Friday, October 10, 2008

A Whole World Coming Alive


Friday evenings in the Westward TV region circa 1973 and my Dad and I are big fans of 'The Protectors'. He is an admirer of 'Miss' Nyree Dawn Porter and I am an admirer of the exotic locations, the swarve 'Harry Rule' (Robert Vaughan) and, above all, the theme tune, which is, of course, magnificent - whether in the instrumental version we get with the opening titles or the big powerful Tony Christie take at the end. Those opening five 'dar dar de dum dum' notes (not dissimilar to the ATV 'ident', come to think of it) practically define the excitement of Friday night for 7-8 year old me.

Now good old Tony may just have made a record with Richard Hawley on which he sounds like.....Richard Hawley - but I absolutely bloody well LOVE this.

[PS: I just tried to download the song from iTunes, but the site 'needed to close' mid-download. I bet the buggers keep my 79p! It's worse than those bloody tube station chocolate machines!]

[PPS: Oh, hang on. I gave it a thump and the choc dropped out...]

Tony Christie - 'Avenues & Alleyways' (1973)

19 comments:

  1. The Persuaders was a pre-Protectors Friday night ritual in our house too. No one does these sort of fun-size cinematic themes for TV anymore. Wasn't Nyree known as The Contessa? I've got a Protectors Annual in the loft somewhere I'll have to look it up

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  2. And oh what a shirt. Nyree was posh crumpet were she not?

    I'm back at Batley Variety Club again. Other major stars who played there around the end of the 60s and into the early 70s were: Louis Armstrong, Shirl, Jones the Voice and the Big O, but Tony C was perfect for the chicken in a basket brigade. "He punched the air for affect".

    Incidently, I married a girl called Maria .. and 'I did what I did' for her.

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  3. I want that shirt ,too!

    Is it just me or does he look like Tony Hadley (or vice versa ) in this clip?

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  4. Damn, everyone's beaten me to it. I was going to say something about The Protectors being cut price Persuaders (but still fun). I've got nearly 5 years on you, Davy, so I was starting to notice The Contessa but I wasn't sure about her at the time because she was posh and a bit mumsy, not like the dollybirds we were supposed to fancy. Now it would be a no brainer and I would be in full agreement with Mr H Snr. I always loved the theme too.

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  5. Nyree was 'nice' and 'pretty' and 'posh' - all of which were good things; but yes, also (definitely)'mumsy'.

    I was really just in love with the jet-setting, music, international crime busting and not going to bed if I kept really, really quiet.

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  6. PS: Are you really 5 years older than me? I was born 31st July 1965.

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  7. PPS: Tony Hadley? Yes, I can see that a tad Peewit. Also, weirdly, Stuart Maconie?

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  8. 15th November 1960. That's my excuse for owning progressive rock albums.

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  9. BTW, we've mentioned the shirt (quite rightly) but what about the red jeans?! Nice.

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  10. what was that one when they were rubbishly psychic or something and had that exceptionally lovely whats her name in it? and what is going on at the start of tony's performance - is his mum still asking what he wants for his tea after ?

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  11. The show Ally's thinking of is The Champions with the gorgeous Alexandra Bastedo. I saw an old episode the other day and she is/was hot.

    btw - I bumped into my best man's mum the other day for the first time in about 10 years and she said, and I quote: "You've aged really well. Mick. You'd pass for 35." Made me feel good - I was older than that last time I saw here!

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  12. Tony says " I'll have egg".

    The Champions had an equally marvellous theme tune of course (written by Mr Tony 'Crossroads/Downtown' Hatch).

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  13. You're marvellous for your age Mick - all this blogging on computers or whatever it is you do, I think it's fantastic, I really do.

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  14. Bastedo and Bastable always got a chuckle in my (northern) playground.

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  15. Why thank you, sir. It's not easy being older than you but looking younger :)

    Dick, those names were funny in west country playground too.

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  16. Thanks for uploading this, Davester, I liked the tune more than the programme, and loved John Barry's theme for The Persuaders too.
    Two interesting facts while I was wallowing in nostalgia over this on Wikipedia: firstly, The Protectors was known as 'Poigne De Fer Et Seduction' in France. Secondly, I am 45 but most of my students think I'm 30-35. (By the way, one of these facts is not from Wiki. I wonder if you can spot which one. Cue sarcasm about people with bad eyesight, of which I am one.)

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  17. I was amused to discover whilst sojourning with my French penfriend in the late 70s that The Avengers is known over there as 'Un Chapeau Melon Et Les Bottes De Cuire',which lacks a certain snappiness, don't you think? The bloke who dubbed Steed had a very deep, macho voice completely unlike Patrick MacNee's.

    People tell me I look every one of my 43 years.

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  18. Splendid. I am an admirer of Mr. Christie, but I don't have this one. I do remember every bar, however; but that's another story. Cheers!

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