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TV Pop Diaries
Pop Music on British Television 1955 - 1999

By the summer of 1981 it was obvious that ATV had finally got the pop bug. After decades of ignoring pop music it had decided with Revolver in 1978 that pop was worth a punt and followed it up with Oh Boy, Let's Rock, a Toyah documentary and Rockstage, and all just in time for it's franchise to be renewed, or so it thought.

Jack Good tells the Daily Mirror in the summer of 1981 "I'd love to do the Six-Five Special anniversary in February. It'll be twenty-five years since we went on the air. It was my first show. I'd love to do something really exciting to celebrate." Sadly, there would be no revival, but ATV were ready to listen to any ideas he may have had.

After the success of the Oh Boy re-boot on ATV Good decides to produce a new show, or rather the same show with a different title, just as he had done with Oh Boy and Boy Meets Girls and Wham! back in the late fifties / early sixties. This time he would hand over production to two of ATV's people and content himself with the "Devised and written by" credit in TV Times, or "Created by" credit on-screen. Although made in the UK it was originally shown in the USA, with a later showing by ATV in the UK. The copyright date at the end of the UK transmissions states 1980.

Oh Boy had made a star of Shakin' Stevens, who Good had employed in his Elvis stage show back in 1977, but despite its presumed success the series was put on late at night, 11.35 till gone midnight in fact, so Shakey's fans had to stay up, video it (if they had one), or miss it. If they had missed it, they really missed it as the show has never been repeated, or released on tape or disc.

The show's regulars were Joe Brown, Lulu, Den Hegarty (from Darts), Alvin Stardust and Shakin' Stevens, who bagged the front cover of TV Times the week of the show's launch, backed by a supporting cast of singers and musicians The Cats, The Kittens, The Boppettes (vocal trio), The Rockin' Rollers, Fumble, The Bruvvers and The Big Beat Boogie Band. They stuck to the medley style of song presentation that had worked so well in Oh Boy, and co-incidentally had been so successful more recently with the Stars on 45 series of singles. It also didn't hurt that there was a rock and roll revival in the early eighties in the UK with bands like The Stray Cats, The Polecats among others.

Talking to TV Times in August 1981 Lulu said "It's set in the Fifties and it gave me the chance to wear a pony tail and sticky-out frocks. It's a return to my roots." Explaining why she did it "One of the main reasons I did the show was Jack Good, a fascinating man. He comes over as a shy intellectual, yet leaps around the studio in a pink track suit and cowboy hat."

As TV Times put it "On your mark. Get set. Now ready . . . and it's a rocking start for a brand new series with G.B.H. as your resident host saying Let's Rock! to Tutti Fruitti, Shout, C.C. Rider and a great many more favourites---old and new." 'G.B.H.' was Billy Hartnell (I'd like to think this was Doctor Who's William Hartnell, but no...), who would pop up between the songs to introduce the singers.

It only ran for one series and would be Jack Good's last TV show. He returned to the US and devoted the rest of his life to painting religious iconography in his hermitage in New Mexico, later returning to the UK.



18th July 1981 - 22nd August 1981