1980: Elvis Costello is a very serious artist, you know. From one speccy guitarist to another, The Shadows were a band with whom both the charts and Pops kept faith with long after their time. Brian Bennett's certainly enjoying his moment out front but you've seen more convincing faux-keyboard playing.
1985: Unassumation, if there is such a word, was surely taken to new levels by Stephen Tin Tin Duffy, who wears a guitar but strums it twice shortly after some distracted looking poking about with a boxy synth, surrounded by prints of paintings. Lesser men would have hired session musicians. Compare to the sleek professionalism of the Commodores with their three keyboards, lead vocal swapsies and adventorously designed top. The white tracksuit is a neat touch.
1997: Whatever you're imagining Cathy Dennis covering Waterloo Sunset at the commercial peak of Britpop might sound like, you're probably right. That might well have been the last headstockless guitar to ever appear on the show. There was a phase between Prince calling himself the symbol for TAFKAP and returning to his proper name where he was referred to as The Artist to little commercial effect, though he still gets to extravagantly guitar solo. What is that he grabs out of someone's hand and throws at his keyboard player right at the start?
2003: Something that littered pop around the very late 90s and early 00s was pop acts asserting their credentials by doing acoustic versions at the drop of a sessioneer's plectrum. Busted had more call than most, being guitar-based anyway, though Matt's not left with a lot to do. Still waiting for that seventh album.