The animal takeover continues. . .
Ronny’s Pop Show was a West German television programme which ran from 1982 to 1988. A monkey named Ronny presents a 45 minute video show which ran through the latest chart hits. A spin-off LP and cassette followed in 1983 on CBS and releases continued bi-annually for a few years. The first one to receive a CD release was volume 9 in 1987; an 18 track single disc of highlights from the double LP [which had included 31 tracks]. These albums would continue to be released throughout the 1990s – long after the television series had finished.
Ronny’s Pop Show works well as a solid selection of spring 1987 material while also featuring tracks that appeared on both Now 9 and Hits 6.
There are three Now 9 crossovers:
Ben E. King – Stand By Me. The title track for one of my key coming-of-age movies.
Jackie Wilson – Reet Petite. Clay animation and the 1957 rock’n’roll revival.
Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley – Jack Your Body. Seminal early house anthem. Not on the Now CD so great to see it here.
Elsewhere George Michael and Aretha Franklin’s booming I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me) and John Farnham’s hyperactive You’re The Voice would be grabbed by the Hits team for inclusion on their sixth volume.
The Bangles are in trap two. Refreshingly it’s not Manic Monday or Walk Like An Egyptian. Instead we’re treated to the catchy single remix of Walking Down Your Street. Next up is Gregory Abbott’s I Got The Feelin’ It’s Over – a resigned tale of extinguished romance complete with his trademark falsetto. Mandolin Rain was Bruce Hornsby and The Range’s plaintive follow-up to The Way It Is. It ended up in chart quicksand – just making #70 in the UK. I’d never heard Don Johnson’s Heartache Away before now – it certainly beats his ailing late ’86 semi-hit Heartbeat. Also unfamiliar were Cook Da Books and the impressive McCartney-lite strum of Your Eyes. Colin James Hay’s Hold Me is a little aimless however; like a bad Sting b-side.
Other highlights include Queen’s re-treading of their Hot Space sound. Edge-of-the-dance-floor-watching-everybody-else Pain Is So Close To Pleasure. Swing Out Sister’s Surrender is chic lounge with a deadly twist. Then there’s the Heaven 17 era that time forgot; their Pleasure One LP and its ultra-sleek Trouble. Jennifer Rush’s I Come Undone is a dramatic Eurovision lung-buster while Genesis’ Tonight Tonight Tonight [the strongest single on Invisible Touch] shows us exactly how a long album track can be properly edited for radio. We end up with some uptempo beats – Sandra’s mysterious nightclubbing gem Midnight Man.
Swing Out Sister – Surrender
Genesis – Tonight Tonight Tonight (Remix)
Lest we forget
Bangles – Walking Down Our Street (Remix)