Thursday, 9 January 2014

Hello, This is 1979!


4-1-79: Presenter: Mike Read

(24) PAUL EVANS – Hello, This Is Joanie (The Telephone Answering Machine Song) (and charts)
(NEW) GENERATION X – King Rocker
(5) ELTON JOHN – Song For Guy ®
(18) EARTH, WIND & FIRE – September (danced to by Legs & Co)
(6) IAN DURY & THE BLOCKHEADS – Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick (video)
(21) OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN – A Little More Love (video)
(3) RACEY – Lay Your Love On Me ®
(29) BARRY WHITE – Just The Way You Are (video)
(NEW) BROTHERHOOD OF MAN – Goodbye Goodbye
(1) VILLAGE PEOPLE – Y.M.C.A. (video)
(16) HOT CHOCOLATE – I’ll Put You Together Again (and credits)

user posted image


Paul Evans ~ plays over the chart rundown. This was his first hit in 20 years, his earlier ones being Seven Little Girls (Sitting In The Back Seat) and Happy-Go-Lucky Me.

Generation X ~ King Rocker became their biggest hit, peaking at number 11. The song is apparently about the Beatles and Elvis having a fight over who is the king of rock n roll!

Elton John ~ a fine live performance featuring just Elton and his piano. At the time I thought this was about Guy the Gorilla, who had recently died at London Zoo, but in fact it is dedicated to Guy Burchett, a 17 year old messenger for Elton's label, who had been killed in a motorbike accident.

Legs and Co ~ dancing to Earth Wind and Fire's September - a strange time to release a song with such a title! Co-writer Allee Willis went on to write the theme from Friends.

Ian Dury and the Blockheads ~ the video this week, the legendary studio performance is yet to come. Ian had this song in rough on a piece of paper for about three years before it was finally completed!

Olivia Newton John ~ this song was written by John Farrar, who also wrote You're the One that I Want and Hopelessly Devoted to You. Not a bad 12 months for him!

Racey ~ were originally called Alive ‘n’ Kicking. They picked the new name from a list by producer Mickie Most for its easiness to say. This song was written by Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman, who wrote a production line of hits in the 70's for the likes of Sweet, Mud, Smokie and Suzi Quatro.

Barry White ~ almost a year after Billy Joel had taken the original to 19 in the charts, Barry's cover made it to number 12.

Brotherhood of Man ~ a rather aptly titled song for them, as this marked the end of their chart career. Not a bad song though really, I guess its just the times they were a changing.

Village People ~ replacing Boney M at the top of the charts. A song that was no doubt played at just about every New Year party in 1979, it was still being played at those parties I'm sure in 2014. The song was inspired by the YMCA branch at 215 W 23rd St, as seen in the video.

Hot Chocolate ~ play almost their entire song over the end credits - well why not, it is such a good one :-)

Next week, it's the 11th January 1979 hosted by David Jensen.


  1. I'll probably just dip into this site and leave the odd message as, apparently, the 'big fella' will be back on track in a few days. Hope that's okay with you.

    Anyway, it felt a bit weird seeing the last of Brotherhood of Man, as they've been with us since the first week or two of the re-runs. A bit like saying ta-ra to old friends. What a prophetic title for their last appearance on TOTP and their chart career.

  2. Hi Arthur ~ of course drop in whenever you fancy :-)

    Yes, and not a too bad song too from BOM - though don't recall it at all from the time - but weird that the Nolans and Dooleys would score big hits with similar genre stuff soon afterwards.

  3. Sorry to see the last appearance of the Brotherhood.Never listen to them at home, but always enjoyed their performances on these re-runs.
    BTW - was something edited out, as b4 ONJ, Mike says there would be another OBE, a surprise, on the programme later, or did I miss something?

  4. You're right, merv. I noticed that OBE glitch and have it in my notes for another blog (sorry, Angelo!). The Popscene website has complaints about the crude editing of this show which removed the identity of the other OBE recipient.

    It appears Paul Evans didn't have a hit over here with "Happy-Go-Lucky Me" (which was a top 40 hit for George Formby!), but he did make the top 50 with "Midnite Special". Similarly, "Goodbye Goodbye" was a complete chart flop, though BoM spent one more week at number 67 three years later.

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  6. Me again! It turns out this show included a brief clip of the first ever TOTP, hosted by Jimmy Savile, who'd been made an OBE in 1972.

  7. Very enjoyable episode, although the miming seemed to be particularly bad.
    Quite enjoyed the BoM song - don't remember it all, but it sounded like ABBA do Hey Jude.
    Watching Village People brought a question to mind - where did the YMCA dance come from? It's not in the video....

  8. In case you weren't going to sleep tonight, a friend has told me the YMCA dance originated on American Bandstand in 1979

  9. Don't know if Chris's blog is going to continue, so I hope you don't mind me having a ramble on here :o)

    So we start with the BBC showing off some pristine new drum pads - now all they need is some of that new-fangled Blutack stuff. Gen X, as we now know, had been visitors to TOTP since 1977, but this was the first I remember of them.

    Yes, Elton was cool - just him playing solo piano, not even with orchestral accompaniment.

    Always thought that this EW&F song was released rather earlier in 1978, like, erm, September.

    Quality song from Livvy, a bit like returning to her normal stuff after her film work.

    This Racey performance gets cut just as Sue comes on, but she's wearing the same blue dress as on my DVD clip (Can be seen here: ). The plot thickens.

    Barry White - what, no barely-intelligible mumbling during the intro?

    Don't recall this BOM number at all. Agree that it seems a kind of 'end of an era', but they wouldn't have fitted into 1979 at all. The thing was, the Nolans and the Dooleys updated their sound.

    Finally, what was that falling-down structure in the background of the Village People promo?

  10. Testing, chhhhhheck one-two, bissssscuits, crisssssps

  11. Testing, chhhhhheck one-two, bissssscuits, crisssssps