Thursday, 8 September 2016

Papa's Got a Brand New Top of the Pops

Simon Bates, with his best bunny girl by his side, introduces the Top of the Pops easter special!

And now its time for Our Carrot...

8-4-82: Presenter: Simon Bates

(32) HAIRCUT 100 – Fantastic Day
Nick and the boys get easter off to a bouncy start with the third top ten hit (reached number 9) taken from their number 2 album, Pelican West.

(2) BUCKS FIZZ – My Camera Never Lies (video)
Next week's number one but edited out of tonight's 7.30 slot.

(4) CHAS & DAVE – Ain’t No Pleasing You
The rockneys bring their sophisticated new look into the studio but narrowly miss out being next week's number one to the act who preceded them.

(24) THE BOOMTOWN RATS – House On Fire ®
With their final top 30 hit, now at its chart peak. They were one of the hottest bands just two years prior, but new wave was now old news.

(23) ELTON JOHN – Blue Eyes (video)
Looks like Elton has somehow half inched Chas's white piano and is tinkling its ivories up some exotic mountain somewhere sunny, landing himself his first top ten hit of the 80's for his troubles, when Blue Eyes made number 8.

(27) SHALAMAR – I Can Make You Feel Good (danced to by Zoo)
They would never have edited out a Legs & Co routine from the 7.30 slot would they, not even one of the more saucy ones, but this Zoo routine suffers the indignation of being edited out tonight.

(19) PAUL McCARTNEY & STEVIE WONDER – Ebony And Ivory (video)
Our first sighting of Paul since John Lennon's death, and he's looking pretty perky, and no wonder, he's about to get to number one for the 19th time, taken from his quite excellent album Tug of War, which was also a number one.

(18) FOSTER & ALLEN – A Bunch Of Thyme ®
Their biggest hit, now at its peak in the chart.

(1) GOOMBAY DANCE BAND – Seven Tears
After three weeks at number one, we get a new studio performance, this time minus the fire eating!

(30) PIGBAG – Papa’s Got A Brand New Pigbag (and credits)
We had a bouncy start to the show, and here's an even bouncier ending, and we do also get to see a bit of Zoo after all! Pigbag's only top ten hit, peaking at number 3.

Next up then is April 15th 1982, which will be on BBC4 next Friday.


  1. First glimpse of the new Elton John video at this point, and my first observation was wow what a location. I'd love to know where that was. My second observation is that Elton at this point was still conscious of his baldness, and firmly used the white hat to cover it up in the new video, and a black one in the caption in the chart rundown at No.23, and well before the hair transplant was implemented for him later in the 80s.

    It's a bit like waiting for the moment when the new hair was revealed, much like how we waited for the first reference to the term 'video' on TOTP which was by DLT in October 1981 on TOTP. Can't wait to see when in the 80's Elton reveals the new hair transplant, and which would be the first TOTP episode that we see him as such.

    1. The Elton John video was shot in Australia, at a place called Tamarama, by the Tasman Sea.

  2. I remember seeing this 'world exclusive' as Simes puts it, of the new video of McCartney & Wonder, and I remember thinking that it was amazing to see the two superstars sitting next each other in the video singing this track. It was only years later that I found out that they were never together in the video and it was a camera trickery that put them there.

    That in itself was another piece of amazing work to produce such a video where no-one would have thought that they were not really sitting together in it. Also it was nice to see McCartney making his first appearance since John Lennon's death, as 1981 was a full year off the music scene for him.

    1. The bluescreen in the video really is painfully obvious now. Whether it would have been to less well trained TV eyes (and less technically brilliant TVs) at the time I don't remember.

    2. It's been remastered since for the McCartney Years DVD collection and looks a lot slicker than the version that appeared on TOTP.

  3. I agree with Angelo, Tug Of War is excellent and one of Macca's strongest solo efforts. I bought the vinyl re-issue in Liverpool last year which included a bonus record of b sides and outtakes, amongst them a Macca only version of Ebony & Ivory.

    Not a bad show overall, even the Slimer was just about bearable save for the odd nonsensical link and creepy smile.

  4. Yes, another nod for the Tug of War album, one of Macca's finest post-Beatles work.

    To be pedantic, Ebony and Ivory was to be his 20th appearance at No.1, at least in my book as I count Please Please Me as their first No.1. For those who don't know the story, PPM made No. 1 in three of the four UK charts at the time and, most importantly was No.1 in the averaged chart that the BBC used that everyone at the time took to be de facto. I really hate how the Guiness Chart Books have rewritten history over this as they used the fourth, and least common chart before they were all harmonised in 1969.

    1. and if you followed just the Melody Maker as reprinted by several newspapers, then you can add Strawberry Fields/Penny Lane and Magical Mystery Tour to the list of Number 1s. So that's 2 more to make 22- but wait, as one was a double A side and the other a double disc, that's 4 more, to make 2 dozen! ;)

    2. In the NME chart, Please Please Me spent a week as joint number 1 with Frank Ifield's version of The Wayward Wind - quite a symbolic moment really, the old and the new briefly sharing top billing before the old got swept away.

  5. So many great songs on Tug of War ~ love Wanderlust, and Ballroom Dancing, and the title track is something special too.

    1. Macca liked Wanderlust and Ballroom Dancing so much he re-did them for Give My Regards To Broad Street. The other Stevie Wonder duet - What's That You're Doing - is pretty good too.

  6. Simes and his new friend appear to be advertising for Hugh Hefner, did he really need the publicity?

    Wonderful sax on Fantastic Day, it does sound like summer, unless you listen to the lyrics which once again are full of doubts and fears. This episode's quotient of small bowties already at 2.

    Bucks Fizz turning their video into a trivia quiz, spot the movies they're recreating. Very much the Adam Ant/Prince Charming of its day. OK, maybe not.

    I'm not sure if Simes was trying to be flattering when he said Chas and Dave had been in makeup all afternoon, but it sure didn't sound like it. An insult to Mickey the drummer once it's over too. Luckily, the tune rises above it, soars even.

    Boomtown Rats sounds more like a novelty song second time around, like Lance Percival on That Was The Week That Was or something.

    OK, Elton, never mind the song, how on earth did you get that piano onto that location? Was it lowered in by helicopter or worse, carried up there by four burly scene shifters? Anyway, the song, nice enough, but he was well into his MOR stylings by now.

    It was almost strange to see a straightforward dance routine now, looked out of place, but Shalamar delivered an improving bit of light disco soul anyway.

    The way Simes was bigging this up I thought Paul and Stevie would be in the studio, but nope, though it's a mark of how important videos were becoming that this broadcast was an event in itself.

    Must admit Foster and Allen was a rare fast forward for me, it's basically the same line over and over, and I'd had enough.

    I thought at least Bent could have tried juggling if he'd given up the fire-eating, or produced a coin from behind Craig Fairbrass's ear or something, but this was all about the music. And the Shadows-style fancy footwork.

    Who's this rabble? It's the sound of a thousand student discos, Pigbag, storming along with the catchiest instrumental of the year. With a "Hi Mum" sign to boot, a sure indication of the early 80s.

    1. The Zoo dancers on the Shalamar track were emulating Bananarama's style in my opinion, even the outfits and hairdos, as well as the dancing.

  7. Brief though their career was, Haircut 100 proved to be one of the early 80s' most memorable bands. While OMD, Japan, Soft Cell and Depeche Mode were all buying Kraftwerk albums and the latest Casio models, the Beatlemaniacs from Beckenham breezed into the Top 10 with their jangling guitars and cod-Scouse harmonies - even finishing 'Fantastic Day' on a G6 chord! Yeah, yeah, yeah, ye-e-e-eah!

    Shalamar had previously sampled chart success, but '82 would prove to be their most successful year, especially in this country. Lulu and other TV variety stars of the day would duly cover their hits on 'Seaside Special' and similar programmes during this period.

    Sir Elton John made a welcome return to the hit parade with 'Blue Eyes' - one of his classier collaborations with Gary Osborne. Punk rock had almost spelt the end for the Scissor Sisters' idol as a major chart force, but the New Romantic era was the ideal setting for his impressive comeback.

  8. P.S. Here's one of those Shalamar covers, performed by Lulu with the Alyn Ainsworth Orchestra and a backing chorus that includes her younger sister, Edwina Lawrie:

    I'm sure you'll all agree that it suits Lulu's voice.

  9. I've had a busy week so an edition that I could skip through most of was for once not an unwelcome event. With the grinning Bates, Fairbrass in shot far too often and a tepid lineup, this was one of the worst of 82 for me.

    Haircut 100 - Well, I *used* to like this. But as it's the only song of theirs that ever gets on the radio, I'm thoroughly bored of it now it's become another 'housewife Heart classic'.

    Bucks Fizz - I don't think I've ever seen this video before, strangely. It's not the most original ever, but entertaining enough. 2nd best song on the show.

    Chas & Dave - Followed by the best. Interesting to see that their performance is almost a restaging of the video. It's all downhill from here....

    Boomtown Rats - I guiltily admit that this has grown on me a bit since I got my vinyl out for a spin. I'd forgotten that it was featured on Chart Hits 82 on the Jonathan King curated disc. Though whether he actually picked it given that he just witters about how great Bob Geldof was in The Wall (?) on the sleeve notes is debatable.

    Elton John - Pleasant enough, but nothing special. Workmanlike Reg.

    Shalamar - Housewife Heart classic Number 2! Would gladly never hear this again.

    McCartney / Wonder - Utter dross in every sense of the word.

    Foster & Allen - Dear god. They could have put Classix Nouveaux right here (and for once, in the correct break in the charts) and yet this gets another airing instead?

    After another play of the dreadful No.1 we get Pigbag which I enjoyed for about a week when it was out and soon got very bored off. It doesn't sound any better to me now to be honest.

    Hoping for better next week!

    1. "But as it's the only song of theirs that ever gets on the radio, I'm thoroughly bored of it now it's become another 'housewife Heart classic'."

      'Fantastic Day' was THE Haircut 100 hit which appeared on compilation CDs in the 1990s (and maybe still does today). Coincidence?

      It's my view that music radio went down the pan during the '90s as stations went 'digital'. Those such as Heart and Virgin (Absolute) were of course born in this climate.

      Today, much, much more back catalogue has been released in the digital format and hard drive capacity is at a level which was beyond wildest dreams 20 years ago, but it seems that only forward-looking (ie, non-profit making) internet stations take advantage of this.

    2. 20th cent, you have to remember that most of those that listen to the radio actually want to hear the same old shit over and over again, as all they really want is some safe familiar noise that makes them feel comfortable and secure (this theory was originated by the early 20th century philosopher theodore adorno, who theorised that the masses were content and sated with "fragments of melody")

      also it's all about making money rather than offering some kind of artistic or asthetic entertainment - if the commercial radio stations are more adventurous with their playlists then it's likely the listener ratings will fall. then advertiser revenues are likely to fall accordingly (the same people who are happy to be spoonfed familiar music are also likely to be the same ones that actually buy the products they are being brainwashed to acquire). so then they will withdraw their patronage and the shows/stations will disappear accordingly. so it doesn't matter how much archive music becomes available in digital format, it will never get played on such radio stations!

      i stopped listening to the radio years ago due to the above and for other reasons, and i can't believe that anyone with half a brain and a serious interest in music does that nowadays!

    3. I listen to the radio on my iPhone on the trains to and from work. I used to listen to a number of established stations but not any more. The first casualty was Radio 2 when Chris Evans took over the breakfast show (I can’t stand him), the second was Xfm being shut down and replaced by an horrendous ladrock alternative, and the third was Absolute as I prefer music to waffle and I got fed up with that stuffed shirt Christian O’Connell. Unfortunately, Absolute recently decided that their other stations I tuned into (70’s, 80’s ,Rock) would all link up to O’Connell’s ramblings between songs, and that was enough. I now listen to Jazz FM (mmmm, nice!) and a number of ad-free indie stations. My listening habits have completely changed as a result, but such is life.

    4. The only station I will have truck with now is 6 Music. Radio 1 has been shite for as long as I recall (Mark and Lard, when they went, I went).Radios 2 has its moments with Bruce and Vine, but since Wogans gone...not bothered.

      The commercials?? Good god. Heart/Absolute/Radio X all much of a muchness.

      You can get some good obscure stations on digital though.

    5. Totally agreed on 6 Music, a great mix of old and new, knowledgeable presenters with a sense of humour, and not playing the same old stuff in mind-numbing rotation. I've found loads of great music from listening over the years that I'd never get from commercial.

      Radio 3 is nice to wake up to, mind you, and Radio 4 is good for non-music business.

    6. I have dabbled with 6 Music (it’s one of the selections on my iPhone) and, indeed, it has a fine non-rotational selection of music. Problem is, just my luck, whenever I tune in I seem to get either a Shaun Keaveny monologue, a Steve Lamacq critique or, like this morning, a music news section which today told us what Bruce Springsteen’s up to. Having suffered the four-songs-per-hour rubbish served up by Chris Evans at Radio 1, and tired of the ‘zoo radio’ style of Steve Wright which has poisoned the Absolute breakfast show, now I just want to hear music with as little chat as possible (I’m happy with “that was song W by artist X, now song Y by artist Z”). I’ve even got picky with the internet indie stations, as some are programmed to run a 30-second advert before playing any music. For anyone interested who doesn’t know, there are two decent free internet radio apps that I know of, called Simple Radio and Tunein Radio. Through these apps, I’ve discovered a folk station in Antarctica and a disco station in the Vatican City!

    7. Wow, it looks like I've started something here! The only music station I listen to these days is Gold, and that's only because there's a good AM signal at Mercia Marina and it's the ideal complement to my 1963 Roberts set which I keep on the boat. It's also the station which is most closely aligned to my own musical tastes but I'm sure that if I listened to it every day I would be fed up with it within a week! (It has to be said that a vintage radio is the only way to listen to AM; on a modern PLL receiver it sounds plain awful - really just telephone quality with a bit of bass added.)

      But I stand by what I said originally - in the old days radio station record libraries grew organically and no two were the same. Yes, there were always the 'hits' on rotation but what was played between them determined the station's 'character'. These days it's possible to buy a 'digital music package'. Our hospital station started talking about going down this road, but in the event it was disbanded. For me, that was the preferred option...

    8. I have a Roberts internet radio at home, which provides the bulk of my listening nowadays. To be honest, it gives you so much choice it's hard to know where to go next, but there is a UK station called Oldies Paradise which does make a point of trying to play lesser known stuff from the 60s, 70s and 80s. The one problem with it is that there is a limited number of hosted shows, which then tend to get repeated at intervals during the week...

    9. I've not got an internet radio but Tune-in is great for coming across something unusual, there's some excellent chill out stations on there.

      I helped oversee the introduction of the computer playout system at the hospital station I was involved with, but we opted to keep the existing record library (a vinyl junkies heaven) and only use playlists for automated shows.

      The community station I'm at now has a playout system but it contains loads of songs that don't often get an airing, and presenters are free to play what they want.

  10. A veritable curate's egg of a show, this one. On the plus side. . .

    Haircut 100. Possibly my favourite of theirs, very summery, although the stage lighting did little to underline the sound. At times it was almost stygian. The performance was almost identical to their previous performances on their other hits as well.

    Bucks Fizz. I, too, have no recollection of this video, but it's a vast improvement on their studio appearance a couple of weeks ago. Lots of filmic references and a veritable Mr-Benn's-Shop of costume changes. Nice one.

    Shalamar. This is the start of their purple patch of hits and it still sounds good today (at least to me.) Unfortunately, its a no-show from the group so we are forced to endure Zoo with two female members dressed in more clothes than The Leggers wore in a month, and two males who seemed to think that gymnastic flips and tricks are actual dance moves. God, I miss the old gals!

    The Boomtown Rats and Chas & Dave straddle the good/bad divide quite neatly, but the rest of them . . .

    Elton John and Macca & Stevie are both prime examples of lightweight album fillers being allowed out in broad daylight on their own. They couldn't even be bothered to come up with decent original videos either.

    Foster & Allen and The Goombay Dance Band. Everything that needs to be said has already been said.

    And we play out with the annoying earworm that is Pigbag.

    Scores. The Geography teacher gets a 5.Not prime-annoying, but still.....

    The show scores 5 as well. Not keen on the lighting on this- far too dark for a show with a lot of upbeat songs. Zoo were appalling. The cheerleaders were more annoying than usual for some reason. Maybe its just me - coming down with a dose of SAD.

    Now, excuse me while I go and ponder the futility and meaninglessness of life.

    1. The Zoo dancers were doing a Bananarama clothing impersonation from It Ain't What You Do It's The Way That You Do It, performed earlier in 1982 in the TOTP studio.

    2. Shakey - most professional dancers are taught gymnastic moves as part of their Jazz training. Song-and-dance troupes such as The Young Generation and The Brian Rogers Connection frequently performed somersaults on TV variety shows during the 70s and 80s.

      I loved disco dancing when I was younger and once dreamed of joining one of Flick Colby's troupes - but I was terrified of somersaulting, so the dream never came true.

    3. I had to look up the word "stygian". That would have been a "Call My Bluff" classic. Seeing as I'd never heard of the word before, in my case it becomes a classic nouveau (boom boom tish!).

    4. i'd never come across the word "stygian" before either - nice one shakey! i seem to remember a previous haircut 100 appearance being pretty stygian too, so maybe nick and his chums were being kept in the dark as they "did a madness" and upset the producer?

  11. Anyone who was munching a premature Easter egg while watching this show 34 years ago may well have regurgitated it at the sight of that bunny girl gazing adoringly at Master Bates while clinging to his arm. The cheerleaders in general were very annoying this week, particularly Fairbrass with his oh-so-fake whooping as Bates went into one of the links. Our host himself was not so bad on this occasion, his inability to get the Shalamar song title correct until the chart rundown being his only real offence of note, aside from the obvious crime of being Simon Bates, of course...

    Musically this was, to put it politely, "mixed." Haircut 100 provide the perfect start with an unimpeachable pop tune. The boys' fashion sense continues to irritate, though, and I don't know why Nick bothered to pick up those inaudible maracas at the end. I still don't care much for this Bucks Fizz effort, but the video was diverting - Jay was quite convincing as Cleopatra, Cheryl rather less so as Marilyn Monroe...

    I was pleased to see that Chas and Dave kept their keyboard ties for this studio performance, and it's a bit of a shame this one didn't get to the top. Another white piano then appears halfway round the world with Elton, now well into his 80s hat phase, sitting behind it. The picture quality on this video is terrible, but Blue Eyes deservedly reignited his chart career after an extremely fallow period. I don't think he returned to top form until he reunited with Bernie Taupin the following year, however.

    Along with the Haircuts, Shalamar provide one of the two top tunes of the night, and mercifully Zoo provide a decent routine for it. I notice the splendidly-named Radford Quist was credited as Dance Director this week - presumably Flick was on holiday, or otherwise indisposed. I had to fast forward Macca and Stevie, as I absolutely loathe this song. It may well be the low point in both men's careers, though in Macca's case especially there are plenty of other musical crimes to take into consideration!

    The Goombays mark their final week at the top by ditching the fire and going all glittery disco on us, before a fairly well-behaved Pigbag provide a rousing finale. I don't like the screeching brass bits very much, but this does at least inject some last-minute energy back into a largely lacklustre show.

    1. I too enjoyed the Pigbag hustle at the end of the show. It does a a lot for me that track, and you can understand why it was rebooted in the 90's and renamed "Reach Up" by the Perfecto Allstars, and then soon after became the walk-on music for world No.5 darts player Adrian Lewis even to this day.

      Suffice to say that Pigbag here in 1982 were reportedly told to get lost by TOTP as soon as possible after the end of the show, as someone in the group must have rubbed up the TOTP producers the wrong way. This story was apparently revealed on The Story of 1982 on BBC4.

    2. Radford Quist sounds like an old dance craze, like the Lambeth Walk (or, I suppose, let's quist again). I had to look him up on the imdb website and his bio simply says "Radford Quist is known for his work on Underworld (1985) and 3-2-1 (1978)."

    3. Did he play Dusty Bin?

    4. as if "3-2-1" wasn't already bizarre enough by being a quiz show pitched at the great unwashed whilst giving mensa members a headache, they also chucked in some "young generation"-style dance routines as filler! presumably mr quist was responsible for choreographing those?

    5. They re-showed all the 321s a few years on Challenge and the later shows did feature some cheesy dance sequences. They also had some interesting musical guests from jazz pianist Roy Budd to Wall Street Crash who were like a combination of Bucks Fizz and Manhattan Transfer.

  12. Top of the mixed pops this week. I still like SB myself having listened to his Sunday Chart run downs for a number of years.

    Haircut 100 – Fantastic Day – Nick and the guys maintain their impressive form and this is a lively bouncy start to the show. Much enthusiasm from Mark Fox on percussion.

    Bucks Fizz- My Camera never lies – Another bouncy song, this time with a clever video montage. I can see why this pulled in the record buyers as it’s very infectious and the band have clearly matured one year on from Eurovision.

    Chas & Dave – Ain’t no pleasing you – Lacklustre performance after the excellent video shown the other week with the string players etc. Chas just goes through the motions and his gaze even follows the camera round at one point. This is however, a rousing song and compared to some of the 1982 number ones, packs a real punch.

    Boomtown Rats – House on fire – Ouch…

    Elton John – Blue Eyes – As noted above, one of Elton’s collaborations with Gary Osborne rather than Bernie Taupin. It certainly was a return to form but over the pond the Americans were buying what was for me a superior song; ‘Empty Garden’, which was Elton’s tribute to John Lennon. Over here it was more or less ignored. Looking at Elton in this video it’s hard to believe that it’s the same guy who appears in the papers so often these days. I guess we all look older after 30 odd years!

    Shalamar – I can make you feel good – Not for me…

    Pau & Stevie – Ebony & Ivory – Almost unlistenable and unwatchable now for me. One of the first CDs I ever bought when I purchased my first CD player in 1987 was ‘All the best’ by Paul McCartney. However, the CD player conveniently allowed easy skipping of ‘Say say say’, ‘The Frog Chorus’ and this song…

    Foster & Allen – A bunch of Thyme – As noted above, why?

    Goombay Dance band – Seven Tears – As mentioned, no fire eating this time but the guys and girls must have been so thrilled to still be no.1 they stopped by to record a new performance.

    Pigbag – Papa’s got a brand new Pigbag – Great rousing instrumentation. I love it, and so do the audience, but did I spot the Goombay girls standing watching in the background, one haughtily with hands on hips?

  13. thanks to the closing of the iplayer loophole, no doubt not the last time i'm late to this particular party

    host: slimy has moved on from schoolteacher jackets to a more casual stye that was probably a bit trendier at the time but now looks incredibly dated. like others i didn't think he was as odious as usual - maybe because the majority of acts here were more so?

    haircut 100: a fantastic song (well, a fantastic chorus anyway), and great use of the classic "she loves you" harmony trick at the end. nick heyward was obviously a great fan of the early 60's, as (having had a background in commercial art) he insisted on their album "pelican west" being a facsimile of albums released in that era i.e. colour front and monochrome back, complete with the "file under" instruction. i don't think it had a "flipback" sleeve though which was the way they were manufactured back then. there were actually three quite annoying things about this performance: 1 - a bass version of an acoustic guitar just looks ridiculous and is probably virtually impossible to play, 2 - the other guitarist is more prominent than nick in several shots, whilst having nothing better to do than stare gormlessly into space, 3 - mr studious saxist has brought along two of them again, despite only using one for a nanosecond!

    bucks fizz: at one point mike nolan is actually wearing more make-up than either of the girls. and no, i'm not referring to the bit where he portrays rudolf valentino! the second pop video in a few months to feature a pastiche of the silent film star, that demonstrates even though his time was brief he was still considered some cool kind of icon 50 years after his death

    elton john: i looked at the john craven pop quiz above, and of course knew that his given name was reginald dwight (did you know his cousin roy played in the 1959 fa cup final, where he got his leg broken and - unbelievably at the time - his team had to play the rest of match with 10 men as there were no substitutes?). i can't say i'm pleased to see the return of reg, still peddling the same old dreary shite as if it's the mid-70's. as he was still in the closet at this point, presumably the subject matter was meant to be perceived as female?

    stevie/macca: "side-by-side on my pee-YAAN-o keyboard"! this was pretty rank at the time, and sounds even more toe-curlingly bad now

    pigbag: i quite liked the groove and the main horn riff on this. but the atonal solos were the brass equivalent of the cat walking across the keyboard - was it some kind of deliberate tribute to noise makers like ornette coleman, or simply that they couldn't play their instruments properly?

    1. sorry - that bit about the pigbag atonal horn solos should have said "like the cat walking across the pee-YAAN-o keyboard"!

  14. I just hate the way Simon Bates announces mugshots songs as “X and Y”, or “X with Y” with Y being the artists. Another couple of Slimes classics this week - Foster and Allen’s was a surprise hit but a welcome one (welcome? really??), Elton’s tune might be a hit (it’s in the top 30, you moron – that makes it a hit!) and the gold medal winner “Talking about the American chart, let’s go back to Britain”!

    I enjoyed the first three songs and the outro, but the rest of the show was a massive disappointment.

    I don’t remember that rainbow Rubik cube backdrop at the start before. I actually liked the look of that acoustic bass in Haircut 100.

    Bucks Fizz’s oh-so-80’s video subliminally reminded me of the old Fry’s Turkish Delight ad, and they really should have let Jay portray Marilyn Monroe. Let’s hold that thought.

    Such a shame Chas and Dave’s Easter hit wasn’t “Rabbit” but this is a classic. Sadly, this was their last ever TOTP apart from that godawful “Snooker Loopy” four years later (or two, the way we’re going).

    Where was Simes standing prior to the Rats re-run? He looked dafter than usual with a mic on a stand nearby.

    Howdy! It’s Hank Elton in a video which was sunny weather wise but dull, dull, dull in content, giving that Leo Sayer vid a run for its money.

    I usually like animals, but I really wish this Zoo had been shut down.

    Another hater of “Ebony and Ivory”. Up there (or should that be down there?) with the Frog Chorus and “Mull of Kintyre” in my book.

    Pig Bag? The ensemble given a two word name in both in the mugshots and the pre-song credits. A big hit on the student union jukebox in Kingston Polytechnic at the time, the main refrain is still used on football terraces when a player makes a hash of something and the crowd sing “der der der DER – f#cking useless!”

  15. Well a quick look at the top 10 best selling singles of 1982 shows that 'Seven Tears' is not at no.7 but at no.8. A few clunkers in this top 10 sadly..

    10) Town called Malice / Precious - The Jam
    9) Ebony and Ivory - Paul & Stevie
    8) Seven Tears - Goombay Dance Band
    7) I don't wanna dance - Eddie Grant
    6) Pass the Dutchie - Musical Youth
    5) Do you really want to hurt me - Culture Club
    4) The Lion sleeps tonight - Tight Fit
    3) Eye of the Tiger - Survivor
    2) Fame - Irene Cara
    1) Come on Eileen - Dexys Midnight Runners

    The next no.1 we'll see from Bucks Fizz languishes at no.38 beaten by the likes of Toni Basil, Dionne Warwick, Rockers Revenge, Chas & Dave and (sigh!) The Kids from Fame. However, bottom selling 1982 no.1 goes to Charlene with 'I've never been to me' at a lowly no.47!

    1. I think Charlene outsold Captain Sensible's Happy Talk at around the number 80 mark (that's disregarding Beat Surrender which split it sales between 1982 and 1983)

    2. Gosh - you're right Nutty! I'd forgoten all about that piece of dross and yes, it's not even in the top50 listing that I was looking at.

      I really like 'South Pacific' though, just not the Captain's 'unique' interpretation.

  16. Did anyone see the 80s Pops repeats dream team of Toyah and Nick Heyward on Pointless Celebrities last weekend? Nick was looking very well (and very dapper), I'm pleased to say. Two of the other contestants were Fish and Barbara Dickson! I won't say how everyone did in case you want to catch up with it later.

    1. it might interest some here that a deluxe 2-CD edition of haircut 100's "pelican west" LP was released earlier this year, featuring loads of 12" mixes and other tracks not on the original album:

    2. Although Fish and Nick looked more or less the same, both Mari Wilson and Barbara Dickson were unrecognisable from their days of fame.

  17. I am surprised that no-one has yet mentioned the simply ludicrous dancing from the Fairbrass during Pigbag. As the end credits roll the acting hardman gets really carried away by the music and almost can't control his limbs! The blue hat just adds to the hilarity... well I enjoyed it anyway

    1. I try to give that Fairbrass as little publicity oxygen as possible. :-D

  18. Almost a week late - I have only just got around to watching the highlights of this show courtesy of Lee Nichols. Hey, it's just like the old days isn't it! Actually, I've been away and while I could have squinted at the phone when I had a 4G signal I decided to wait until I got back.

    Surprised nobody has commented on the similarity of the bass line in that Pigbag tune to The Jam's 'Precious'. Which one came first? Another one of those Jean Genie/Blockbuster things I guess.

    1. 20th, I had (or some of us had) mentioned this similarity on the blog when when The Jam was No.1 with Town Called Malice/Precious as double A side at No.1. I had thought that Precious came first, simply because it was No.1 in Feb 1982, and well before Pigbag even charted for this week's TOTP debut in April 1982.

  19. I'm so late I've almost crashed next week's show. Oh well.

    A mixed (pig) bag this week. As much as I hate the Slime Master I am becoming immune to his inane comments and sickly looks.

    I liked this Haircut 100 song a lot back in the day. And I like the way the band take the trouble to mime it so carefully and I'm glad to see that they've dropped the trousers-tucked-into-long-socks-and-jumpers-round-shoulders look and have gone for a more straightforward casual style.

    A slick video from Bucks with so many things going on it would have been hard to keep track in the days before video and rewind buttons. While the girls look cool and sexy the boys are wearing too much eye liner and some hideous creations, sort-of giant velvet jump suits adorned with metal studs. They make up for it by posing as their favourite film stars, Warren Beatty, Rudolph Valentino and Marlon Brando.

    Ironically Chas, Dave and Mickey do please us with an in person appearance but I feel sorry for the TOTP orchestra, they finally have a song they can back but they are nowhere to be seen. The crowd love this and its the real crowd not just Craig and his mates.

    The Rats again still on a reggae vibe, great music spoiled by Geldof's so-so vocal and dancing.

    Then Elton John with his first Top 30 hit since Song For Guy three and a half years earlier. This was another one I liked at the time, especially the electric piano bit at the end of the chorus, Great video too. He should write more songs with Blue in the title then he might have another hit.

    A shame that Shalamar couldn't appear but it's a reasonable dance routine from Zoo, or whoever Zoo is this week. The only thing is the cheerleaders (including inevitably Craig Fatarse in a cod Happy Days outfit) are a distraction and are wearing similar clothes so its not always possible to see what's going on. I really liked Shalamar as did my friend who was nuts about them. He got me a ticket to see them at Wembley Arena at the end of 1982 year. It was a really good night and everyone in the place was dancing and singing along.

    Then the charts from 30 to 19 and Stevie and Macca on video, the BIG exclusive. Wow! I must admit both the song and the video were better than I remember, I particularly like the middle chanting bit which stops it from being syrupy nonesense. They use the same chroma key effect to have a band of Maccas as they did with the Coming Up video but why is there only one Stevie?

    The middle bit of the charts then Foster and Allen again which gives us another chance to laugh at the dancers making fools of themselves in the background. The guy in the pink trousers is seriously slappable.

    The Top Ten, the Goombays (again), then, as if the BBC were trying to tell is something, instead of ending with the number 1 they end with the number 30 group in person, Pigbag. And this is excellent. It seems that this was written (or developed from a jam session) and recorded in 1981 and so pre-dates The Jam's Precious which seems to have borrowed its sound. Also the band Rip Rig and Panic seem to have been influenced by the Pigbag sound.

    1. one suspects that stevie wonder had to have his arm twisted to "duet" on macca's trite plea for racial harmony, so he wasn't going to do anything more than absolutely necessary for the video

      by chance i've just read an old edition of "new sounds new styles" magazine that profiles both pigbag and rip rig & panic - i don't know if they deliberately picked similar names, but the similar sound is probably not a surprise as they were both formed from the ashes of the pop group, that also peddled a jazz/dance/noise fusion

    2. Interesting point Bama about Pigbag pre-dating Precious by the Jam. In an earlier TOTP 1982, where we blogged Precious at No.1 as double A side with Town Called Malice, I was saying that Pigbag had borrowed the Jam's background sound on Precious, but if you are correct, then it's still bewildering that The Jam would sample Pigbag, but hey it got to No.1 for Mr Weller & Co.

    3. Well they did rip off the bass line from 'Taxman' for 'Start!' and that for 'Town Called Malice' is really just a variation on that tired old 'You Can't Hurry Love' thing...