Thursday, 19 June 2014

Up the Junction ~ Top of the Pops 28th June 1979

So on a night when England sadly, if rather predictably crash out of yet one more World Cup, at least over on BBC4 we have another edition of .......

Top of the Peters!
28-6-79: Presenter: Peter Powell

(24) SEX PISTOLS – C’mon Everybody (and charts)
(3) SQUEEZE – Up The Junction
(19) LENE LOVICH – Say When (video)
(26) THOM PACE – Maybe
(5) QUANTUM JUMP – The Lone Ranger ®
(23) JANET KAY – Silly Games
(29) THIN LIZZY – Do Anything You Want To (video)
(37) U.K. SUBS – Stranglehold
(10) GERRY RAFFERTY – Night Owl (video)
(36) BONNIE TYLER – Married Men
(20) CHAS & DAVE – Gertcha
(1) TUBEWAY ARMY – Are ‘Friends’ Electric?
(30) SLICK – Space Bass (and credits)

Sex Pistols ~ get us off to a rock n rolling start over the chart rundown

Squeeze ~ a new performance of Up the Junction, with Glenn in a stripy t-shirt, just one chart place below its peak position.

Lene Lovich ~ such a lively crowd in this video - reminding me somewhat of the Nirvana video for Smells Like Teen Spirit.

Thom Pace ~ a little dull this one following straight after Lene Lovich. Maybe was Thom's only hit and made it to number 14.

Quantum Jump ~ another showing for The Lone Ranger now at its peak at number 5.

Janet Kay ~ a new performance of Silly Games from Janet, adorned in a silver headdress, though not sure if she did a live vocal this time.

Thin Lizzy ~ a fun video for Do Anything You Want To, but this tune did remind me of The Boys are Back in Town, particularly the guitar riff, but nevertheless a good song.

UK Subs ~ making their debut on the show with Stranglehold, the first of two top 30 hits for this punk group in 1979.
Gerry Rafferty ~ a video reminiscent of the one he made for Baker Street a year earlier, Night Owl was his first of two singles from the album of the same name.

Bonnie Tyler ~ was a casualty of the 7.30 edit, but you can engage with her at 1.00am tonight on BBC4.

Chas and Dave ~ looks like a third performance of Gertcha, now at its number 20 peak, but this was also edited out of the 7.30 showing.

Tubeway Army ~ Gary and the boys are back in the studio for a new performance of Are Friends Electric now it has made it to number one. This was the second single from their album Replicas, the first one, Down in the Park, failed to chart.

Slick ~ play us out over the credits of this Legless & Co edition of Top of the Pops.

The next edition is from the 5th July 1979 and its a Jimmy Savile, so we won't get to see it unless it somehow turns up online somewhere, because it was shown on UK Gold.

Otherwise we jump all the way to the 12th July 1979 with Mike Read.


  1. I'm pretty sure I have 4 of the remaining DLT and Savile shows recorded from UK gold back in 1993 when Satellite TV was still clockwork. But I don't know how to upload them to Youtube and even if I did they would obviously be removed.

    1. hopefully it will turn up online even if only for a day or two, but if not I'll still put up the popscene info so folk can still comment on it ~ there might be a few clips of some of the performances on youtube already.

    2. if Darnell is reading this i would be so grateful if you can message me about the your old 5 July show at

    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    4. You have spelt 'electric' wrong in your title, and in your YouTube link. Is this intentional?

    5. I found two TOTP episodes on this link from someone else, so I don't understand why Darnall's has been taken down, unless Darnall has removed them him/herself.

    6. I found two TOTP episodes on this link from someone else, so I don't understand why Darnall's has been taken down, unless Darnall has removed them him/herself.

    7. Dory these are my accounts [another old show uploading as i type] I had another account and it as taken down last week so i suspect Darnell was also a victim of the phantom rights enforcer maybe Darnell might start another a/c no harm in sharing what Auntie REFUSES to show


    9. Thank you everybody for the info, I'm primarily looking for the show dated 5/7/79. It is one that won't be re-broadcast on the BBC for obvious reasons - Darnell mentioned elsewhere that he had a UK gold copy of this episode - he may very well have posted it on his vimeo account had it not been withdrawn - still hoping it will show up somewhere -

    10. Try looking here:

    11. Thanks to everyone for the links to banned shows!
      Keep them coming :-)

    12. cheers jeg and Angelo - and a big thank you to D, a true trooper, cheers

  2. Not the best of shows this weeks, with no Legs & Co for the first show since 1976 when they started out, but a few exceptions:

    Lene Lovich - best song on the show for me, as Lene's video was brilliant and the first I have seen shown in full by TOTP to the last frame!

    Gerry Rafferty - reaching peak this week and last showing on TOTP, it's a great song for the summer, and excellent follow up to Baker Street. Night Owl was never overplayed over the following 35 years like Baker Street, which probably explains its enduring appeal.

    Slick - interesting entry into the chart at No.30 this week and playing out the show on end credits. I thought their sound was very similar to Cerrone, and no-one would notice the difference if Slick were on a Cerrone album.
    Also I liked the Slick photo on the chart rundown at the beginning of the show, with an almost topless girl with a very short yellow dress.

    1. I seem to recall that Legs also missed a show in '78, though I can't remember which one off the top of my head. Looking at the line-ups for the 1960s shows on the Popscene website, I was struck by how rarely the dance troupes appeared in the early years - right through the decade, the Go Jos and, later, Pan's People would only perform on the occasional show, and the prevailing policy with acts who couldn't make it to the studio seems to have been to play them as little as possible!

    2. Yes as recently as 16.11.78 was also a legless show. I wonder why this was? Were they on holiday? Did a couple of them sprain their ankles so they couldn't perform? I think an explanation is needed.

    3. Looking at Popscene, it seems as if Legs were also absent from the 5.7.79 show, giving them a fortnight's break. Perhaps Flick needed a holiday to summon up some fresh inspiration?

  3. Concert videos are ten a penny, but Lene Lovich with Say When really stands out, the energy in it is incredible, that crowd were positively hysterical! Lene giving it her all up there on the stage, and everyone else worshipping at her altar in pogo style, fantastic.

    Aaaand then we come straight back down to earth with Thom Pace, all he needed was an acoustic guitar and round spectacles and he'd be John Denver about to break into Country Roads Take Me Home. Was that a choker he was wearing? Interesting choice.

    They were certainly giving the echo effects on Janet Kay's microphone a workout this time, weren't they? I think she was live but the vocals were "treated".

    Ah, Thin Lizzy sticking it to The Man. And The Woman - not a fan of traffic wardens either, apparently. Jolly tune, reminds me of a certain Eddie and the Hot Rods record, but none the worse for that. The shots of the band lined up on timpani was one of the highlights of this episode.

    UK Subs: oddly when BBC 6Music conducted a poll to find the best punk band ever, this bunch won, which suggests either a lot of underground UK Subs fans or a few UK Subs fans with large phone bills. Didn't take them long to write the lyrics, did it? Even Lene was in on the counting act.

    Bonnie Tyler goes disco with the theme song to the Jackie Collins epic The World is Full of Married Men! It's very much the third placing behind The Stud and The Bitch, though above Yesterday's Hero in the Collins movie canon, but is reliably terrible and Bonnie appears in it singing the theme over the opening credits. It could have been worse, Mick Jackson sings the same song over the closing credits, we could have ended up with him.

    Hmm, no Legs & Co, wouldn't surprise me if they'd gone on strike considering what year this was. Couldn't they have busted some moves to Slick? Midge Ure could hit those high notes, couldn't he?

    1. Certainly I think that if Legs & Co were not on holiday, they would have been given Slick to dance to, as there was no studio or video footage available, and it was a nice new entry at No.30 this week.

  4. I loved Thom Pace's song, which is one of my favourite tunes to play on the harmonica. 'Maybe' was an even bigger hit in Germany, where it reached No.1, and also charted high in Australia - but, amazingly, missed the US Top 100.

    Bonnie Tyler proved she could perform funkier material on 'Married Men', which was a reasonable foray into disco, if somewhat repetitive, and her final hit for RCA before she moved to CBS/Columbia and teamed up with Jim Steinman to record her masterpiece.

    UK Subs fall into the same category as Angelic Upstarts, Cockney Rejects, The Exploited and Anti-Nowhere League: unimaginative failed revolutionaries who somehow managed to operate musical instruments for long periods without making any music. The Subs' follow-up single, a slapdash 100mph cover of 'She's Not There', is only slightly more tolerable than ANL's slaughtering of 'Streets of London'.

    Thin Lizzy's hit, a lyrical return to form for the great Phil Lynott, was probably their best uptempo single since 'The Boys Are Back In Town', though my all-time favourite Lizzy single is the ballad 'Sarah'.

    1. i agree with julie about the (somewhat-against-type) "sarah" - i think that was their next single release, but don't know if we'll get to see it on these reruns thanks to yewtree and a low chart placing... i think the song was about phil's girlfriend whose father was the so-called comedian leslie crowther - the only remotely funny thing he ever did in my opinion was when he said that phil lynott asked him if he could have his daughter's hand in marriage, and he replied "why not, you've had everything else!"

    2. "Sarah" was actually a tribute to Phil Lynott's daughter, his first child with his wife Caroline Crowther.

      While her father Leslie wasn't a comic genius, he was undoubtedly one of Britain's most accomplished all-round entertainers - but, like so many others of his ilk, he ended up hosting TV game shows.

    3. "...a slapdash 100mph cover of 'She's Not There' - like it!!

      According to my book, though, they released 'Tomorrow's Girls' before this, which I rather like - a good bit of air guitar for beginners!

  5. The UK Subs are still going, with tour dates booked until this December. Vocalist Charlie Harper is now 70. Mind you, he's still younger than the also currently gigging Stranglers' drummer Jet Black, who's now 75!

    1. i remember the raised eyebrows over the fact that charlie harper was pushing 40 when uk subs were at their chart peak - did he have a shameful pub rock past a la fellow superannuated punks jet black, joe strummer and ian dury, or was it his first foray into the music scene?

    2. Charlie Harper started his first band in 1964 and combined his love of gigs and R&B (maybe hard to believe) with his job as a hairdresser.

    3. arthur you've jogged my memory - i now remember he used to be a hairdresser... even if his music wasn't exactly cutting edge (ho ho). by the way, can anyone explain the meaning of the band's name? did "subs" stand for "substitutes"? or maybe "subscriptions?

    4. It's short for "Subversives", the band's previous name.

    5. thanks arthur - that thought did come to me earlier today whilst i was cleaning the cooker!

  6. According to the sublime "Popscene" website, UK Subs hold the record for the most appearances on TOTP without having a top 20 hit - no less than seven!

    1. I liked the way that Peter Powell had two girls on his arm in shorts as replacements for Legs & Co, when introducing UK Subs. Brilliant!

  7. I like that Lene Lovich tune more each time I hear it, and it was a great video. So was Thin Lizzy's, with that classic plain white background that is such a feature of early videos.

    Overall it was a somewhat lacklustre instalment, with most of the new songs failing to impress, while I am sick to death of both Quantum Jump and Chas 'n' Dave. Bonnie Tyler's attempted leap on to the disco bandwagon saw her fall flat on her face, and UK Subs were just punk-by-numbers. Thom Pace's effort was pleasant, but ultimately less memorable than his decidedly non-starry appearance and improbably high voice! Gary Numan couldn't present a greater contrast, and it was nice to see this new performance anticipate the coming decade in more ways than one, with plenty of dry ice on stage.

    I think this was also the first time Jools Holland hasn't been smoking during a Squeeze performance - were his cigars banned for being a fire hazard?

  8. Not a great edition this, and we are really suffering at the moment from having to miss out every other one. There were 2 highlights for me - one was the guy pogoing like mad behind Peter Powell during one of his typically tepid links, and the other one I'll come to shortly.

    Sex Pistols - Clearly high up on the 'worst cover versions ever made' chart.

    Squeeze - A strangely lacklustre performance of this, the flashing lights in the background (which no other act had) were completely inappropriate for this song as well!
    Weirdly, although the keyboards sounded re-recorded as they did on the previous performance, the vocals sounded the same as the single whereas they didn't before.

    Lene Lovich - say I was blown away by this is an understatement. Such a perfect video for this tune - mad, energetic and magnificent. I had no idea this even existed before seeing it on this show, and the shock of it turning up made it seem even more exciting. The best thing that's been on in the 79 shows, no question.

    Thom Pace - Unfortunately the mood then deflates with this dull plodder. Julie above mentions it being a big hit in Germany - given that his name is spelt unusually with an 'h' in, I'm guessing he must have some German roots?

    Thin Lizzy - One of their best, and I too love the kettle drum line-up. Not sure of the relevance of the Elvis bit in the lyrics at the end though.

    UK Subs - Utterly execrable. I was watching this and thinking the lead singer looked about 40. By the comments above, I wasn't far off! He also looked disconcertingly like Harry Hill in a wig at times too.

    Bonnie Tyler - Hmm...not convinced she carries this one off. Average disco.

    Tubeway Army - Not a lot of love on here for this one, I know, but in my opinion still one of the most extraordinary chart toppers of all time. In a good way.
    Soon we'll get another of the most extraordinary chart toppers of all time. In a bad way.

    Slick - Were they French? Has a bit of that sound about them, a little reminiscent of Voyage (although slightly less good)
    I noticed a lyric about the year 2000, which was highly futuristic talk back then. I'm still waiting for my rocket pack.

    1. As far as I know, Thom Pace doesn't have German roots - he just chose to spell his forename unusually, like Thom Yorke of Radiohead.

      German record buyers at that time were very keen on country-flavoured pop - Smokie were massive over there - so that explains the chart-topping success of 'Maybe' in that country. Lee Majors' 'The Unknown Stuntman', from 'The Fall Guy', was another country-pop TV theme that did well over there.

    2. Maybe the Elvis reference was meant as a rallying call for someone to take up the baton and become the dynamic new leader of rock 'n' roll. Phil was certainly more sympathetic towards Elvis in the lyrics of his solo hit "King's Call".

    3. Slick were from the United States, and one of their writers/producers was Larry James from Fat Larry's Band.

      You're 1000 years out, the lyric goes "People dance to every night, and they always will, even in the year 3000"...

      One of my favourite tracks ever!

  9. host: obviously the director still hasn't got around to doing anything about peter's lack of clarity

    sex pistols: barrel-scraping alert! seeing as all their riffs were basically nicked from eddie cochran songs, it's perhaps no wonder when they run out of ideas they just start doing cover versions of them

    lene lovich: still not convinced about the tune but there's certainly a lot going on video-wise. wonder if the crowd were ringers though rather than true lene fans (did she have a fan club)? noticed that they preceded "radio ga ga" by 5 years with the "nuremburg rally" routine at one point. i lamented before how she only had her 15 minutes of fame whilst her clone bjork gets a lifetime of it - someone pointed out to me that kate bush was ploughing a similar furrow back then and one female weirdo was probably all joe public could handle at the time! plus toyah was also treading similar ground at that point, although (maybe for the above reasons) she had to wait a couple of years more for her breakthrough...

    in the chart rundown i was rather shocked to discover that thom pace was white - maybe i'm mixing him up with someone else, but wasn't he a songwriter for the likes of the stylistics and the (detroit) spinners, which led me to believe he was black. thanks to pp's mumbling i had no idea who he was when he did his song - i have no recollection of this at all, and the only thing i remember about it now having listened again was that vocally he was flat as a pancake at times...

    quantum jump: not them again!

    thin lizzy: not as good as their last one, but i always liked the kettle drum/massed guitar bits on the video - a shame that they didn't have a white background all the way through with the superimposed storyline shots (phil obviously wasn't in a real cell, as the bars shook when he grabbed them). i notice gary moore can't resist messing about by bashing scott and brian's timpani as well as his own - bet he wouldn't have whacked phil's though!

    uk subs: one of the better punk/new wave efforts even though it all seems a bit of a sham with such a superannuated frontman. wonder if that was the fan club that charlie was bending over to "sing" with? they should have let acts bring along their own contingent of followers as it surely would have made better telly than a bunch of people related to beeb employees standing around like a bunch of lemons! like the "i don't care" attitude of the bassist, but sadly the guitarist was treating the event far too seriously...

    gerry rafferty: you can imagine his manager urging him to make a video so they can shift a few more units, and gez being adamant that his music stands alone. then after much badgering reluctantly agreeing to do one, but strictly on condition that they film him when he's recording in the studio with his fellow po-faced beardy backing band...

    bonnie tyler: old hawk face dispenses with her usual snooze rock to belatedly leap aboard the disco bandwagon, thankfully without success. as thx notes, a theme for one of several jackie collins sex 'n' scandal "novels" filmed on the cheap around this time. the music was written by bugatti and musker (wonder if they are among the beardy backing bunch?) who normally churned out stuff for our old chum paul nicholas. and guess what? mr nicholas was in not one but two of those films playing a pop singer!

    gary numan: all i can add is that someone watching this with me remarked on how gaz looked like a gerry anderson puppet

    slick: bonnie tyler and co take note - this is how you do proper disco! and very futuristic not only lyrically but musically too, with synthesizers used a lot more deftly than gary numan could ever manage. i don't know where the singers came from, but the man behind this was larry james of fat larry's band fame...

    mark: 6/10

    1. i've just remembered that the guy who wrote songs for the likes of the stylistics was called thom bell!

  10. On holiday? All of them, all together? Nah, they were probably on strike over something or other, this being 1979.

    So I take it that this Lene Lovich clip was a promo, a 'faked' piece of concert footage with the fan club as 'audience', like Queen did with one of their '70s hits (can't remember which)? The huge variety of camera angles would suggest that this is the case, but if not then I really hate it when they overdub the record version on the soundtrack - I would much rather hear the original live sound however grotty it may be.

    Oh dear, Janet Kay has turned into a Movellan. Well maybe not, but seriously, why the Doctor Who costume department decided to use a contemporary fashion to represent an alien robot race is beyond me. And what on Earth have they done to her voice? It sounds like one of those execrable 1980s remixes where everything had to be drenched with tacky electronic reverberation (check out the version of Wuthering Heights on 'The Whole Story' for a prime example).

    Thin Lizzy enter the video age. They were clearly having fun but somehow I don't think it suits them.

    For this third performance from Chas & Dave the lyrics nanny has clearly had a word with them. No 'cow son' allowed - not even once - and the line "Sister's boyfriend put his sister up the club" had to be changed. And some reverb on the vocals here too - must have been the sound man's turn to get a new toy.

    Otherwise an unremarkable show relieved by a superb No.1!

  11. Better late than never with my two penn'orth, I guess.

    A fine start in the studio with the great unblinking Glenn, followed by a high energy (no, not Hi-NRG, that was years later) vid from the gal who taught Hazel O’Connor her entire act by default, then…

    Erm, is it Eric Idle with a beard and a few more pounds on? The echoey vocals were a bit grizzly for my liking (see what I did there?). Nowhere near as bad as Janet Kay, though, who looked lovely but sounded like she was singing in a third floor toilet.

    So, we get “pooftah” again from the Jump and, on the same show, Chas and Dave suffer another lyrical curfew. Pathetic.

    I’d completely forgotten this Thin Lizzy track. Loved the all kettledrums / all guitar swops. Mind you, being on video stopped the lads from becoming TOTP’s new house band.

    The UK Subs, bringing energy back into the top 30, Pete? They were at number 37! You weren’t strangled hard enough. If that wasn’t bad enough, Pete then promises us something hot. Ooh good! Is it Rafaella Carra in another all-in-one? Joy Sarney, maybe? No, it’s that steaming hunk of manhood Gerry Rafferty in a boring vid for a sublime song.

    Oh, dear, Gaynor! Disco isn’t you, is it, love? Not even the prototype Liquid Gold bassline could save this effort. I noticed the credits mentioned The Maggie Stredder Singers were backing vocalists on the show. Which Stredderette was that in the Green Goddess outfit, then?

    Anyone else notice the “I can’t believe this” min-smirk at the start of Gary Numan’s performance? Tut tut! Get back into android mode immediately.

    And we finish with a damp squib slab of disco which drops to 31 next week but vaults into the top 20 the following week, complete with those farting noise keyboards.

  12. I love the way the smiley BBC4 announcer said "and some good moves from Legs and Co". Err not tonight there aren't. They are on holiday (according to PP).

    Nice to see Squeeze again but this performance was perhaps a little lacklustre compared to the last. Was this the nearest they ever got to having a number one?

    I have no recollection of this Lene Lovich video. The crowd certainly seem very excited, perhaps they were well paid or were just really glad at the chance of getting their faces in a video this being the early days of promo videos.

    I have no recollection of Thoma Pace either. I guess the Grizzly Adams series must still have been running in the UK even though the show finished in 1978 in the US.

    Quantum Jump are a prime example of how quickly you can tire of a song when the same performance is repeated. Even at the time I remember groaning sometimes when they repeated stuff but at least it was only fortnightly.

    Having said that it's a pity they didn't repeat Janet Kay's debut performance because the vocal was much better and that silver headdress is not a good look.

    Ah Thin Lizzy on video with a line up of kettle drums, looking pretty cool and yet again something I have to recollection of. Only problem with the Lizzy is that a lot of their songs are similar so you can get them mixed up.

    The UK Subs' Charlie Harper always put me in mind of Gary Glitter and still does, they must shop at the same wig shop. This is a prime example of punk at its worst. They were on the same label as cheesy French disco meister Patrick Hernandez (Gem) which says it all really.

    Gerry Rafferty's bassist puts me in mind of Ronnie Barker dressed up as Fat Belly Jones and doesn't Gerry have small feet. The BBC clearly don't like the Lyricon (electronic wind instrument) that Raphael Ravenscroft is playing as they always fade the track once he start playing it.

    The worst song of the night award must go to Bonnie Tyler, a song that has no hooks or any redeemable features apart from the wonderful PP Arnold who was providing the backing vocals. And we certainly know what religion the bassist is.

    The third and last performance of Gertcha where they finally bow to Robin Nash pressure and then drop down the chart. So the public liked a cowson or two. But presumably they played this on the radio so what was the big deal with the lyric on the telly?

    I bet the cameraman hated Gary Numan when he kept moving his head about as he was trying to fit him in that graphic oval. I remember at the time thinking that this really did seem like the future had arrived and Gary really was an alien. I was even slightly scared.

    Slick Space Bass a nice funky dance track I remember well and bought at the time. The vocalists were Barbara Ingram and Doris James, the former was related to the producer Butch Ingram. Needless to say the follow up single Sexy Cream was not played on the radio.

    1. i would imagine that doris james was related to fat larry james, who was involved in the slick record. i remember me and my chums smirking at the title of slick's follow-up 45, but sadly musically it wasn't in the same league as "space bass"...

      there was one noticeable hook in the bonnie tyler performance... her nose!

  13. Squeeze made number 2 with both "Cool For Cats" and "Up The Junction". They weren't as unlucky as Darts, who had three number 2's without topping the charts. The unluckiest runner-up single was probably Frank Chacksfield's orchestral instrumental "Limelight", which spent 8 weeks in three different spells at number 2 in 1953 without reaching the summit.

    1. Did it get trapped at number 2 by Frankie Laine's version of I Believe? That ended up spending 18 weeks at number 1 in total!

    2. As Tony Green used to say on "Bullseye" one!

  14. This comment has been removed by the author.