Music Television 1

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Post  misery guts on Sat May 02, 2015 12:01 pm

Glad All Over - The Dave Clark Five and Beyond
Or - how much the USA loved the DC5. Elton John claims they rank at the apex with the Beatles and the Stones, which seems a novel argument. A galaxy of Americans rocked up to sing their praises, from Bruce Springsteen to Whoopi Goldberg, Gene Simmons to Stevie Wonder. Amusingly Paul McCartney had a lot to say in comparisons with the Beatles. The bulk of this near-2-hour trip was on the band, then a short bit about Dave's canny buying of the "Ready Steady Go" archive, and then an informative stretch on his mid-80s musical "Time", with archive of Freddie Mercury and Larry Olivier singing Dave's praises. Their inclusion in the R&R Hall of Fame seemed oddly overdue given their apparent god-like status.

Messiah at the Foundling Hospital
The story of how George Handel rescued both his own reputation and that of his classic oratorio by performing it in aid of a charity in London. This was an early example of the benefit concert which is so prevalent these days. Painter William Hogarth inspired the premise of charitable giving and society fell for it big-time.

Biggest Band Breakups and Makeups
Pretty much any great rock band who split or nearly did were covered here: The Police, ABBA, New Order, Simple Minds, Guns N Roses, Oasis, Simon & Garfunkel, Pink Floyd, The Smiths, Take That!, The Beatles and REM. The reasons discussed were money, respect, art & so on. An amiable if probably in-essential hour.
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Post  misery guts on Mon May 04, 2015 8:48 am

Perspectives: For The Love of Fred Astaire
Dance expert Len Goodman hot-foots it to America to tell the story of maybe America's greatest all-round performer. His early days in the shadow of his sister Adele, and then his success with Ginger Rogers, and brilliance of creation with his routines, whilst never shaking off the sense that he wasn't quite as appreciated for his work as others. Not wholly convinced by comparisons with Michael Jackson, 'Smooth Criminal' video or not. But another entertaining look at a great.

A Fine Romance: The Story of the New Romantics
This 2001 effort was more about the style and the stylish then the music, necessarily. Steve Strange, Boy George, Gary Kemp and Robert Elms were prominent contributors, and the attitude was that the Blitz club was the authentic epicentre, and the further away, the less true. Eventually, once the mainstream caught on, it was time to move on.


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Post  misery guts on Wed May 06, 2015 8:44 am

On Set With Olly Murs
His latest video "Seasons" doesn't seem to be one of his best, and hasn't been much of a hit, either. But he persists.

How To Make A Number One Single
Hardly definitive, skirting from topic to topic, but with a reliable cast of contributors, from Noddy Holder and Gerry Marsden, through PRs like Judd Lander and Gary Farrow, and discussing Christmas, talent shows, the acts who never topped the charts, and so on. Nothing new, but fun to experience again.

Ghost Blues: Rory Gallagher
An Irish blues rock hero who seemed to have impressed all and sundry, from Bob Geldof and the Edge, to Slash and BillWyman, and even Shooter Jennings and Johnny Marr. His integrity in not wanting hit singles perhaps worked against him, and his decline through drugs was disappointing to his fans. He ought to have lasted past 47.


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Post  misery guts on Mon May 11, 2015 12:04 pm

Opera Stories: Carmen
The short saga of staging a French classic with a Spanish angle, at Teatro Le Fenice, Venice, for the first time in 34 years. In fact, they looked to be handling it pretty well.

Metallica: The Halcyon Days
Three hours or so covering their story from their 80s successes, the stratospheric success of their 1991 self-titled record, and how it catapulted them to a place that didn't entirely suit them, let alone please their old fans.


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Post  misery guts on Sun May 17, 2015 7:41 am

Rock Milestones: Thin Lizzy - Live & Dangerous
Philomena Lynott leads a fine typical line-up of contributors to re-telling the familiar story of the Irish rockers, their peak album, and Phil's failings. The respect is always evident here.

The Best of Asia - Live
Possibly from a gig on May 10, 2002, a steady run-through of several numbers, highlight being Heat of the Moment about halfway in. But the others weren't bad.

HARDtalk: Don McLean
Back in the news after selling the lyric sheet for "American Pie", he is negative about the corporate control in music today, that blacklisting is not a historical footnote, but a modern policy. That trademarking one's creative work is very important. And that computers are not good.

Drive-In Soul Classics
Possibly from a show at the Rock and Roll Palace, 1988, notable for featuring many folk from 20-30 years earlier. So, Bobby Vee and Del Shannon did a few numbers, Mary Wells, Martha Reeves and The Shirelles all contributed. And so did Sam Moore and The Platters. Rather a groovy show, really.


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Post  misery guts on Wed May 20, 2015 7:44 am

A Night In With Olly Murs
An entertainment vehicle to perform half a dozen of his songs, and have funny skits with other celebs, like Nicole Scherzinger. Olly's a likeable enough bloke, and has many good songs, but seems to be pursuing the presenter route more and more, which is a waste.

Perspectives: Vivaldi's Four Seasons
Rick Wakeman presents another look at the familiar story of this controversial 18th century classic which Rick sees as the first ever concept album (he interviews Mike Rutherford of Genesis to see if he agrees). The work was lost & forgotten after Vivaldi died, only being revived after WW2 when the recording industry was getting into its groove. Rick finishes by meeting a Venezian metallist called Mistheria working on a metal re-interpretation of the work, which Rick approves of, and believes Vivaldi probably would also have liked.

Live With... Thunder
Veteran British metal band run through material from their recent album, and end with a couple of oldies. They made a good fist of this format.

Tales From The Tour Bus: Rock N Roll On The Road
Rick Wakeman again, this time retelling the early days of rock n roll in the 1960s and 1970s in Britain as bands pounded around the country in vans. A great many fun folk had much to say, such as Steve Harley, Carl Palmer, Suzi Quatro, Gary Brooker, Peter Hook, Rat Scabies, Marty Wilde, Wilko Johnson, Rowetta and many more. Cheap enough telly, but still enjoyable.


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Post  misery guts on Mon May 25, 2015 8:37 am

The Outlaw
Another look at the Phil Lynott story, from 2006-ish. Brian Robertson and Eric Bell and many friends of his were involved, plus his mother of course, and even George Best (!). As ever, it's hard to imagine how he would have got on after 1986 anyway, but it would have been preferable to find out.

Arena: Brian Eno - Another Green World
The maverick instrumental genius did most of the talking, and some of the tunes (including the classic Arena theme tune). He seemed more open to musical experimentation than probably 99% of folk.

Nowhere Is Home
From Apr 2013, where Dexys Midnight Runners had a residency at the Duke of York Theatre, London, to perform their first new album in over 25 years. The songs were broken up by backstage chat, mainly from the always verbose Kevin Rowland. Sounded like a good show.

Je T'Aime - The Story of French Song, with Petula Clark
The magic of chanson francaise was as much about those who practiced it, from Johnny Halliday and Jacques Brel, to those who were appreciative of it, from Marc Almond and Pet herself. Though some modern practitioners like Stromae and Zaz are changing the currency, the nature remains as strong as ever. Quelle surprise.


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Post  misery guts on Wed Jun 03, 2015 8:42 am

Rock Case Studies - The Cure 1979-1989
So Robert Smith has this band, and he's not really that goth, but he wears make-up and has frizzy hair, and gets upset when people praise his jolly songs, but he can turn out the odd pop hit sometimes & so on. Some of their albums here were better than others, and they proved surprisingly successful in the USA too.


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Post  misery guts on Fri Jun 12, 2015 8:10 am

Sound of Song
A weighty 3 hour series presented by Neil Brand, retelling the story of the 20th century and beyond, from the Sheet music days, though developments of wax cylinders, vinyl and magnetic tape, thru to the current computer days. It was less about the star interviews, and more about the nuts & bolts, so it threw little fascinations such as magnetic tape being developed in Germany and taken back to the USA as a spoil of war almost. And the days of sampling and apps.


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Post  misery guts on Thu Jun 18, 2015 11:59 am

Rock-Roll Music: Chuck Berry
A DA Pennebaker production from Toronto in 1969, as Chuck ran through his repertoire, and seemed jollier than some times. Too Much Monkey Business and Reelin & Rockin were good, and he returned to Johnny B Goode for his finale. The kind of show that showed why people liked him so much.

Chopin Saved My Life
A rather moving tale of two people who experienced great suffering, but kept it together because of their love for Chopin's "Ballade in G Minor". Momoka, from Sendai in Japan, had been brushed by the tragedy of the Tsunami. Paul from Glasgow had suffered a neural problem, and been brought out of a coma by the tune, which he was proficient at playing, though he later developed MS. A few worthy voices like Lang Lang and Vladimir Ashkenazy rhapsodised about the magical qualities of this piece of music, and it was a good reminder of a wider musical arsenal.


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Post  misery guts on Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:32 am

Snoop Dogg's #Hangout
Unlike others in this occasional series, it was of a Q&A chat, but Mr Dogg Wink still spoke warmly of David Guetta, Stevie Wonder, Kendrick Lamar, PCD and Pharrell, and there were some videos to break it up. His recent 'Peaches N Cream' should have been a bigger hit (or even just a hit) over here. I realise that, as with R Kelly, he might not be the cool choice to back, but he's OK by me.

Daryl Hall & John Oates - Live in Dublin
From the Olympia Theatre on July 15 (!) 2014, this was a lengthy show mixing stuff from across their career. They boldly open with Maneater and Out Of Touch, but still have plenty left in the tank, though stringing out for 2 encores is a cheeky touch, even with Kiss On My List and Private Eyes saved up for last. A good show, all that said.
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Post  misery guts on Sat Jun 27, 2015 12:31 pm

Masters of the Guitar
In connection with a dreary reality show called Guitar Star, this was a tribute as 10 guitar heroes paid respect to 10 others. So the likes of Tony Iommi, Phil Manzanera and Wilko Johnson tipped their hats to folk like Will Sergeant, Wes Montgomery and Paco De Lucia, though Clapton and Hendrix inevitably found themselves in the list too.

Glastonbury - Golden Greats
Ahead of this weekend's annual musical festival, this was a runthrough from the past 20 years from the coveted "Sunday teatime on the Pyramid Stage" slot which has become synonymous with veterans like Tony Bennett, Isaac Hayes, Neil Diamond, and last year Dolly Parton. Fair do's.


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Post  misery guts on Thu Jul 02, 2015 8:59 am

Motorhead @ Glastonbury
Only a short show here, though I assume their actual set was longer (especially since this half-hour didn't include Ace of Spades). Maybe they should have been booked before now.

Inside the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band
A mad bunch of mavericks, some of whom were still alive enough to comment (and they were also on Gerry Bron's label at times). They managed 5 albums in total, though arguably never quite matched the success of the first. And they were a much better live act anyway.

Paloma Faith @ Glastonbury
No fool, she got a full hour on the Pyramid Stage to run through material from her 3 albums (and a cover of Purple Haze, supposedly a taster for her next album). She closed on her #1 hit with Sigma, "Changing". Daffy but likeable.

Carly Rae Jepsen's #Hangout
This series knows no end. CRJ spoke about working with Owl City, Tom Hanks, Justin Bieber, the smash success of 'Call Me Maybe', Nicki Minaj, and plans for the future. Seems like a nice girl.
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Post  misery guts on Sun Jul 05, 2015 7:32 am

Charli XCX @ Glastonbury
Disappointingly only 15 minutes shown from her set on the John Peel Stage, even with a post-gig chat added on. Nice to know she has at least had some hits which have earned her attention, but with recent single 'Famous' doing nothing, it seems she's missing something.

Lionel Richie @ Glastonbury
In the sunday afternoon "legends" slot on the Pyramid Stage, he rocked for over an hour, mixing his ballads with his more danceable gems. This duality was typified by following 'Three Times a Lady' with 'Brick House' Shocked The crowd were thrilled with the closing run of Dancing on the Ceiling, Hello and All Night Long, and then he bizarrely ended on 'We Are The World' which I guess no-one was expecting. Still, he did co-write it, I guess. Otherwise, it more than delivered on the hype.

Burt Bacharach @ Glastonbury
Also on the Pyramid Stage, from Saturday evening, the legend talked of having been invited in 2000 and unable to come, and finally making it. He left the singing to three singers on stools who worked through dozens of his works, either in short bursts or long. They finished with That's What Friends Are For and a 2nd run at Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head. Oh well.

Disclosure at Wildlife Festival
From Brighton, the dance act's own festival saw them do a set with vocal help from Gregory Porter, Kwabs, Lion Babe and Sam Smith (except he wasn't there). Only a short glimpse of what was clearly a welcome occasion.


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Post  misery guts on Wed Jul 08, 2015 9:52 am

Dame Kiri and Kate Adie: In Conversation
Short half-hour about the NZ diva legend, from her beginnings in the 1960's, success when she moved to Covent Garden, worldwide fame for singing at the 1981 Royal Wedding, retirement in 2010, and work now on inspiring the newer generations.

Discovering: The Smiths
Rock history was made when Johnny Marr decided to seek out Steven Morrissey. The critics soon loved them, even if the wider media took umbrage at times. They progressed with each album until they burst artistically and went their separate ways, court cases notwithstanding. But their legacy still thrives.

The South Bank Show: Laura Mvula
Amusingly, Mvula is her married name - Douglas being her maiden name. Her siblings are talented too, and she developed her sound through a band called Judyhouse, before getting discovered whilst working for the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra - as a receptionist. She's now working on her 2nd album.


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Post  misery guts on Mon Jul 13, 2015 9:01 am

Suede @ Glastonbury
Over an hour from the John Peel Stage, as Brett & co belt out the hits and the others. It was certainly an eye-opener to watch with subtitles and finally learn what some of these songs are about Shocked The crowd clearly got what they wanted.

World Stage: Charli XCX
From Helsinki back in September, a short showcase making sure of I Love It and Fancy, and ending with Boom Clap, which seems to have done her as much good as the more boisterous efforts.


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Post  misery guts on Wed Jul 15, 2015 8:07 am

The Chemical Brothers @ Glastonbury
More of a continuous mix, really, from the Other Stage, but the crowd loved it, from the hits to the rest.

Sommernachtkonzert at Schonbrunn
With the Vienna Philharmonic, conducted by Zubin Mehta. Apparently, it's the 150th anniversaries of both Nielsen and Sibelius, but amongst the mix of material, the two outstanding pieces were both by Grieg, being his Piano Concerto and Suite from Peer Gynt.

Inside King Crimson - A Critical Review 1972-1975
After their breakthrough masterpiece, they did 3 more albums of varying quality, whilst Robert Fripp was lauded as a genius (something I'm hugely sceptical of given his current state). It was Fripp who called it a day, possibly not before time.

Pop Gold
A truly excellent 8-part series compiling footage from bands on assorted ITV music shows, hampered only by a snide voiceover from Andy Kershaw. The breadth of acts was profound, as it should be with decades of stuff to work with. Not sure why the final episode was delayed for so many weeks, though.


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Post  misery guts on Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:42 am

Barry White - The Man and His Music
A lengthy medley of footage, rather than a single gig, I think. Love Unlimited were able to fill in from time to time with their own hits. Otherwise, Barry delivered his big numbers, and other interesting ones I was less familiar with.

YesSongs
From the Rainbow Theatre, in 1972, notable for some extended musical noodling, and a lack of clarity over what songs they were doing. The broadcast was also bedevilled with sound problems towards the end (the audio and video not matching up) and a rather abrupt end.


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Post  misery guts on Sat Jul 25, 2015 1:03 pm

Live With... Steve Harley
Acoustic and charming stuff, he broke out 'Mr Soft', but it was mainly modern stuff, and good stuff as you'd expect.

The South Bank Show: Joseph Calleja
Malta's premier amabassador and tenor. He unwittingly made comparisons with Pavarotti. He was sporty and moved by the Beatles and Queen, but Caruso turned him on to opera. Now working in London, it turns out he has an English aunt anyway, and can use several languages. Only in his late 30's, he should have a long career ahead of him.

Bob Marley: Freedom Road
A fairly impressive account of his life and music. He was compared to being a Jamaican MLK, and his cancer was an unlucky nemesis that took a few years to develop from its initial source. Two former Jamaican PMs were interviewed here, which is more impressive than is sometimes the case.


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Post  misery guts on Tue Jul 28, 2015 12:53 pm

Katherine Jenkins OBE - Live at Cadogan Hall, with Special Guests, Collabro
A lengthy concert from earlier this year, where the blonde classical singer takes material from her 10 albums, whilst giving up a good part of the running time to relative newbies and talent show winners Collabro. They come together on a few songs, too. They both mix more obvious old fare with pop stuff, the lads showing how contemporary they can be by having a crack at Let It Go. A pleasant show, anyhow.

The Temptations - Live in Concert
From 1983 at a place called Harrah's in Atlantic City, apparently. The lads bashed through the hits to great crowd joy. I even recognised a few of them (the hits, not the crowd).

Bonzo Dog Doodah Band - I Should Koko!
A short show referencing their gig in April of this year, with Neil Innes, Rodney Slater, and some Bonzo subs, bringing the jazz rock comedy troupe back to life once more.


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Post  misery guts on Sat Aug 01, 2015 11:57 am

Broadway Idiot
How Green Day's political magnum opus from 2004 ended up becoming a Broadway show in 2010. It was as much about how the band were actually more deserving of respect, because they're more talented musicians than might come across, and Billie-Joe Armstrong writing a concept album elevated their status (and also made a more successful fist of anti-Bush sentiment than R.E.M. ever did).

Andrea Bocelli - Passione: Love in Portofino

Accompanied by David Foster on piano, who helped MC the concert, and before a crowd which included such luminaries as Michael Caine, Paul Anka and Ornella Muti, Bocelli belted out a lengthy mix of material from this 2012 gig, demonstrating fluency in many languages, and finishing with a version of "My Way".

Tinie Tempah's #Hangout
So the UK rap star is back with a forthcoming 3rd album. Hard to believe how long it has been since his breakthrough with Pass Out. He spoke of his many collaborators such as Cheryl not-Cole and Ellie Goulding, not to mention Labrinth.  He also spoke of plans to work with Naughty Boy and possibly even Zayn Malik. So things look busy for him.

Run DMC and friends, at Alcatraz
I suspect this concert cut off before the end. It became notable not so much for the names on the undercard (Dru Hill, Kurtis Blow) as for people whom I assume were one-hit-wonders or just never made it across the pond (Too Short? 3rd Storee? Mack 10? and many more).


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Post  misery guts on Mon Aug 03, 2015 11:42 am

The Rutles - Live at Koko
From Apr 17 this year, from a double bill with the Bonzos (see above), this was mostly backstage chat, with a bit of performance. Neil Innes remains the central Rutle now, but well flanked by other musicians.

Discovering: The Foo Fighters
I'm not a fan, though I don't doubt Dave Grohl is a lovely bloke. That they have done quite so well and lasted so long is testament to the man's work ethic and kudos.

Giuseppe Verdi - Messa Da Requiem
From the Basilica di San Marco in Venice, Lorin Maazel conducted the Symphonica Toscanini in 2007 with great aplomb.


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Post  misery guts on Fri Aug 07, 2015 7:43 am

Selena Gomez: Teen Superstar
The 23 year old from a poor background started young by working with Barney, before appearing on Hannah Montana and Wizards of Waverley Place. Eventually, she grew old enough to launch her own solo career, which hasn't been that bad. She's a pal of Demi Lovato and possibly Miley Cyrus. She's a UNICEF ambassador and works for other charities too. Her recent "Good For You" single suggests the move to maturity might work out well for her, without the childish antics of Miley.

The Eagles: In Performance

Just 3 useful talking heads, but the tale told didn't need any more. How they solidified the sounds of LA, changed their line-up, had a mammoth hiatus, but eventually reformed, and even more eventually knocked out a new album. Their live shows typify their musical proficiency.

Zappa - Does Humour Belong In Music?
On this evidence, I'm not wholly sure. This gig at the Pier, NYC, Aug 26, 1984, featured a wide mix of songs, and their musicality is not in question. But their frequent homophobic slights seem a sad demonstration of American machismo, but I suppose the defence is "we're only joking". Hogwash.

Green Day - Welcome To Paradise: American Idiot
Another re-telling of the American pop-punk's journey and 2004 apotheosis with a concept album conveniently cocking a snook at President Bush. It did make me feel I should listen to the album again, so job done, I guess.


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Post  misery guts on Sun Aug 09, 2015 7:55 am

Julio Iglesias In Jerusalem - At The Sultan's Pool
Entertaining if unusual 1981 gig, mainly in Spanish. Happily, he finished on 'Guantanamera', and the crowd were happy enough anyway.

Access All Areas - Eagles of Death Metal
A backstage interview with Jesse Hughes mainly, though Dave Catching and fan Duff McKagan (!) had a few words too. There was some music too. The story of how they got their name & ethos sums up what seems like quite a fun bunch of guys.

BBC Proms: Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms
It's summer in England, so time for more of these shows. This only ran 1/3 of an hour, so was packaged with...


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Post  misery guts on Fri Aug 14, 2015 12:07 pm

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds @ T in the Park 2015
Noel delivered a lengthy show mixing stuff from his first 2 solo albums, and assorted Oasis numbers. I wouldn't expect any sort of Oasis reunion any time soon, he doesn't need to.

The Prodigy @ T in the Park 2015
A shorter selection than that from Noel, they also seem to have benefitted from the success of their recent album, and have a quarter of a century of material to play with.


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