The Rolling "Top of the Pops" BBC4 Revival thread.

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Because, the first one (tonight) is 1976, where we get :

01/04/1976
With Abba, the Brotherhood of Man, the Beatles, Fox, John Miles, Diana Ross and Sailor. (R).

Then after that they are on Thursday night, 7:30pm, and basically are running weekly, each
episode being from (exactly) 35 years ago (near enough)..

Until BBC4 sack it.

Mark G, Friday, 1 April 2011 15:36 (eleven years ago) link

Brilliant idea. I can relive my childhood. My earliest musical memories (from pre-school days) are stuff like Abba, The Wurzels, Showaddywaddy and Hot Chocolate.

in a wonderful balloon! (Nasty, Brutish & Short), Friday, 1 April 2011 20:50 (eleven years ago) link

This docu that's on now makes grim viewing.

The docu made some interesting points, and for all that I'd have loved if they'd started in 1964 (or whenever), 1976 is a good year to kickoff from.

The big point made was that the charts had become a 'variety' show source, as opposed to the 'teen hit parade' of the sixties. So, loads of Mathis, Roussos, BroMan, Abba and Radio DJs having comedy send-up hits.

It'll be like this for a while, but one I do remember being somewhat of a life changing moment was when Eddie and the Hot Rods did "Get out of Denver",and I went straight out and bought the (expensive) ep the next day.

I know, thesedays peopple decry the rods as being "not as seminal as Dr Feelgood", but I saw a repeat on TOTP2 and it was as good as I remembered. So, soon come, that show which showed the juxtaposition of this band against the other acts on that night.

(also, it means that the quality of dodgy Punk TOTP compilation DVDs are going to shoot up. If they get that far, of course)

Mark G, Monday, 4 April 2011 09:27 (eleven years ago) link

What tickled me most was the former TOTP producer saying that they didn't get the Pistols on for "Anarchy In The UK" (which peaked at #38) because it didn't chart high enough, very important that we always stuck by the rules etc etc... followed by an April 1976 show featuring two (useless) acts which never charted at all.

The Hot Rods did well to get a TOTP appearance for "Get Out Of Denver", as a) the Live At The Marquee EP peaked at #43 and b) it was the lead track on the B-side.

mike t-diva, Monday, 4 April 2011 09:43 (eleven years ago) link

It was track 2 on the a-side, but yeah.

Also, the funny was having Dave Bartram saying "yeah, a TOTP appearance guaranteed you a top 10 hit" and demonstrating this with a screening of their massive top (fillinasecond) hit "Trocadero"...

Mark G, Monday, 4 April 2011 10:08 (eleven years ago) link

32

Mark G, Monday, 4 April 2011 10:09 (eleven years ago) link

xpost - Aaargh, so it was!

mike t-diva, Monday, 4 April 2011 10:25 (eleven years ago) link

The big point made was that the charts had become a 'variety' show source, as opposed to the 'teen hit parade' of the sixties. So, loads of Mathis, Roussos, BroMan, Abba and Radio DJs having comedy send-up hits.

Am I misunderstanding? cos the 60s had big hits for Ken Dodd, Englebert Humperdinck, the Barron Knights etc etc

Boobage Dirtbag (Noodle Vague), Monday, 4 April 2011 10:32 (eleven years ago) link

Oh sure, but the theory being that those were in the minority, show-content wise.

Mark G, Monday, 4 April 2011 10:42 (eleven years ago) link

oh on the show. yeah probly fair enough. chartwise it was variety a-go-go

Boobage Dirtbag (Noodle Vague), Monday, 4 April 2011 12:00 (eleven years ago) link

Yeah, I don't think the point was that the charts had become (more) like a variety show, but that TOTP had.

in a wonderful balloon! (Nasty, Brutish & Short), Monday, 4 April 2011 12:09 (eleven years ago) link

fuck Noel Edmonds and his 'comedy' links

did you notice "you spin me round" was playing in the background? (snoball), Thursday, 7 April 2011 18:37 (eleven years ago) link

fuck Noel Edmonds and his 'comedy' links

I know, what a dick. Still we had the Four Seasons doing "Silver Star" this week. Also Eric Carmen's "interview" with Noel Edmonds, where you couldn't hear a word he was saying, don't be shy Eric!

Tom D (Tom D.), Friday, 8 April 2011 08:50 (eleven years ago) link

Interviews on TOTP? that's a rarity...

Mark G, Friday, 8 April 2011 09:12 (eleven years ago) link

"Inteview" not really the word.

"You wrote a song for Dana didn't you?"
"Mumble mumble mumble"
"What's the best song you've ever written?"
"Mumble mumble mumble All By Myself"
"Well all the best with the new single"
"Mumble"

Tom D (Tom D.), Friday, 8 April 2011 09:15 (eleven years ago) link

Don't know what song he wrote for Dana

Oh and Noel was saying what a good album "Eric Carmen" was: a rare display of good taste from Edmonds there!

Tom D (Tom D.), Friday, 8 April 2011 09:17 (eleven years ago) link

Noel had to say he liked it cos he didn't want to blow a raspberry.

ridic beau (NickB), Friday, 8 April 2011 09:21 (eleven years ago) link

My god that it horribly formed.

ridic beau (NickB), Friday, 8 April 2011 09:22 (eleven years ago) link

*is*

ridic beau (NickB), Friday, 8 April 2011 09:22 (eleven years ago) link

OK so Google tells me Dana covered "Never Gonna Fall in Love Again" from the aforementioned "Eric Carmen" album

Tom D (Tom D.), Friday, 8 April 2011 09:26 (eleven years ago) link

Is Dana the one who did some religious kids programme called 'Wake Up Sunday'?

in a wonderful balloon! (Nasty, Brutish & Short), Friday, 8 April 2011 10:18 (eleven years ago) link

Sounds likely

Tom D (Tom D.), Friday, 8 April 2011 10:23 (eleven years ago) link

10CC, "Mandy Fly Me" was on too. Fantastic!

Tom D (Tom D.), Friday, 8 April 2011 10:34 (eleven years ago) link

NEdmonds always had his love of singer-songwriters, to be fair.

Mark G, Friday, 8 April 2011 10:48 (eleven years ago) link

Big fan of Harry Chapin, yer Edmonds.

mike t-diva, Friday, 8 April 2011 14:40 (eleven years ago) link

Balderdash certainly describes droll Noel's career.

This was easily the most WTF song on this week's show:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iISUroWbu2U

in a wonderful balloon! (Nasty, Brutish & Short), Saturday, 9 April 2011 22:17 (eleven years ago) link

I watched last night's 1976 episode, it was amazingly and compellingly bad. Lots of odd-looking folks I've never heard of awkwardly performing novelty songs, and one of Pan's People doing some remarkably gratuitous ass-shaking in the direction of the camera. I need more.

Antoine Bugleboy (Merdeyeux), Friday, 22 April 2011 14:22 (eleven years ago) link

70s was the golden age for ugly blokes, you could still end up in a band on TOTP with groupies galore. Rubettes' (sans caps) song sounded more like the Beatles than the Rutles!

None'll come and then a lot'll (Tom D.), Friday, 22 April 2011 14:27 (eleven years ago) link

I'm watching this now. LOL at the male members of the Vagabonds miming the female backing vocals. Something massively depressing about second tier disco groups though, like they're trapped in time, it's as if they're composed entirely of all the bits of late 70's disco that don't influence music today.

grill 'em bake 'em fry 'em burn 'em (snoball), Friday, 22 April 2011 14:57 (eleven years ago) link

Shoeless and carrying a walking stick with a bicycle bell on it? Fucking hell, Harpo could teach Lady gaga a thing or two.

grill 'em bake 'em fry 'em burn 'em (snoball), Friday, 22 April 2011 15:00 (eleven years ago) link

Sheer Elegance one of the most misnamed bands ever judging by what they were wearing, the uglyness of the Rubettes & their overcocky drummer, the utter WTFness of Harpo. mandatory viewing from now on!

/人 ◕ ‿‿ ◕人\ (zappi), Friday, 22 April 2011 15:23 (eleven years ago) link

I'm sure Punk would never of happened if Sky+ would of been available in 1976...ended up fast forwarding most of last night's show...bring back Noosha Fox...become a little obsessed with s-s-single bed...

sonnyboy, Friday, 22 April 2011 16:27 (eleven years ago) link

^^^ same goes for watching it on iPlayer. I don't know if 'compellingly bad' is the term, or just 'bad'.

grill 'em bake 'em fry 'em burn 'em (snoball), Friday, 22 April 2011 16:50 (eleven years ago) link

the uglyness of the Rubettes & their overcocky drummer

Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sx-aH0oBscw

Ned Raggett, Friday, 22 April 2011 16:51 (eleven years ago) link

definitely 'compellingly bad' for me. and Fox lady really reminded me of Alison Goldfrapp which is a Good Thing.

/人 ◕ ‿‿ ◕人\ (zappi), Friday, 22 April 2011 17:10 (eleven years ago) link

Noosha F missing link between Clare Grogan and Goldfrapp. Love that record.

Michael Jones, Friday, 22 April 2011 17:16 (eleven years ago) link

Ah, been catching up via good old iplayer on the wii.

Old enough to remember these episodes quite clearly in some cases.

Sad that they haven't gone back far enough in time to have Sparks on.

Still, don't recall that Gilbert O'Sullivan song though I must have heard it then.

Mark G, Tuesday, 26 April 2011 11:30 (eleven years ago) link

Oh, last I heard, they are definitely doing this run for a year.

After that? Who knows...

Mark G, Tuesday, 26 April 2011 11:30 (eleven years ago) link

Still, don't recall that Gilbert O'Sullivan song though I must have heard it then.

He was long gone as commercial proposition by 1976. That song sounded like a demo, did artists have to re-record tracks? I know they had to re-record vocals, hence the ubiquity of the Ladybirds. But then other acts obviously just mimed to the record.

None'll come and then a lot'll (Tom D.), Tuesday, 26 April 2011 11:37 (eleven years ago) link

They did 'have' to.

A lot of them switched the tapes post-session, apparently.

Mark G, Tuesday, 26 April 2011 11:59 (eleven years ago) link

ooooooo-oooooooooooooh Vienna it's Slik

grill 'em bake 'em fry 'em burn 'em (snoball), Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:32 (eleven years ago) link

It's Midge Uuuurrrr...

sonnyboy, Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:35 (eleven years ago) link

And Paul knickerless

sonnyboy, Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:36 (eleven years ago) link

Jesus Christ, superstar?

grill 'em bake 'em fry 'em burn 'em (snoball), Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:37 (eleven years ago) link

DLT looks like Badly Drawn Boy.

grill 'em bake 'em fry 'em burn 'em (snoball), Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:47 (eleven years ago) link

This is sooooo much better than last weeks....

sonnyboy, Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:50 (eleven years ago) link

Only one novelty act so far.

grill 'em bake 'em fry 'em burn 'em (snoball), Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:51 (eleven years ago) link

Shit Brotherhood Of Man are still number one...

sonnyboy, Thursday, 28 April 2011 18:52 (eleven years ago) link

Hard agree, the band had pop chops for days.

Chewshabadoo, Sunday, 27 November 2022 14:30 (two months ago) link

Tony Dortie presents the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 2 December 1993 and featuring U2, Bjork, M People, East 17, Mr Blobby and Meat Loaf.

One of these things is not like the rest of these things...

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 2 December 2022 18:56 (two months ago) link

3D glasses, the Meta Quest of the early 90s.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 2 December 2022 19:06 (two months ago) link

Jeremy Clarkson?

koogs, Friday, 2 December 2022 19:57 (two months ago) link

I thought it might have been some kind of charity single but apparently not. Carol Vorderman is in the video as well, but tbh she was everywhere on TV in the 90s.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 2 December 2022 20:06 (two months ago) link

I'm sure I had that remix of Big Time Sensuality, does anyone know which one it is?

Chewshabadoo, Saturday, 3 December 2022 11:56 (two months ago) link

Fluke Minimix?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CwVLnl9m40

groovypanda, Tuesday, 6 December 2022 08:41 (one month ago) link

Yes, nice one GP - that’s a group I’ve forgotten about.

Chewshabadoo, Tuesday, 6 December 2022 10:12 (one month ago) link

2 Unlimited gleefully leaning into the ridiculousness with their performance of 'No Limits' on this Christmas 1993 edition. But elsewhere it seems that the editors of this episode were hitting the fast forward button more often than I was.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 16 December 2022 20:22 (one month ago) link

1993 is a bad year for TOTP, not a great year for the charts, but the selections on TOTP (loads of big name boomers with their latest shit singles many of which didn't even do well) were even worse. And still annoyed about the apparent boycot of The Prodigy.

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Friday, 16 December 2022 20:27 (one month ago) link

Hard disagree, this year and Christmas episode was full of bangers.

Chewshabadoo, Saturday, 17 December 2022 09:16 (one month ago) link

1993 is all eurodance, ragga and waistcoats, I have no issue with this. The problem is that TOTP in 1993 seems committed to pretending that young people want to hear stadium metal and dadrock. I'm a few episodes behind but the last one I watched had the crowd going wild for 2 Unlimited and then completed disengaged for everything else.

boxedjoy, Saturday, 17 December 2022 17:06 (one month ago) link

Ah, yes, I get you.

Chewshabadoo, Sunday, 18 December 2022 07:57 (one month ago) link

Exactly, every week we had a chart countdown with loads of great stuff then across to another satellite link of Rod Stewart from Paris at #34. The charts were maybe 10% heritage acts but the show was sth like 50%. Even the good Eurodance stuff was often ruined by a combination of ill-judged live vocals and backing track mixed way too low.

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Sunday, 18 December 2022 08:23 (one month ago) link

also Take That can fuck off forever

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Sunday, 18 December 2022 08:32 (one month ago) link

I also think it's telling that, in this era, when TOTP show an exclusive performance of a yet-to-be-released single, it inevitably ends up charting. It feels like the show is trying to influence rather than reflect popular taste, and you only need to look ahead fifteen years to see how that ends up working out for them.

boxedjoy, Sunday, 18 December 2022 08:51 (one month ago) link

According to wikipedia, it was the Prodigy who boycotted TOTP, not the other way round. xps

lord of the rongs (anagram), Sunday, 18 December 2022 10:02 (one month ago) link

guess the idea was "this show is for everyone, we have to play the older acts to keep the mums and dads watching" which is tbh the kind of audience targeting fuckery that has been a plague on the BBC for the last 20 years.

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Sunday, 18 December 2022 10:05 (one month ago) link

xp yeah but it was TOTP that refused to play the videos

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Sunday, 18 December 2022 10:05 (one month ago) link

They've also managed to avoid Goodmen's "Give It Up" which has been hanging around for weeks and weeks.

boxedjoy, Sunday, 18 December 2022 10:21 (one month ago) link

There was a similar attitude in the 1970s with lame-o third-rate soft rock acts like Liverpool Express and Smokie turning up every week, while disco was tolerated by the producers at best.

no jaki liebezeit required (Matt #2), Sunday, 18 December 2022 11:20 (one month ago) link

b-b-but Liverpool Express were the new Beatles!

the shaker intro bit the shaker outro in the tail, hard (breastcrawl), Sunday, 18 December 2022 11:35 (one month ago) link

excuse me a moment.

A ha ha ha...

Righto, onwards

Mark G, Sunday, 18 December 2022 12:16 (one month ago) link

("Every man must have a dream" was basically "Imagine", righto o&o)

Mark G, Sunday, 18 December 2022 12:18 (one month ago) link

Was Righto their drummer or something?

chap, Sunday, 18 December 2022 12:33 (one month ago) link

It's possible

Mark G, Sunday, 18 December 2022 12:33 (one month ago) link

The "Give It Up" situation will descend into a farce in 1995 when Simply Red release Fairground and it's given blanket coverage.

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Sunday, 18 December 2022 12:51 (one month ago) link

I was put off from watching last night's repeat of the Christmas 1990 episode because the BBC saw fit to make the thumbnail a screenshot of Timmy Mallett mid-"oh yeah".

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Saturday, 24 December 2022 09:42 (one month ago) link

Also TOTP Review Of Year 2022 is on tonight at 10:40pm on BBC2 if you can muster the level give-a-shit-ness required to watch 'Clara Amfo and Jack Saunders present a hit-packed show'. Missed out a letter there.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Saturday, 24 December 2022 10:27 (one month ago) link

Shogw

Mark G, Saturday, 24 December 2022 16:59 (one month ago) link

I'm sort of glad they never played Give It Up because I missed half of '93 and wanted to see that one.

You Are My Love is brilliant.

you can see me from westbury white horse, Tuesday, 27 December 2022 15:01 (one month ago) link

7pm tonight there's "Smashie and Nicey's Top of the Pops Party" - a retrospective on the show's first 30 years, originally broadcast on 4th Jan 1994.

If you don't fancy that then there are two regular episodes following.

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Friday, 6 January 2023 13:36 (four weeks ago) link

I was just coming here to say I think I'll skip Smashie and Nicey. The BBC broadcast a mockumentary about them that went through just about all the jokes anyone could make in about 15 minutes. Unfathomable to me - both then and now - how those two characters became so big.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 6 January 2023 18:46 (four weeks ago) link

The good news is that there's not that much Smashie & Nicey, the bad news is that they've added a load of later clips, everything only gets 30 seconds, and the whole thing is an incomprehensible mess.

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Friday, 6 January 2023 19:32 (four weeks ago) link

In the context of 1994, 'Things Can Only Get Better' isn't that bad, despite the singer's attempts to come across as an egotistic cock. It sounded worse during the 1997 General Election.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 13 January 2023 19:24 (three weeks ago) link

the sax solo is the only good bit

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Friday, 13 January 2023 19:28 (three weeks ago) link

'Blow Your Whistle' is the kind of song that I was excited to hear in the club as a 19 year old but then after two minutes dancefloor freneticism I'd be "ffs enough" and dive towards the bar for another drink.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 13 January 2023 19:29 (three weeks ago) link

Marti Pellow, so sweaty.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 13 January 2023 19:30 (three weeks ago) link

Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart and Sting can all fuck off together pls

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Friday, 13 January 2023 19:37 (three weeks ago) link

all for one, all fuck off

the shaker intro bit the shaker outro in the tail, hard (breastcrawl), Friday, 13 January 2023 20:11 (three weeks ago) link

1977 was very white male, with only pussycat(!) as relief (and legs and co dancing around whilst dressed as car wash brushes). david soul sounds like he was pitch shifted up a couple of octaves.

koogs, Tuesday, 17 January 2023 20:37 (two weeks ago) link

Blow Your Whistle is a classic functional dance hit and gets bonus points for not being 2002 No. 5 smash Blow My Whistle Bitch.

you can see me from westbury white horse, Tuesday, 17 January 2023 22:03 (two weeks ago) link

Garth Brooks clearly subscribes to the Billy Joel school of "make facial expressions like you're taking a really long and difficult dump while singing".

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 20 January 2023 19:49 (two weeks ago) link

First show tonight was pretty good! second was less good though. These were the last two shows for Dortie & Franklin, a shame as I've grown to like them a lot. Next week we have the relaunch format to kick off the real mid-90s

Camaraderie at Arms Length, Friday, 20 January 2023 20:12 (two weeks ago) link

I saw Therapy? live about four or five times in the mid 90s. They were... considerably less good than I remember.

chap, Saturday, 21 January 2023 10:51 (two weeks ago) link

no actual good shot of the keyboardist on either of the d:ream appearances

only bit i enjoyed in the 4 episodes was martika's hair

koogs, Saturday, 21 January 2023 12:08 (two weeks ago) link

I don’t think Brian Cox was in this version of D:Ream, but he was in the performances when it was previously released.

I was never that into Therapy?, but Screamager is a banger.

Chewshabadoo, Sunday, 22 January 2023 07:58 (two weeks ago) link

Britrock bands are to this era of TOTP what Senseless Things and that ilk were to the last.

you can see me from westbury white horse, Monday, 23 January 2023 05:05 (one week ago) link

"Give It Away" is one of those songs that I think I like when I try recall what it sounds like, but when I hear it (especially accompanied by the video) I realise that it's a bunch of nonsense.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Friday, 27 January 2023 19:22 (one week ago) link

I like that TOTP heralding their new era included a single from an album that was released before the last era. Why wasn't it a UK hit until 94 I have no idea.

you can see me from westbury white horse, Saturday, 28 January 2023 13:45 (one week ago) link


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