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24 September 2014
top of the pops 2 top of the pops 2

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Part 2 - The Glam Years

The show might have been a regular mix of artists and styles, but the show survived the rapidly changing musical landscape by sticking to the format. Launched during the British beat boom, the show easily accommodated the late '60s Summer of Love era and moved effortlessly into '70s Glam Rock.

 The Pops was a perfect platform for such Glam stars as Marc Bolan & T Rex, David Bowie and Slade - perhaps a high point of nostalgia for many committed Pops viewers. "My favourite performance was Rod Stewart doing 'Maggie May', kicking the footballs around with Ronnie Wood and Ronnie Lane, and John Peel pretending to play mandolin," says Noel Gallagher of Oasis. "I particularly remember it because Rod was wearing yellow tartan trousers!" - nice!

In 1972 TOTP changed its signature tune. The original music, a percussion piece written by Johnnie Stewart and Harry Rabinowitz (and there had been two subsequent orchestral versions in the '60s), was replaced by CCS, performing Led Zeppelin's 'Whole Lotta Love'. To this day, this tune is associated with the Pops. 'Whole Lotta Love' was replaced by Phil Lynott's 'Yellow Pearl' in 1981, and subsequent signature tunes have been written by Paul Hardcastle, Tony Gibber and Vince Clarke.

Next: Give the Dads a nudge, it's Pan's People!

History of TOTP


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