TV Pop Diaries

Popular Music on British Television

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10th January 1970 - 25th July 1971

The successor to Colour Me Pop featured acts playing live in a studio setting, the studio in this case being the vacated premises of Gerry Anderson’s Century 21 productions in Slough, Berkshire.

Like its predecessor Colour Me Pop it had ties to BBC2's daily arts strand Late Night Line Up, with Line Up's editor Rowan Ayes initially heavily involved.

When a band couldn’t make a personal appearance then specially made graphic clips were assembled, an idea later taken up by the series that replaced it in September 1971, The Old Grey Whistle Test.

Tommy Vance was the show’s first announcer, later replaced with Pete Drummond and Mike Harding, while Richard Williams, who would later host the first series of the Old Grey Whistle Test, was act as interviewer on later editions, as was actor and Radio One DJ Mike Raven. The archive film clips that were used for album tracks and oldies were provided by Late Night Line-Up’s Philip Jenkinson.

The theme was provided by Elton John, later replaced by Led Zeppelin, who also had the Top of the Pops theme.

Controversy hounded the final shows as one of the Producers had been on the unfortunate end of a News of the World sting when he accepted money from the newspaper to allow the band Demon Fuzz to appear on the show in return for a £200 payment. The band knew nothing of the payment by the newspaper. The Producer later confessed to the BBC and was fired. The show was dropped and gave way to the Old Grey Whistle Test, which was Produced by Disco 2's Executive Producer Michael Appleton.

Possibly three complete shows are known to exist.