TOTP 14 October 1976: Ruby Flipper dance to Play That Funky Music by Wild Cherry
From the old blog: Monday, 26 July 2010
Ruby Flipper – Play That Funky Music
Don’t worry chums, I’m not dead! (crosses fingers to avert hubris) Here’s Ruby Flipper dancing to Wild Cherry’s Play That Funky Music on Top of the Pops.
Another clip from German TV channel Einsfestival.
Some Guy said…
This was there last apperance On totp, and arguably there best. BBC bigwigs put a stop to there fun. I thought they were pretty cool,even Floyd and phillip were alluring in a strange sort of way. But we got legs and co at the expense of these.
13 November 2010 22:47
The end of an era! But they went out with one of their best dances.
Thank you Floyd, Lulu, Patti, Phil and Sue, Thank you Ruby Flipper.
Top of the Pops 7 October 1976: Lulu and Sue of Ruby Flipper dance behind Paul Nicholas who sings Dancing with the Captain.
A fairly obvious choice of outfits and moves here, as I remarked in the old blog, but lightweight jokey pop songs like this almost demand a bit of knowing jokiness in their interpretation.
Paul Nicholas at this point was blurring the distinction between pop-star and actor-playing-pop-star. As a snobby music purist teenager, I hated this with righteous rage. Now it just seems like a bit of fun: made more delightful with some apt, light-handed choreography.
From the old blog, Friday, 31 July 2009:
Here are Lulu and Sue on TOTP, in nautical outfits doing a few hornpipe steps, behind Paul Nicholas, who’s singing Dancing with the Captain. Yes, it’s literal references time again.
Although both went on to become members of Legs & Co., Lulu & Sue were members of Ruby Flipper at this point.
TOTP, 23 September 1976: Ruby Flipper dance to Disco Duck by Rick Dees And His Cast Of Idiots.
Silly, very silly, but fun. Floid’s pantomime duck outfit looks to be from the back of dusty cupboard in the BBC wardrobe department. Clearly not designed to be worn on a podium, we get to see just a little to much of the strapping-in undercarraige mechanism of the outfit.
Meanwhile the girls (and Floid, when he’s not in panto mode) are wearing the same charming outfits that they wore for “You Should be Dancing” a few months before.
Top of the Pops, 9 September 1976:
Ruby Flipper dance to You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine by Lou Rawls
Back in the Summer of 1976, Flick Colby’s choreography was fizzing with ideas. For this Lou Rawls number, she gives us not one but three routines: Floid’s stately podium solo; Goucho Phil and Cherry’s tango; and a teasing fan dance from Sue, Patti and Lulu.
Top of the Pops, 26 August 1976: Ruby Flipper dance to Don’t Go Breaking My Heart by Elton John & Kiki Dee
Thanks to panspeople.com for the youtube post.
From the old blog, Sunday, 30 January 2011
As requested by Carl, here’s Ruby Flipper – Don’t Go Breaking My Heart. Since there’s wearing the same outfits as the previously posted Morning Glory routine, it’s no surprise that this is from the same TOTP episode (26-8-1976). Such fabulous costumes: Cherry should always wear purple and gold.
Thank you YMG; an absolute classic of a song.
This is one of those rare routines that focuses quite a bit on the audience. They are a mixed bunch aren’t they? Some of them are a bit lethargic in their willingness to dance, while others get into the spirit and make much more of an effort. The Flipsters are wearing some of their best costumes on this (erm apart from Philip- can’t stand those wellies, sorry)
It’s really nice towards the end when Ruby Flipper are doing their high kicking and the audience are all joining in. Watching this always makes me feel good. 30 January 2011 17:50
I agree, a real feel-good routine and thank goodness they resisted that awful temptation to grab someone from the audience. It might have been risky for the girls to try this in those costumes anyway! (Philip would have been relatively safe though) 30 January 2011 19:28
Some Guy said…
I always like to look out for Noels desperate attempts to chat up the audience girls during this performance, what a loser.
I also dig the choreography, or should i say lack of it in this routine. I suppose it reflected the easy going nature of that golden summer. Oh and i must not forget to give princess cutie pie a mention, cant make my mind up which RF shoot she looks the cutist in, ive narrowed it down to about 10.
Sue v Lulu in this period of time, what a choice. God am i starting to waver here. No its got to be Sue, i think. 30 January 2011 23:01
i like this dance routine but i agree it does lack a bit more choreography but then they had done their main performance with morning glory this end routine was just used as a fill in cos they had showed elton and kiki video for what seemed to be the whole of 76 summer and decided to involve the audience a bit more for this episode 1 February 2011 16:16
A feel good song and dance which never fails to make me smile.Natural dancing, which I love to see, with a great atmosphere in the studio where everybody seems to be having a good time. A perfect recipe to cheer any ones day up. A priceless post. Benja 🙂 1 September 2012 00:35
Top of the Pops 26 August 1976: Patti Hammond dances as Acker Bilk played Aria.
It’s a common scenario back in the seventies: amongst the screaming hairy youths, some sedate ballad or slow instrumental becomes a surprise hit, and the groovy hipsters at TOTP, obliged to include the dirge amongst their snappy dance choones, shoves in a dancer to liven up the screen. Sue got the job for james Galway’s Annie’s Song a couple of times in 1978: Pauline got to dance alone to Rose Royce in a fabric forest in 1977: and Lulu got a male partner for Diana Ross and Lionel Richie’s endless Love in 1981.
But back in 1976, it was Patti’s job to dance while old Acker Bilk played his Aria. Not really my cup of tea musically, but it does show Patti to be a highly technically accomplished dancer.
Top of the Pops, 26/08/1976: Ruby Flipper dance to Morning Glory by James and Bobby Purify.
Well of course Sue, Patti and Lulu are looking lovely here: but Cherry, in that fuchsia & gold outfit looks absolutely fabulous. What a fine routine. My favourite moment? Patti’s mock-admonishing wagging finger at 0’38”.
Kudos to Phil for carrying off those silver wellies, too.
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My old One for the Dads blog was shut down by the Kopyright Kops. So here's a new one. Still showing performances from Legs & Co., Pan's People and Ruby Flipper, amongst others. But no more downloads. Sorry.