The greatest Top Of The Pops episode ever was in 1980 and my memory of it was wrong. I was absolutely convinced Kraftwerk were on it but having done some research it would appear they weren’t. There were, however, a load of songs that I loved (and some I really, really didn’t, but TOTP was always like that). I think it was the 13th March 1980 episode, which ran as follows:
(23) Rush – Spirit Of Radio (and charts) *
(39) The Dooleys – Love Patrol
(6) The Police – So Lonely (video) *
(20) The Detroit Spinners – Working My Way Back To You – Forgive Me Girl (Medley) (danced to by Legs & Co)
(25) Brothers Johnson – Stomp (video)
(40) Secret Affair – My World
(14) Liquid Gold – Dance Yourself Dizzy
(5) Rainbow – All Night Long (video) *
(8) The Vapors – Turning Japanese *
(36) Siouxsie & The Banshees – Happy House *
(18) The Gibson Brothers – Cuba
(4) Peter Gabriel – Games Without Frontiers (video) *
(3) Marti Webb – Take That Look Off Your Face
(35) Genesis – Turn It On Again *
(1) Fern Kinney – Together We Are Beautiful
(7) Captain & Tenille – Do That To Me One More
They were confusing times. I liked Punk and I liked Prog and it was illegal, or something, to do that. There are 7 songs on the show that I liked, 7 was a lot, 2 or 3 was the usual. I’m convinced Peter Gabriel appeared on the show and it wasn’t a video but I looked it up and his only ever appearance on the show was two months later with a different song (No Self Control) so I’m pretty sure this is the right episode.
I was at a friends house and had to watch it on a little portable TV in his parents bedroom as they were watching something else on the big TV downstairs. Despite definitely having watched this episode there are songs I really don’t remember at all, such as ‘Stomp’ by The Brothers Johnson and ‘Dance Yourself Dizzy’ by Liquid Gold. There are also songs I didn’t know I remembered, like ‘Cuba’ by The Gibson Brothers and ‘Together we are beautiful’ by Fern Kinney. Memory is a delicate thing.
Here is that Top Of the Pops reconstructed for your viewing and listening pleasure (some of the performances aren’t from that actual dates show but from the one before or after but it’s near enough, oh, and the way they included Rush is really very disappointing)
So it may not be the greatest TOTP ever, but it was pretty good apart from Steve Wright being on at and being dick, at least there was no Jimmy Saville, the scumbag. .