turned out I already had a Google account without realising it (twit that I am) so thankfully that was the option I went for.
opening a Google account is quite easy, just go to Google, key in Google accounts, register with a password and take it from there.
The good thing about the new blog is that you can reply to individual comments which will make answering questions easier.

Sorry to use your blog to plug another Simon, it's like going into Tescos and shouting "Sainsburys!".

Arthur Nibble (again) said...

You're forgetting Julie Joanne Bevan for one. She put some decent posts on here. Some of those other lesser-known aliases might be ladies too, you never know. My weekend name's Chanice, by the way. Only kidding!!!!!

wilberforce said...

to my recollection there were comments from 2 contributors known to be female... i think this blog proves the old adage that men are from mars, and women are from venus!

still umming and aahing whether to get a google account or not - perhaps someone who has already managed to post on the new site can let chris know about the problem so he can make the comments page accessible to those who don't (won't!) have google/livejournal (whatever that is)/wordpress (ditto) et al...?

ps - simon, sorry to have to keep adding posts and making you do extra work - hopefully this problem of logging in to chris's site will eventually be resolved and we won't bother you again! (maybe you could point out the problem to chris and tell him how to set up the "name/URL" option?)

thanks

Chris Retro said...

It's been unlocked now W! Blame it on me being a novice...

wilberforce said...

thanks chris - looks like i've managed to get access to the new totp website comments page now, so hopefully this will be the last message i leave here...

thanks again simon for everything, and hope you join in with me and the other regulars on the new site...

seekenee said...

hi Simon, many thanks for your blog which has proven an invaluable companion to the re runs, every week I read every word on every entry - it's a fine annotation of the shows - well done and good luck!

yvonne said...

A bit late just to say thanks to Simon I have read this blog every week I know it's finished now but I keep coming back! I will also read the new blog. Also just to add I am female but have never added comments before I just enjoyed reading everybody elses!

johnlyons121 said...

I've just caught up with this news. I'm very sorry to see you wave goodby to YINO, but understand totally that it becomes just homework if you're not enjoying it anymore.

Thanks a million for the info and the laughs, and the very best of luck to you.

S said...

just watched a totp for the first time this year I think, the irregularity of the broadcasts mean I have a few to catch up on. Big shame that the site has 'closed' but I just wanted to say thanks for the efforts over the past year or 2 (and I'm not just saying that because the 'new' site is hopeless, no commenting facility - not even a login screen - and a massive page load with all those screendumps which is eventually going to break if he doesn't do something)
Anyway, must go, that's Magazine on... time flies!

babblingmouth said...

I miss this blog!