Friday, 10 June 2016

It Must Be Top of the Pops

Many thanks once again to Neil B for coming to the rescue and making this quite unmissable edition of Top of the Pops from December 10th 1981 available at 4shared.
The show is hosted by Jimmy Savile so obviously do not click the link if you wish to avoid him.

Neil has also put this show on WeTransfer ~

How tattyfilarious to be on Top of the Pops!

10/12/81 (hosted by Jimmy Savile) 

(35) Showaddywaddy – “Footsteps”

The Waddys get the show underway with their penultimate chart hit, which peaked at 31. Was this their last ever time on the show?

(7) Madness – “It Must Be Love” (video)

Rounding off a run of nine consecutive top ten hits when it peaked at number 4.

(26) Dollar – “Mirror Mirror (Mon Amour)”

Became the duo's first top ten hit for two years when it reached number 4. Liking the Cinderella look!

(-) Ken Dodd – “Hold My Hand”
Here to promote his new tv series with what became his final chart hit (to date!) when it made number 44. Well, it was nearly Christmas.

(9) Adam & The Ants – “Ant Rap” (video)

Amazing celebrity packed video from the Ants for what was in fact the final top ten hit for the group before Adam went solo. It made it to number 3.

(24) Bucks Fizz – “The Land Of Make Believe”

What a totally brilliant song and perfectly timed for Christmas ~ and loving those outfits! Made it to number one of course.

(28) The Police – “Spirits In The Material World”
The Police return to the Top of the Pops studio for the first time in over two years to perform the third single in quick succession from their number one album Ghost in the Machine. This song made it to number 12.

(11) Abba – “One Of Us” (video)
Taken from their magnificently dark final studio album, The Visitors, this was, incredibly, Abba's final ever top ten hit peaking at number 3.

(1) The Human League – “Don’t You Want Me” (video)

Phil Oakey didn't think this was good enough to release as a single. Now here it was with its first of four weeks at number one, outselling all other singles released in 1981, and all other singles the band ever released.

(-) Philip Lynott – “Yellow Pearl” (audience dancing/credits)

We play out of this terrific edition with members of Zoo giving it some to the new theme tune, which made it to number 14.

So, tonight on BBC4 then we will see December 17th 1981.


  1. This was clearly an outstanding and unmissable show, and what a pity that BBC4 are not showing it. I mean, when would you see Ken Dodd and The Police on the same show, and changing rooms behind the scenes?

    Showaddywaddy - they just couldn't resist trying again, especially as the rockabilly theme was relentless in 1981, even though the Waddys were already washed up.

    Dollar - wow, Theresa Bazaar just looks better every time Dollar is in the studio. Her outfits are just wonderful, and she has the same level of cuteness as recently described with Claire Grogan of Altered Images.

    Adam & The Ants - a quick follow-up to their big no.1 Prince Charming, and this rarely seen video called Ant Rap did not get the credit it deserved, and to this day is rarely if at all shown on the music video channels, and one of those unfairly forgotten videos in my opinion.

    I like it when Adam gets the girl at the end of the video - none other than Lulu! It was not the only time that Lulu appeared in another group's video, as 13 years later in 1994 she appeared (and sang) on Take That's video and No.1 single called Relight My Fire.

    The Police - what made them decide to accept an invitation to appear in the TOTP studio when they did not do so since their debut hit Roxanne in mid-1979?
    In fact there were 9 single releases between these hits where there was no sight of The Police in the TOTP studio. It's like the saying goes: "where are the police when you need them?"

    Abba - a tired looking Abba moving house in their video. The sadness they expressed in the video on the occasion of moving house, was reflective of the real-life sadness of their career now in decline with no more No.1 singles since Super Trouper, and scraping the barrels for music content for the 80s. Poor Agnetha was almost in tears in this new video for One Of Us.

  2. The 'Waddy made one more TOTP appearance, in Autumn 1982 to promote their top 37 smash "Who Put The Bomp", but that's also on a Yewtreed edition.

  3. I think ABBA's sadness had more to do with the lyrical content of the song and the fact that both couples were divorced by this point. Their single sales only went into decline in 1982.

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. John G is right; with both Abba's marriages at an end, the band's songwriting had taken on a largely melancholic slant. Nevertheless, Dory, 'One of Us' was hardly an example of barrel-scraping; indeed, it was a fitting coda to the band's hitmaking career. While peaking at No.3 in Britain, it reached No.1 in Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany and Eire.

  6. Shakey Shakerson10 June 2016 at 05:18

    Blimey - not exactly cutting edge this episode is it? From a presenter who looks, acts, dresses and talks as though its still 1969 to a line up which features a lot of acts in permanent decline.

    First of these 'decliners' is Showaddywaddy who have put the drapes and crepes back on for one final huzzah. The song is a waste of vinyl.

    Madness on video putting the 'fun' into funeral. I liked this in 81 but it hasn't stood the test of time. Its a good vid though (naturally) and a nice cameo for writer/original performer Labi Siffri on violin.

    It's Panto season in the world of ToTP re-runs, and Michael Hurll goes for it big time now.

    1) Babes in the wood Dollar with a decent leightweight frothy concoction complete with requisite breathy vocals from a cute looking Ms Bazzaar. Looks like they have found their Dollar-groove and are intent on mining it for all their worth.

    2) Panto Dame (sans make-up obviously) Ken Dodd on the show purely to advertise his up-coming series. Now I bow to no one in my admiration of the marathon gagster but he is a good fifteen years past his time. I thought the light entertainment crossover days were supposed to be over.

    3) Adam raids the make up and dressing up box again for a song he probably knocked out in ten minutes. Another panto video and another leap from on high for the Ants leader. Running out of ideas much, Adam?

    4) And we come to the end of the panto session with the pick of the bunch - the really quite brilliant Land Of Make Believe from Bucks Fizz featuring Jay in a short wedding dress. Really, I mean the guys behind this group were PR geniuses - perfect time of year, perfect outfits (for both kids and dads) and a perfect song. I applaud you.

    Back to some real music now and Lordy Lordy is that the Po-lice in the studio. Luckily for He-Who-Cant-Be-Shown its the former bleach blond Punks and not our boys in blue as they make a rare-as-a-Yewtree-conviction in the Pops studio. No video for this one - have they been releasing singles so quickly that they had no time for filming? Its a faintly gloomy number, this one, especially coming so hot on the heels of the exhuberant previous single.

    Abba maintain the levels of depression - but at least there is some emotion behind the lyrics. It really does look and feel like the group are imploding on all levels here doesn't it? Sad.

    Human League at number 1 and we play out with a full length Yellow Pearl.

    Scores. He-Who-Cant-etc. Well he was usual annoying self complete with ramblings, lack of musical knowledge, boring chart countdown and mistakes. 3.

    The show. Can't agree with Angelo and Dory I'm afraid. Some of it was okay, but that is based more on the novelty of seeing and/or hearing the song/video that we don't get to see/hear very often.On the plus side there was no JK in the USA or Zoo, but we still struggle to get up to 6.

  7. Were we supposed to believe the Showaddywaddy blokes were doing those backing vocals? Anyway, would have been a big hit, but it wasn't 1978 anymore. They seemed to be dressed for a funeral...

    ...maybe the one Madness were attending/curating? Really rather sweet cover of the old Labi Siffre tune, tempered by the antics in the video - the bit illustrating the bees and the birds line remains hilarious. Proof not all covers are bad, and one of the most charming in Madness' repertoire.

    Dollar with one of their best, Bob Stanley in his Yeah Yeah Yeah book described them as budgies with this song, which is a cute analogy. One thing bothers me, though, did Dave actually do the deep voice on the line "Only in my mirror!"?

    Time to rock out with the king of hardcore (joke telling), Ken Dodd. Very much a theme tune. Proof Zoo would dance to anything, even if they were doing the slosh.

    Another weirdo winner from Adam and the Ants, more examples that the lyrics in 80s pop of this era just kept getting stranger. Not exactly The Sugarhill Gang, but it hammers along superbly, though I can see why the video doesn't get much play with Adam's non-PC Bruce Lee get up. Or maybe nobody wants to see him romance Lulu?

    Bucks Fizz with their finest four minutes, more weird lyrics (just listen to them next time), proving they were no flash in the pan. What was Cheryl dressed as, though?

    Ello ello ello, wot's all this then, let's be 'avin' you... yes, more weird lyrics in a return to the reggae beat that made the Police's name. Quite like this, goes from spooky to jaunty not smoothly, but distinctively. Does Sting still dance like that?

    Aw, poor ABBA, not happy. One of their most plaintive numbers, not exactly a Christmas party record, but sounds better out of that context. Like the mandolin, was this what Bowie was singing about on Wild is the Wind? Must have been.

    After the number one, yes, more weird lyrics with Phil Lynott's Yellow Pearl. Another theme tune record too, I suppose, but I can't imagine Doddy covering this one. Might have gotten him a couple of extra laughs for the act, mind you.

    1. The lyrics to The Land of Make Believe were written by Pete Sinfield, formerly of King Crimson, who by now was dipping his toes into the pop mainstream.

    2. bowie released a truncated version of his take of "wild is the wind" as a single around this time (the end of 1981), even though it had been recorded and featured on the "station to station" album five years earlier. he even made a video to promote it, accompanied by a jazz-style band that included a saxist and double-bassist (even though there were neither on the recording) and what looks like a pre-simple minds mel gaynor on drums. whatever the reason for its belated release as a single (to please the fans? something to fill the gap after "scary monsters"? cashing-in on bowie's collaboration with queen?), it failed to set the charts alight:

      the song was originally written for a late-50's film of that name. others then released their own interpretations, including nina simone. her version then came to bowie's attention, hence his recording of it. but (to tie in with thx's comments above) for some bizarre reason he sings of mandolins rather than the violins of the original lyrics!

      by the way, i was always a fan of his version and would often sing along to it, and last year i finally got the chance to perform it in public for the first time!

    3. further to the above: i've just listened to the original johnny mathis version, and it's actually mandolins mentioned - not violins. so sorry to the dame for assuming he dared to re-interprete it in his own unique manner...

  8. Part1
    Wow! Dory’s hit the nail on the head here with the first review of this show. It’s a real cracker and it’s such a shame that the BBC cannot compile these Yewtreed shows to edit out the host (who is back on irritating “I’m not going to tell you the song title” on the chart rundown). I’ve watched it quickly this time in case I miss it. Thanks Neil B for posting. Actually I definitely remember watching this one the first time round as there are so many highlights.

    Showaddywaddy – Footsteps – “…on the dance floor, remind me baby of you…”. Well not quite in that league; in fact this could have been taken from a 1977 TOTP. Quite enjoyable only for the fact that they hadn’t been on the show for so long but otherwise the novelty had worn off.

    Madness – It must be love – For me the best Madness track ever (forget ‘House of Fun’ which reached no.1). Quirky, deadpan, whacky, catchy. The Labi Siffre original version was a pleasant song but the Nutty Boys take it to another dimension and it’s a lovely touch when Labi himself takes his sunshades off near the end.

    Dollar – Mirror Mirror – Trevor Horn, you’re a genius! No mistaking the production with the instrumental section sounding like’ Video killed the Radio Star’. Thereze looks wonderful in the gold Cinderella dress that she also wears in the excellent video.

    Ken Dodd – Hold my hand – This appearance certainly stuck in the mind and not because this was a particularly great song, far from it. I guess it was a BBC internal promo for Ken Dodd OBE’s show. However, what it does serve to remind us is that Ken did record some memorable singles. We’ve all heard ‘Tears’ but how about his last chart entry (in November 1975) before this one; ‘Think of me (wherever you are)’? A lovely song that is sadly not posted on YT in a form to do it justice.

  9. Part2
    Adam & the Ants – Ant Rap – Arghhh! Everyone I know added a ‘C’ to the second word of this track. It really was an absolute clunker that even the lovely Lulu couldn’t rescue. My sister was a big ‘Ants’ fan at the time and bought the ‘Prince Charming’ album, but funnily enough hardly played it which probably explains why there were no more singles from it. BTW that looks like Bodiam Castle in Sussex where this video was filmed (or at least the outdoor scenes were).

    Bucks Fizz – Land of Make Believe – A hit written all over it. Cheryl plays the sexy part in this performance whilst Jay covers up in her bridal outfit. A contrast to the last hit. Andy Hill and Pete Sinfield did write some good songs. We’ve got ‘Have you ever been in love’ coming soon by Leo Sayer (although the original by Paris is well worth checking out).

    Police – Spirits in the Material World – Hot on the heels or what?! This sounds like a live rendition. It certainly isn’t the version I’m familiar with and it’s the Police plus some extras. Nice touch. Not a bad song and certainly better than ‘Invisible Sun’. No more singles were taken from the ‘Ghost in the Machine’ album; I always felt they should have put out ‘Darkness’, written by Stuart as it’s a haunting semi-ballad type song with an intriguing bass line.

    Abba – One of us – One of the very best singles Abba ever released and it only reached no.3. What a crime! OK so ‘Don’t you want me’ was a great song and deserved a run at the top but ‘Daddy’s Home’ stuck at no.2 is just not in the same league as this. The video matched the song perfectly and I can so vividly recall the first time I saw it on this very edition. This was the last great Abba single released even though I really liked ‘The Day before you came’, that just wasn’t single material. I would rate this song above some of Abbas no.1 hits in my personal Abba chart. Ah well, Agnetha can come and paint my house any time! Nice to see the four of them singing together again recently even if ‘Me and I’ was a strange song to pick.

    Human League – Don’t you want me –
    Timeless song, timeless video. So many memories from this.

    Philip Lynott – Deserved re-plugging of a great single that should have been a hit earlier in the year. Note that the reissued single was different to the original release as it was slightly shorter and started off the same way as it does on the TOTP intro.

  10. All in all, a pretty good show, though Showaddywaddy made for an unpromising opening act - did they get Jim'll to host this week so he could say their name? Doubtless the band were seething that their thunder had by now been comprehensively stolen by a new wave of rock 'n' roll revivalists, but their sound had not moved on at all - as has already been mentioned, they could easily have released this song five years earlier. Madness then turn up with a funereal video and an accomplished, sombre cover, though I still prefer the bright and breezy Labi Siffre original - I must admit I didn't recognise him in the video! The song did go through a period of overexposure a few years back when it was being heavily featured in adverts, but I haven't heard it much in recent years and it sounds much fresher now.

    Dollar were now on a roll thanks to that nice Mr Horn, and his production here helps to elevate what would otherwise be a very slight song into something quite memorable. The sound is actually similar to some of Mike Oldfield's music around this time. A complete contrast follows, as Doddy makes his rather cloying plea for racial harmony. As with Lena Zavaroni's appearance earlier in the year, the Beeb were blatantly using TOTP here to promote another show, but it was nearly Christmas and I think this song should be approached in a spirit of indulgence. Some of the Zoo dancers behind Doddy were dressed very oddly, particularly that guy with the weird face make-up - what were they thinking behind the scenes?

    Ant Rap really is atrocious, the moment Adam comprehensively jumped the shark. The video is quite fun, however, and Adam looks pretty good in his armour. The only thing that spoils it is the presence of serial bandwagon-jumper Lulu, evidently hoping to revive her currently stalled career by associating with the current flavour of the month. Happily Bucks Fizz then show up with probably their finest song; it's a bit overproduced, but a great tune nevertheless. A good performance too - I particularly liked Cheryl's pixie-style outfit, though the Christmas trees behind the group looked distinctly threadbare!

    The Police then make an unexpected return to the TOTP studio with this slightly by-the-numbers effort. Andy looks a bit stupid playing with his toy guitar, and Sting should have left that earring in the dressing-up box. I agree with the comment above that One of Us is ABBA's last great single. It is beautifully melancholic, with great harmonies on the chorus, and it's a shame in some ways it wasn't their final release, as it would have been a great way to bring the curtain down. While it is perhaps easy to say this with the benefit of hindsight, it is pretty clear from the group's tired faces in the video that the end was nigh.

    I notice that the League's video was re-edited at the end this week, removing the shots of Phil firing the gun - had the Beeb had complaints? It was a real treat to hear Yellow Pearl properly at the end of the show, as it's a great piece of music, and I think the freaky dancer and his friends did it justice. Just a shame Jim'll didn't acknowledge Midge Ure as co-writer - he did a pretty decent hosting job overall, but sadly was back to his bad old habits on the chart rundown. He also appeared to be wearing a jacket made out of cushion covers, and the lighting did make him look rather sinister at the start...

    1. i remember seeing lulu as the headliner in what must have been one of the last old-fashioned variety shows, shortly before her first bandwagon-jumping effort with bowie's "the man who sold the world". there were 5 acts on the bill and a couple of them have since slipped my memory, but second-top was roy hudd and second-bottom were little and large. i actually thought the latter (well, eddie large anyway) were very funny, but i was only around 10 years old at the time!

    2. whenever old editions of "mock the week" are shown on freeview, do the yewtree squad now ensure that hugh dennis's hilarious impressions of mr now-then saying "showaddy - waddy" get airbrushed out?

    3. Well spotted John G, regarding the Human League video being edited at No.1, removing Phil's gunpointing and firing shown when at No.9 the previous week. I also noticed that in the early part of the video, they also edited out one of the two gunpointing images of his fellow band member at the other girl (Joanne).

      I checked today my iTunes copy of the video I downloaded some years ago, and theirs is the edited version too, so thank goodness we got to see the 3rd Dec version on Thursday night by BBC, cos I must admit I didn't know at the time that the video was edited from No.9 showing to the new No.1 showing.

      This is where the value of AngeloGravity Blogspot comes into its own, as we can all find out things now that passed us by then, much in that most of us were children or teenagers then, and we were not that technically-minded to remember every scene of the video from one week to the next.

    4. Fascinating stuff. Watching the 3rd December show and seeing the 'uncut' video is indeed interesting. The wikipedia article on this is worth reading.

    5. Thanks Stephen, having just read the Wikipaedia article on this video, it appears that the only remaining version of the original uncut video is on the 3rd Dec TOTP which we were lucky to see on Thursday night, cos from that moment on, while it was No.1 and in later years on DVD and music video channels (and iTunes), only the edited version is ever shown to this day.

    6. Wilberforce, amazingly they don't edit out the Hugh Dennis impressions (at least when shown on Dave)
      There was a particularly unfortunate instance on one edition I saw recently where he did the impression then someone did a paedophile joke about 30 seconds later. Only about 10 years ago but very different times....

    7. Yes, thanks for the info sct about the League video - I guessed those shooting scenes were probably deemed controversial at the time...

  11. Jimmy Warned the kids not 2 copy when madness jumped in a pool with their instruments

  12. Fans of Dollar should check out Lime. They were a Canadian husband and wife duo (Denis and Denyse LePage) who did some cracking electro-disco songs including Your Love, Babe We're Gonna Love Tonight and Guilty. She has an amazingly high voice and I wondered if they were influenced by Dollar:

    1. i'd tried listening to lime in the past in the hope of discovering some good dance music, but another listen confirms they're lemons as far as i'm concerned. it's all cheesy leaping octave basslines, and i don't like the guy's raspy voice either (sorry bama!)

    2. ...whilst we're on the subject of early 80's canadian dance music, here's my recommendation:

    3. Ah France Joli, I remember her well. Come To Me was her big hit i think. Both her and Lime were big in the gay clubs in the early 80s.

  13. Shame we didn't get to see this one, there was some top pop on offer.

    So after waiting patiently over 6 years of repeats, we finally get Showaddywaddy said in THAT way. That fact more interesting than the actual song.

    I didn't know the Labi Siffre original of 'It Must Be Love' at the time. I must say that I probably marginally prefer it now, but the Madness version is good.

    Ah, Dollar. I love ALL their Trevor Horn era stuff and this is one of the finest. I assume we get to see this again on BBC4? I bloody hope so!

    The Doddy song is rubbish but I can forgive it. The Ants song is also rubbish but for some reason I love it! The video is amusing barring that hag Lulu's contribution. God, she's made very little talent go a long way. Mostly by bandwagon jumping on popular artists coat tails as here.

    Bucks Fizz - see my comment on Dollar, pretty much! Perfect pop, and I know we'll definitely get to see this on telly. I think Cheryl was dressed as Cinderella maybe?

    The Police song is not one of my favourites. They've definitely re-recorded it for the show for some reason.

    I like 'One Of Us' and the other two singles from the same album. It's almost like everyone has been told that they were rubbish at the end and just go along with that belief. Forget the chart positions, 'The Day Before You Came' in particular is superb.

    Then the housewife classic (yawn) and the brilliant theme tune by 'Mr. Thin Lizzy' which is a great way to end.

  14. Greetings again from my hols where I don't have roaming availability and can't watch the shows. I have, however, spent some time reading from start to finish Ian Gittings' TOTP book. Not difficult, as it's in large font and with loads of pictures filling it out. Very anecdotal, lots of A saying B about C, and not really enough technical detail for my liking. Still, it scratched an itch while I was here. Has anyone else hear read it and, if so, what did you think?

  15. Concise Nibble catch-up…

    Sho WADDY WADDY – dressed to commemorate the end of their top 30 career. Once took on Mud outside TV centre according to Ian Gittins’ TOTP book. A bit of an unfair advantage numbers wise though maybe, as in their performances, at least three of the group did next to nothing.

    Madness – proper funeral gear, and a great video for a sadly overplayed song which I now turn off at every availability. Nice Labe Siffre cameo.

    Thereze Bazar, to quote part of the song, I’ve been looking at you and I want you to know that I like what I see. Nice freeze frame effect in this great tune, and top mirror effect in the mugshot.

    There used to be a band called Ken Dodd’s Dad’s Dog’s Dead. I saw Doddy three years ago – he wasn’t on for long (surprisingly, according to his susla stage show lengths) but he still had itUnlike with this tripe, though.

    Adam’s rap role call soon became rather truncated to put it mildly.

    If only Jay Aston had pre- Morrisseyed Morrissey circa “William, It Was really Nothing” and written “Marry Me” in lipstick on her, erm, chest area. Ahem, sorry about that!

    The Police. Sting – slappable. Andy – Blakey. Stuart – Oddball. Tune – hints of cod reggae. Same old lame old.

    Abba – sad, but seen it before (erm, in a later edition in this blog’s run, due to my playing the right shows, but not necessarily in the right order).

    Human League – great video, but see Abba.

    Philip Lynott, played by viewer demand? What next, a band’s vocalist street dancing for a second time due to viewer demand? Ahem. One of the few non-chart outros, up there with Chris White’s “Natural Rhythm” back in ’76.

    1. "Susla" shoud have said "usual". Sorry about that!

    2. i thought i'd have a look on youtube to see if "natural rhythm" was there as there's no way i could remember how it went - there is a posting for it, but only a soundtrack edit from the totp programme it appeared on!:

      by the way, it reminded me very much of david dundas's efforts from that time...

    3. by the way, even though chris white's only album included a song called "zombie jamboree", from what i can ascertain he was not actually the chris white who was in the zombies. therefore i now don't think the zombies are in contention for holding the record for most ex-members of a band consequently appearing on totp either solo or with other projects (in their case it's only colin blunstone and rod argent)

    4. off the top of my head i would have said the winning band would be the bodysnatchers, as at least four of their number later appeared on totp as the belle stars. can anyone do better?

  16. As Get Back is credited to 'The Beatles and Billy Preston' doesn't that win most subsequent solo acts at 5 (Long way behind on the comment!!)