Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Who's that with Jools, then? (Guardian Article)

Article by Phil Hogan ~ Observer Music Monthly, Sunday 20 January 2008

No one ever thought it would become a TV institution, but Later is about to hit its 200th edition. Behind the scenes, Phil Hogan asks an inveterate ivory tinkler about the unlikely secrets of its success.. (Read More...)


Monday, May 12, 2008


Questions from the June 2007 exam:
  1. Discuss the factors that might contribute to the success of a television music programme.
  2. "Television has damaged the music industry. There are now too many performers who are getting success because of their looks, not their musical skill.” Discuss this view of the contribution that television is making to music.

and Jan 2007:

To what extent does the medium of television influence the music industry ?

'music on TV is better served by television than by radio, because music should be a visual experience' Discuss this view

Jan 2008

How well are music lovers served by TV?

'Music is light entertainment. Viewers don't want anything live or intellectually demanding. Just pop videos on demand. The video channels have got it right" Discuss this view

Sunday, May 11, 2008

How important is tv to the music industry ?

How might you go about answering an essay question like the above ?

Look for the formula- Point Example Explanation (PEE)

here are about 20 points you might make (in a random order!) You need to think of examples for each and then explanations to make clear their relevance. Structuring them into some kind of argument would be the third step to making this into an essay answer...

  • Image construction is vital to the music industry
  • TV adverts are used to sell albums
  • Chart shows are essential for the promotion of singles
  • Chat show appearances are often used to promote albums
  • The number of audition/reality shows on TV is testament to their huge importance
  • Documentary coverage of artists is frequently tied in with the release of new audio product
  • News coverage of bands/ solo artists is useful to their progress
  • The number of music channels to be filled with music videos represents a big area for the music business
  • Artists often appear on panel shows
  • Variety programmes for niche and mass audiences are used to showcase bands and their latest releases
  • Live concerts and festivals represent another opportunity for bands on TV to reach a wider audience
  • record companies sometimes release DVDs, particularly of tours, which end up being shown on TV
  • A flagging career can sometimes be revived by an appearance on a reality Tv show
  • tracks can sometimes gain in popularity by being used as incidental music, trailer music on adverts, sports coverage or even soaps
  • Soap stars often release singles and start a pop career
To find examples
  • use your wider knowledge
  • use examplkes from class- past and present!
  • use examples from your youtube and other research into a specific artist
  • use examples from the music video unit
Make sure you think of points which can demonstrate understanding of all four key concepts: audiences, institutions, representations and forms/conventions

Saturday, May 10, 2008

X Factor vs. LATER with Jools Holland

X Factor on YouTube
Leon Jackson

Note the big set, the role of the audience, the range of conventions demonstrated.

Bad Audition

LATER on YouTube

Opening Titles (2000-2001)

Indie from the Arctic Monkeys

Rodrigo y Gabriela

Friday, May 9, 2008

The Brit Awards (Music Award Shows)

The BRIT AWARDS 2007 took place on Wednesday 14th February 2007, Valentines Day.. hence the choice of set...

Consider: the use of mise-en-scene, the choice of host- what does Russell Brand represent ? the way that the sponsor draws upon popular youth culture to sell its product and the conventions of award acceptance represented by Take That contrasted with that of the Arctic Monkeys. Can a programme like this negotiate the tensions between corporate image and the rebellious tendency of rock music ?

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Web Research Task

Task for U1 Wed/Thur 20/21 Feb

1) Choose a band/artist that had some success between the 1960 and 1990.

2) Try to find out as much information as possible about their TV appearances and make notes in your notebook.

Start with Youtube and search for 'The Band' and 'TV shows', 'music shows' that you have learnt about so far and other 'light entertainment' shows, 'live TV' performances, 'one offs shows' and 'TV interviews'.

Try to avoid looking at music videos, although these are an important part of the artists TV images and might be worth referring to in your write up. You might go on to search for articles and information about the band and TV.

3) Write 500 words in your exercise book on your case study. Explaining the artist’s relationship with television. How has TV been important to the artist/band, the record company, TV companies. You could refer to some of these key terms.

Sub Culture
Prime Time

On Tuesday 26th, you will be asked to present your findings by showing a clip and talking about what you have found, so keep a bookmark of each clip.

For an example of research into a bands appearances on TV check out this blog about the Ska band 'The Specials'.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Speed Essay Task

Try answering one of the questions from June 2007 (see below post). But only give yourself 20 minutes. There are some other rules:

1) Try and write at least 5 paragraphs.
2) Mention 5 TV shows - properly referenced e.g. Top of the Pops (BBC1, 1964-2004)
3) Use as many terms from these two glossaries as possible.

Genre, Programming, Schedule, Mainstream, Niche, Presenter, Celebrity, Terrestrial, Digital, Conventions, Target Audience, Audience Ratings, Production Company, Record Label, Artist

Camera, framing, Editing, Juxtaposition, Pace, Mise-en-Scene, Lighting, Costume, Wardrobe, Set, Studio Audience, Performance, Diegetic, Non-diegetic

Now get someone else to mark it. Score the essay like this:

2 marks for each programme mentioned (1 mark for programme, 1 mark for date and channel)
2 marks for each paragraph
1 mark for each of the words from the glossary

Good Luck

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

T4 Transmission

T4 Transmission Website


Episode Two - Part One

Episode Two see us in Cambridge with the likes of The Hoosiers and Enrique Iglesias. Watch it.

Episode Two - Part Two

The second part of Episode Two we have an interview with Ben Miller, plus performances from Enrique and more from The Hoosiers. Watch it.

Episode Two - Street Gig
Athlete are shown around the learned city of Cambridge by comedian Tom Basden to search for Street Gig venues. Watch it.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Never Mind the Buzzcocks

Extract from a show

Watch the latest episode on

Monday, March 5, 2007

Live from Abbey Road

Jamiroquai - Runaway (Live from Abbey Road)

The Killers - When You Were Young and Sam's Town (Live from Abbey Road)

LeAnn Rimes - Destructive (Live from Abbey Road)

Worth considering the unusual use of camera in these clips, the absence of audience in the studio, the long held shots and particularly the intimacy created by the conventions used here.

Abbey road is obviously chosen for its famous associations, but again it is worth looking closely at the style of the show and how it differs from other live music on TV

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Music Awards Shows on TV

The Brit Awards (1977-Present) Official Site | Wikipedia
The awards began in 1977 under the auspices of the BPI, the British record industry's trade association. The last BPI Awards show took place at the Albert Hall and was the first prime-time TV event. In 1989 they were renamed The Britannia Awards, or Brit Awards. MasterCard is the long-time sponsor of this annual event.

The Mercury Prize (1992-Present) Official Site | Wikipedia
The Mercury Prize, currently known as the Nationwide Mercury Prize for sponsorship reasons, is an annual music prize awarded for the best British or Irish album of the previous 12 months. It was established by the BPI and BARD (the British Association of Record Dealers) in 1992 as an alternative to the industry-dominated Brit awards. It was originally sponsored by the now-defunct telecoms company Mercury, followed in 1998 by Technics and starting in 2004 the Nationwide Building Society [1]. It is often observed that bands who are nominated for, or indeed win the prize experience a large increase in album sales, particularly for the lesser known nominees.

MOBO Awards (1996-Present) Official Site | Wikipedia
The MOBO (an acronym for Music Of Black Origin) Awards, established in 1996 by Kanya King, are held annually in the UK to recognise artists of any race or nationality performing music of black origin.

In 2006 the awards were hosted by Coolio and Gina Yashere.

There was further controversy in this year, when it was discovered underground band the Choong Family were removed from the short list for newcomer due to pressure from Def Jam to include Lady Sovereign on the list. The decision to drop the award categories of World Music and Jazz prompted protests from jazz musicians outside the event. Beyoncé Knowles was booed for not showing up to the event despite winning 3 awards. Corinne Bailey Rae went on to win the prize for best UK newcomer. Akala, the British rapper, caused a stir when he won best hip hop act, beating competition from acts such as Kanye West.

MTV Video Music Awards
(1984-Present) Official Site | Wikipedia
MTV Video Music Awards
were established in 1984 by MTV to celebrate the top music videos of the year. Originally beginning as an alternative to the Grammy Awards, the MTV Video Music Awards is now a respected pop culture awards show in its own right. They are presented annually and broadcast live on MTV and CTV in Canada[1]. Past broadcasts have been held in New York City, Los Angeles, California and Miami, Florida.

The statues given to winners of the award are often called "Moon Men" because the statue is of an astronaut on the moon, one of the earliest representations of MTV. The "Moon Man" award is manufactured by R.S. Owens & Company in Chicago, IL, who has been producing the award since 1984. The eligibility period for the Video Music Awards begins July 1. Before 2002, the VMAs were traditionally held on the first Thursday of September. It was decided to move the awards back a week so that it wouldn't conflict with the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks.

For other MTV Awards Shows... click here.

The Grammys (1959-Present) Official Site | Wikipedia
(originally called the Gramophone Awards, commonly abbreviated as the Grammys or GRAMMYs), presented by the Recording Academy known as NARAS, (an association of Americans professionally involved in the recorded music industry)for outstanding achievements in the recording industry, is one of four major music awards shows held annually in the United States (along with the Billboard Music Awards, the American Music Awards, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony). However, the Grammys, usually held in February, are considered the approximate equivalent to the Oscars in the music world.

Monday, January 29, 2007


Popworld on Wikipedia

Popworld is a British television programme broadcast on Channel 4, offering pop news, trivia, gossip, interviews and music vidoes.

The show began in January 2001 and is currently presented by Alex Zane and Alexa Chung who took over the programme in 2006. Popworld is broadcast every Saturday Morning on Channel 4 at 10.30 a.m., and repeated on E4 at 2.00 p.m. the next day.

The X Factor

The X Factor on Wikipedia

The X Factor on YouTube

The X Factor is a British popular TV music talent show, broadcast on Saturdays on ITV1, with spin-off "behind-the-scenes" shows The Xtra Factor and The X Factor 24/7 screened on ITV2. It is produced by FremantleMedia's talkbackTHAMES and Simon Cowell's production company SYCOtv. The "X Factor" of the title refers to the undefinable "something" that makes for star quality.

The judges are Simon Cowell, Sharon Osbourne and Louis Walsh, and the show is hosted by Kate Thornton. Voice-overs are provided by Peter Dickson and Enn Reitel.

Fame Academy

Fame Academy on Wikipedia
Fame Academy on YouTube

Fame Academy was a televised competition to search for and educate new musical talents. The winner received a chance to become a successful music artist. The prize consisted of a £1m recording contract with a major record company, plus the use of a luxury apartment in London and a sports car for one year. . It was broadcast by the BBC and co-produced by an Endemol company called 'Initial'. The format was originally created in Spain under the title Operación Triunfo, and had already achieved major success around the world (especially France) under the name Star Academy. It is now also practised in India, called Fame gurukul. Every week, depending on the perceived quality of their performances, contestants would be put into either "safe" or "danger" zones. Anyone in the latter had to undergo a system of voting by the other participants to determine which one would then be forced to leave.

Pop Idol

Pop Idol on Wikipedia
Pop Idol on YouTube

Pop Idol is a British television series which debuted on ITV1 on October 5, 2001; the show was a talent contest to decide the best new young popular music singer, or 'pop idol', in the United Kingdom, based on viewer participation.

The Idol series has become an international franchise; it has spun off many successful shows such as American Idol, Canadian Idol, Australian Idol , Philippine Idol, Nouvelle Star and Deutschland sucht den SuperStar.


Popstars on Wikipedia
Popstars on YouTube

Popstars is an international reality television program and a precursor to the Idol series. The series first began in New Zealand when producer Jonathan Dowling formed the 5 member all-girl group TrueBliss. Dowling then sold the concept to other countries, initially to Australia and then onto the UK before taking worldwide.

The judges on the UK version of the show were: Nigel Lythgoe, Nicki Chapman, and Paul Adam.

Miami7/LA7/Viva S Club

Miami7 / LA7 / Viva S Club on Wikipedia
Miami7 / LA7 / Viva S Club on YouTube

Miami 7 was the first television series made by British pop group S Club 7. The programme was shown every week on CBBC and starred all seven members of the band as themselves in thirteen episodes. In Miami 7 the S Club 7 are struggling with bad management, lousy gigs and no fans. So their manager decides to dump them on to his "friend" Howard Borlotti and his ofttimes cowardly brother Marvin in their run down hotel, and are forced to double as both entertainers for the hotel and staff members. In the finale they discovered their contract with their manager was expired so they had to decide to go to Los Angeles or back home, they decide to roll the dice in Los Angeles. There were two in between specials before the next series LA 7, S Club 7: Back to the Fifties and S Club 7: Boyfriends & Birthdays.

Top Of The Pops

Top of the Pops on Wikipedia
Top of the Pops on YouTube

Top of the Pops, also known as TOTP, is a long-running British music chart television programme, made and broadcast by the BBC. It was originally shown each week, mostly on BBC One, from 1 January 1964 to 30 July 2006. Each weekly programme consisted of performances from some of that week's best-selling popular music artists.

Later with Jools Holland

Later with Jools Holland on Wikipedia

Later with Jools Holland on BFI ScreenOnline
Later with Jools Holland on YouTube

is a contemporary music show hosted by Jools Holland. A spin-off of The Late Show, it has been running constantly since 1992 and is a part of BBC2's late-night line-up, usually around 11PM. It regularly features a healthy mix of both established and new musical artists, from solo performers to bands and larger ensembles.

The Tube

The Tube on Wikipedia
The Tube on YouTube

The Tube was an innovative United Kingdom pop/rock music television programme, which ran for 5 seasons, from 1982 until 1987. Many other specials were made, including one for the eve of the millennium. It was produced in Newcastle upon Tyne by Tyne Tees Television and broadcast on Channel 4 television. The Tube was presented live by such talented luminaries as Jools Holland and the late Paula Yates. It was relaunched by Channel 4 as an online radio station in November 2006.

Ready Steady Go

Ready Steady Go on Wikipedia
Ready Steady Go on YouTube

Ready Steady Go! or simply RSG! was one of the UK's first rock / pop music TV programmes. RSG! was conceived by Elkan Allan, head of Rediffusion TV, who wanted to try a music radio show. Allan was assisted by Record Producer/Talent Manager Vicki Wickham, who eventually became the show's producer. It was first broadcast in August 1963 and ran until December 1966. It was produced by Associated-Rediffusion (later re-named Rediffusion) which had the ITV franchise for the London region. The show was so successful it eventually went out live nationally. It was contemporary with the surge in British pop music of the 1960s and the rise of the Beatles.

Six-Five Special

Six-Five Special on Wikipedia
Six-Five Special on YouTube

The Six-Five Special was a television programme launched in February 1957 when both television and rock and roll were in their infancy in Britain. It was the BBC's first attempt at a rock and roll programme, a great innovation at the time and subsequently much imitated. It was called the "Six-Five Special" because of the time it was broadcast - it went out, live of course as all programmes did then, at five past six on a Saturday evening. It began immediately after the abolition of the "Toddlers' Truce", which had seen television close down between 6 and 7 p.m. so that young children could be put to bed.

So It Goes

So It Goes on Wikipedia
So It Goes on YouTube

So It Goes was a British TV music show presented by Tony Wilson on Granada Television between 1976 and 1977. It is most famous for showcasing the then burgeoning Punk Rock movement.

The Old Grey Whistle Test

The Old Grey Whistle Test on Wikipedia
The Old Grey Whistle Test on BFI ScreenOnline
The Old Grey Whistle Test on YouTube

The Old Grey Whistle Test was an influential BBC2 television music show that ran from September 1971 until 1987. The first host was Richard Williams, then features editor of the Melody Maker music weekly. During this initial period, there was a remarkable correlation between the featured artists on the show, and those appearing on the magazine's front page. Eventually, Williams was replaced by DJ Bob Harris (nicknamed "Whispering Bob Harris", due to his quiet voice and "laid back" style). The programme hosted many seminal acts of the era, including the first British TV performance of Bob Marley and the Wailers as well as little known acts of whom any footage is now considered precious, such as Judee Sill. The show's focus on "serious" rock music rather than chart hits was emphasised by the lack of showbiz glitter; bands would often perform their songs in front of plain wooden boards (actually the backs of set walls from other programmes). As with many BBC productions, this was (initially at least) as much a matter of money as of style. Other late night shows of the time, having only 'minority' appeal, also had to be content with spartan sets. Bob Harris became notorious among the younger generation for calling the New York Dolls "mock rock." The Dolls' performance on the Old Grey Whistle would strongly influence the British punk movement.

Oh, Boy!

Oh, Boy! on Wikipedia

Oh Boy! was the first teenage all-music show on British TV 1958-1959. It was produced by Jack Good for ITV.

Thank Your Lucky Stars

Thank Your Lucky Stars on Wikipedia
Thank Your Lucky Stars on BFI ScreenOnline
Thank Your Lucky Stars on YouTube

Thank Your Lucky Stars was an ITV pop show broadcast from 1961 to 1966 and a lot of the top bands performed on it. For millions of teenagers it was essential viewing. As well as featuring British artists, American guests were frequent visitors.

It would appear from the surviving footage that the bands mimed their latest 45. Occasionally a band was allowed to do two numbers (possibly the ‘A’ and ‘B’ sides of the latest single), and if you were pop royalty like The Beatles or The Rolling Stones you could do four numbers.

Audience participation was a strong feature of the show and the Spin-A-Disc section, where a guest D.J. and three teenagers reviewed three singles, is a very well remembered feature of Thank Your Lucky Stars. Generally American singles were reviewed.


Revolver on BFI ScreenOnline
Revolver on YouTube

While the birth of punk in 1976 had a seismic impact on British music, television was slow to respond; The Sex Pistols' 'God Save the Queen' was famously banned by Top of the Pops (BBC, 1964-) despite making it to number one. Some of the more housetrained post-punk acts did make it on to The Old Grey Whistle Test (BBC, 1971-87), where they sat uncomfortably among the show's favoured classic rock and prog artists, but it was two programmes outside the mainstream which really engaged with the new scene: Granada's So It Goes (ITV, 1976-77) and ATV's Revolver.

The Monkees

The Monkees on Wikipedia
The Monkees on YouTube

The television show first aired on September 12, 1966 on the NBC television network and lasted for two seasons (58 episodes). The final primetime episode ran on September 9, 1968 (see List of The Monkees episodes). Modeled on The Beatles' theatrical films A Hard Day's Night and Help!, The Monkees featured the antics and music of a fictional pop-rock group. Due to the massive success of the records, and the public's expectations, the four Monkees became a real pop group. The series was sponsored by Kellogg's Cereals and Yardley Cosmetics of London. After leaving NBC, the program would later be rerun on both CBS and ABC on weekend mornings.

Jukebox Jury

Jukebox Jury on Wikipedia
Jukebox Jury on BFI ScreenOnline

The show - in which assorted celebrities rated new single releases a 'hit' or a 'miss' - began on US Television in 1948 starring Hollywood DJ Peter Potter.

It came to the UK in 1959, presented by David Jacobs, but only became a 'hit' itself in 1960.

One of the highlights of the show's history was when The Beatles appeared on December 7th 1963. They rated songs by artists including Billy Fury, Elvis Presley and The Swinging Blue Jeans - all of which became hits.

On the night, seven of the Beatles' predictions were right and three were wrong.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Live Music programmes

Within the past year 2 separate programmes have been launched that showcase bands and artists playing live. One of these Live from Abbey Road is broadcast on Channel 4 and More 4, the other is From the Basement which is available as a download only. Both programmes focus on artists or bands playing live; much is made of the studios in which they they perform, Abbey Road and Madia Vale respectively. Both have no studio audience as if the music and performance is enough.

You should look at both websites and see what other similarities the programmes have. Who is their target audience? What makes you think this, how can you justify it?

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Final exam

the exam 2735 Media issues and Debates takes place on June 12

You will answer two essay questions in two hours- each of the topics contains a choice of two questions. our two topics are Contemporary British Cinema and this topic- Music on television.

By mid-march you will have your scores for the research exam, for the music video coursework and for any re-sits you have done. This will add up to an overall score out of 510, leaving just 90 marks still to play for in the final exam. Your teacher will be able to tell you your overall score and how many marks you still need for a particular grade. You will be able to discuss options for any summer re-sits too.

In the five weeks where we concentrate on Music on TV we will look at:

the history of music on Tv in the UK
examples of particular programmes from different genres: reality/audition shows, chart shows, live performances, panel shows, documentaries, etc
music channels and music video
the key concepts in relation to the topic: audiences, institutions, representations and forms/conventions

You will watch some examples and discuss them, do some research using wikipedia and youtube and ultimately prepare to write some essays. Please make sure for every lesson you arrive on time, ready to work with pen and paper!

You will need to be confident about these four concepts in relation to specific examples

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Useful links for research

Specials on TV

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Welcome to the...