Wednesday, 6 June 2012

6th June

1968: What remains of this one is as piecemeal as it gets - the first five and a minutes, featuring the heroically mid-60s-like theme, a rundown, Dionne Warwick represented by a donkey and the end credits, replete with Johnnie Stewart logo and Jimmy wiping someone's eyes. Also, a few silent seconds of Jimmy and Davy Jones clowning about. In terms of tangible splinters of archive, Don Partridge took his 'king of the buskers' thing a touch too far and Manfred Mann practiced some formation recorder playing. Look at that audience demographic from 2:04.

1974: You know when people talk about seeing Sparks for the first time and the consequential mummy-make-the-scary-Hitler-man-go-away feelings? This is the appearance that survives but it was actually their second on the show, which says something for archives and shared memory. The end of the song's missing because.... the end of the clip's missing. Meanwhile Cozy Powell takes centre stage - momentous moment for BBC Television as colour arrives halfway through - and Pan's People go down the indoor park on the Isley Brothers' behalf. A momentous Pan's moment, this, as following Louise's departure it's the debut of Sue Menhenick, the only person to dance with three TOTP troupes.

1985: Somehow Propaganda's icy allure is diminished by seeing Claudia Brücken's green leisure coat.

1991: TOTP didn't feature songs outside the top 40 much beyond the early 80s, especially when the host makes direct reference to that chart in the show intro, but everyone must have gone on an early holiday as baggy also-rans Northside and the ever reliable/available Marillion got on while at 41 and 42 respectively, though both climbed subsequently. Meanwhile, somehow Kirsty Maccoll gets away with urban appropriation. Looks like she's half-heartedly trying to join in at the start.

1996: Louise's stage outfits basically consisted of nothing but elaborate bras, leather/PVC trousers and a useless headset mike for years. One can take a pretty good guess at Nicky Campbell's intro going on his expression at the very start. The Fugees (it's a repeat, before you say anything) were still pretending they were on a even keel. Nice of Wyclef to remind Lauren where they are.

1997: Rosie Gaines seemed to be on every week in late spring 1997 - in fact she opened the shebang twice in a row. This is the first, with pillars of fire and impromptu screechy shoutalongs. Don't try and match her vocal range, girls, she's a pro. These were the days when Gary Barlow would let plebs touch him and Hanson were cocks of the junior walk. I liked the girl.

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