Could I just ask the brains trust another question?
I was looking back over older posts but couldn't find the info I'm after.
How many 1974 episodes were there? I'm assuming also that the episode hosted by John Farnham and transmitted on 01 March 1975 was the first of the 1975 series as it was the first in colour?
According to the info I have from the Glad All Over book,there were 6 B&W episodes from 1974 and hosted by various DJ's(though the book doesn't say who those DJ's were)
Countdown debuted on Friday November 8 1974 (recorded Saturday Nov 2) at 6:30pm after Dr Who (The Mutants Part 2) and according to my TV Week it was in colour and ran for 25 minutes - I always thought the first few episodes were B&W.
It didn't make big news at the time as Jamie Redfern and Debbie Byrne winning King and Queen Of Pop was on the front cover but rated well which ensured that the ABC commissioned 44 episodes for 1975. It was mentioned that a few artists weren't happy receiving $52 appearance fee for being in the studio from 11am to 7pm the previous Saturday.
I don't know the line ups of these lost episodes that well but the 2nd episode (Nov 15) had Debbie Byrne and Stevie Wright on it. You had best check out Troy's site as that has most of the info - http://1970scountdown.atspace.com/
It wasn't shown on Dec 13 due to the ABC coverage of The Ashes cricket test. I think this also affected another date so while there were 8 episodes officially 4 of them were bunched together to make 2 on Dec 20 and 27 (final 2 episodes) which were 55 minutes starting at 6pm. So officially I think there were only 6 episodes shown but 8 episodes made.
There is a 2 page article in TV Week Dec 7 1974 with colour pictures of The La De Das, Stevie Wright, William Shakespeare, Debbie Byrne and Hush performing on Countdown.
I guess the artists who complained about the $52 performance fee weren't complaining for too long,when they realised how much of an impact the show had, the nationwide exposure and chart success. I guess in the early days, esp. the first few episodes, they had no idea where the show would take them. The 1974 episodes may have been recorded in colour, but would have had to been transmitted in B&W. ie colour TV was introduced in '75.
Thanks for that guys, particularly you Guru (an empiricist after my own heart!!!).
It seems logical then that 01 March 1975 may have been Episode 9 (?) and that if 44 episodes were commissioned that the year would have ended with Episode 52 (although this may have not been given that number as it may have been the 30 December Sherbet Special episode?)
Just counting the fortnights through to episode "36" transmitted 31 August, there appears to be only slightly out of synch as if the 01 March episode was number 9 then it should have been number 35. This may have had something to do with the combination of shows in 1974?
I wonder if the year actually finished with Episode 50 in early December (7 December?) and if there a couple of specials or if there was another regular episode between 50 and the Sherbet Special?
My Nan had a whole box of TV Week Magazines I remember going through in the late 1970's when I would stay over occasionally. I suspect they have long gone to the magazine rack in the sky (or at least the incinerator out the back).
Now I come to think of it as a record of the history of television they would be very informative. I wonder if they are available on microfilm or in some kind of reference format?
****, I didn't realise that Troy's site went into so much detail, I've only been looking at his footage found section. Thanks for putting me onto that.
According to this site the Sherbet Special was originally shown 24 August 1974 and repeated in Decemeber.
It appears episode 50 was the climax of the year then.
THe numbering still seems messy between shows 33 and 36. Even if the Sherbet Special was originally Episode 34 and aired 24 August, there's only a week before Episode 36 which was aired on 31 August. Maybe its just an administrative error?
I was wondering if you could possibly scan me copies of the 7th December 1974 article on Countdown please as I would love to include the info/pics on my site and personally would love to see those photos.
Also do you have any more TV Week Countdown articles from say 1974 to 1976 with pics? It would be great to add as many Countdown photos of the early years as possible to my site.
I can return the favour in some way if there's anything you would like in return.
Hi Troy if your interested i have a 1977 tv week with a special feature on the 100th episode. It's two pages,five color photos and a few paragraphs of text.