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TV Pop Diaries
Pop Music on British Television 1955 - 1999

A series of live shows in front of a typically non-responsive British audience featuring the finest singer songwriter talent from both sides of the Atlantic.

Produced by Stanley Dorfman, the series kicked off with Joni Mitchell playing songs from her forthcoming album Blue, followed by John Sebastian, Elton John, Bobbie Gentry, Nash & Crosby, James Taylor, Tony Joe White, Randy Newman, Mason Williams, Alan Price, Mac Davis, Tom Paxton and Pentangle, and that was just the first few months. Talking to Melody Maker Dorfmnan about making the show here rather than in the USA claimed "It would be unthinkable there to give such people their own half-hour spots - unless they are of the stature of a Sinatra or Andy Williams. The only chance for them would be a guest on a big variety show."

Dorfman went back to making Top Of The Pops at the beginning of 1971, but would continue with In Concert, and when series two started in April 1971 Neil Young treated us to songs from his album Harvest, yet to be released, continuing with Melanie, Labi Siffre, Gallagher and Lyle, Carole King with guest James Taylor, Laura Nyro, Cat Stevens, Lesley Duncan, Jimmy Webb with Gilbert O'Sullivan rounding off the year.

When the series returned in 1972 it was with Harry Nilsson. Not used to playing concerts he chose to make the show alone in the studio using multi-take performances merged to make it appear that he was in triplicate, similar to his own vocal multi-tracking. In 1973 he would work with Dorfman again on the Little Touch Of Schmilsson In The Night special, and shooting a TV commercial for his album, Duit On Mon Dei.

The series would continue until 1976, but by this time it veered more toward the middle of the road. The Old Grey Whistle Test presented a series of concerts of its own in 1976 which probably led to its cancellation.



9th October 1970 - 2nd September 1976