Goodbye to TOTP

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TODAY I remember the greatest chart show EVER – and say Thank You For The Music, Top Of The Pops.

After 42 years reflecting the nation’s favourite tunes, the last ever TOTP will be broadcast tomorrow in an hour-long special on BBC2 from 7pm.

It was THE single most important show for teenagers, who tuned in every week to watch their pop idols perform songs from the Top 20.

Tomorrow’s tribute show will be hosted by JIMMY SAVILE, the first of 150 presenters to pick up the golden microphone. He will relive some of the best moments from the last 2,203 programmes.

I thought it would be fitting for Bizarre to also pay tribute to the legendary Beeb show.

For me, one of the most memorable TOTP experiences was watching CULTURE CLUB perform Do You Really Want To Hurt Me in 1982. I couldn’t quite work out whether BOY GEORGE was a man in drag or a woman, or whether he was gay or straight.

And who can forget the Christmas Day specials, where the year’s biggest-selling hits were performed?

In the days before the video recorder it always sparked a row in my house because it was on during Christmas dinner.
Other, ahem, golden moments in TOTP history include JIMI HENDRIX miming to Purple Haze — when an ALAN PRICE song was accidentally played instead.

Grunge kings NIRVANA’s only appearance on the show involved strange dancing, singing and guitar smashing. And, of course, there were the rebellious GALLAGHERS. LIAM mocked the fact they had to mime by walking away from the mic during Lyla and strutting around the stage for the remainder of the song.

Yesterday, I asked some of the biggest names in music to remember their most memorable times at TOTP. Here they are.

VICTORIA BECKHAM: “My favourite TOTP memory was the Christmas of 1996 when the SPICE GIRLS co-hosted the show with ROBBIE WILLIAMS. We did Wannabe, Say You’ll Be There and Two Become One, which was the Christmas No1.”

DURAN DURAN’s SIMON LE BON: “TOTP was one of those things you would always rush home for. We would take the p*** out of most of the acts because they were so bad.”

KASABIAN’s TOM MEIGHAN: “The first thing I remember is that shocking rubbish called Agadoo when I was a kid in 1984. That was a disgrace man, horrifying, mortifying.
We performed LSF on our first TOTP. I remember Dad ringing to say he’ d been watching all those years and now he’d seen me on it.”

USHER: “The show was a launch pad for many successful recording artists and it was a privilege and honour to appear on it.”

STATUS QUO’s RICK PARFITT: “My most memorable moment was when I walked on stage straight in to the drum kit and fell off stage when we performed Marguerita Time.”

WILL YOUNG: “Being on the show was a dream come true.”

GIRLS ALOUD’s SARAH HARDING: “I was a huge fan of PULP and ran home to get back in time for their Disco 2000 on TOTP because they had recreated the dancefloor from the video. I was dancing along to JARVIS COCKER in my own home!”

JAMELIA: “I watched every week without fail so when I was on it — wow! It’s a day I’ll never forget.”

So here’s to you TOTP — you’ll always be our No1.

The longest performance was by GREEN DAY on November 6, 2005. They sang Jesus Of Surburbia for nine minutes, ten seconds. SUPER FURRY ANIMALS were the shortest act with their hit Do Or Die — which lasted just 95 seconds.

The show had a young audience so bosses banned certain songs from being performed. The most famous ones included FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD’s Relax in 1984 and the SEX PISTOLS’ God Save The Queen in 1977.

Courtesy THE SUN