Music Television 4

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Post  misery guts Sat Mar 05, 2022 8:30 am

Folk That Rock - Ceol Roc Ceilteach
Ian "Spanish" McKay considers "Celtic Rock", from Saw Doctors and Big Country, through Thin Lizzy and Simple Minds, to Wolfstone and In Tua Nua, and up to date with Tide Lines and Peat & Diesel.

Stars of Wales
A compilation for St David's Day compiling the great and the good appearing with orchestras, running from Shirly Bassey and Tom Jones, to Katherine Jenkins and Michael Bacll, to Sophie Evans and presenter Wynne Evans too.

Yes - Symphonic Live
 A gig from 2002, as they were pushing their "Magnification" album, as Jon whimsically mentioned during between-song banter.

Winter Journey - Schubert's "Winterreise"
A 24 song cycle, here done by baritone Benjamin Appl, in some suitably evocative alpine setting.
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Post  misery guts Wed Mar 09, 2022 9:14 am

Face 2 Face: Laycon
Another one from Nigeria, he won "Big Brother Naija Lockdown" which he feels helped raise his profile, even though he already had material to prove he was a proper artist and not a gimmick. He went to university in Lagos, spent 2 years earning the money to afford the recording of his 1st EP. He's made further EPs and a full album. He sees the importance in developing a sound.

Greatest Pop Videos: 1985
The guys from Go West joined the ongoing line-up, there was praise for Prince, and a plethora of genuinely timeless efforts from Take On Me to Road To Nowhere to Money For Nothing to Cry, all of which in some way demonstrated the possibilities of the video form.
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Post  misery guts Fri Mar 11, 2022 8:11 am

Later presents... The Beautiful South
Good repeat from 1997, when they were pushing their Blue Is The Colour album. Guests included soul legend Sam Moore, Manic Street Preachers frontman James Dean Bradfield, and American soloist Iris Dement, of whose songs they did a cover too.

BBC One Sessions: Duffy
An acoustic set from 2008, so mainly from her first (successful) album. Some good stuff recalled, but the total collapse of her career after this point was quite drastic.

The Great Songwriters: Emeli Sande
She's got a new album coming, but as she's another whose first album outshone everything she's done since, anticipation is mixed. She got a publishing contract first, so got to see the industry from a better vantage point than otherwise.

The Birth of British Music: Purcell
The start of a 2009 series from Charles Hazlewood. Purcell only lived to 36, but made a big impact musically in that time.
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Post  misery guts Mon Mar 14, 2022 9:34 am

The Conductor
A new major look at the life of Marin Alsop, violin whizz who became the first major female conductor of an orchestra in Baltimore, despite much approbation from the industry. She did have a major influence/help/backer, though - Leonard Bernstein himself. She is of course now doing her best to encourage others to follow in her footsteps, and quite right too.

MTV World Stage: One Republic
Back in November they were at Heroes Square in Budapest to run through some hits to a lively crowd.
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Post  misery guts Wed Mar 16, 2022 6:50 am

Lwp - Curadur - Aleighcia Scott
She had a reggae vibe, and besides singing her own "Cry", she spoke to legends Keith Murrell and Geraint Jarman, as well as more modern types like Des1re, Twmffat and Kiddus. Pleasant enough stuff.

HARDtalk: Ivan Fischer
Conductor who works with the Budapest Festival Orchestra, and his brother is also a conductor. He dislikes most of what the job entails. He also composes, having done an opera, He scorned the idea that Brexit meant a separation from Europe. He discussed the current climate, but seemed largely hopeful.

An Evening with Nat "King" Cole
Uncertain if I've seen this before. He did a steady flow of works, with many of his classics like Mona Lisa or When I Fall In Love or Paper Moon, and also included the Ted Heath Orchestra.
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Post  misery guts Fri Mar 18, 2022 8:01 am

Top of the Pops - The Story of 1991
Better late than never, the skewed story of a year when Bryan Adams was #1 for almost 4 months. Seal, Tim Booth (of James), Miles Hunt (of the Wonder Stuff) and Mr C (of the Shamen) were among the useful contributors, though you might be forgiven for thinking Nirvana gave the most important performance - but at least they had a good story with the KLF too.

Top of the Pops - 1991 Big Hits
Some of the above, plus others like Chesney Hawkes and Color Me Badd who weren't interviewed. Of course, Cher, the Simpsons and George Michael were all omitted because they never appeared in the studio.

A Night of Wonder
From 1995, as Stevie was pushing his "Conversation Piece" album, and gave a nice hour-long concert, introduced by Tracey MacLeod, perhaps as Jools Holland hadn't quite secured the franchise. Stevie whipped up the audience with Superstition, then went onto I Just Called To Say I Love You, which was quite the drop-off. He also did Tomorrow Robins Will Sing, which I've never liked.
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Post  misery guts Mon Mar 21, 2022 8:14 am

The Birth of British Music
2 - The Conquering Hero
German George Handel came to England and wrote the Water Music, the Messiah, and Zadok the Priest for a royal coronation. He was supposedly got at by The Beggar's Opera, but had the last laugh all the same.

The Great Songwriters: Paul Heaton
Quite the long career to get through. His parents went to concerts, but sang at home rather than played instruments. He sang with his brother's band, Tools Down, then later formed The Pond Frogs with Norman Cook. He uses Holland as a frequent haunt for songwriting excursions. He feels Oasis flourished after they split, and that Elvis Costello is surprisingly dull in real life, in contrast to his songs. He's working on his sobriety, and won't let his stuff be used in adverts.
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Post  misery guts Wed Mar 23, 2022 8:37 am

The Radio 2 Piano Room
One-off acoustic programme, with acts ranging from Ed Sheeran and Will Young, through Stereophonics and Simple Minds, to Ella Henderson and Joy Crookes. A reasonable hour.

Ireland's Greatest Small Music Festival - Other Voices
Annie MacManus fronts a compilation of performances past and present, as well as chats to Sigrid, Sam Fender and Dermot Kennedy.

Harry Belafonte
A one-off show from 1977, managing to include a cover of Streets of London, old favourite Hole In My Bucket (with Falumi Prince) and other spirited numbers.
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Post  misery guts Fri Mar 25, 2022 9:07 am

Top of the Pops - The Story of 1992
The changes from 1991 continued to play out, so singing acts like Wet Wet Wet and Shakespear's Sister hit big, and lesser acts like Stereo MC's or Carter USM could make a good impact too. Perhaps the best stories came from the Orb and the Wedding Present.

Top of the Pops - Big Hits 1992
Again, unlike the year before, the #1 acts were often present and correct, so here were Boyz II Men, Charles & Eddie, KWS, Jimmy Nail and Tasmin Archer. They even threw in SL2 too.

The Great Songwriters: David Foster
Busy song-writer and producer had won 16 Grammys, and had arranged them all on his piano lid. His partner Katharine McPhee was on hand to sing a bit (though his versions were more interesting). He worked with everyone from Bo Diddley to Celine Dion. He's working on a Betty Boop musical, and is disliked by Rolling Stone.

The Birth of British Music
Haydn - The Celebrity
An Austrian who made a big success as an old man in England. He was hugely prolific, writing over a hundred Symphonies.

CNBC Conversation: James Blunt
Tania Bryer was in Dubai to have a face to face talk to the singer who released a compilation at the end of last year, and is just starting a new world tour, to go with a new record deal. He also presented a beer-based series on Amazon, and owns a pub in London. He talked about his time in the army, and how the pandemic-enforced break allowed him to reconnect with his wife and children. He also mentioned his social media profile.
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Post  misery guts Mon Mar 28, 2022 6:37 am

Music Legends: Demis Roussos
A welcome change for this series, the still under-rated Greek legend who met Vangelis in Aphrodite's Child, and then became a 70s superstar across Europe, and topped the UK charts. Much material, and quite a bit which was fresh.

Greatest Pop Videos: 1986
A year which produced Sledgehammer, Addicted to Love, You Can Call Me Al, Walk Like An Egyptian, Don't Give Up, Walk This Way, Land of Confusion and Dancing on the Ceiling had plenty of stories to tell.
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Post  misery guts Wed Mar 30, 2022 8:51 am

The Birth of British Music
Mendelssohn - The Prophet
The last in Charles Hazlewood's series looks at the man behind the Wedding March, who became a friend of Queen Victoria, but who died at just 38. He was even a capable sketch artist.

Cymry ar Gynfas: Carys Eleri
Aron Rhys Evan came to the Botanic Gardens to meet the polymath musician, with whom he had a lot in common. She lost a friend in Melbourne to cancer before the lockdown, and then her dad. His studio was in Cardiff. At the unveiling, she liked it for being very colourful and representative of the natural world.
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Post  misery guts Fri Apr 01, 2022 7:41 am

The Great Songwriters: Johnny Marr
The last in the series, and a talkative and thoughtful guest. He was as proud of Electronic as The Smiths, as pleased to have worked with the Pretenders as the The and working on films with Christopher Nolan. He's just got a new album out.

Classic Albums: Aja
Didn't recognise having maybe seen this before, even though it was made in 1999, and besides chats to Walter Becker and Dennis Hopper lookalike Donald Fagen, there were thoughts from Ian Dury too. Another act who don't quite qualify as jazz rock.
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Post  misery guts Wed Apr 06, 2022 6:57 am

Lwp - Curadur - Cate Le Bon
A whole hour, from a Welsh singer who's lived in LA since 2012. She bigged up Pys Melyn, Kris Jenkins, Accu, Devendra Banhart, Noon Court, and Courtney Barnett and Stella Mozgawa, and even managed some of her own songs.

6music Festival 2022
A preview show with Cerys Matthews and Huw Stephens, as the event was happening in Cardiff. They heard from Johnny Marr, Nicky Wire, two of the guys from Idles, and less familiar names like Lemfreck, Miss Faithee and Ibibio Sound Machine.
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Post  misery guts Fri Apr 08, 2022 7:32 am

Greatest Pop Videos: 1987
Some predictable choices less about their videos than about the songs really. Carol Decker's frequent contributions finally led to her actual turn with T'Pau. Dr Robert took his lumps on behalf of the Blow Monkeys. and the Kane Bros suggested the plaster baths in Labour of Love might be where their baldness started.

Top of the Pops - The Story of 1993
They suddenly seem to be accelerating with these. Apache Indian, St Etienne, M People, New Order, East 17, Shaggy, the Bluebells and 2 Unlimited were all featured, and mostly positive about their experiences.

We Are England: Graft - Uncovering My Roots
Leeds-based winner of Rap Game UK 2020, and visited an old school to give a talk, then sent off a DNA kit to find he had roots in Senegal and Guinea-Bissau.

Top of the Pops: Big Hits 1993
A wider selection that included the debuts of Eternal and Jamiroquai, big hits from Urban Cookie Collective and Sub Sub, not to mention Inner Circle and 4 Non Blondes, and closing with the late Meat Loaf.
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Post  misery guts Mon Apr 11, 2022 8:04 am

The Art of the Album Cover
A major effort with dozens of interviewees, a few photographers and a great many art directors. Familiar faces like Henry Diltz and Aubrey Powell were present and correct, and there was discussion whether the present streaming system meant the death of the album and the album artwork. 

6Music Festival 2022 Highlights: Cardiff Calling
Cerys Matthews and Huw Stephens introduced an hour of performance with a few chats squeezed in too. Some fresher prospects like Khruangbin along some old stagers like the Pixies.  Quite a hopeful selection, really.
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Post  misery guts Thu Apr 14, 2022 8:02 am

Take That at the BBC
The usual hour-long round-up, to the point where it became a memory test to think what tracks weren't included. Amazing they lasted as long as they have (admittedly with a useful mid-point hiatus, and less frequently these days).

Greatest Pop Videos: 1988
I've noticed increasingly as the series goes on that some big choices have been omitted, which I suppose is par for the course, but begs questions whether it's just about videos or on occasion big singles with crappy videos, which would seem to defeat the object. Then again, if they've managed to interview Debbie Gibson, or Yazz, then maybe those choices direct the material rather than vice-versa. And Sam Brown and Betty Boo are always but always good value thoughtful contributors on shows like these.
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Post  misery guts Fri Apr 15, 2022 7:12 am

Top of the Pops - The Story of 1994
Upheaval for the show with a new producer and cosmetic changes like guest presenters. The rise of Britpop continues, Wet Wet Wet dominate, but the heart-warming story comes from Dawn Penn. Notably, a few DJs and presenters and journalists crept in here, whereas 1993 got by without them.

Top of the Pops - Big Hits 1994
A few surprising choices here, like Corona, Elton John, Kate Bush and Youssou N'Dour ft Neneh Cherry, plus an infamous performance from Bon Jovi from Niagara Falls, which was exclusive the first time they showed it, but not on the many subsequent re-showings.
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Post  misery guts Tue Apr 19, 2022 8:15 am

A Little Later: Suede
They were on in late 1996, and did Trash, Saturday Night and Lazy.

Mariah Carey at the BBC
From her 90s heyday through her less successful 21st century works, and including her interminable Christmas classic too.

Limp Bizkit
A somewhat grotty look at the early years of the American rockers, plus comments from fans which didn't paint the greatest picture, especially when their version of "Faith" was singled out by several as their favourite song.

Fragile: A Concert for Uncertain Times
From Milan, performances of works from Bach to Arvo Part.
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Post  misery guts Sat Apr 23, 2022 8:34 am

Africa Direct: Sounds of Home
Michael Makembe visited Nkombo Island in SW Rwanda as part of a sonic project, taking his results back to his studio in Kigali. He was most impressed with a vocalist called Guiness.

Music Box: DMX - Don't Try To Understand
Somewhat ironic effort made during what turned out to be his final year, after he emerged from prison and tried to restart his career. He seemed a mercurial character, respected by friends and family but with his own demons to battle. He was a Yonkers man.
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Post  misery guts Mon Apr 25, 2022 7:36 am

Top of the Pops: Oasis
One of a number of repeats, this a compilation from 1998 ranging from their debut with Shakermaker through to a double-header 2 years later with Don't Look Back In Anger and their cover of Cum On Feel The Noize.

Top of the Pops: The Story of 1995
The high watermark of Britpop, and a rare return from Madonna, whilst Black Grape and Skunk Anansie got their big moments, and TOTP magazine was launched.

Michael Ball - Showtime
A special marking the return to live performance from Cardiff, with Michael joined by guests like Charlotte Church, Amy Wadge and Gregory Porter.

Greatest Pop Videos: 1989
Whilst Like A Prayer and Sowing the Seeds of Love deserve mention, quite a lot of others didn't, and quite a lot of candidates were omitted. But interviews for members of Ace of Base and Culture Beat rather pre-empted the news of a further series looking at the 1990s.
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Post  misery guts Thu Apr 28, 2022 8:33 am

Top of the Pops: Big Hits 1995
Though the main show was Britpop-mad, this at least found space for other key acts, such as Shaggy, Simply Red, the awful OutHere Brothers and Celine Dion (all had #1's) plus gems from Edwyn Collins and N-Trance.

Later presents... Oasis
An hour from 2000 as they were pushing their 4th album Standing on the Shoulder of Giants, from which several tracks were done here. But also plenty from the first three albums, and ended with a cover of My Generation.

The Byrds - Behind The Beat
A curious collection of performances from various stages of their lifespan, and with assistance at times from Bob Dylan on a version of Mr Tambourine Man.

Music Legends: Andy Williams
He made 43 albums (including 8 Christmas ones), was the youngest of 4 brothers, and went solo from them in time. He made regular turns on Steve Allen's show, and later his own. He started his own theatre in Branston, Missouri, and died in 2012. He is synonymous with Moon River, but also managed Almost There, Where Do I Begin?, Can't Take My Eyes Off You and others.
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Post  misery guts Sat Apr 30, 2022 7:32 am

Oasis - "Right Here Right Now"
A short effort from 1997 as they pushed their fateful third album Be Here Now. Liam and Noel did almost all the talking, with Bonehead and Guigsy getting about one line each. There was also plenty of performance stuff from the album.

Top of the Pops: The Story of 1996
The show moves to Friday nights and continues its decline. Euro 96 competes with the Fugees (only one side gets to talk about it), the Spice Girls take over from Take That!, and the likes of Divine Comedy, Reef and Faithless get their moments in the spotlight.

Top of the Pops: Big Hits 1996
Blackstreet, Babylon Zoo, Los Del Rio, Robert Miles and OMC all got a look in with their respective zeniths.
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Post  misery guts Mon May 02, 2022 6:38 am

Folamour at Hackney Church
A lengthy set from a French DJ tagged as "Power to the PPL" with a little chat from the man himself, to mention his album The Journey. Solid enough show, ended with Stayin' Alive for what it's worth.

Video Killed The Radio Star: Snow Patrol
A return, or resumption, of this series, with Robert Elms and Neil McCormick rather playing contrary to each other about Gary Lightbody's qualities as a singer, frontman, writer and video star etc. Some of their more intriguing videos weren't particularly hits, and vice versa.
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Post  misery guts Sat May 07, 2022 7:00 am

Gitar - Yn Y To
Osian Huw Williams discusses the value of guitar playing in Welsh pop & rock music, and talks to various other Welsh musicians from Meic Stevens to Mei Gwynedd to do so.

Fflach: Dathlu'r 40
A tribute to the late Jones brothers Richard and Wyn, who died last summer, made their names in the band Ail Symudiad, and relevantly set up their own label & studio, and helped many subsequent acts to record and achieve. Though there was some gratified chatter, most of the show featured acts connected to the brothers, performing many of their songs, at the Theatr Mwldan.

Imagine... Jacob Collier - In The Room Where It Happens
4 years ago, he did a Proms gig which I recall hating. Possibly I just didn't get where he was coming from, but this feature did at least do him justice. A 3rd generation talent, he made Youtube videos which impressed Herbie Hancock and Quincy Jones, to name but two, and he's won Grammys for most of his albums, and has a wider palate than just being a jazz whizz.
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