My 1979 Charts – September

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4th September 1979

The first chart in Long Beach, LA, and it’s too soon for anything to have happened musically, so it’s quite a dull chart with a bit of shuffling. On the plus side, Cliff’s fab record gets a second week on top, Boney M get a 4th Top 3 hit (yes I knew that hook was fab, even if it under-performed UK charts-wise), Gerry Rafferty gets a 4th Top 5, and the Specials are real Gangsters at 5. Don’t argue!

Flying Lizards get to 10, Randy Vanwarmer takes his sweetsad ballad to 11, and Johnny Mathis gets a 3rd Top 20 hit. Jumping Randy Crawford with The Crusaders 51 to 27, Streetlife – sadly not the much better Roxy Music hit, though the nearly-as-good Angel Eyes is at 8 for them – and Dr Hook get to 39 with a future biggie. New entries: Wings (it’s OK), and not much else worth noting.

So instead I’ll pop over to California ’79, where I was, and continue the pop culture anecdotes amongst the student nostalgia. Cheers! So, we headed randomly to Long Beach, and came across Beach Terrace Motel, literally on the beach, and facing the Queen Mary liner, and all for $11 each, wow! My American airplane friend gave us good advice! It was night, the ocean was full of blocks of colour and twinkling lights. Fab! Roomy, a iamspamspamami a balcony over the beach, living room and bedroom, “Pure sensational delight” I quote myself. Being an American TV fan, I took over the control next day as I re-acquainted with childhood faves not seen in a decade thanks to re-run stations – as opposed to the pathetic 3 UK channels. Notably Mel Brooks wacky sitcom Get Smart, and Gilligans Island daft but loveable sitcom, Ghost and Mrs Muir, Family Affair, Batman, Partridge Family. I was in babbling sitcom heaven.

Tuesday: The daytime revealed we were basically living like Jim Rockford, on the beach, we got groceries at a nearby store, played frisbee, took photos, pancakes at a diner “a cup of tea, please” said Julie, the waitress loved the accent and repeated it. A recurring theme of the States: the English accent is very popular! We hired a tent, everyone was so happy to help us look for one, so friendly and helpful. I loved it here, shame we moved out next day….

Wednesday: Out for a drive, my un-named friend tried driving down the highway wrong direction, cars hurtling towards us – fortunately those alleyways you see on cop shows are real and dived down it. Laugh or cry about it? Laugh! Then it was a day in Disneyland: my first time, my first theme park. The thick brown cords I wore prob not a great idea in the heat… I loved the rides, the detail, the lifelike “robot” Abe Lincoln, and I pushed Tomorrowland as the place to be – so ME! Space Mountain: “the most exciting thing I’ve ever done” a pitch-black indoor roller-coaster, thus begins my roller-coaster obsession! I adored Disneyland.

Thursday: Off to Las Vegas. I froze in the air-con car (I like heat!). I anticipated a future language cliche in my comment: “literally” my feet and arms were freezing, but I used the commas to show it wasn’t actually literal. So there! Nothing new under the sun. Station KFI (LA) – some of the big news items that cropped up: Lex Barker (Tarzan) died, actress Jean Seberg was found dead in Paris (Paint Your Wagon), Earl Mountbatten blown-up by the IRA, hurricanes. Gulp! Stop-off at Calico, a great desert mountain ghost mining town done up for tourists, terrific for photos and HOT, well over 100F. Yay! On the radio? My theme song, my all-time fave song, the song that has followed me round the world, wherever I go, I usually hear it (less so these days, mind you): Baker Street by Gerry Rafferty. Las Vegas: I found new DC Comics in a supermarket, Legion Of Super-Heroes especially. Me sorted, then! Accommodation? KOA campsite, a tent in desert heat, erecting it as night fell – yes, not thought through that one….. Cruising the Las Vegas strip at night in the car? Tick! Just like American Graffiti…

Friday: newspaper tokens for a free casino breakfast and free $1 in coins to play. True! I demonstrated to Pete & Julie the futility of gambling on the one-armed bandits, feeding my coins in “you never win on these things” I said as $5 worth of cash tumbled out. I quit while I was ahead:) Drove to Hoover Dam: terrific photos. Pete and Julie were getting on VERY well by this time, leaving me as the 5th wheel, but all good fun. We were heading for the Grand Canyon…. TBC

1 ( 1 ) WE DON’T TALK ANYMORE Cliff Richard
2 ( 2 ) I DON’T LIKE MONDAYS The Boomtown Rats
3 ( 6 ) GOTTA GO HOME Boney M
4 ( 8 ) GET IT RIGHT NEXT TIME Gerry Rafferty
5 ( 7 ) GANGSTERS The Specials
6 ( 4 ) VOULEZ VOUS/ ANGEL EYES Abba
7 ( 3 ) BANG BANG B.A. Robertson
8 ( 10 ) ANGEL EYES Roxy Music
9 ( 5 ) OOH WHAT A LIFE The Gibson brothers
10 ( 13 ) MONEY The Flying Lizards

11 ( 23 ) JUST WHEN I NEEDED YOU MOST Randy Vanwarmer
12 ( 14 ) LOST IN MUSIC Sister Sledge
13 ( 9 ) BEAT THE CLOCK Sparks
14 ( 12 ) CAN’T STAND LOSING YOU The Police
15 ( 11 ) THE DIARY OF HORACE WIMP E.L.O.
16 ( 16 ) IS SHE REALLY GOING OUT WITH HIM Joe Jackson
17 ( 19 ) LINES The Planets
18 ( 17 ) ARE ‘FRIENDS’ ELECTRIC Tubeway Army
19 ( 22 ) GONE GONE GONE Johnny Mathis
20 ( 15 ) AFTER THE LOVE HAS GONE Earth Wind And Fire

21 ( 20 ) MORNING DANCE Spiro Gyra
22 ( 28 ) ROCK LOBSTER The B52’s
23 ( 26 ) YOU’LL NEVER KNOW WHAT YOU GOT Me And You
24 ( 24 ) DUCHESS The Stranglers
25 ( 18 ) LADY LYNDA The Beach Boys
26 ( 34 ) GIRLS GIRLS GIRLS Kandidate
27 ( 51 ) STREET LIFE The Crusaders
28 ( 21 ) IF I HAD YOU The Korgis
29 ( 31 ) THE LONELIEST MAN IN THE WORLD The Tourists
30 ( 27 ) BORN TO BE ALIVE Patrick Hernandez

31 ( 25 ) REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL Ian Dury And The Blockheads
32 ( 30 ) STAY WITH ME TILL DAWN Judy Tzuke
33 ( 63 ) REGGAE FOR IT NOW Bill Lovelady
34 ( 39 ) CARS Gary Numan
35 ( 29 ) KID The Pretenders
36 ( 32 ) GIRL’S TALK Dave Edmunds
37 ( 35 ) WANTED The Dooleys
38 ( 42 ) IF I SAID YOU HAD A BEAUTIFUL BODY (WOULD YOU HOLD IT AGAINST ME) The Bellamy Brothers
39 ( 49 ) WHEN YOU’RE IN LOVE WITH A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN Dr. Hook
40 ( 33 ) HERSHAM BOYS Sham ’69

41 ( 37 ) LIGHT MY FIRE Amii Stewart
42 ( 36 ) GOING THROUGH THE MOTIONS Hot Chocolate
43 ( 38 ) SWEET LITTLE ROCK ‘N’ ROLLER Showaddywaddy
44 ( 40 ) SILLY GAMES Janet Kay
45 ( 41 ) MY SHARONA The Knack
46 ( NEW ) GETTING CLOSER Wings
47 ( 54 ) BAKER STREET Gerry Rafferty
48 ( 55 ) DREADLOCK HOLIDAY 10CC
49 ( 48 ) DOES YOUR MOTHER KNOW/ KISSES OF FIRE Abba
50 ( 47 ) SUNDAY GIRL Blondie

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51 ( 46 ) NIGHT OWL Gerry Rafferty
52 ( 45 ) SPACE BASS Slick
53 ( 44 ) GOOD TIMES Chic
54 ( 75 ) WHEN YOU’RE YOUNG The Jam
55 ( 53 ) BREAKFAST IN AMERICA Supertramp
56 ( 58 ) CHIQUITITA Abba
57 ( 64 ) YOU NEED WHEELS The Merton Parkas
58 ( 59 ) TRAGEDY The Bee Gees
59 ( 60 ) I WILL SURVIVE Gloria Gaynor
60 ( 43 ) THE BOSS Diana Ross

61 ( 50 ) ROCK AROUND THE CLOCK Telex
62 ( 62 ) ROXANNE The Police
63 ( 56 ) RING MY BELL Anita Ward
64 ( NEW ) BOY OH BOY Racey
65 ( 67 ) LOVE’S GOT A HOLD ON ME Dollar
66 ( 52 ) BAD GIRLS Donna Summer
67 ( 57 ) DUKE OF EARL Darts
68 ( NEW ) WHEN WILL YOU BE MINE Average White Band
69 ( 73 ) THE DAY THE WORLD CAUGHT FIRE City Boy
70 ( 70 ) HEART OF GLASS Blondie

71 ( 61 ) BOOGIE DOWN The Real Thing
72 ( NEW ) TEENAGE WARNING The Angelic Upstarts
73 ( 66 ) LIVING ON THE FRONTLINE Eddy Grant
74 ( 68 ) MARRIED MEN Bonnie Tyler
75 ( 69 ) ONE RULE FOR YOU After The Fire

11th September 1979
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The first US chart proper, and it shows in an inrush of Californian and Nevada radio tracks that hadn’t registered in the UK. Appropriately, the 3 highest were British acts, plus 3 US acts, and an Aussie and a Canadian, but the chart-topper was one of the 2 45’s I bought on holiday – Gerry Rafferty’s 2nd number one, the fabulous Get It Right Next Time, inexorably linked in my mind with desert highways. As was the highest new entry at 3, ELO’s 3rd Top 5 of the year off Discovery, the thumpingly brilliant Don’t Bring Me Down, the other 45 I bought, along with In The Ghetto, Aquarius/Let The Sunshine, and Good Morning Starshine as I was reliving the summer of 69. ELO: all the boys sang along to “Broooce” loudly in the car, every time it came on. yay!

Sister Sledge get their biggest hit to date as the brilliant Lost In Music goes Top 5, Dr Hook get a 5th Top 20 hit at 18, and in at 20 it’s the 3rd Breakfast In America single, the US-hit-only Goodbye Stranger, a delicious ballad much better than the title track. In at 30 it’s Nick Lowe, fresh off helping Dave Edmunds, with the irresistible Cruel To Be Kind – in the right measure! Another non-UK-hit at 38, the wonderful Cars and Let’s Go, for a 3rd John hit and another great single. At 55, Babs is back with the theme tune to her last decent comedy, with Ryan O’Neal, The Main Event, all camp disco, and 8 years of hits.

The Little River Band had a radio hit in the UK with Reminiscing but never broke through, but Lonesome Loser is a sort of 80’s poprock template and a great singalong bit of drama. Anne Murray gets 9 years of hits, 2 number ones, and a 3rd hit of the year with the pleasant Shadows In The Moonlight. A bit MOR but I always loved her soft easy-on-the-ear vocals. Robert Palmer gets a 2nd hit with Bad Case Of Loving You, rocking it where Every Kinda People ached wistfully, and finally a bit of country from Eddie Rabbit, and one I’ve never managed to hear again. Not for long though…!

On the holiday media-scene, Laverne & Shirley (a Penny Marshall Happy Days spin-off, daft but loveable), The Jeffersons (black sitcoms were making inroads on US TV) and The Match Game, the US original version of Blankety Blank: more on this later…

Friday (cont): The Grand Canyon. Just past Bedrock (I kid not, Fred Flintstone is alive and well!), through the woodland, park the car, and whooo the biggest hole in the world! If you’ve seen the photos, it comes as a letdown initially – but that’s only till you get a proper sense of scale. It blew my mind: I peered over the edge and watched a bird flying way below. Only it wasn’t a bird, it was a plane. It’s HUGE. One of the greatest spots on the planet to visit, stunning to me, less so for the others. Downside: we camped in the tent. It was bloody freezing! We weren’t dressed for cold! I loaned my pyjamas to the girls.

Sat: The canyon was breathtaking in the morning light and blue skies. I picked up some souvenir stones to take home. I do that. Chipmunks. Ammonite souvenirs. Hoover Dam. KOA Las Vegas. Another nameless friend drove Pete & I in the dark to a casino – the wrong way down the highway! Quick U turn! Cruised the strip. Lady Luck casino, past gathering prostitutes and drunks. Watched a gathering of glamorous ladies getting picked up in the casino one by one by gentleman callers who gave them something before leaving. How thoughtful. Pete played cards, won some cash, a lady helpfully advised us that if we didn’t have ID proving we were over 21 (Julie wasn’t 21) we ought to make a quick exit as it was against the law. We took her advice!

Sun: Death Valley via Pahrump, a dust devil, desert scrub, it was a National Monument, fabulous scenery, worryingly hot with names like Furnace Creek and danger signs all adding to the anxiety about breaking down en route. All good fun, as was the toilet rolls in the “emergency” roadsign box. Souvenir desert-salt fell immediately to bits in the car, as predicted by yours truly. Sand dunes. Hick gas shack on the mountain climb out of the valley. Mountains! Lone Pine: a motel! hooray! Luxury!

Mon: To Lake Tahoe, sensational mountain scenery, forests and lakes, Lake Tahoe a deep blue edged by steep pine-treed slopes, and casinos on the Nevada end. The 2nd-highest lake in the world I read somewhere. Judy Collins and Jim Stafford were in town for shows: nobody knew who they were or cared to find out. Johnny Mathis more so, but expensive. Pity! Eagle Point Camp Site. tent again.

Tues: Sunny, fresh campsite morning by the lake! Driving to KOA Auburn for the afternoon, put my washing in the campsite industrial-sized drier. My T shirts shrunk to the size of tots T shirts. Much merriment from others. Listed lots of oldies in my notebooks heard on radio: Beatles, Abba, Bee Gees a-plenty (yes Abba, despite popular perception they never made it in the States, did, and were played on radio), Love’s Theme, Jet, Driver’s Seat, Layla and many more….

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1 ( 4 ) GET IT RIGHT NEXT TIME Gerry Rafferty
2 ( 1 ) WE DON’T TALK ANYMORE Cliff Richard
3 ( NEW ) DON’T BRING ME DOWN E.L.O.
4 ( 2 ) I DON’T LIKE MONDAYS The Boomtown Rats
5 ( 12 ) LOST IN MUSIC Sister Sledge
6 ( 5 ) GANGSTERS The Specials
7 ( 6 ) VOULEZ VOUS/ ANGEL EYES Abba
8 ( 8 ) ANGEL EYES Roxy Music
9 ( 3 ) GOTTA GO HOME Boney M
10 ( 11 ) JUST WHEN I NEEDED YOU MOST Randy Vanwarmer

11 ( 7 ) BANG BANG B.A. Robertson
12 ( 10 ) MONEY The Flying Lizards
13 ( 9 ) OOH WHAT A LIFE The Gibson brothers
14 ( 17 ) LINES The Planets
15 ( 14 ) CAN’T STAND LOSING YOU The Police
16 ( 20 ) AFTER THE LOVE HAS GONE Earth Wind And Fire
17 ( 13 ) BEAT THE CLOCK Sparks
18 ( 39 ) WHEN YOU’RE IN LOVE WITH A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN Dr. Hook
19 ( 19 ) GONE GONE GONE Johnny Mathis
20 ( NEW ) GOODBYE STRANGER Supertramp

21 ( 15 ) THE DIARY OF HORACE WIMP E.L.O.
22 ( 18 ) ARE ‘FRIENDS’ ELECTRIC Tubeway Army
23 ( 27 ) STREET LIFE The Crusaders
24 ( 21 ) MORNING DANCE Spiro Gyra
25 ( 22 ) ROCK LOBSTER The B52’s
26 ( 23 ) YOU’LL NEVER KNOW WHAT YOU GOT Me And You
27 ( 16 ) IS SHE REALLY GOING OUT WITH HIM Joe Jackson
28 ( 24 ) DUCHESS The Stranglers
29 ( 30 ) BORN TO BE ALIVE Patrick Hernandez
30 ( NEW ) CRUEL TO BE KIND Nick Lowe

31 ( 33 ) REGGAE FOR IT NOW Bill Lovelady
32 ( 25 ) LADY LYNDA The Beach Boys
33 ( 34 ) CARS Gary Numan
34 ( 26 ) GIRLS GIRLS GIRLS Kandidate
35 ( 38 ) IF I SAID YOU HAD A BEAUTIFUL BODY (WOULD YOU HOLD IT AGAINST ME) The Bellamy Brothers
36 ( 28 ) IF I HAD YOU The Korgis
37 ( 36 ) GIRL’S TALK Dave Edmunds
38 ( NEW ) LET’S GO The Cars
39 ( 45 ) MY SHARONA The Knack
40 ( 46 ) GETTING CLOSER Wings

41 ( 31 ) REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL Ian Dury And The Blockheads
42 ( 29 ) THE LONELIEST MAN IN THE WORLD The Tourists
43 ( 32 ) STAY WITH ME TILL DAWN Judy Tzuke
44 ( 47 ) BAKER STREET Gerry Rafferty
45 ( NEW ) LONESOME LOSER The Little River Band
46 ( 35 ) KID The Pretenders
47 ( 37 ) WANTED The Dooleys
48 ( 41 ) LIGHT MY FIRE Amii Stewart
49 ( 44 ) SILLY GAMES Janet Kay
50 ( 49 ) DOES YOUR MOTHER KNOW/ KISSES OF FIRE Abba

51 ( 48 ) DREADLOCK HOLIDAY 10CC
52 ( 50 ) SUNDAY GIRL Blondie
53 ( 64 ) BOY OH BOY Racey
54 ( 53 ) GOOD TIMES Chic
55 ( NEW ) THE MAIN EVENT/ FIGHT Barbra Streisand
56 ( 59 ) I WILL SURVIVE Gloria Gaynor
57 ( 58 ) TRAGEDY The Bee Gees
58 ( 51 ) NIGHT OWL Gerry Rafferty
59 ( 56 ) CHIQUITITA Abba
60 ( NEW ) SHADOWS IN THE MOONLIGHT Anne Murray

61 ( 66 ) BAD GIRLS Donna Summer
62 ( 54 ) WHEN YOU’RE YOUNG The Jam
63 ( 68 ) WHEN WILL YOU BE MINE Average White Band
64 ( 52 ) SPACE BASS Slick
65 ( 60 ) THE BOSS Diana Ross
66 ( 63 ) RING MY BELL Anita Ward
67 ( 40 ) HERSHAM BOYS Sham ’69
68 ( 42 ) GOING THROUGH THE MOTIONS Hot Chocolate
69 ( 55 ) BREAKFAST IN AMERICA Supertramp
70 ( 62 ) ROXANNE The Police

71 ( RE ) POP MUZIK M
72 ( 70 ) HEART OF GLASS Blondie
73 ( 43 ) SWEET LITTLE ROCK ‘N’ ROLLER Showaddywaddy
74 ( NEW ) BAD CASE OF LOVING YOU (DOCTOR DOCTOR) Robert Palmer
75 ( NEW ) SUSPICION Eddie Rabbit

TV
1 Laverne And Shirley
2 The Jeffersons
3 The Match Game

18th September 1979
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A split US/UK chart, with a couple of days back in the UK mixed in with American radio new entries. ELO get their 6th chart-topper, knocking off Gerry after one week only. The record has popped up since in American road movies (I mean how appropriate for me, being as it was, and is, and always will be, singing down freeways and highways) like the brilliant Paul, the good Super 8, Doctor Who, Family Guy, The Pirates, and only just missed getting onto Guardians Of The Galaxy (hoping to see it in the extended version on DVD). I feel all justified and warm… Both crackers! Gary Numan motors up to 4 for a 2nd Top 5 hit with Cars, and highest new entry is The Commodores (and Lionel Richie’s) best ballad, the gorgeous Sail On. It’s a country song from a soul band, and the delayed end chorus is just delicious.

The Stranglers get all royal at 18, and Dollar re-enter with their soppy ballad at 25, making it 3 in a row Top 40’s. At 26, it’s Robert John, last seen in 1972 wimoweh-ing with a sleeping lion, back this time with a sweet falsetto ballad, Sad Eyes. Frantique strut some funky stuff at 28, Squeeze are up for a bit of Slap n Tickle at 30, a 5th hit for them, and Elton John follows-up his Philly-hit Are You Ready For Love with the US-only Philly hit Mama Can’t Buy You Love, almost as good and the track I preferred at the time.

Dionne Warwick gets the Manilow treatment, and a decent ballad, at 49, back after 5 chart years away. Secret Affair debut with the storming Time For Action at 50, and Maxine Nightingale leads me on at 57, her 4th hit since her brilliant Motown-styled breakthrough in 1975, Right Back Where We Started From. Another US-only hit by a British act, the US charts were full of ‘em in those days, we had pop stars to spare. At 64, 3rd hit for Maureen Mcgovern, 6 years after her Poseidon Adventure song, and finally 2 big name comebacks: Herb Alpert’s sax goes disco for the fab Rise, the head of A&M records getting his first hit in 10 years, and former child-star Michael Jackson goes solo for a second-wind career, his 6th hit sneaking in at 75 produced by Quincy Jones, a slick, disco dance maturity on display. Wonder how that’ll go down? Not badly….!

Holiday tales:

A famous movie star - and some paving slabs

A famous movie star – and some paving slabs

Wed/ Thurs: Sacremento. Pleasant city, and a Middle Of The Road song. San Francisco for 2 days: instantly my fave city, gorgeous to look at, lots to do, Chinatown, Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf (views of Alcatraz) all done, all fab, Cable-car trolley ride? tick. The Bay bridges? yup. Attractive high-rise buildings? not bad. I especially loved Chinatown, giving me a heady dose of Singapore nostalgia, buying up oriental souvenirs and trinkets in a sweaty excitement. Pagoda wind-chimes, playing cards, chess piece, tiger-balm ointment (for mosquito bite ease), tiger-design & China scenery bamboo and cloth wall hangers, parasol, bamboo table mats. Yup I loved it. They all thought I was mad.

KOA tent evening north of the Bridge, where I got chatted-to by a hunk and his blonde girlfriend, neither of them had heard of Nottingham, Robin Hood or Errol Flynn when I tried to explain where I came from. On the second day, I wanted to stay longer, but one friend wasn’t at all keen and ended up getting the others to agree to move on to the next campsite, while we were eating a meal. I threw a hissy fit, sulked for the journey and refused to help with the map reading to the KOA campsite in the middle of nowhere (I really had had enough of dull tent-life with nothing to do and nowhere to go, and also wanted to see an exciting-looking new film Alien starring a new actress called Sigourney Weaver, showing in SF). Hilariously (to me, in a petty, serves you right sort of way) we went sailing by the exit we needed, and had to double-back and put the tent up in the dark. How spiteful was I? I knew it was the road we needed when we sailed by and I said nothing. Sulky brat, that’s me! I apologise here and now to Julie and Sue (lost touch with Joe and Pete) for being an arse!

Me, pre-sulk San Fransisco

Me, pre-sulk San Fransisco

Fri/Sat: Fresno. A younger girl bank-teller loved my “cute” T shirt and accent, and Pete’s. Aaaahhh! Sequioa National Park: mountain giant redwoods amazing! Saw General Sherman, the world’s biggest tree. Pete tricked me into thinking pine cones were falling on me on a huge fallen trunk. he was throwing them. Doh! Another KOA – did some charting while the others went swimming. They thought I was sulking again, and offered to go and see Alien at a local drive-in. Stopped by police for not stopping completely at a junction “stop” sign. It means just that, but they let us off when we explained it didn’t mean that in the UK. Phew! Being English had so many advantages! Too late for Alien, we went to a double-feature instead: Jaws, and the audience was SO unlike British audiences, screaming, gasping, laughing, applauding, so not-hung-up on showing emotion. Fab! Unfortunately they did the same for Airport ’80: The Concorde, a piece of tripe I slagged off afterwards, even though everyone else seemed to love it. “Sheer boring garbage” said I at the time and I stand by that!

Sun: L.A. 120F degrees. Hot! Hollywood sign. Sunset Boulevard. Capitol Building. Chinese Theatre, pavement footprints of the stars! Yay! Monroe, Marx Bros and Bogart were my faves. The Life Of Brian was showing!!! Not even out in the UK and here was a controversial Brit-flick on at the most famous movie theatre in the world. Joe & Sue went to see it while Pete, Julie & I went to CBS studios to watch a recording of The Match Game (aka Blankety Blank) as we’d got free tickets outside the theatre. yay! The warm-up man took over, getting the audience jolly, pulling faces and making crude groin gestures to get a bigger laugh. Even during recording! That explains the manic laughing at mild jokes on US shows: it’s what’s happening off-stage that’s funny! The star guests: David Doyle (Charlie’s Angels); Charles Nelson Reilly; Marcia Wallace (then of Bob Newhart Show, most famously now Mrs Krabappel from the Simpsons, sadly died recently); Bill Daly (also Bob Newhart Show, and previously I Dream Of Jeannie – as I told a smart-ass kid waiting for autographs after the show, he didn’t believe me. Bill confirmed and signed autographs for us. Ahhh!); Randi Oakes (great name) from CHIPS. It was great fun to watch! At the KOA later a couple in the next tent were having loud sex. That was a first for me….!

I knew I was short but...

I knew I was short but…

Mon: Universal studios, Battlestar Galactica sci-fi tunnel on the tram tour (still verrrry hot!), houses of The Munsters, The Addams Family, Animal House, Pyscho, sets of Kojak and The Sting (doubling as New York), Land Of The Giants TV show props (had my photo with a telephone bigger than me), the Jaws shark, and an icy-water avalanche as relief from the excess 120F heat. I bought a Mork And Mindy photonovel, the only way in those days to get a visual record of a beloved TV show. Loved Robin Williams, I did. Back to Mann’s/Grauman’s Chinese Theatre for The Life Of Brian in a plush cinema, it was BRILLIANT! Pete & I loved the depth and irreverence of it, piss-taking so much and so many, and my new fave all-time comedy as a result.

Tues: That’s it, flight home, after a shopping mall detour, bought some more singles and gifts for the family, and really wanting to stay. I always want to stay when I go on holiday, it’s never long enough, but especially so for this one having packed so much in 2 weeks. Sorry for the self-indulgent stories, but hope the 1979 media references fit into the Retro Themes nicely!

Battlestar Galactica

Battlestar Galactica

1 ( 3 ) DON’T BRING ME DOWN E.L.O.
2 ( 1 ) GET IT RIGHT NEXT TIME Gerry Rafferty
3 ( 2 ) WE DON’T TALK ANYMORE Cliff Richard
4 ( 33 ) CARS Gary Numan
5 ( 5 ) LOST IN MUSIC Sister Sledge
6 ( 8 ) ANGEL EYES Roxy Music
7 ( 7 ) VOULEZ VOUS/ ANGEL EYES Abba
8 ( 4 ) I DON’T LIKE MONDAYS The Boomtown Rats
9 ( 10 ) JUST WHEN I NEEDED YOU MOST Randy Vanwarmer
10 ( 6 ) GANGSTERS The Specials

11 ( 9 ) GOTTA GO HOME Boney M
12 ( 12 ) MONEY The Flying Lizards
13 ( NEW ) SAIL ON The Commodores
14 ( 30 ) CRUEL TO BE KIND Nick Lowe
15 ( 14 ) LINES The Planets
16 ( 19 ) GONE GONE GONE Johnny Mathis
17 ( 13 ) OOH WHAT A LIFE The Gibson brothers
18 ( 28 ) DUCHESS The Stranglers
19 ( 11 ) BANG BANG B.A. Robertson
20 ( 20 ) GOODBYE STRANGER Supertramp

21 ( 23 ) STREET LIFE The Crusaders
22 ( 15 ) CAN’T STAND LOSING YOU The Police
23 ( 16 ) AFTER THE LOVE HAS GONE Earth Wind And Fire
24 ( 31 ) REGGAE FOR IT NOW Bill Lovelady
25 ( RE ) LOVE’S GOT A HOLD ON ME Dollar
26 ( NEW ) SAD EYES Robert John
27 ( 22 ) ARE ‘FRIENDS’ ELECTRIC Tubeway Army
28 ( NEW ) STRUT YOUR FUNKY STUFF Frantique
29 ( 35 ) IF I SAID YOU HAD A BEAUTIFUL BODY (WOULD YOU HOLD IT AGAINST ME) The Bellamy Brothers
30 ( NEW ) SLAP AND TICKLE Squeeze

31 ( 17 ) BEAT THE CLOCK Sparks
32 ( 21 ) THE DIARY OF HORACE WIMP E.L.O.
33 ( 38 ) LET’S GO The Cars
34 ( 29 ) BORN TO BE ALIVE Patrick Hernandez
35 ( 25 ) ROCK LOBSTER The B52’s
36 ( 18 ) WHEN YOU’RE IN LOVE WITH A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN Dr. Hook
37 ( NEW ) MAMA CAN’T BUY YOU LOVE Elton John
38 ( 53 ) BOY OH BOY Racey
39 ( 32 ) LADY LYNDA The Beach Boys
40 ( 45 ) LONESOME LOSER The Little River Band

41 ( 36 ) IF I HAD YOU The Korgis
42 ( 42 ) THE LONELIEST MAN IN THE WORLD The Tourists
43 ( 37 ) GIRL’S TALK Dave Edmunds
44 ( 27 ) IS SHE REALLY GOING OUT WITH HIM Joe Jackson
45 ( 24 ) MORNING DANCE Spiro Gyra
46 ( 40 ) GETTING CLOSER Wings
47 ( 39 ) MY SHARONA The Knack
48 ( 48 ) LIGHT MY FIRE Amii Stewart
49 ( NEW ) I’LL NEVER LOVE THIS WAY AGAIN Dionne Warwick
50 ( NEW ) TIME FOR ACTION Secret Affair

51 ( 49 ) SILLY GAMES Janet Kay
52 ( 26 ) YOU’LL NEVER KNOW WHAT YOU GOT Me And You
53 ( 55 ) THE MAIN EVENT/ FIGHT Barbra Streisand
54 ( 44 ) BAKER STREET Gerry Rafferty
55 ( 51 ) DREADLOCK HOLIDAY 10CC
56 ( 50 ) DOES YOUR MOTHER KNOW/ KISSES OF FIRE Abba
57 ( NEW ) LEAD ME ON Maxine Nightingale
58 ( 59 ) CHIQUITITA Abba
59 ( 60 ) SHADOWS IN THE MOONLIGHT Anne Murray
60 ( 52 ) SUNDAY GIRL Blondie

61 ( 57 ) TRAGEDY The Bee Gees
62 ( 56 ) I WILL SURVIVE Gloria Gaynor
63 ( 34 ) GIRLS GIRLS GIRLS Kandidate
64 ( NEW ) DIFFERENT WORLDS Maureen McGovern
65 ( 54 ) GOOD TIMES Chic
66 ( NEW ) RISE Herb Alpert
67 ( 75 ) SUSPICION Eddie Rabbit
68 ( 41 ) REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL Ian Dury And The Blockheads
69 ( 61 ) BAD GIRLS Donna Summer
70 ( 58 ) NIGHT OWL Gerry Rafferty

71 ( 47 ) WANTED The Dooleys
72 ( 66 ) RING MY BELL Anita Ward
73 ( RE ) THE DAY THE WORLD CAUGHT FIRE City Boy
74 ( 69 ) BREAKFAST IN AMERICA Supertramp
75 ( NEW ) DON’T STOP TILL YOU GET ENOUGH Michael Jackson

TV
1 Top Of The Pops
2 Get Smart
3 Carry On At Your Convenience: film
4 The Seachers: film
5 The Tonight Show

25th September 1979

2 weeks on top for ELO as US holiday hit Robert John’s not so sad at 4, and The Commodores get their 3rd Top 10. It’s all about the new entries though, as a deluge of new UK releases invade my charts having been denied UK radio access for over 2 weeks, and led by highest new hit at 9 for Blondie, instantly catchy Dreaming. Just behind them, and also following up a chart-topper, it’s The Police shifting it up a gear with the frantic Message In A Bottle, a huge student fave and in at 11.

That’s not all though, big new entry at 13 for Kate Bush’s Them Heavy People. Wow! One more big new entry at 15, Rainbow, a Deep Purple off-shoot and a great Russ (Argent) Ballard song already charted for Clout in my charts. This rockpopmetal version is even better though. Biggest climber, up 50 places to 25 for Michael Jackson, just hanging on ahead of another batch of new entries.

Such as Quo at 30, Whatever You Want, one of their best records and rifftastic and all moody singalong – just bad luck it got overshadowed by even better records! At 38, Elvis Costello-a-like The Jags good Back Of My Hand, and then 2 new monster hits: Fleetwood Mac finally release something new, and it’s the sprawling, ambitious, rhythmic Tusk, confounding expectations brilliantly, in at 49. At 51, it’s Trevor Horn debuting. His group were called The Buggles and this was a little-known track mentioning the increasingly popular music videos that were cropping up on TV. I expect this utterly fab novelty record and music videos are long-forgotten these days. Finally, it’s a ska debut from a fresh-faced gang of lads called Madness: The Prince at 53.

OK, so no sooner than back from the States than it was off to Batley by coach for Sue’s 21st birthday bash with her family and mutual college friends. That was saturday, sunday was back to mansfield and a procession of guests, Mona from down the street (mum’s school-friend’s mum, a family friend) and Great Aunty Doll (mum’s Aunt) who talked of the tragedies in grandma’s life – it’s a novel in itself – before dad took me and brother mark out for a driving lesson. Mark was much better than me, couldn’t get the hang of gear changes. Aunty Eileen, Uncle Tony and the cousins Rachel & Lisa popped round Monday, before a family outing to Monty Python & The Holy Grail – probably the last film dad bothered to go and see at the cinema. Mum and Sue hated it, and it just wasn’t as good as Life Of Brian in LA! The other film, Blazing saddles, everyone loved, cos it’s brilliant. Cleaned my goldfish tank, and the budgie aviary. Mark bought a 10-minute Dr Who & The Daleks movie edit for his new movie projector, which was good, pre-video days, like being at the cinema, and was disappointed at the quality of my American slides that came in the post – too dark, mostly. Tragic!

1 ( 1 ) DON’T BRING ME DOWN E.L.O.
2 ( 2 ) GET IT RIGHT NEXT TIME Gerry Rafferty
3 ( 4 ) CARS Gary Numan
4 ( 26 ) SAD EYES Robert John
5 ( 9 ) JUST WHEN I NEEDED YOU MOST Randy Vanwarmer
6 ( 13 ) SAIL ON The Commodores
7 ( 3 ) WE DON’T TALK ANYMORE Cliff Richard
8 ( 5 ) LOST IN MUSIC Sister Sledge
9 ( NEW ) DREAMING Blondie
10 ( 14 ) CRUEL TO BE KIND Nick Lowe

11 ( NEW ) MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE The Police
12 ( 7 ) VOULEZ VOUS/ ANGEL EYES Abba
13 ( NEW ) THEM HEAVY PEOPLE Kate Bush
14 ( 8 ) I DON’T LIKE MONDAYS The Boomtown Rats
15 ( NEW ) SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE Rainbow
16 ( 18 ) DUCHESS The Stranglers
17 ( 11 ) GOTTA GO HOME Boney M
18 ( 6 ) ANGEL EYES Roxy Music
19 ( 25 ) LOVE’S GOT A HOLD ON ME Dollar
20 ( 24 ) REGGAE FOR IT NOW Bill Lovelady

21 ( 10 ) GANGSTERS The Specials
22 ( 20 ) GOODBYE STRANGER Supertramp
23 ( 12 ) MONEY The Flying Lizards
24 ( 16 ) GONE GONE GONE Johnny Mathis
25 ( 75 ) DON’T STOP TILL YOU GET ENOUGH Michael Jackson
26 ( 19 ) BANG BANG B.A. Robertson
27 ( 30 ) SLAP AND TICKLE Squeeze
28 ( 28 ) STRUT YOUR FUNKY STUFF Frantique
29 ( 29 ) IF I SAID YOU HAD A BEAUTIFUL BODY (WOULD YOU HOLD IT AGAINST ME) The Bellamy Brothers
30 ( NEW ) WHATEVER YOU WANT Status Quo

31 ( 21 ) STREET LIFE The Crusaders
32 ( 50 ) TIME FOR ACTION Secret Affair
33 ( 23 ) AFTER THE LOVE HAS GONE Earth Wind And Fire
34 ( 22 ) CAN’T STAND LOSING YOU The Police
35 ( 42 ) THE LONELIEST MAN IN THE WORLD The Tourists
36 ( 17 ) OOH WHAT A LIFE The Gibson brothers
37 ( 38 ) BOY OH BOY Racey
38 ( NEW ) BACK OF MY HAND The Jags
39 ( 15 ) LINES The Planets
40 ( 49 ) I’LL NEVER LOVE THIS WAY AGAIN Dionne Warwick

41 ( 27 ) ARE ‘FRIENDS’ ELECTRIC Tubeway Army
42 ( 32 ) THE DIARY OF HORACE WIMP E.L.O.
43 ( 31 ) BEAT THE CLOCK Sparks
44 ( 66 ) RISE Herb Alpert
45 ( 36 ) WHEN YOU’RE IN LOVE WITH A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN Dr. Hook
46 ( 39 ) LADY LYNDA The Beach Boys
47 ( NEW ) THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME The Headboys
48 ( 34 ) BORN TO BE ALIVE Patrick Hernandez
49 ( NEW ) TUSK Fleetwood Mac
50 ( 40 ) LONESOME LOSER The Little River Band

51 ( NEW ) VIDEO KILLED THE RADIO STAR The Buggles
52 ( 48 ) LIGHT MY FIRE Amii Stewart
53 ( NEW ) THE PRINCE Madness
54 ( 57 ) LEAD ME ON Maxine Nightingale
55 ( 41 ) IF I HAD YOU The Korgis
56 ( 33 ) LET’S GO The Cars
57 ( 54 ) BAKER STREET Gerry Rafferty
58 ( 64 ) DIFFERENT WORLDS Maureen McGovern
59 ( 55 ) DREADLOCK HOLIDAY 10CC
60 ( NEW ) SOMETHING THAT I SAID The Ruts

61 ( 35 ) ROCK LOBSTER The B52’s
62 ( 58 ) CHIQUITITA Abba
63 ( 60 ) SUNDAY GIRL Blondie
64 ( 56 ) DOES YOUR MOTHER KNOW/ KISSES OF FIRE Abba
65 ( NEW ) TOMORROW’S GIRLS The UK Subs
66 ( 43 ) GIRL’S TALK Dave Edmunds
67 ( NEW ) QUEEN OF HEARTS Dave Edmunds
68 ( 44 ) IS SHE REALLY GOING OUT WITH HIM Joe Jackson
69 ( 47 ) MY SHARONA The Knack
70 ( NEW ) DIM ALL THE LIGHTS Donna Summer

71 ( 61 ) TRAGEDY The Bee Gees
72 ( 62 ) I WILL SURVIVE Gloria Gaynor
73 ( RE ) WHEN YOU’RE YOUNG The Jam
74 ( 51 ) SILLY GAMES Janet Kay
75 ( NEW ) LASER LOVE After The Fire

TV
1 Star Trek: Charlie X
2 Westworld: film
3 MASH
4 Arthur C. Clarke Profile
5 Targets
6 Top Of The Pops
7 Kojak
8 Carry On Doctor: film
9 Film 79
10 The Sky At Night

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