Top of the Pops 1979 - 8.2.79

Watched by Chris Arnsby on BBC4

Kid Jensen. “Hi There. If you've ever wondered if what goes up must necessarily come down then stay with us for this week's edition of Top of the Pops because this is it."
Chart music: Dan Hartman, This Is it [17].

Mick Jackson: Weekend [58]. Funky but forgettable. More interesting is the technician lurking behind Mick in the lighting gantry. He seems to be working a giant spotlight although when he first comes into shot it looks as if he's got hold of the worlds biggest telephoto lens.

Rod Stewart: Ain't Love A Bitch [29]. Rod Stewart's wearing a foul pair of leopard print trousers. In the high angle shots they make his skinny legs look like matchsticks.

Abba: Chiquitita [2]. As Legs & Co (dressed as flamenco dancers) slide around to Abba's dullest song we're three boring songs into the most disappointing edition of Top of the Pops for several months.
Chiquitita makes a suprise appearance as Abba sing


Elvis Costello & The Attractions: Oliver's Army [45]. Micky Dolenz has climbed over the wall at the back of Television Centre (by the Blue Peter garden) and snuck into the Top of the Pops studio to gain all of five seconds television exposure. He's good natured enough to laugh at Kid Jensen's "monkeying around," pun as if he's never heard it before. Then we're off into the first decent song of the evening. For some reason the vision mixer turns the colour signal off a couple of times. Maybe he just thinks Elvis Costello looks better in black and white.

The Shadows: Don’t Cry For Me Argentina [5]. With the show quality needle trembling on the brink of "okay" Hank Marvin's here to drive it back down to "mediocre".

Dr. Feelgood: Milk And Alcohol [13]. A surly performance which is remeniscent of The Stranglers at their audience blanking best. At one point the guitarist adds some vibrato as he's playing and it sounds better than anything Hank Marvin has ever done in his career.

Leif Garrett: I Was Made For Dancin’ [7]. Leif Garrett may be made for dancin' but not for singin' or bein' a charismatic pop star. Leif Garrett's American but the song is the kind of frantic eurodisco which gives me the fear that Bacarra are suddenly going to start trying to rhyme dynamite with got a light.

Darts: Get It [50]. Darts had an astonishingly good 1978. They clocked up around 12 appearances on Top of the Pops. They don't break any new musical ground with Get It, but it's a nice enough song.

Judas Priest: Take On The World [20]. This week Judas Priest are being fronted by Kenny Everett's Sid Snot character. I was late meeting Deadrie the other night. I 'ad a bit of trouble with the bike you know. She gave me a lot of GBH of the ear 'ole. You know what I mean? She said, "what 'append?" I said, "piston broke." She said, "I know you are but what 'appened?"

The Jacksons: Destiny [39].  It's Michael Jackson dancing his heart out in front of the Top of the Pops audience. Somewhere out there is someone who keeps going on about it,"there he was dancing no more than three feet in front of me..."

Numer one: Blondie, Heart Of Glass. The video's finally arrived from America so Legs & Co, and their trousers, are not required this week.

Closing titles: Gene Chandler, Get Down [21].

Performance of the week: It should be Oliver's Army a song I've always liked, but when I watched this edition of Top of the Pops I really liked Milk And Alcohol, so it's Dr. Feelgood.

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