Thursday, 22 December 2016
Everybody's going to the party
It's our last timeslip moment of 2016...
Let's race back one final time to that most memorable of years - the year of Pol Pot, Nadia Comaneci, Entebbe, the great British heatwave, the "Gang of Four", The Omen, the US bicentennial, Brotherhood of Man, the "Son of Sam", and the final end of the Vietnam War (as North and South Vietnam were merged) - 1976, for another bout of nostalgia.
In the news forty years ago in December 1976: the US of A was celebrating the arrival of its fresh new President Jimmy Carter; the Sex Pistols shocked uptight Britain by saying the word "fuck" on live television; in the ascendant were Northern Ireland peace campaigners Betty Williams and Mairead Corrigan (who won the Nobel Peace Prize), and The Eagles (who released Hotel California), but Bob Marley narrowly survived an assassination attempt; and the UK Labour government's disastrous economic mismanagement was exposed when Chancellor Denis Healey secured a loan from the International Monetary Fund to prop up a huge deficit. On our big screens were The Pink Panther Strikes Again, Survive! and Picnic at Hanging Rock. On telly: The New Avengers (with Joanna Lumley), Multi-Coloured Swap Shop and The Two Ronnies.
And in our charts this week in 1976? Johnny Mathis held the #1 slot with When A Child is Born, and following close behind were Showaddywaddy, Abba, Queen, Mike Oldfield, ELO, Yvonne Elliman, Tina Charles and Smokie. But leaping upwards was this eternal party favourite - it's the lovely Mr Paul Nicholas and Grandma's Party!
Oh dear. I still remember it all too well.