THE FRIDAY FIVE – 24.10.2014

1. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – In The Heat Of The Moment
2. Per Gessle – He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother
3. Simple Minds – Midnight Walking
4. Foo Fighters – Something From Nothing
5. Cheryl – I Don’t Care

So, the live finals of X-Factor have started, and as is tradition, a Top Five based on the previous week’s theme. In truth, I haven’t watched any of it yet. Fell behind watching it and haven’t really bothered to catch up. Might just tune in for the final.

Unlike the X-Factor, my chart will feature songs that actually meet the criteria of the theme.

FIVE SONGS FROM THE 1980s

1. Falco – Rock Me Amadeus
2. Paul Hardcastle – The Wizard
3. Glenn and Chris – Diamond Lights
4. Starship – We Built This City
5. Strawberry Switchblade – Since Yesterday

Meanwhile, the news we’ve waited 11 years was announced this week – that S Club 7 are reforming. Albeit, just for Children In Need, but we can dream of a full comeback.

To keep you occupied until then, here’s an S Club Top Five.

5 SONGS BY S CLUB 7

1. Bring It All Back
2. Reach
3. You’re My Number One
4. Alive
5. Don’t Stop Moving

50 YEARS OF TOP OF THE POPS AUG 8 – AUG 14

We begin this week, by jumping straight into Madness, as Chris Foreman turned 58 this week.

Randomly, they once did a song with Feargal Sharkey. Amazingly, Sharkey wasn’t the only one on stage to grow up in Northern Ireland, as Chas Smash spent a year as a teenager living in Coleraine.

Now, quite literally, a criminal record.

East 17, innit?

There are some people, who erroniously think Justin Timberlake is the most talented member of N*Sync

Remember Vanessa Amorosi? Absolutely everybody does!

And now, for a bit of S Club 7

This week’s sad bit, Whitney Houston would have been 51 this week. (And yes, I know this is from the German version of the show, but they used clips from the UK show)

Joe Jackson turned 60 this week. His solo career never scaled the heights of his bother Michael. (WARING : Second clip introduced by Jimmy Savile)

And now Sparks, featuring the classic line-up of Adolf Hitler and Kevin Keegan.

…… which nicely links us into another band featuring brothers, Dire Straits.

It would have been brilliant if they did a studio appearance for “Money For Nothing”, as you just know the props department would have had a Microwave Oven, a Refrigerator and some Colour TV lying around the stage.

He made an appearance on earlier with Madness, but Feargal Sharkey turned 56 this week, so it would be rude not to include.

I could be lazy and play “Teenage Kicks” but it’s not The Undertones best song. It’s not. And i’m not even going to apologise for saying it.

(WARNING : First clip features Jimmy Savile at the end)

Now for some Sarah Brightman. It’s almost, but not quite, time to say goodbye.

Actually, it is. Goodbye.

50 YEARS OF TOP OF THE POPS : APR 25 – MAY 1

It’s almost Eurovision, and a former Eurovision winner is celebrating a birthday this week, Bjorn Ulvaeus. If you don’t know, one of the Bs in ABBA (though, there is the technicality of Anni-Frid usually being referred to as Frida)

(DISCLAIMER: Clip introduced by Jimmy Savile)

Another birthday this week, is Fish from Marillion, though he’s probably forgotten it already. If you think Fish is a funny name, his real name is Derek Dick.

Hiting the big 50 this week is Andy Bell from Erasure (not from Oasis, Ride, Hurrican #1 or Gay Dad). Rejoice in some Erasure classics.

Not quite the big 50 (but close) is a birthday this week for Simon Fowler from Ocean Colour Scene.

Duane Eddy turns 76 this week. Here he is in one of the more bizarre appearances in Top Of The Pops history.

Jon Lee from S Club 7 is celebrating a birthday this week. Hope he got something nice. He’s never had a dream come true. By the way, last week was the 11th anniversary of S Club 7 splitting up.

Also celebrating this week is Belshill’s second finest export (after Brian McClair) with a song about travelling to work on Scotrail

Hitting the big 30 this week is Patrick Stump from Radioactive Man

It’s 21 years this week since Mick Ronson died. It’s a bit obvious what video is going to be posted as tribute, isn’t it?

50 YEARS OF TOP OF THE POPS : APR 4 – APR 10

The first week of April sees the birth of someone more associated with the end of the year, Dave Hill from Slade. This song, from the 1980s, is superb.

Remember Razorlight? They had, how you say, a Golden Touch from 2004-2006.

It was 20 years this week since Kurt Cobain died.

Kurt Cobain’s death happened on Mylene Klass 16th birthday. As you’ll see later, this is a bumper week for late 90s/early 00s pop star birthdays.

It’s 16 years ago this week since Tammy Wynette. He she sort of is in the studio with The KLF. It’s best not to think about this collaboration. It melts your head.

Meanwhile, John Oates, Oates from Hall and Oates is bus pass age this week.

Meanwhile, back to late 90s/early 00s pop stars born this week in history ….

Duncan James, off of Blue.

Rachel Stevens, off of S Club 7

And some of her solo stuff was rather good

Sophie Ellis-Bextor, off of The Audience, who nobody remembers, also off of that Spiller song, but best known for her solo work.

And Liz McLaronon off of Atomic Kitten, but no solo career of note.

Around the same era, albeit not a pop band, Albert Hammond Jr, off of The Strokes, one good solo song which criminally undercharted, and with the famous dad of the same name.

And we end, with 50s revivalists big in the 80s …… and it’s not Shakin Stevens.

50 YEARS OF TOP OF THE POPS : MAR 28 – APR 3

We begin this week with a would be birthday, as Jon Lee from Feeder would have been 46 this week. You’re best to ignore Jamie Theakston getting the name of the song wrong.

And now, for something completely different.

Terry Jacks turned 70 this week. I’d love to post a video of him, but there is none, so i’m posting a video of Westlife covering him. I’m sorry. I’m really really sorry.

Now, for Northern Ireland’s greatest musical talent. No, not Dana, but he comes from the same city (Well, if you want to be pedantic, not really, as she was born in London)

Sadly gone 19 years now.

Eric Clapton was 69 this week. This song is a forgotten classic.

I’ve spent all this week trying to remember who won the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest. Oh wait, it’s all coming back to me now.

In the history of Boybanders gone solo, this song is up there with the best.

New York, London, Paris, Munich. Everybody’s talking about this guy’s suit.

Hannah Spearritt from S Club 7 turns 33 this week. How old does that make you feel?

30 years ago this week since Marvin Gaye died. Scraping the barrel here, but here’s a Paul Young cover.

Back to this week’s birthdays ….. Karen Woodward of Bananarama, or, Mrs Ridgeley. What an A List couple that would have been in 1983.

50 YEARS OF TOP OF THE POPS : MAR 7 – MAR 13

We begin this week’s round-up celebrating the birth of Paul Cattermole of S Club 7. I love S Club 7 and I don’t care who knows it.

Also celebrating a birthday this week, is a singer called Cheryl, a national treasure who had a TV career as well. Not her soon to be back on X-Factor. I am, of course, referring to Cheryl Baker.

Sharing a birthday with her is Gary Numan.

And “Freak Like Me”, from the week when Gary Numan was a member of the Sugababes.

It’s easy to mock Keane (the band, not Roy Keane though) but this is a brilliant song.

And now, a band that is as easy as 123, and are not to be confused with AC/DC …… ABC (Warning : Video introduced by Jimmy Savile)

Remember “What I Am” by Emma Bunton? Well, it’s a cover, and the original by Edie Brickell is far better.

Emeli Sande gets everywhere, and she’s even made it onto this blog. Easy to mock her, but this song is bloody brilliant.

46 this week, was 90s one hit wonder Lisa Loeb. This is a brilliant song. (Also, feel free to look up “I Do”, which should have been her second hit, if there was any justice)

Last week, we had The Proclaimers, this week, our twins (It won’t be a weekly thing) are Joel and Benji Madden from Good Charlotte.

45 this week was Graham Coxon of Blur, one of the best singles bands of the 90s, if not ever. So, we’ll include their two Number Ones, “Country House” which beat “Roll With It” by Oasis to Number One.

The definitive answer ……… both Oasis and Blur are brilliant. Oasis are better than Blur, but “Country House” is better than “Roll With It”

….. and “Beetlebum”, their second Number One, which is actually far better than the single which followed it, “Song 2”.

Also big in 1997 was Eternal, currently on ITV 2’s ‘The Big Reunion’. Not a massive Eternal fan, but this is superb.

28 this week was Danny Jones from McFly/McBusted, performing “One For The Radio”, ironically, on the TV.

If he was alive today, Scatman John would have been 72.

Born this week (in England, but shhhh about that) in 1960 was Adam Clayton of U2. Here they are before they became too big for Top Of The Pops. Anyway, you wouldn’t have been able to fit a 30 foot lemon into Television Centre.

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 23.3.2012

1. Bruce Springsteen – We Take Care Of Our Own
2. The Shins – Simple Song
3. Emeli Sande – Next To Me
4. Gotye – Somebody That I Used To Know
5. Michael Kiwanuka – I’m Getting Ready

S Club 7 are back together!!!!!!!! S Club 7 are back together!!!!!!!! S Club 7 are back together!!!!!!!! S Club 7 are back together!!!!!!!!

Ever so slightly excited by this. So, in honour of this, here is my S Club 7 Top Five

FIVE S CLUB 7 SONGS

1. Bring It All Back
2. Alive
3. You’re My Number One
4. Don’t Stop Moving
5. Reach

It’s Elton John’s 65th birthday this weekend, and no doubt it will be a low key affair.

In honour of this milestone, here’s five Elton John songs for you.

FIVE ELTON JOHN SONGS

1. I’m Still Standing
2. I Want Love
3. Made In England
4. Kiss The Bride
5. The Circle Of Life

This week, saw International Water Day. So, here’s some themed songs, sadly, not including Aqua or The Waterboys.

FIVE WATER RELATED SONGS

1. Simple Minds – She’s A River
2. Take That – The Flood
3. Madonna – Rain
4. Lighthouse Family – Ocean Drive
5. Katie Melua – The Flood

And to finish, New Order are coming to Belfast. So, here’s five New Order songs for you.

FIVE NEW ORDER SONGS

1. True Faith
2. Temptation
3. Blue Monday
4. Regret
5. Crystal