Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Wanted ~ Top of the Pops 21st June 1979!

Huge thanks once again to Darnall 42 for uploading an edition of Top of the Pops 1979 that will not be broadcast on BBC4, this time due to the host being Dave Lee Travis.

Click Here to watch Top of the Pops 21st June 1979

If it works for Abba....
21-6-79: Presenter: Dave Lee Travis

(22) THE CLASH – I Fought The Law (and charts)
(21) EDDY GRANT – Living On The Frontline
(55) THE DOOLEYS – Wanted
(25) VILLAGE PEOPLE – Go West (video)
(63) RUBY WINTERS – Baby Lay Down
(37) THE RUTS – Babylon’s Burning
(24) AMII STEWART – Light My Fire (video)
(16) DOLLAR – Who Were You With In The Moonlight ®
(57) PATRICK HERNANDEZ – Born To Be Alive
(14) JOHN WILLIAMS – Cavatina (danced to by Legs & Co)
(71) SNIFF ‘N’ THE TEARS – Driver’s Seat
(1) ANITA WARD – Ring My Bell ®
(29) THOM PACE – Maybe (and credits)
The Clash ~ it's the band who refused to be on Top of the Pops playing over the credits this week
Eddy Grant ~ this song was featured three times on the show, twice hosted by Jimmy Savile, and the other by DLT. So BBC4 audiences won't get to see Living on the Frontline at all.
The Dooleys ~ here's the moment they did a Brotherhood of Man, and switched to Abba style female lead singers, and to great effect. Wanted became their biggest hit when it reached number 3.
Village People ~ very enthusiastic dancing from the boys in what looked like footage from an (American?) tv show.
Ruby Winters ~ appearing live in the studio but Baby Lay Down went to sleep at number 43.
The Ruts ~ making their fiery debut on the show with what became their only top ten hit.
Amii Stewart ~ more flames on show with another disco version of an old song, this time the Door's Light My Fire, and another top ten hit being kindled for Amii.
Dame Edna Everage ~ some things are just so bad they are funny, and some things are just so bad...... but Barry to his credit gives it some welly, though thankfully this non-charter won't be on again!
Dollar ~ a good year for the duo with top ten hits soon to follow.
Patrick Hernandez ~ picking up where Harpo and Paul Nicholas left off, this was his only UK hit, and I bet the aforementioned two would have loved to have twirled their canes to this one.
John Williams ~ it's a bendy ballet routine this week from Legs and Co.
Sniff n the Tears ~ I was half expecting this to be a novelty record in answer to Driver 67, but no such luck, Drivers Seat was their only charter and it stalled outside the top 40.
Anita Ward ~ still having a good chime at number one :-)
Thom Pace ~ plays us out with his only hit which we'll see on the show next week.
Back on BBC4 next time then with the edition from 28th June 1979.


  1. To give you a flavour of the day the 1979 Glastonbury Festival started today - the line up included Peter Gabriel, John Martyn, The Only Ones, The Slits, UK Subs, Tom Robinson, Steve Hillage, The Pop Group, Genesis.

    Quite a mixed bag!

    Here's the listings for ITV for 21 June 1979:
    12.00 Gideon
    12.10 The Pipkins
    12.30 The Sullivans
    1.00 News
    1.30 Crown Court
    2.00 Money Go Round with Tony Bastable
    2.25 Sister Dora - drama
    3.20pm Sounds Of Britain - jazz in Southampton with Humphrey Lyttleton, Acker Bilk
    3.50 Quick On The Draw with Michael Bentine, Willie Rushton and Florence de Jong
    4.20 Premiere For Elizabeth - classical music concert
    5.15 Show-jumping from Lincoln
    5.45 News
    6.00 Local News
    6.35 Crossroads
    7.00 Emmerdale Farm
    7.30 Thunderloud - sitcom with Derek Waring, James Cosmo
    8.00 You're Only Young Twice - sitcom with Peggy Mount, Pat Coombs
    8.30 TV Eye
    9.00 Hazel - drama with Nicholas Ball
    10.00 News
    10.30 Pro-celebrity Darts with John Lowe and Carry On star L:iz Fraser!
    11.00 Fantasy Island
    11.55 Police Surgeon

    1. I wonder if there was pro-celebrity boxing with John Conteh and Charles Hawtrey?

      No children's programmes after school, either? Odd.

  2. I used to come home from school for lunch (1 and a half hours!) so I always watched The Sullivans :-)

  3. only commenting on a "blind" basis as i never watch the "banned" versions online as my form of protest against the "emperor's new clothes" system:

    can't say i'm gutted about missing eddy grant and his plodding drum machine. wish i could say the same about the dooleys, but no doubt they'll get other opportunitities to inflict their particular brand of torture on me... we've all seen dame edna in action in the totp 1979 review programme (or something similar) so that's alright. hopefully "born to be a lathe" (as one of my school chums amusingly pointed out it sounded like) will get another chance. the legs thing sounds like a real car-crash moment but sorry, even that won't tempt me to break my vow!

  4. The Dooleys - I agree with you Angelo, in that the first time the male lead gave way to the females in the band to take lead vocals, this worked handsomely, as their next hits from here were bigger and better. I have their greatest hits CD, and the ones with the women on lead vocals are much better, fresher sounding hits which were more successful in the singles charts.

    Village People - disappointing follow-up to their first hugely successful hits, YMCA and In The Navy.

    Dollar - just brilliant, and pity that their second and third appearance of this tune on TOTP were on the Savile and DLT shows which were not shown on BBC4. Teresa Bazaar would have upstaged the whole of Legs & Co with her good looks.

    Sniff & Tears - I must admit that I don't remember this at the time, but having heard this now on the Darnall42 link in 2014, I think it sounds great, and worthy of the likes of Dire Straits and Driver 67.

    Anita Ward - her video was never shown on TOTP as she bothered to make a studio appearance for the two weeks at No.1, but in this case, she needn't have bothered, as the video was much better than the studio performance.

  5. Well, it's two weeks in a row after months of limited activity, yes, the house orchestra and the Maggie Shredder Singers really are back with a vengeance! I genuinely felt sorry for Patrick Hernandez for having to go through this. Even so, it was a show filled with enthusiasm, from the director giving it maximum with picture-in-picture tricks and split-screen techniques making alternate Dooley sisters disappear etc., to DLT at his madcap best.

    One of the best records of 1979, but it'll never be more than something over the chart rundown. Oh well, if that's what they wanted...

    Not very often do we kick off with an act that has been on a fortnight previously, but not unknown. Is it something to do with somebody dropping out at the last minute?

    Now this was what made me sit up and take notice of the Dooleys, it just sounded so up-to-date and fresh compared to their earlier stuff, and they never looked back. I find the girls quite attractive in 2014 but they would have been nothing special in 1979. I think it's an age thing.

    Village People - the first single was about the YMCA, the second about the Navy and this one doesn't make any mention of the opposite sex. Even us kids were beginning to twig...

    Both Baby Lay Down and Driver's Seat were to all intents and purposes new to me, although I was vaguely familiar with the latter.

    The oft-repeated performance of Babylon's Burning, complete with primitive flame effects and dribbling guitarist. Only recently did I discover that the single didn't have the alarm and siren at the beginning, which is always heard today.

    I've said before that I was never a disco kid, but have always fallen for a good melody, and there were three melodic disco numbers at this time which I've always liked. Two are featured here - Light My Fire (and particularly the '137 Disco Heaven' bit in the middle) and Born To Be Alive. The third is Let's Fly Away by Voyage, which sadly appears to have missed TOTP completely.

    Did Disco Matilda get any other TV or radio coverage apart from this? I can't remember anything - I think even Stewpot stuck to the Rolf Harris version. Just as well, this was cringeworthy, but that's what I think of Dame Edna anyway..

    Despite the stated aim of 'reproducing the sound of the record', this rendition of Born To Be Alive is about as far removed from the record as you can get! Poor chap, he had probably been on TV shows all over Europe, either miming to the record or singing live to its backing, but comes to the UK and has to suffer this!

    And a flash of inspiration from Flick, when presented with the slowest, most laid-back record in the charts, to simply show the girls working out on the bars.

  6. Thanks as ever for the posting, but not many tracks rang my bell (see what I did there?) this week, other than The Ruts. As for Dame Edna....

  7. When BBC4 were compiling the Big Hits show at the start of the year, they should have substituted Living on the Frontline for Disco Matilda, given that we won't get to see any of the editions it appeared in. Disco Matilda isn't even funny, and is only memorable for Dame Edna prefiguring Morrissey with the flowers at the end. I do think it is very unfair that good artists like Grant are being denied the fresh exposure that the TOTP repeats might bring them, just because of who happened to present the show they appeared on.

    Elsewhere, it was the proverbial mixed bag this week. For the first time, The Dooleys impressed me with a quality tune that Brotherhood of Man must have wished they had got hold of! It was nice to see a performance of Driver's Seat too - I had no idea it was such a minor hit, as I have heard it on the radio quite often over the years.

    On the downside, Ruby Winters' effort was a plodding dirge. There appeared to be some hamsters in a glass or plastic case next to her on stage. Were these her pets, put on stage as a result of a diva-ish demand by Ruby, or a desperate attempt by the director to make the performance more interesting? I can't stand Born to be Alive on the original record, and this version was even worse, the orchestra very much living down to their reputation. I've never been that keen on Light My Fire either, whoever is performing it, and I don't think Amii was able to pull off the same trick she had with Knock on Wood.

    I did quite enjoy the Legs ballet class, however, which very much suited the music. This version of Cavatina is also far superior to the Shadows' effort.

    1. i much preferred amii's go at "light my fire" to "knock on wood" at the time - i'm ashamed to say that i had never heard the former in any capacity before this cover, but i've since made up for that by having about 20 versions of it in my mp3 collection!

  8. 'Driver's Seat' may have been only a minor chart entry in this country, but it fared better in North America, reaching No.15 in the US and No.17 in Canada, and eventually hit No.1 in the Netherlands in 1991 after being featured in a TV commercial for a famous electronics corporation.

    I remember Dame Edna performing 'Disco Matilda' on 'Saturday Night at the Mill' as well as TOTP. Dreadful record, full stop.

    Ruby Winters' offering should have been HUGE!

    As for Legs, they were working out on the BARRES, not the bars!

    1. i remember seeing sniff 'n' the tears (dreadful name by the way) on the old grey whistle test around this time and being really impressed with what they did. so when "driver's seat" came out as a single i was really hoping it would be a success. i couldn't afford to own the album at the time which annoyed me, but i did get to listen to it in much recent times and now have to say i think i would have wasted my money if i had!

    2. Ah, thanks, so it's like barre chords on a guitar, where you 'bar' the strings with the forefinger? Never got past open 'E' and open 'A' myself...

  9. The Dooleys, pretty uncool now, but a storming pop record in its way.

    Mr Cowboy Village Person was always so cheery and happy to be there, wasn't he? Another song I liked as a kid.

    Ruby Winters upstaged by the canaries, very odd, never work with children or animals, Ruby.

    I don't think a yellow polka dot shirt is very punk, Mr Ruts.

    Three disco classics tonight, erm, well maybe not, but Amii's isn't bad, Patrick was at the mercy of the orchestra (that bassman!) and Dame Edna was notable for shaving under her arms especially for the performance. Thoughtful.

    Sniff and the Tears, not even a top 40 hit here though it still gets played on the radio. Maybe the snotty cold reminiscent name was putting potential buyers off?

    1. the cowboy with his cheesy cheerfulness was my favourite village person - the GI was the equivalent of brad dexter in "the magnificent seven" i.e. the one that no one ever remembers...

  10. This is the first 'banned' episode in ages that is really good, so a pity there are performances here that we'll never see on TV.

    I love The Clash's song, and it's such a shame that they were snooty about the Pops. Eddy Grant's song doesn't do much for me, and then to a true classic. 'Wanted' is a truly fantastic pop song, and deserved to be a big hit.

    Hmm..the second version of 'Go West' I've heard in 2 days since I was at the Pet Shop Boys concert last night (and rather brilliant they were too!)
    Not one of my favourite tunes ever, in either version. Have they already replaced one of the lineup? The construction worker looks different to me. Or is it just because he hasn't got his helmet on?

    Ruby Winters - Zzzzzzzzzz. I didn't particularly like her hit songs, this is even worse.

    'Babylon's Burning' is a terrific song, and it's a good performance too. Amii Stewart's tune I remember being on the radio almost as much as 'Knock on wood' so I don't mind it actually, though it's probably not as good.

    Dame Edna - Well, yes....I don't find her funny either, although you have to admire Barry Humphries for getting through that without having a coronary.

    I also have to admire Patrick Hernandez for sticking with what can only be described as a disgraceful performance by the orchestra and singers (they put more effort in for Dame Edna, for gods sake!) of what is a rather good single.

    'Driver's Seat' is constantly talked about by Steve Wright as if he was the only one championing it at the time, which can't be true. I'm sure he's talked before about how he got them a slot on TOTP after another act pulled out. Given that he's not presented an edition yet, this must be yet another example of him talking absolute bollocks. I cannot believe that he's still peddling his 20+ year old tired format on the radio. Sadly all the housewives love his show.
    Anyway, the song - yes, it should definitely have hit the Top 40!

  11. Just went to see this show on darnell42 page but it is gone looks like Vimeo have deleted it because the Pat m page of old editions from the 60's and early 70's are also gone
    can the show be put up again ? thanks by the way keep up the good work on the reviews Jonny

  12. Looks like I got there just in time then. I did notice a comment from some nosey parker (supposedly) working at the BBC saying it was an infringement of copyright. Great, looks like they are playing hardball with these now, so we might not see them at all in future.

    Thanks BBC, though I think that you'll find that with these being broadcast on UK Gold first, the copyright issue may be a bit more complex than you think. With any luck.

    1. The BBC really know how to keep the licence fee payers happy, don't they? Quite why they have suddenly decided to "get tough" now, I don't know, but I guess I will just have to scour Youtube for clips from future banned shows - if the Beeb don't take them down first...

    2. Yes any chance of a reupload somewhere? if the BBC are so uptight about it then show the bloody programme even if they have to shave a few seconds off the songs so we don't have to see these DJs that haven't as yet been convicted of any crime.

    3. we have to think of a way to help darnell42 upload the "Missing shows" even if it means creating a new a/c every few mts even on different sites - utube , viemo ,break ,veoh,ect and maybe uploading 2 or 3 eps at one time and posing the link here ? just an idea jonny

    4. If the BBC are not going to broadcast these episodes then I think its only fair that they allow them to be uploaded so people are free to make up their own minds whether to watch or not ~ maybe the BBC should upload them if they don't want anybody else to do it ~ but we ~ the licence fee payers, have paid for these shows and have a right to see them.

    5. It is about licence-fee payers, so I hope they will do us a good turn

  13. Blimey! Ten days away in Bosnia and three programmes to catch up on, which I probably have time to do before the next edition! I tried watching the show two Thursdays back on my work iPhone while in Bosnia and found I was being charged £3 a minute so had to give up pronto! Anyway, some random thoughts for now.

    A sad day for any nostalgic folk in our crew, with the loss of both Captain Scarlet voice and accomplished actor Francis Matthews, and the man who taught Americans to count from 40 backwards, revered chart countdown DJ Kasey Casem.

    Does anyone think someone in charge of the BBC's production of the World Cup presentation is a closet TOTP re-run fan? Why else would they choose 1977 top 30 scraper Another Star" by Stevie Wonder as their coverage's theme tune? Fair play to them, though - a fantastic and inspired choice.

  14. That was meant to say "I probably won't have time to do". The return of crap typing and mis-spelling to this forum - I bet you haven't missed that! :-D

  15. Not forgetting the sad loss of Rik Mayall, the posthumous recipient of a number 7 chart single (for a 2010 World Cup single which flopped) due to a Facebook campaign. He's probably having a chuckle at that up there.

  16. Sorry to dominate proceedings today. Making up for lost time. Well, actually, I’m not…

    Christ on a bike! (Sorry if that offends anyone). I’ve missed the Mike Read edition through being away longer than the stupid BBC iPlayer 7 day cut-off point (I thought they were extending it to 30 days?) and now some arsehole’s taken down the editions BBC4 are too chicken to broadcast. Feels more like we live in North Korea than the UK. Still, I’ll make a few sparse comments.

    Anyone interested in non-League football (only me, then) will know that “I Fought The Law” is used as the track that Metropolitan Police run out to. One of the dirtiest, thuggiest, biggest load of cheats in the non-League game year after year.

    I bet Jim Dooley thought “Bugger!” when his sisters’ vocal efforts were rewarded with higher chart placings.

    “Go West” has been ruined recently by a radio ad for a loans company, where the song’s been given new cringeworthy lyrics. The only good thing about the ad is that the vocalist’s Derek Griffiths, my favourite male “Play School” presenter (for the record, even as a five-year-old, I really had a thing for Chloe Ashcroft!).and one of the most underused and underrated comic actors on British telly in my opinion.

    Wearing a yellow polka dot shirt would have been punk-like if, like The Ruts, you came from Southall. One of my favourite punk songs, and a band whose time was all too brief after vocalist Malcolm Owen died from an overdose. He’d tried to overcome it, as shown in a Ruts track called “Love In Vain” (or was it “Vein”?) where he sings “Don’t want you in my arms no more”.

    I much preferred “Friends” by Amii Stewart, apart from that horrible instrumental break in the middle. Completely out of character to the rest of the track, in the same way as the intro to “Run Back” by Carl Douglas.

    Sniff ‘N’ The Tears was yet another single which missed out on a higher UK chart placing than expected due to not enough copies being pressed beforehand or when demand arose. The same fate stopped “Perfect Day” by The Saints and “Little Girl” by The Banned from reaching the top 30. All three singles would have been pressed by EMI, who were pretty clueless when it came to the new trends. Offhand, I can’t think of a major punk or new wave band who signed directly to them.

    Thom Pace’s track was the theme tune to “The Life And Times Of Grizzly Adams”, the American kids’ show about a wrongly charged fugitive who takes to the woods and befriends the animals, especially a huge bear. The single made top 20 here but spent nine weeks topping the German charts, which proves they like their ballads a bit more saccharine than we do. Well, maybe (see what I did there?).

  17. Bring back darnall42 Please!

    1. Unfortunately for all of us, there are another 10 shows in the second half of 1979 with Savile and DLT, and it looks like we will not see any of them on internet uploads if the BBC or some other parties are taking them down.

      It is very disappointing, because we always had the backdrop of watching these episodes online thanks to Darnall, but even this exercise is now being knocked down, so there is little hope of ever seeing these shows again. I just hope I am wrong, and that it is a temporary blip, and that we get normal resumption of activity online at some point soon.

    2. Disappointed the online episodes have been taken down. Do the BBC really have a problem with this? I hope there will be somewhere new where they can be uploaded. I didn't manage to see this particular episode. Did anyone upload the file and is able to send it to me? Would be grateful if it's possible.

      Frustrated the DLT episodes aren't being shown on BBC4. Typical BBC. When is he due in court? And there are a few more DLT episodes to come in 1979.