Seaside Special

Filmed: Friday 15 August 1975

Location: Clennon Valley, Paignton, Devon, UK

Broadcast: Saturday 16 August 1975, 20:10, BBC1, UK

Release status: See below

Duration: 51:00; ABBA bits 6 minutes

Shown in: UK

Additional information

Seaside Special was a BBC light entertainment show broadcast on summer Saturday nights from the mid-late 1970s (and I LOVED it!). It was an outside broadcast and was always filmed in a big top in a British seaside resort. Originally the big top belonged to various circuses (principally Gerry Cottle's Circus), but in later seasons, the BBC purchased their own big top to act as the venue. The programme was developed by BBC producer Michael Hurll.

The theme song, Summertime City was by Mike Batt (the man behind The Wombles). The main stage was held in a circus tent (Big Top). The shows were always featured a variety of acts - some music, some comedy.

ABBA were introduced by DJ Tony Blackburn and performed Waterloo which had been recorded outside earlier (and performed to playback  - first verse only) and SOS LIVE quite beautifully. In the 1970s in the UK there was a rule that only British musicians could be heard on British TV (or something like that). So whenever ABBA performed on any UK pop programmess they had to re-record backing tracks with British musicians and sing live - which is why ABBA stopped doing such appearances after Fernando, by which time they didn’t need to do it to publicise the latest singles. The rules were relaxed in the late 70s that non-British backing tracks could be used, but all musicians on a recording had to be seen, hence the remixed version of If It Wasn’t For The Nights that ABBA performed on The Mike Yarwood Christmas Show in late 1978, which removed all but the basic keyboards/guitars/bass/drum.

In the days of buying video clips from other fans in the late 80s/90s/00s, the clip of Waterloo showed up on many video lists as being a "Swedish Folkpark" performance. But the proof that it's a UK performance is right there in the clip with the appearance of a bright red London bus in the right-hand corner of this shot.

The running order was:

  1. New Edition sing & dance to The Main Attraction, Be A Clown and Funky Gibbon
  2. Dailey & WayneKeep The Customer Satisfied and Hey There
  3. Des Lane - Yellow Rose of Texas and It's a Long Way to Tipperary
  4. Lulu - I Was Raised On Rock and Boy Meets Girl
  5. ABBA - Waterloo and SOS
  6. Janet Brown - The Pleasure Of Your Company
  7. Kimberley ClarkeCall The Preacher
  8. Kenneth McKellar - Without A Song and O Sole Mio
  9. Mike Batt - Summertime City
  10. Tony Blackburn - Tie A Yellow Ribbon

The performance of SOS has been released on the ABBA Deluxe Edition CD/DVD

In ther performance of Waterloo, notice the two styles of dancing from the girls - Frida bounces to the beat whereas Agnetha moves to the melody.

The names of "Agnetha" and Frida" appearing on the back of their outfits for the first time.

Lyrics available on the Official ABBA site: Waterloo and SOS

Archive data from BBC’s public site:
Caption: Variety show from the Big Top in Torbay starring LULU, Dailey & Wayne, Kenneth MCKELLAR with Roy HUDD, Abba, Mike BATT, Janet BROWN, Des LANE, Kimberley CLARKE, Tony BLACKBURN & New Edition. sp s ob
Guid: LLV1476B
Transmission date: 16 Aug 1975
Clip #: BBC_LLV1476B
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License type: Rights-ready
Filmmaker: BBC Broadcast Archive
Collection: BBC Broadcast Archive
Clip length: 00:50:50:00
Credit: BBC Broadcast Archive
Source: BBC Broadcast Archive
Final delivery options: Other digital and analog formats available. Please contact us for assistance.
Release information: Not released. More information
Aspect ratios: 4:3
Object name: BBC_LLV1476B
Subject: Arts, Culture and Entertainment
Keywords: Large, Performance, Lulu, Arts Culture and Entertainment, Celebrities, ABBA. Find similar clips
Availability: Availability for this clip cannot be guaranteed until time of purchase.
Transcript: Variety show from the Big Top in Torbay starring LULU, Dailey & Wayne, Kenneth MCKELLAR with Roy HUDD, Abba, Mike BATT, Janet BROWN, Des LANE, Kimberley CLARKE, Tony BLACKBURN & New Edition. sp s ob
MUSIC PERFS: New Edition sing & dance to 'The Main Attraction' (0m20s) 'Be A Clown' (0m35s) 'Funky Gibbon' (1m25s) w Mike BATT 'Summertime City' (3m27s) Dailey & Wayne 'Keep The Customer Satisfied' (1m40s) 'Hey There' (0m35s) Des LANE 'Yellow Rose of Texas' (1m02s) 'Long Way to Tipperary' (1m00s) LULU 'I Was Raised On Rock' (2m25s) 'Boy Meets Girl' (2m45s) Abba 'Waterloo' (1m50s) 'S.O.S.' (3m10s) Janet BROWN 'The Pleasure Of Your Company' (0m35s) Kimberley CLARKE 'Call The Preacher' (2m12s) Kenneth MCKELLAR 'Without A Song' (2m38s) 'O Sole Mio' (2m25s) Tony BLACKBURN 'Tie A Yellow Ribbon' (1m02s)
BBC Item Type: Programme
BBC SubCatalogue: LONPROG

Tanks to Paul Russell, Jozsef, Philip Muytjens, Ian Cole, Paul Neilson, Paul Jordan, Petr Mlejnek, Pam Alvarado, Carl Magnus Palm, Richard Knight and "Cyclops".
YouTube links c/o OldTVShow

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