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Top of the Pops

1990 on BBC Four

MU
mumu03
I never knew that Whitney Houston performance was repeated quite so many times, five is just total overkill. Although she was of course less of a massive star back then, they definitely didn't do that when she was on in 1987 Rolling Eyes

Colm posted:
Roxette's 'Dressed for Success', which was filmed c. October 1989 (same session as Deborah Harry doing 'I Want That Man' on the same stage) on the expectation the track would make the Top 40... which it eventually did on re-issue.


It could've been recorded during the sessions for one of July's shows too - according to the OCC's website, that was when the single first peaked in the low 40s. Either that, or the reissue plans were known of as far back as October and Roxette were available so the producers didn't want to pass them up, which is understandable.
AB
AcerBen Granada North West Today
I didn't mind Cowey having songs that were going down the chart if they were new performances. It made sense to include some more familiar hits in there for casual viewers rather than just new entries every week. Better to show a "real hit" again than something that was in at number 18 and would be out again in a couple of weeks.

Sometimes they would have the sense to pre-record 2 or 3 on different stages with different clothes all on the same day. But 5 times of the same one is overkill.
MU
mumu03
While a lot can be said for Cowey's sometimes questionable preference for the biggest hits and performances, it was still just about a better approach for the show than the six or so videos and only two or three new live acts per edition that we've been seeing in 1990, and will continue to for a little while yet. Of course, Ciani had good intentions in trying to get more hits on, but the rules haven't always worked well after their initial implementation.

In fact, there's a certain song coming up on the second of this week's episodes which will be having its fourth outing, and all of those were of its video, so in a way TOTP went from one extreme to another in the space of about 9 years - and, aptly enough, the middle period of it was when the format was probably at its most agreeable point for a while.

17 days later

JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
One thing I noticed was the New Kids On The Block video was in black & white the last two times TOTP showed it, but when we saw it last night it was in colour- albeit very unusual looking colour. Clearly colourised using the rudimentry technology of the time, and some "creative" decisions made. Maybe we got the B&W version because the colourised version wasn't finished, or the colourising was a decision made after the video has been finished.

Has been interesting the times we've seen different edits of videos used on different editions on these repeats, happened on The Chart Show as well, and even seen it on music channels from time to time where either different channels are using different edits, or on edit gets replaced by another one a few weeks down the line (often so superficially different you wonder why they bothered).
Last edited by james-2001 on 21 February 2021 7:37pm
AB
AcerBen Granada North West Today
I was just watching this video on YouTube today, which has the first video of Cher's Believe that was shown on CD:UK and The Pepsi Chart Show when it first went to number 1. It's actually just scenes from her previous hit One By One.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ALILX4m_UM

There was then a second version of this which had her singing the chorus only, to tide us over until the video was finished

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuZZqGRrSzI
CO
Colm Anglia (West) Look East (West sub-opt)
Bizarre how in 1998, two of the biggest-selling and most-played singles - 'Believe' and Stardust's 'Music Sounds Better with You' - didn't have a promo video available pre-release.

c.f. Black Box's 'Ride on Time'
JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
I admit I can't even remember the Cher video not being done until after it was released! Though we didn't have cable until a few months later, so I wouldn't have seen the videos (or lack of) on there (though the video was on The Box on heavy rotation by the time we did get it), TOTP never showed the video, and I rarely saw the end of CD:UK as my dad would insist on turning over to Grandstand (and I might not have picked up on the video being clips from One by One even if I had managed to see the end one of those weeks).

I do remember the video for the follow up, Strong Enough, also wasn't released until several weeks after the single came out though.

I remember, going back to 1980, when The Tide is High was at number one, they showed a video that consisted of the opening scenes of the proper video (with the band members staring up at the sky), but the rest of the video consisted of clips from other Blondie videos and a number 1 flying around the screen. I had assumed it was made by TOTP because the finished video wasn't ready, but then I saw it on VH1 classic when I was in the US a few years back.
Last edited by james-2001 on 21 February 2021 9:25pm
BH
BillyH Founding member London London
More recent examples include Viva la Vida by Coldplay, which was released in May 2008 but didn’t have a video until the August. That quietly became the first number 1 single not to get any kind of physical release at all in the UK (it did elsewhere) - all the hype had gone to Crazy by Gnarls Barkley two years earlier as the first “download-only #1”, but that was simply the result of a rule change that month that allowed a song to chart on downloads a week before the physical release.

In 2016 ‘One Dance’ by Drake never had an official video released, and indeed wasn’t available on YouTube at all - some musicians capitalised on this and videos of random cover versions sneakily credited to just Drake in the title had hundreds of millions of views, and thousands of angry comments along the lines of “HOW DO I FIND THE ACTUAL ****ING SONG?!” below. It essentially forced you to download or stream the song in order to listen to it, and possibly as a result of this was number 1 for 15 weeks, almost beating Bryan Adams’ record. YouTube plays were added to the official UK chart in 2018, making the release of a video worthwhile again.
Member since 26 May 2001
NJ
Neil Jones Founding member Central (West) Midlands Today
Colm posted:
Bizarre how in 1998, two of the biggest-selling and most-played singles - 'Believe' and Stardust's 'Music Sounds Better with You' - didn't have a promo video available pre-release.

c.f. Black Box's 'Ride on Time'


The story goes with Stardust that the song wasn't intended to be released; it was supposed to be a DJ exclusive (so you'd only hear it at venues and what not), but it was popular enough to be released more widely, and as things turned out it was successful enough to reach number 2 in the UK charts. So they had to cobble together a video for it after the event for airing on TV and music channels, and the result was one of those "story driven" music videos with little more than cameo appearances from the band themselves (the kid and to a lesser extent the model plane he builds and ultimately loses get more screen time than they did).

Of course many other examples through the years where hit singles never had music videos, mostly from the 1970s (MTV didn't become a thing until 1981 - their first video shown being the ironically named Video Killed The Radio Star - so I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of 70s music videos were either from live performances or cobbled together later). Slade's Merry Xmas Everybody never had a video (they were too busy doing other things), and what became their "official" video is some studio performance from somewhere. Are Friends Electric never had a video either.

More recently MGMT released Kids without a video, which allowed a college student to jump in and effectively rule that roost for a while, until MGMT released an official one, which basically boiled down to terrorising the crap out of a two year old.
CO
Colm Anglia (West) Look East (West sub-opt)
Other post-1980 Number 1 hits which stand out as not having an official promo video are 'Move Closer' by Phyllis Nelson and 'I Just Can't Stop Loving You' by Michael Jackson.

MJ's 'One Day in Your Life' also didn't have an official promo video, but TOTP still (just about) had Legs and Co in residence at the time to overcome that.

Indeed, Friday's two editions of the 'Pops saw another such song: 'Praying for Time' by George Michael.

An official 'lyric video' was produced around that time; I've not been able to ascertain so far when it was first broadcast, but it seems it wasn't available for the BBC to use during the song's eligibility for TOTP, so it never featured.

The circumstances behind this are artistic: this was the era when George declined to promote his work in person.

At the time, the only footage made public showed him recording 'Waiting for that Day' in a studio, as filmed for 'The South Bank Show'.

This was used by TOTP four times in October/November 1990:
Arrow to represent the 'Listen without Prejudice Volume 1' LP in two monthly Top 5 album rundowns (4-10-1990 and 8-11-1990)
Arrow within a Breakers sequence when it entered the singles chart at 32 (25-10-1990)
Arrow the playout track with the credits when it climbed to 25 a week later (1-11-1990)

I'm certain this brief clip was later shown on MTV and VH-1.

Further footage from this period, including George recording 'Praying for Time' in the studio, went on to featured in the 'George Michael: Freedom' film.

(For the record, the rightly-iconic promo video to 'Freedom '90' with the various Supermodels only gets shown twice, briefly, on TOTP - during the Breakers on 13-12-1990, and during the album chart rundown on 7-3-1991.)
Last edited by Colm on 22 February 2021 12:42am
SW
Steve Williams
One thing I noticed was the New Kids On The Block video was in black & white the last two times TOTP showed it, but when we saw it last night it was in colour- albeit very unusual looking colour. Clearly colourised using the rudimentry technology of the time, and some "creative" decisions made. Maybe we got the B&W version because the colourised version wasn't finished, or the colourising was a decision made after the video has been finished.


Pretty sure the first appearance of this (brilliant) song on 2nd August was a completely different video altogether, seemingly just a compilation of clips with the song dubbed over the top, before the seemingly official video was first shown on 16th August. Of course, Donnie's pixelated T-shirt was quite the talking point at the time.

On Twitter the other day there was a discussion about another video that was edited during its chart run, certainly for Pops, when in 1981 Richard Skinner introduced the "new version" of the video to Stand And Deliver by Adam and the Ants, after in previous weeks they'd shown the sequence where he was hung and they got umpteen complaints, so it was rather crudely edited out. Around the same time there were also two different videos for Woman by John Lennon, the first one including an image of him when he was dead, tastefully removed for the second one.
FL
Flux London London
Colm posted:
Bizarre how in 1998, two of the biggest-selling and most-played singles - 'Believe' and Stardust's 'Music Sounds Better with You' - didn't have a promo video available pre-release.

c.f. Black Box's 'Ride on Time'


The story goes with Stardust that the song wasn't intended to be released; it was supposed to be a DJ exclusive (so you'd only hear it at venues and what not), but it was popular enough to be released more widely, and as things turned out it was successful enough to reach number 2 in the UK charts. So they had to cobble together a video for it after the event for airing on TV and music channels, and the result was one of those "story driven" music videos with little more than cameo appearances from the band themselves (the kid and to a lesser extent the model plane he builds and ultimately loses get more screen time than they did).

Of course many other examples through the years where hit singles never had music videos, mostly from the 1970s (MTV didn't become a thing until 1981 - their first video shown being the ironically named Video Killed The Radio Star - so I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of 70s music videos were either from live performances or cobbled together later). Slade's Merry Xmas Everybody never had a video (they were too busy doing other things), and what became their "official" video is some studio performance from somewhere. Are Friends Electric never had a video either.

More recently MGMT released Kids without a video, which allowed a college student to jump in and effectively rule that roost for a while, until MGMT released an official one, which basically boiled down to terrorising the crap out of a two year old.


Wasn't it ABBA who popularised the music video as a concept? Their worldwide popularity meant they were in high demand, and so they began filming bespoke videos to send out to broadcasters where they were unable to appear in person and it was effective enough for others to follow suit. Or maybe that's an urban legend!

Speaking of songs with delayed music video, I also remember when Lyric Videos seemed t take off briefly circa 2012 (Little Mix: Wings being the first big one I remember) as a way to give songs a visual aspect so they could be publicised well before the video was available, often when a song was a second/third single from an already released album which "accidentally" charted as it could already be downloaded freely - I even remember a few lyric videos popping up on TV shows as exclusive airings of an unreleased song (on Something for the Weekend and maybe CBBC's Friday Download?)

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