Music on Film & TV

Stardust (1974)

This sequel to That’ll Be The Day  (1974) has Adam Faith taking over the role of Mike which Ringo Starr played in the original movie. Now set in the sixties, the movie opens appropriately enough in a fairground, providing an obvious flashback link to That’ll Be The Day, the first of many cross-references. Jim MacLaine (David Essex) meets Mike and talks him into(…)


1 9 6 5 (UK) This short-lived Scottish pop music show was produced in Glasgow and aired on the BBC. Artists who appeared on the show included Lulu & The Luvvers, Marmalade, The Beatstalkers, Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas, Elkie Brooks, The Fortunes, Anita Harris, Herman’s Hermits, Tom Jones, Jonathan King, The Ivy League, Peter and Gordon, Barry Ryan, Paul Simon, Jimmy Witherspoon, Fontella Bass, Adam Faith, Wayne Fontana, The Hollies, Pinkerton’s Assorted Colours, Sandie Shaw,(…)

Sump’n Else

1 9 6 6 (USA) Dallas-based TV show featuring many local bands including The 13th Floor Elevators, and more obscure groups such as The Living End, The Changing Times, The Menerals and Southwest FOB.



1 9 7 5 – 1 9 7 7 (UK) 1 9 8 3 (UK) 58 x 30 minute episodes 1 x 60 minute special Supersonic began in September 1975 as part of Saturday Scene and was launched in it’s own right on 6 September. Ratings dwindled after less than a year and the final(…)

Sweet and Sour

1 9 8 4 (Australia) 20 x 30 minute episodes Sweet and Sour was like an Australian version of Rock Follies – but without the drugs, the sex or the swearing. The series follows the fortunes of a rock band called The Takeaways, but theirs is not a rags-to-riches story. Rather it is a gritty history(…)

Teen Scene

1 9 6 4 – 1 9 6 5 (Australia) This ABC TV teenage music programme was hosted by singer Johnny Chester (pictured with Olivia Newton John) who appeared with his group, The Chessmen (pictured below). The weekly half-hour show was screened at 6.30pm on Saturdays and aired in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Hobart, Rockhampton(…)

Thank Your Lucky Stars

Thank Your Lucky Stars

1 9 6 1 – 1 9 6 6 (UK) Produced by ABC TV and broadcast on ITV, Thank Your Lucky Stars was intended as a rival to the well-established Juke Box Jury. The original presenter of the 45-minute show was Keith Fordyce, who went on to greater fame as compere of Ready, Steady, Go!. Other presenters over the show’s(…)

That’ll Be The Day (1974)

David Essex, always more content in the role of actor rather than pop star, combined both occupations in That’ll Be The Day – and its sequel Stardust (1974). Two films which saw his character, Jim McLean, rise from girl-hopping delinquency on a fairground in the 1950s to castle-owning pop stardom. Jim is a middle-class kid whose father deserts his(…)

This Is Spinal Tap (1984)

“How much blacker could it be? None, none more black.” Documentary maker Marty DiBergi (Rob Reiner) goes on the road with ageing British heavy metal band Spinal Tap and sees them lose drummers, purpose and all sense of self-respect. The nucleus of Spinal Tap is David St Hubbins on vocals and guitar, Nigel Tufnel on(…)

Tommy (1975)

Director Ken Russell was the perfect choice to direct The Who‘s landmark rock opera Tommy, transforming it into a stream-of-consciousness catalogue of wild performances from Roger Daltrey, Ann-Margret, Oliver Reed, Tina Turner, Elton John, Keith Moon, Jack Nicholson and others. Tommy Walker is a deaf, dumb and blind boy who has been reduced to his near-catatonic(…)

Tommy Steele Story, The (1957)

Having learnt to play the guitar while in hospital, Tommy Steele discovers his ability as a performer while working as a ship’s steward. Returning to London, he is given an engagement in the Two I’s Coffee Bar. He is asked to make a record and becomes a teenage rock ‘n’ roll idol. Tommy Steele Himself(…)

Top Beat 

1 9 6 4 – 1 9 6 5 (UK) Top Beat was a monthly TV show which crammed eight or nine acts (Wayne Fontana, The Pretty Things, The Miracles etc) into an hour-long studio concert. In 1965 it featured possibly the greatest 60s line-up ever, including The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Cliff Richard and(…)

Top Of The Pops

1 9 6 4 – 2 0 0 6  (UK) On 30 July 2006 the BBC broadcast the final edition of Top Of The Pops. Thousands mourned but few were surprised. After the programme was shunned to Sunday nights on BBC2 barely a year earlier, its cancellation was clearly only a matter of time. Still, it(…)

Tube, The

1 9 8 2 – 1 9 8 7 (UK) Channel 4’s live music show with edge and attitude debuted on Bonfire Night in 1982. Produced by Tyne Tees Television from its Quayside base in Newcastle, the show would clock up more than 100 episodes across five series and make stars of its co-hosts, former Squeeze keyboard player(…)


Melbourne’s ATV-0 remained the leading production house for Australian rock TV shows in the late 60s and early 70s with Uptight, fronted by Ross D Wylie (and ultimately Happening 70 and Happening 71).

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