Thursday, 23 June 2016

Dead Ringer For Top of the Pops

Happy new year everyone and welcome to Top of the Pops 1982!

Vee have vays of making eu dance...


7-1-82: Presenter: Peter Powell

(25) PHIL LYNOTT – Yellow Pearl (danced to by Zoo)
We begin 1982 where we left off in 1981, with the Lynott/Ure new theme tune, danced to here by Zoo, who were giving it a bit of muscle, helping it on its way to a peak of number 14.

(12) FOREIGNER – Waiting For A Girl Like You (video)
Edited out of the 7.30pm showing.

(US 1981 7) DARYL HALL & JOHN OATES – Kiss On My List (video)
(US 1981 5) RICK SPRINGFIELD – Jessie’s Girl (video)
(US 1981 1) KIM CARNES – Bette Davis Eyes (video)
Jonathan King's US chart rundown slot was also edited out.

(62) ALTON EDWARDS – I Just Wanna (Spend Some Time With You)
I don't remember this one at all, but it made it to number 20 and was Alton's only hit.

(30) MEAT LOAF – Dead Ringer For Love (video)
The first single from his number one album, Dead Ringer, this song became Meatloaf's first top ten hit when it reached number 5. The song was co-written by an uncredited Cher, who also shares the vocals.

(48) THE MOBILES – Drowning In Berlin
A sort of I'm in Love with a German Filmstar part two, and like the latter it also proved to be a quite atmospheric one hit wonder, peaking at number 9. Our very sharply dressed host tipped them to be one of the biggest acts of 1982....

(42) SHAKATAK – Easier Said Than Done
Making their debut in the studio tonight are jazz funk legends Shakatak with a tune that became their first top 20 hit when it peaked at number 12.

(9) JON & VANGELIS – I’ll Find My Way Home
Also making their studio debut here with what was to be their second and final top ten hit when it made number 6.

(1) THE HUMAN LEAGUE – Don’t You Want Me
A new silly string free studio performance now for their fifth and final week at number one.

(4) MADNESS – It Must Be Love (crowd dancing) (and credits)
This Labi Siffre cover was now at its chart peak.


Next up is 14th January 1982, but this is our first Yewtree casualty of the year, being hosted by DLT. So instead BBC4 will show January 21st with David Jensen, which will be next Thursday.

79 comments:

  1. Happy New Year, everyone - on one of the wettest ever days in a UK summer!

    Ah, Mobiles, another chart act on the lesser spotted Rialto label (along with The Korgis, The Regents and The Planets) and based in that well known Teutonic epicentre, Eastbourne.

    Actually, sorry to put on the pedant tanktop but they weren't proper one hit wonders - 1) a real one hit wonder has a number one single and nothing else and (spoiler alert) this didn't top the chart and 2) their follow-up reached the giddy heights of number 45.

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    1. I don't know about you Nibble, but I'm in holiday this week in Greece in scorching temperatures of 36 degrees C and clear blue skies, but somehow "I'll Find My Way Home", and a new Britain outside of the EU.

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    2. i've just discovered that the rialto label was owned by ted heath's son! obviously that's the big band leader rather than the tory prime minister, as the latter was what used to be known as a "confirmed bachelor". of course of course a single guy like him wouldn't stand a chance of being chosen to lead a major political party in this media age - however able he might be! it seems you have to be a "family man" in order to get approval these days (as has long been the case when it comes to american presidents). and yet logically to me it makes far more sense to have someone like ted heath as PM as he would have no distractions such as worrying about how his kids are getting on at school, and therefore would just fully devote himself to the difficult task of running the country!

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    3. Rialto was run by Ted Heath's sons Nick and Tim. By the time of Mobiles' hit, the colourful pink and blue Rialto label had changed to a silver 'plasticrap' one as they'd changed manufacturers and distributors - for those not in the know, plasticrap's a slang term for singles which don't have paper labels and whose details are carved into the plastic with the remaining top layer sprayed a different colour, e.g. the majority of Polydor singles.

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    4. Wilberforce - if the ex-PM Ted Heath was still with us, he would be even grumpier than usual in the wake of the EU referendum, given he was the man who first took us in!

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    5. Arthur - Rialto had switched its distribution deal from PRT to Pinnacle, who may well have hired PolyGram's pressing plant in order to fulfil demand, hence the plastic label. This practice is known as 'contract pressing'. Many other hit singles on CBS/Epic, RCA, EMI and the Warner group imprints, as well as a few indies, were pressed at PolyGram with similar plastic labels when the other companies' own pressing plants found themselves overwhelmed.

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    6. i always liked the look of contract pressing singles, although of course it was a lot harder if not impossible to mark them with my initials (like others back then i had no concept that they might be considered more collectable if the labels weren't "defaced" in that manner!). i wonder if there are cases where singles were released in both contract pressing and traditional paper label format, and one of them is so rare that collectors hand over large wads of cash for them (in the manner that some do for first pressings of beatles' albums), even though they sound exactly the same?

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    7. The term 'contract pressing' refers to the practice of hiring ANY other recording company's pressing plant - not necessarily PolyGram (now Universal) - in order to increase production. Here's a made-for-geeks article that explains it more fully: http://thebeatles-collection.com/wordpress/2011/12/24/contract-pressings-2/

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    8. Wilby, there are several examples of hit singles found on both paper and plastic labels, when a single takes off quicker than expected and the label has to hire a different company's pressing plant to keep up with demand. One example I can think of is Space's "Magic Fly", primarily on the mauve and red paper Pye label but also available with an orange plastic label. I've forgotten what it stands for but, if I remember correctly, plastic labels are known in the trade as IEP.

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  2. I'll get this one in first as I just sneaked a look at the start of the prog before watching the full version over the weekend - fair play to Peter Powell for joining in the dancing early doors. He gave it a decent crack!

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    1. He got in early so he could have a crack at the Grecian-tunic clad blonde dancing next to him, I reckon. He's seen dancing with her at the end too. She is gorgeous, it must be said.

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  3. before i begin to deconstruct the first show of 1982, i'd just like to point out that in the "story of" programme the now-of-pensionable age david jenson is simply credited as "kid", with none of that "david "kid"" nonsense! however he's referred to, he still looks good for his age (i think he wore those glasses on purpose just so wouldn't look so youthful!). sadly tonights host doesn't seem keen on giving his recollections, so i have no idea if time has been as kind to him or not...

    host: despite having a makeover that makes him look a lot more formal, if anything peter powell is more enthusiastic than ever. this is actually probably the best show he's done so far with no real noticeable cock-ups (you might say after all this time there shouldn't be any by now!)

    phil lynott/zoo: it sounds a bit weird having the same intro playing for a song as we've heard less than a minute earlier for the programme intro. things have certainly changed a bit since legs & co cleared their desk - there's nary a female in sight here, and if the homo-erotic imagery of oiled posing body builders and guys in cossack costumes is mr hurll's idea of improvement then it's certainly not mine (although i was impressed when the latter became some kind of human centipede) - all we needed to complete the scenario were a few "tom of finland" sketches! presumably i'm not the only one who noticed our host doing his robot dance in the background?

    alton edwards: pp describes this as a "disco" record, but hadn't disco died a death by now? in fact it had just turned into what was described at the time as dance or club music (i was into this stuff, and i never heard anyone refer to it as "boogie" as they do nowadays). but whatever terminology is used, this is not a particularly good example of that sound. and with his bomber jacket, wet-look afro and what looks like a caterpillar above his lip, mr edwards is not a particularly cool customer either

    meat loaf: ...still, i'd much rather have second-rate disco/dance/club/boogie music than anything this guy has to offer! i remember his album "bat out of hell" being in the charts practically throughout 1978 and wondering why it was so popular when there were no hit singles from it. and when i did finally hear him on the "old grey whistle test" i still wondered what exactly what it was that made him so appealing. i also remember listening to the radio 1 "round table" review programme around this time, and being highly amused when one of the guests suggested that mr loaf's producers must have used "vari-speed" to keep him in tune!

    mobiles: i remember hating this at the time, so was curious to see if i still felt likewise having not heard it since. the answer is that it's almost as bad as i remember it (sorry, but no thanks to angelo to comparing it to that masterpiece by the passions), but at least unlike back then i only have to tolerate one or two listens. probably one of the reasons it annoyed me so much was that they did a "prince char-MING" by singing "drowning in BER-lin"

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    1. On the contrary, I remember being totally absorbed by the new Meat Loaf video, as he finally got his girl (Cher) in that sweaty American bar. The music of course was secondary, but I ended up buying every Meat Loaf Album from there on in until 1996 at least!

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    2. if i were pressed to describe meat loaf's music i would say he was a poor man's bruce springsteen. and i absolutely can't stand "the boss"! a shame really as i always liked meat (which is how you apparently address him if on first-name terms) as a personality. but did anyone else here know he was one of the few white acts signed to motown?

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    3. Meat Loaf is also one of the most difficult men to interview in the known galaxy.

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    4. I'd never heard of Tom of Finland before and had to look him up. Oooooer! All I can say is, Finns ain't what they used to be. Boom boom tish!

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    5. The story goes that he was called Meat at school because of his extraordinary size and weight, and then when he left to start work, he added the surname Loaf. I kid you not, and you only have to read the biographies.

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  4. part II:

    shakatak: aha - it's blighty's very own answer to smooth jazz giants bob james and dave grusin. i remember they got a lot of flak attack (ho ho) for their pains, and yes it's bland to the ears of most pop listeners. but it has to be remembered that it's primary purpose was as background music in wine bars rather than being watched on the telly. and i for one would rather be tapping my feet to this in a wine bar than being in some sweaty rock dive headbanging to meat loaf! the blonde singer jill saward had recently appeared on the show as part of enigma, but was still a session singer at this point rather than a fully-fledged member of the band that she later became, in what was an obvious attempt to sex-up an image that was as bland as the music (the guitarist looks like a rabbit in headlights at one point!) - notice she gets all the close-ups as opposed to her shorter and plainer colleague. i always thought the hairy beardy other-keyboard player looked a bit incongruous amongst the clean-cut rest, and he eventually had the sense to realise that himself once they became regulars on the box, although he remained as their producer. one wonders if they got their chance due to ivory-tickler bill sharpe being an employee at the beeb? apparently he worked on the john peel show, although this suggests he may not have had a personal interest in the likes of bogshed and birds with ears!

    jon & vangelis: that's an interesting twelve-string instrument that mr anderson's (not) playing. and there's no actual piano sound on the record either, despite mr papathanios's (or whatever his name is) flourishes. and couldn't they have just put a synth on top of the piano for him to pretend to play in the solo, rather than show a series of stills of them "in the studio"? in a way this is just as bland what preceded it. but would it get played in wine bars? the answer is probably more likely than shakatak these days

    human league: a bonus that we get to see them one more time in the studio, but it still doesn't make up for missing the best of "dare" in these re-reruns thanks to "offending" DJ hosts. adrian wright is clearly bored with the whole thing now as he half-heartedly prods and swipes at his synth, and despite presumably having heard the song even more times than everyone else who'd heard it a million times by now, joanne still forgets to come in with her "harmony" on the chorus. and of course suzanne continues to present a taste of the future with what was perhaps the first-ever karaoke vocal

    madness: oh no, the body builders have returned! i hope they're not going to be a regular fixture on the show from now on? i was never aware of the original version of this, nor did i consider it a better effort by madness at the time. but i suppose i've got used to it now as a pleasant-enough-but-no-more ditty. in fact as such it would probably get played in wine bars these days!

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  5. Because the first thing you think of when you think TOTP is Muscle Marys in fetish gear, then what better to illustrate their theme song? I noticed someone dressed as a nurse, and later a black policeman, were these dancers in costumes or had they just finished their shifts? Anyway, top tune, etc.

    Foreigner, ooh, those synths are a bit ear-biting. The return of the blurry concert footage video to the show, a whiny item of AOR otherwise.

    Alton towers over the audience with this performance of a forgotten ditty, presumably those tight trousers are the reason his voice is so high? Can't remember how this goes now.

    Meat Loaf and Cher: I remember seeing this! Two stars yelling at each other in an extreme Grease style while the band goes over the top behind them. Tasteful oil painting they have in that "joint".

    Cabaret was almost ten years ago, The Mobiles. Someone likes Siouxsie Sioux. Interesting "look" for the band there, did they splash out on blond hair dye? Must admit I rather like this, it's kind of eccentric.

    Shakatak: in a survey for Buster comic, I listed this lot as my favourite band for reasons that I can't quite fathom now. It wasn't exactly aimed at me. But you know, it's smooth, inoffensive, laidback, all the things it needs to be. Rather unfortunate outfit on the lead dancer (who is under the impression she's the singer).

    Hey, Richard Skinner's back! Oh, my mistake. I don't know what Vangelis was playing on that piano, but it certainly wasn't this. Instrumental break montage was searingly dynamic.

    Then ver League are back for the last time at number one, before we witness the posing frenzy to Madness under the credits.

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  6. Jon Anderson - the George Formby of prog-rock - pretends to play a Puerto Rican cuatro, a 10-stringed guitar, in this TOTP performance. He has actually played the instrument on disc and on stage as a member of Yes.

    I remember The Mobiles well; they deserved a longer career. Some critics even hailed them as a new wave Abba!

    Shakatak's Nigel Wright, who quit the onstage line-up the following year, has enjoyed a rich career in film, TV and musical theatre as well as the recording industry. He served as musical director on a number of TV talent shows, including 'Over The Rainbow', 'Any Dream Will Do', 'I'd Do Anything' and most recently 'Britain's Got Talent'.

    Talking of which, Suzanne Sulley's raw new wave style of singing would not have got her past the initial audition stage of 'X Factor' had it existed at that time. That goes for Joanne Catherall and Soft Cell's Marc Almond, too - but they were mega-successful, nevertheless! The industry was markedly different in the pre-Cowell era.

    I'm deducting two marks because Foreigner's classic power ballad was omitted from the 7.30 showing in favour of the overrated Meat Loaf, but that leaves a score of 8/10.

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  7. Shakey Shakerson24 June 2016 at 02:44

    Happy New Year !!!!

    Right then, let's see what goodies are on show this week. First up yet another chance to hear an extended version of 'our theme tune'. Lynott was an inveterate ToTP performer and yet he never once performed this on the show. I wonder why? Was he embarrased by it? Talking of embarrassment. . . Peter Powell dancing. I'll leave that there.

    The dreadful Foreigner singing the dreadful 'Waiting For A Girl' in a dreadful live performance on a dreadful video. There's a word for this - if only I could think of it. Mercifully cut short.

    Alton Edwards. Old timey 'disco' was edging towards a better, funkier vibe. This one, though, was neither one nor the other. Very 'of its time'.

    Meatloaf. According to PP, he 'thinks' the female singer was Cher. Really? With her name on the songwriting credits and a starring role in the video? You THINK? I have a soft spot for Steinman's bombastic popera/wall of sound stuff, but this wasn't one of my favourites. And writing 'rock and roll and BREW' just to enable an easy rhyme isn't clever.

    Next up, Siouxsie & The Banshees Light with a quirky, pleasant enough ditty. Diet Siouxsie was a bit too 'stage schooly' for me though.

    "Is that Shakatak?"
    "Yeah"
    "Listen, this new single isn't bad at all, but I tell you what it could do with - some words"
    "But it's an instrumental!"
    " I know - but if you add some words you could go massive. Just write any old guff."
    "Easier said than done"
    " See? There you go".

    Jon & Vangellis mime, The Human League sulk, and Madness play us out.

    Dancers/Cheerleaders/Others. Clearly the cheerleaders were advised to come dressed in uniforms this week. I saw nurses, police, schoolies and others. The girls 80s hairstyles are starting to crop up more and more on the heads of the crowd but New Romantic dress codes are still in short supply. Muscle men. NO. Just stop it - big muscles and little, ahem, clothes. Distracting and annoying. Fairbrass once again makes a couple of unwelcome appearances.

    Powell. The emphasising of words is still annoying, the Cher 'guess' and the dancing were embarrassing, but other than that, I have to say there is clear improvement. 5.

    The show. Can't get too enthused about much this week, hardly a finger-on-the-pulse one so I'll stick firmly to the middle of the road and say 5.

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    1. i too noticed mr fairbrass posing as an enthusiastic member of the audience behind pp at one point, but rather surprisingly he wasn't one of the body builders. is he by any chance related to richard and fred of "i'm too sexy for my shirt" fame? if so then that wouldn't be a surprise...

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    2. Dan Sullivan from eastenders

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  8. Unusually for a first show of the year, there were plenty of new songs and performances on this one, though the overall standard was mediocre. PP appeared to be using Neville Chamberlain as his sartorial role model here, but hosted with his usual enthusiasm and certainly got stuck into the dancing - he was bopping along to at least three of the featured tracks!

    Another full-length play for Yellow Pearl made for a good start to the year, and also gave a chance to showcase the impressive new main set with its cascading neon. The Zoo routine, alas, was totally tacky thanks to the fake Cossacks and preening musclemen - what the hell was Michael Hurll thinking inviting them into the studio? That was a seriously dodgy live recording of Foreigner's plodding ballad, which may be why it got cut off early. This kind of music was massive in the States at the time, which probably helps to explain why the exciting new wave of British pop stars were poised to invade over there...

    As Mr King is once again airbrushed from history, we move straight on to Alton Edwards, with this underpowered, instantly forgettable effort. Alton certainly looked very contemporary, but the song was not exactly breaking any new ground. Not a lot of love being shown for Meat Loaf here, but I have always had a soft spot for this tune, which I remember listening to a lot when I was very young on a compilation tape my dad had put together. Looking at the video, it occurred to me that if Meat and Cher had really got it on she would have been snapped in two...

    Looking at The Mobiles, they had clearly been watching Cabaret a few times too often. This unmelodic dirge wasn't a patch on I'm in Love with a German Film Star, and the arty pretentiousness of the performance also put me right off - mercifully, PP's prediction of big things for them would not materialise. I'd imagine, after the Brexit vote, that they are drowning their sorrows in Berlin today!

    Shakatak were pleasant enough, but had zero charisma. In any case, this kind of music is better left playing in the lift or at a dinner party! Nice to see Jon and Vangelis in the studio, for the first time in either of their lengthy careers. Jon in particular seemed to be enjoying himself, perhaps due to the incongruous sight of the "policeman" swaying his arms about.

    The League mark their final week at the top with another studio appearance, as PP ham-fistedly jokes that they have now been number 1 for two years. This wasn't as memorable as the Christmas Eve performance, but they were still looking good. Finally, PP tries to chat up a young lady while dancing to Madness, as those bloody musclemen flex their pecs for the cameras - it's a shame someone in the crowd didn't give them a swift kick in the centre of their teensy trunks...

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    1. Indeed, this Meat Loaf video is what got me into his music, as I just about remember that there was some failed single called Bat Out Hell which only just scraped a top 20 status in 1979, but I never saw any footage of him on TV until Dead Ringer For love on this TOTP show, whereby I then became fascinated, and somewhat curious that such a big man could front a pop group with charisma to match, and managing to pull a slender and quite tasty looking Cher in the video, even though she was no spring chicken like Meat loaf.

      Suffice to say that I could not shake of this fascination until 2006, after Bat Out Of Hell III was released, which was for me his last significant calling before the quality music dried up.

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    2. I'm In Love With A German Film Star was by The Passions not The mobiles but it is easy to get them confused.

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    3. Bama - I knew the songs were by different groups, I was just joining in with the comparison that Angelo and Wilberforce had already made between them...

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  9. Just thought I'd comment briefly on the documentary and Big Hits compilation. I thought The Story of 1982 was a very entertaining overview of the year, with plenty of good anecdotage involving the likes of Wham, Dexys, Pigbag and John Peel. Nice to see a very well-preserved Kid reminiscing about the latter, too.

    The compilation was pretty representative of the year, though I would have liked to have seen Mad World and Maid of Orleans included too. It seemed perverse that, having talked at length in the documentary about Jeffrey Daniel's moonwalking and the notorious "Jockey Wilson" Dexys performance, the BBC didn't include either in the compilation - did we really need to be subjected to Come on Eileen yet again?

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    1. I liked the story of Pigbag on The Story of 1982, where they explained how they were escorted out of the studio after their performance, as they had rubbed up somebody the wrong way by something they had said during the recording of the show in which they performed.

      Suffice to say that Papa's Got A Brand New Pigbag was one of 1982's top memories, and spawned off various copies years later, such as Reach Up by The Perfecto Allstars in 1994 that became an even bigger hit than Pigbag's original, and was to be the theme tune for Adrian Lewis's walk-on music in world darts since the early 2000s.

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    2. Adam Ant, in the story of 1982, had dandy highwaymen on the brain, talking about the section of the Goody Two Shoes TOTP set with the Pusses in boots on the road to London, as he mentioned Dick Turpin - that should of course have been Dick Whittington, Lord Mayor.

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    3. I recently read Adam Ant's biography, well bits of it, and he hardly mentions the other members of his band and there are only a few pages dedicated to songwriting partner Marco. But there is a funny story about Michael Jackson ringing him up at 5 in the morning to ask where he got his soldiers jacket from. Adam thought it was one of the band playing a joke and told him to piss of until Quincy Jones rang back to explain. That would seem to indicate that Jacko's later military jacket look was inspired by Adam's clothes. Adam went on to explain that the jacket was worn by David Hemmings in the film The Charge Of The light Brigade and was hired by the day from a costume hire company. The guy who ran the company was the victim of Adam's highwayman in the Stand and Deliver video.

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    4. Adam was also a bit confused about which Madness hit 'Goody Two Shoes' was up against - it was 'House Of Fun' rather than 'Our House'.

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  10. Does any one have the 14 Jan 82 edition

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  11. The saturday repeat is 30 mins too? No unedited version?

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    1. The unedited version was shown early on Friday morning and only included an extra couple of minutes (if that) of Foreigner, so it has the same half hour length in the listings.

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    2. Has anybody come across the JK segment of this show ?

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    3. Neil B has put the JK segment on WeTransfer - I can't believe that Mr King thought Jessie's Girl by Rick Springfield was the best song of 1981...

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    4. Sorry, forgot the link:

      https://we.tl/p53pkzrmOG

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    5. The best part of the JK link on this UK Gold download (thanks John G), is the Hall & Oates contribution called Kiss on My List. This is my personal favourite of theirs, which could not have any more difference in fortunes on both sides of the atlantic.

      While as JK confirms it was in the top ten singles of 1981 in America, it failed to crack the top 30 here in the UK, getting stuck at No.33 seemingly forever in 1980, and not even getting a play on TOTP for bubbling under the charts. We would soon get to see them for the first time in the UK later in 1982 where they finally cracked the UK charts, thank goodness.

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  12. I remember flicking through the pages of one of the Guinness Books of Hit Singles years ago, and on the same page were Shakatak, Shalamar and Sham 69. I'd have paid good money to see that triumvirate in the same gig!

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    1. You'd be more likely to get beaten up at a Sham 69 gig than the others, though. Best not to mix them.

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    2. My partner of the time (1982) once took me to a Shalamar gig at Wembley Arena and I was quite impressed although we had rotten seats with a restricted view.

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  13. Great show this which I do remember well. Not a duff act on show except for the awful Mr Edwards…

    Phil Lynott – Yellow Pearl – We were never going to get Phil and Midge in the studio for this so the dancers are the next best thing; but who are those body builders?!!!

    Foreigner – Waiting for a Girl like you – This gets short shrift! Starts on the second verse and then is rapidly chopped. However Lou Gramm is really struggling for the high notes so it’s probably just as well. This was no.2 in the States for 10 weeks, mostly behind ONJ’s ‘Physical’ which was still No.1 at this point in time.

    JK rundown – anyone seen it?

    Alton Edwards – I just wanna…. FF this and quickly! Dreadful record. Number 62 and on the show; someone must have liked it I guess.

    Meat Loaf – Deadringer – Of course it’s Cher Mr Powell! What a video, what a song, what a production. Just fabulous and we get to see practically all of it.

    Mobiles – Drowning in Berlin – I loved this at the time and bought the single (in fact I bought a number of the singles on this show) and read that it didn’t bring back happy memories for the lead singer (Anna Madge) as it was about some kind of bad experience in Berlin. The Mobiles returned with ‘Amour Amour’ in March which reached no.45 and then that was that. I don’t suppose their name had anything to do with a certain essential accessory that everyone carries around these days!

    Shakatak – Easier said than done – So this is jazz-funk? I always wondered. To me it just sounds like very pleasant MOR background music and it’s none the worse for that.

    Jon & Vangelis – I’ll find my way home – Watching this now having seen Jon live with Yes so many times it seems really strange to see him performing this on TOTP. There are so many people who hate Jon’s voice but try as they will Yes just cannot get the right sound with someone else (although Jon Davison does a pretty good job these days). This song is rightfully lauded by Peter Powell and I never understood why it was not originally on ‘The Friends of Mr Cairo’ album as it such a lovely tune. Vangelis looks pleased to be there, but I think the collage of stills during the instrumental break was a good idea as that piano just wouldn’t match the keyboard swirl. Great that they let it run to the end as well.

    Chart rundown – Pretty good effort from PP. Number 20 was announced as ‘Computer Love’ by Kraftwerk but by then everybody was buying it for the B-Side’ The Model’ which was a song from the 1978 ‘The Man Machine’ album that somehow didn’t get a single release then, despite its obvious commercial appeal. On the album credits for Coldplay’s ‘X&Y’ album it states that the track ‘Talk’ contains elements of the composition ‘Computer Love’ by Kraftwerk. So Coldplay liked the A-Side even if most people weren’t that keen on it (only reached No.36 on initial release).

    Human League – Still no.1 and a better studio rendition than the ‘silly string’ effort. This record also topped the US charts…but not until July 1982. Better late than never!

    Madness – it must be love – We get the Zoo dancers and those blessed body builders again. One playout that doesn’t benefit from now seeing it extended!


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    1. i loved the haunting synth washes that were in the background of foreigner's "waiting for a girl like you". they were courtesy of thomas dolby (who was still to break through as a performer himself at this point, although he already had a reputation for his technical wizardry in the music biz), who was drafted in give this uncool 70's aor outfit a bit of a hip 80's makeover!

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    2. jon anderson has a pretty distinctive voice, but surely not as unique as noddy holder's? that makes me wonder if the still-going dave hill and don powell version of slade hire guys that try to imitate noddy, or just accept that he's irreplacable so don't even try?

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    3. maybe the mobiles took their inspiration from those (strangely-named in my opinion) things that are suspended from the ceiling mainly for the benefit of keeping infants entertained?

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    4. Oh yes Thomas Dolby who recently (in 1981) cropped up as part of Lene Lovich's band ans in the It's My party video,

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    5. In my opinion Wilberforce, and note that only Bama seems to have picked up on this further down the blog, i.e., that the Mobiles lead singer was influenced by, and singing and moving uncannily like TOYAH!

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    6. Erm, read my post immediately below. I mentioned it last Friday! :-)

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    7. Good Lord, it seems I overlooked yours Arthur. Begging forgiveness of course.

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  14. Welcome to this week’s show, unnecessarily sponsored by Mr. Muscle. Let’s not get physical! I’d have much preferred the Leggers doing something pastoral in flouncy dresses to “Yellow Pearl” than that cattle market. Was Peter learning his next link at 2:21 in the show?

    Not a fan of Foreigner’s song, or that ropey video - I’m more of a “Cold As Ice“ man. The Darkness (remember them?) signed to Atlantic purely because the lead singer was a huge fan of Foreigner and wanted to be on the same label as them.

    Oh dear, some substandard Shatatak disco from Zimbabwe’s own Alton Edwards, looking like a Real Thing castoff.

    For years I thought “Dead Ringer For Love” had the line “Ever since I can remember you’ve been hanging round with Joyce”. Urban myth regarding Cher going commando on that table. Nice use of cuica in the instrumental bridge of this classic.

    Ah, the Toyah-influenced Mobiles with Boris Johnson on drums (topical) and a very early contender for most annoying bassist in 1982.

    Scampi in a basket, anyone? It’s Shakatak! Mark King height guitar on a song which you couldn’t get excited about, no matter how many presentation tricks they threw at it. I was half expecting a medley seeing as Gill Saward was involved.

    Hahay, turned out nice again for Jon and Vangelis. This obviously wasn’t “When I’m Cleaning Windows” due to the camera’s smeary effect.

    I wonder if Jo Callis was contemplating a crafty pick before the camera sought him out? Nice, neat plaited hair atop Phil’s head, but this performance was missing something. Silly string.

    If ever a song called out for more preening and flexing, it’s Madness’ tender take on “It Must Be Love”. Stroke of genius, that. If only they’d done this to Lena Martell’s “One Day At A Time”.

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    1. Arthur - Foreigner's single was particularly good value for money as both British hits 'Cold as Ice' and 'Feels like the first time' were on the B Side.

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    2. I used to think Meat had been hanging round with Joyce as well! For a long time, I also thought they were singing "you real can't bring up a load" in the chorus...

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    3. I used to think the main chorus was "rock 'n' rollin' through", when it was really "rock 'n' roll and brew". However, the bit I liked most from the song though, was when Cher decided to give it a go with Meat, when she sings "Well since I'm feeling kinda lonely.....why don't we give it a shot and get ready to go.....I'm gonna tell my daddy I was missing in action."

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  15. According to the bespoke Popscene site, all the Mobiles were sacked from their jobs after they were spotted on TOTP - I assume for pulling a collective sickie in order to appear.

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  16. Okay, so what got more mentions - Slime's birthday last time or Pete reminding us about the theme tune in this edition?

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  17. Peter Powell seems to have come dressed in the sort of clothes your teacher wears at the school disco and his dancing is doing him no favours. I remember towards his reign on Blue Peter, Peter Purves used to wear gear like this, sleeveless cardigans and baggy cord trousers but wisely dropped them (not literally).

    I'm getting bored with Yellow Pearl already and it's only just made the Top 30. These dancers remind me all the gay clubs I used to frequent circa 1981-1984, lots of mad look-at-me queens in leather (not all of them gay!), spiky haired stick insects in pleated trousers and Max Max gear and a couple of muscle men with not much to write home about where it matters. I couldn't wait for this to end.

    A snatch of the horrid grainy Foreigner video. A shame because it's a good song.

    Nice falsetto vocals from Alton Edwards but let down by a muddy sound. I like the backing vocalist "I just wanna spend it with you" refrain. Alton looks like he was caught in a short downpour as his jacket appears to be splattered with something although seeing his wanking arm and wrist action when he sings "making love" what the marks are are anyone's guess. I see that apart from the official Zoo dancers the fake crowd cheerleaders are back in force including Craig Fairbrass strutting his not-so funky stuff for once wearing his everyday gear and not some costume.

    Why is there a child in his pyjamas with his face painted. What's that all about?

    Meatloaf stuck at Number 30 but what a great video. even though its not explained how Cher and co manages to jump about from shot to shot toward the end. Nit sure that painting of the nude should have been seen pre watershed.

    The Mobiles have clearly seen the film Cabaret to many times. The lead singer seems to have taken all the worst parts of Toyah and combined them with Kate Bush's stare and Liza Minelli's hair. Not a bad song once you hear it a few times but the band's look is off putting. One to hear and not see.

    "Now let's take a look at a record just underneath that Top 40" says Peter erroneously as he's just done the Top 30. Doh!

    I must be honest I couldn't see the point in Shakatak back then and still I can't. There's nothing there. They're nothing to look at, they have ZERO stage presence with a weedy lack lustre sound. It's really just easy listening with anonymous vocalists singing part of the song and reminds me of stuff like Hugo Montenegro and Ray Conniff from the 1960s. In order to make it vaguely interesting members of Zoo are back but is there any need for them to mime the vocals?

    The Charts - Hard to believe that the Tweets are still going back up the chart. Who was buying it who didn't have it already? Nice to see Madness have gone back up again.

    The percussion on the Jon and Vangelis song sounds too loud is it really that bad on the record or is this a special Top Of The Pops mix? I quite liked this at the time but the performance is pretty average, Vangelis looks like he wants to be anywhere else.

    Nice to see The Human League in the studio but it's not a lot different from the last performance. Strange to think that Being Boiled aside we won't see them again until the autumn with Mirror Man.

    Playout with Madness but if ever a song didn't call for muscle men accompaniment this was surely it.

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    1. Indeed Meat Loaf was stuck at No.30 for three weeks since the 17th December show, and had TOTP not shown this iconic video this week, (which incidentally won a grammy in America for video of 1981), then it may never have been hit here in the UK, with no video channels at the time, and no plays by rivals channels like ITV, so TOTP really did Meat a favour with playing the video which went down so well with the British public to make No.5 in the charts by Feb 1982.

      In my case, this video was so impactful for me, that it was what got me into Meat Loaf in the first place, and enough to buy the pre-1981 music to get up to date, and then buying everything until Bat Out Of Hell III in 2006, so there was a further 25 years of album catalogue collection after Deadringer For Love!

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    2. Have to say that I prefer Barry Manilow's version of the follow up single 'Read 'em and weep'! (also produced by Jim Steinman). The 'Record Mirror' review of this (Meat Loaf) single at the time simply said "His record reviews presumably".

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    3. Read 'Em And Weep was a surprising flop single for Meat Loaf, despite his better voice on it than the other version by Barry Manilow. And yes, I think Meat has a better voice for singing ballads than dance tunes.

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    4. does meat loaf actually sing "dance tunes"? the only physical response i've ever made to his music is to move out of earshot as quickly as possible!

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    5. I only say dance tunes in the context of Deadringer For love, because of how Cher's backing girls danced out the video at the end, a sort of Grease Pink Ladies gone mad.

      Meat was all about passion and compassion, and his ballads were what really carried through his career, so I was also surprised on the flop of Read 'Em & Weep, especially when he made such a nice video for it.

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  18. There were more new songs on this show than I expected, not all of them good though.

    I too found the assembled mess of things going on to 'Yellow Pearl' extremely offputting. Such a shame that 'Mr. Thin Lizzy' never turned up to perform it - given his stage presence, it probably would've pushed the single into the Top 10!

    I like the Foreigner song, but I'm less keen on horrible live, grainy, tempo pitched up videos to be honest.

    Alton Edwards - My answer to your song title is that I don't, sorry.

    Surprised there's not too much love for the Meat Loaf song, I remember liking it a lot at the time and I still do.

    The same goes for The Mobiles, even though the performance was more than a little iffy. The follow-up, 'Amour Amour', was fantastic and deserved to get into the Top 40.

    I HATED Shakatak at the time, and my opinion hasn't changed. Fine as muzak in lifts and restaurants I suppose (if we must) but has no place in the charts. It didn't help that someone - I think that, inevitably, it was Steve Wright - used their songs as music beds all the bloody time.

    Ah, Jon & Vangelis - that's better. An awkward performance, granted, and not as good as Sue dancing to it, but far and away the best song on the show.

    No need to comment on the housewife song or Bodybuilder of the year 1982...sorry, Madness.

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    1. to be honest i wasn't surprised "mr thin lizzy" never turned up to promote his solo single as there's very little in the way of him singing on it (nor is there any bass guitar), so he would have just stood around like a lemon much of the time. in fact vocally he's almost like a gatecrasher at his own party in that respect! ironically i think he actually sang more on "parisienne walkways" which was of course credited to gary moore

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    2. i had a listen to "amour amour" on yt, and yes it's far superior to "drowning in berlin". but it not only lacked the novelty element but a hook too, so no surprise it failed to do so well. i seem to remember at the time that the mobiles were very much viewed not as a proper band, but as a bunch of amateurs who were extremely lucky to get their 15 minutes of fame...

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    3. Seven places above the very unpopular (on this forum) Alton Edwards was a wonderful record that never got the exposure on TOTP that it deserved – ‘Perhaps Love’ by Placido Domingo and the late John Denver. Listening to it now still makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end. Proof for me that all the best current music didn’t always make it to TOTP.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-G5MxP2w_4

      Edwards meanwhile had one of those’ Wild is the wind’ chart runs going (33) 20 20 23 20 22 (44).

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  19. Hey Angelo, can I suggest that the next TOTP episode showing Deadringer For Love, gets the blog heading Top of The Pops And Brew, as the lyrics go '"Rock 'n' Roll & Brew" cos by then he would have been top ten with this!

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    1. dory you don't appear to have noticed that angelo only uses actual song titles rather than other lyrics from songs as part of his headings, so i shouldn't think that will happen. and he's already used the meat loaf one now anyway, and i'm sure each record only gets one chance!

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    2. I always thought they were singing "Rock 'n' roll with you!" Are you sure those aren't the actual lyrics?

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    3. I'm sure I've seen blog titles with lyrics from songs that are not on the song title, but without trawling through the previous history, I can't be entirely sure. Anyway, I just thought that 'Top Of The Pops And Brew' on Meat's next appearance on TOTP for Deadringer would get me to pour my finest beer in a glass in front of the show, or when writing on the blog!

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  20. 50 something here.

    Just to say that if you thought the meat Loaf video was a bit dubious for a pre-watershed slot, just wait for the J Geils Band coming this way very soon...

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    1. Is it possible that J Geils had been inspired by the success of the Meat Loaf video in America (by it's US award for video of the year 1981 - I think Grammy?), and then pushed out Centrefold?

      Suffice to say that all the J Geils videos are available to download from iTunes for anyone's pop video collections, and Deadringer For Love appears every now and then for download, but not currently it seems, as I picked this one up a couple of years back when it was on there.

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  21. Having seen all three performances of Yellow Pearl since the 10th Dec show when first introduced by Jim'll as a song in its own right on TOTP, up until this week's 7th January show with Peter Powell, my conclusion is that it was best danced by the studio audience with Zoo on the end credits, with the party and balloon atmosphere of the show, rather than week's opening with Zoo in black morbid costumes.

    The song suits colours and happy vibes, but I don't understand why the costumes this week were awash with men in black with one fit lady dancer being felt and touched up by them, especially towards the end of the routine with one of them pressing her buttocks. I would have preferred the shiny colours that we had got accustomed with Zoo in Nov & Dec 1981.

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  22. As ever, massive thanks to Neil B for making the 14 January show available. This must be a recording of the original broadcast, as I don't think it was ever repeated on UK Gold - sound and picture quality go a bit wonky towards the end:

    http://www.4shared.com/video/DTj37G8Oce/TOTP_1982-01-14.html

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    1. Can you get this for us on WeTransfer, as this is a cleaner download than 4shared which sometimes can transfer viruses

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    2. No WeTransfer link as yet Dory - I'll let you know if one appears.

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    3. I've found one now:

      https://www.wetransfer.com/downloads/afcb48...26161136/70c029

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    4. Unfortunately your link is not bringing up a WeTransfer page to download anything. Could you try the link yourself?

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