Friday, 20 January 2017

Top of the Pops Where We Belong

Top of the Pops January 27th 1983 was watched by 10.45 million viewers, making it the 5th most popular BBC programme of the week.

Hey George, we are the new Legs & Co!



27/01/83 (Simon Bates & Richard Skinner)

Level 42 – “The Chinese Way” (35)
After nearly three years of knocking on the door, Level 42 finally got their debut top 30 hit when The Chinese Way peaked at number 24.

The Belle Stars – “Sign Of The Times” (5) (video)
The latest technology lasers in this video obviously impressed Richard Skinner, and Sign of the Times went up two more places.

Central Line – “Nature Boy” (40)
Became the band's only top 30 hit, peaking at number 21 ~ but edited out of tonight's 7.30 slot.

The Beatles – “Please Please Me” (29) (video)
The plan was to re-release all the Beatles singles on their 20th anniversary, but only Love Me Do and Please Please Me made the top 30, this one got no further.

China Crisis – “Christian” (42)
Another victim of the 7.30 pm edit ~ Christian was their breakthrough hit and made it to number 12.

Wham! – “Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)” (34)
This swift re-released follow up to Young Guns peaked at number 8 ~ and its another highly energetic dance routine they perform here, on Andrew's 20th birthday.

Bauhaus – “Lagartija Nick” (44)
Going from sounding like Bowie to sounding like Iggy Pop here, with a 'Spanish' themed song which got no higher in the charts.

Joe Cocker & Jennifer Warnes – “Up Where We Belong” (25)
Making his first appearance on the show since October 1969 with Delta Lady is Joe Cocker, performing this Officer and Gentleman duet live with the much cruelly parodied Jennifer Warnes. An American number one, Simon predicted the same here, but number 7 was where it finally belonged.


Dire Straits – “Twisting By The Pool” (17) (video)
Making a splash in a 1950's style with their follow up to Private Investigations. Even Legs & Co never (quite) performed an underwater routine! It peaked at number 14.


Men At Work – “Down Under” (1) (video)
Here they are at last then, this was number one in America too at the same time, with the first of its three week run.

Eddy Grant – “Electric Avenue” (3) (video/credits)
Went up one more place.



It's February 3rd 1983 next.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Top of the Pops Cutter

Our perfectly synchronized Top of the Pops new year continues now with the edition from January 20th 1983, which was watched at the time by 11.1 million viewers, making it the BBCs second most popular show of the week, just behind .................. Hi De Hi!


You only get an 'Ooh' with ...... Gary Davies


20/01/83 (Gary Davies & Janice Long)

Kajagoogoo – “Too Shy” (33)
Getting the show off to a confident start whilst making their debut are Kajagoogoo performing a future number one which was co-produced by Nick Rhodes of Duran Duran.

Joe Jackson – “Steppin’ Out” (8) (video)
Janice informs us this video was voted 'the best of the year in America' and to be fair, it is a pretty good one! The song went up two more places but it was to be Joe's final top 30 hit.
Joe's trip advisor review....


Echo & The Bunnymen – “The Cutter” (27)
Singer Ian McCulloch sporting an off the shoulder shirt here and The Cutter became the band's first of three top ten hits when it peak-a-booed at number 8.

Jonathan King – US chart rundown: edited out
Eddie Rabbitt & Crystal Gayle – “You & I” (video clip)
Patti Austin & James Ingram – “Baby Come To Me” (video clip)
Toto – “Africa” (video clip)
Men At Work – “Down Under” (video clip)


Melba Moore – “Mind Up Tonight” (25)
Also edited out of the 7.30 show, this went up three more places and was Melba's final top 30 hit.

U2 – “New Year’s Day” (23)
The band's breakthrough hit which became their first of 34 top ten hits when it peaked at number 10.

Laura Branigan – “Gloria” (20) (US TV clip)
Became the first of two top tenners for Laura when it peaked at number 6. And she didn't end up recording the Octopussy theme like Gary had informed us - that honour went instead to Rita Coolidge.

The Stranglers – “European Female” (9) (rpt from 06/01/83)
Now at its chart peak.

Phil Collins – “You Can’t Hurry Love” (1) (video)
Second and final week at the top for Phil.

Billy Griffin – “Hold Me Tighter In The Rain” (28) (audience dancing/credits)
Became his only top 30 hit peaking at 17.



Next up then is January 27th 1983.

Friday, 13 January 2017

Top of the Pops of the Times

It's January 13th 1983, and the BBC is expanding and expanding ~ for not only is the launch of Breakfast Time tv only four days away, but we now have double the number of hosts for each edition of Top of the Pops....


And so a beautiful bromance begins...


13/01/83 (David Jensen & John Peel)

Incantation – “Cacharpaya (Andes Pumpsa Desi)” (14)
Getting the show off to a panpipey start here are Incantation with their only hit single, which went up two more places, taken from their top ten album of (more or less) the same name.

Men At Work – “Down Under” (7) (video)
Despite what the BBC announcer said before the show aired at 7.30pm, this future number one was edited out.

Sharon Redd – “In The Name Of Love” (53)
Quite an eccentric performance here from Sharon but the song peaked at number 31.

Keith Harris & Orville – “Orville’s Song” (4) (rpt from 23/12/82)
At its peak now.

The Belle Stars – “Sign Of The Times” (51)
We'd missed out on their follow up to The Clapping Song, which was a cover of Mockingbird, which failed to make the top 50, but this new one did much better, becoming their biggest hit in fact reaching number 3, and the girls get to wear the white suits this week too.

John Williams – “Theme From E.T.” (17) (film clips)
ET was packing the cinemas up and down the land at the time, hence the theme tune single was in the top twenty, although now at its peak,

Eddy Grant – “Electric Avenue” (22) (video)
This follow up to I Don't Wanna Dance took its name from a street in Brixton, and zoomed to a peak of number 2.

The Maisonettes – “Heartache Avenue” (15)
Another Avenue next, this one peaking at number 7. The two girl backing singers on display here did not sing on the record, but were in fact models hired for the performance.

Phil Collins – “You Can’t Hurry Love” (1) (video)
The first of two weeks at number one for Phil with his cover of the Supremes 1966 top 3 hit.

Donna Summer – “I Feel Love” (21) (audience dancing/credits)
This remix of her classic 1977 number one was now at its peak.


Next up is January 20th 1983.

Friday, 6 January 2017

The Story of Top of the Pops

Top of the Pops returns to BBC4 tonight with The Story of 1983 at 9pm followed by Big Hits 1983 at 10pm. Of course, one of the stories of 2017 is that we won't be seeing any editions where Mike Smith was a host, unless someone at the BBC can sort that particular mess out, and that includes this very first show of the year, from January 6th 1983.

So a huge thanks goes to Robert Thompson for uploading it here to WeTransfer

And an alternative link can also be found here also at WeTransfer

Hey ~ why didn't they just edit out the Mike Smith links and just show Tommy Vance's? 


06/01/83 (Mike Smith & Tommy Vance)

Joe Jackson – “Steppin’ Out” (50)
Became Joe's second and final top ten hit reaching number 6.

Phil Collins – “You Can’t Hurry Love” (2) (video)
Went up one more place to become the first of three number ones for Phil.

Ultravox – “Hymn” (12) (rpt from 16/12/82)
This double-whammy yewtree victim went up one more place.

Bucks Fizz – “If You Can’t Stand The Heat” (13)
Still slowly feeling its way to a peak position of number 10.

Malcolm McLaren & The World’s Famous Supreme Team – “Buffalo Gals” (11) (video)
Scratched its way up two more places.

Wah! – “The Story Of The Blues” (34)
Became their only top ten hit reaching number 3.

David Essex – “A Winter’s Tale” (3) (video)
Another one that has missed out on a BBC4 showing, although it was featured on the recent Christmas Hits compilation show ~ it went up one more place.

The Stranglers – “European Female” (40)
A rare chance for JJ Burnel to take lead vocals and it made it to number 9.

Dionne Warwick – “All The Love In The World” (10) (US TV clip)
At its peak.

Renee & Renato – “Save Your Love” (1) (video)
Final week at the top.

Madness – “Our House” (5) (audience dancing/credits)
Now making itself at home in its peak position.


Back to BBC4 next week for January 13th 1983.

Sunday, 1 January 2017

One Top of the Pops Further

And so we reach the final Top of the Pops of 1982, a live show from December 30th, and because one of the hosts is Jimmy Savile it won't be screened on BBC4. So a huge thanks goes to Robert Thompson for making it available here at WeTransfer. Obviously do not click the link if you wish to avoid Jimmy Savile.

Happy New Hair!


30-12-82: Presenters: Jimmy Savile O.B.E, Pat Sharp, Janice Long & Gary Davies (Live)

ABC – The Look Of Love

BARDO – One Step Further

BANANARAMA & FUN BOY THREE – It Ain’t What You Do It’s The Way That You Do It

(US CHART) JOHN COUGAR – Hurts So Good (video)
(US CHART) J. GEILS BAND – Centerfold (video)
(US CHART) JOAN JETT & THE BLACKHEARTS – I Love Rock ‘N’ Roll (video)
(US CHART) OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN – Physical (video)

THE BELLE STARS – The Clapping Song

IMAGINATION – Just An Illusion

ROCKER’S REVENGE – Walking On Sunshine (danced to by Zoo)

THE STRANGLERS – Golden Brown

SHAKATAK – Nightbirds

PIGBAG – Papa’s Got A Brand New Pigbag (and credits)


Next up then is January 6th 1983. It was hosted by Mike Smith and so BBC4 is skipping it. But we will blog it on January 6th 2017.

So until then, here's wishing a very Happy New Year to everyone who reads and contributes to this blog!