Title graphics for Street Buzz, co-designed by Peter Capaldi
|Created by||Rod Natkiel|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||2|
|No. of episodes||4|
|Executive producer(s)||Anne Somers|
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Production company(s)||BBC Scotland|
|Original channel||BBC1 Scotland|
|Original release||26 March 1982– 18 April 1983|
Street Buzz was a BBC Scotland music programme featuring lesser-known Scottish rock and pop bands filmed in front of a live studio audience. It ran for two short series in 1982 and 1983.
Street Buzz was a response to the marked growth of the early 1980s Scottish music scene, which was gaining worldwide recognition and acceptance following hits for bands like Glasgow's Altered Images who became a household name with their No.2 song Happy Birthday.
It followed the earlier success of BBC Scotland's Jock 'n' Roll series, but while the latter featured Scots acts which had already achieved international fame, Street Buzz showcased up-and-coming bands.
A product of BBC Scotland's light entertainment department, there were just two series, each consisting of two 30-minute programmes, recorded at the BBC's Queen Margaret Drive studios in Glasgow.
Each programme featured three bands playing three songs in front of a live studio audience. There was no presenter. For some of the songs the BBC made special video shoots with the bands, usually in and around Glasgow.
Director Rod Natkiel spent nine months roving live music venues around Scotland, from the large prestige halls like the Glasgow Apollo and the Edinburgh Nite Club to the more offbeat pubs and clubs. He came across the band Shoot The Moon when he was sitting on the judging panel of the Glasgow heats for the 'Battle of the Bands' competition. They later went through to the final in London.
"Scottish groups contribute so much to today's music scene, but have so few major outlets for their talent that they tend to migrate to London," Natkiel told the Evening Times. "We hope, in some small measure, to halt that trend."
In each edition of the programme two music videos were filmed by BBC Scotland, usually in and around the Glasgow area.
In the first programme, Shoot the Moon recorded a film for their song Crash Goes La Viva in locations including Pollok House, Clarkston Parish Church in Airdrie, and the band's favourite, the Musical Swap Shop in the south side of Glasgow. The RB's, meanwhile, used the North Park House entrance to the BBC's Queen Margaret Drive headquarters in the filming for their song Uruguay.
In the second programme there were videos for Dodger's On the Radio and Six Foot Under by the 30 Bob Suits. Dodger's lead singer, Joe Coyle, told the website GlasBand80: "Street Buzz was good, especially the filming bit — two days to do a three minute song and the money was good for having a laugh. It was shot around Glasgow at Kelvingrove park, on top of a block of flats near a motorway and some filming was done inside the BBC building in Glasgow."
The first programme of the second series featured videos for the bands Those French Girls and Private ID, while the final programme had videos for Back To France by Boys In Darkness and a song from Doppelganger.
Programme 1: Pretty Boy Floyd (Greenock); The RB's (Perth); Shoot The Moon (Glasgow).
BBC 1 Scotland, Friday 26 March 1982, 10.15pm
Programme 2: Dodger (Glasgow); H2O (Glasgow); 30 Bob Suits (Glasgow).
BBC1 Scotland, Friday 2 April 1982, 10.15pm
Programme 1: Laughing Academy; Private ID (Aberdeen); Those French Girls (Stirling).
BBC1 Scotland, 11 April 1983, 6.50pm
Programme 2: Blaze; Boys in Darkness; Doppelganger.
BBC1 Scotland, 18 April 1983, 6.50pm
- The second programme of the first series was repeated the following week, on Monday 25 April.
- All programmes are available in BBC Scotland's archive.
Following the first programme in series two, the Evening Times TV reviewer Gavin Docherty wrote: "Last night's trio of bands were certainly worthy of a TV slot, but undoubtedly they would not appeal to the vast majority of musical tastes. And for that BBC Scotland deserve praise... for at least trying."
Scottish actor, Peter Capaldi, who would go on to play Dr Who decades later, worked as a graphic designer on Street Buzz, presumably co-designing the graphics from the opening titles.
The RB's, formerly The Rude Boys, was a Perth-based ska/funk/reggae outfit and one of the most prolific live performers in Scotland at the time. Three of its members went on to form the group Fiction Factory who had a Top 10 hit in 1984 with (Feels Like) Heaven.
The band Pretty Boy Floyd provided the music for a 1980 edition of the network BBC2 community programme, Something Else, made and presented by young people from Greenock.
Shoot The Moon were discovered by producer Rod Natkiel when he was sitting on the judging panel of the Glasgow heats for the 'Battle of the Bands' competition at Tiffany’s nightclub on 16 August 1981. The band went through to the final in London and they were later booked to appear on the first edition of Street Buzz.
In 1982 Dodger starred in their own BBC Scotland TV special, Back on the Streets, hosted by Tom Ferrie. The show allowed the band to showcase six of their own songs in front of a live audience. They also appeared on the the Untied Shoelaces Show in 1983.
Jacqui Copland of Aberdeen group Private ID later moved to London becoming the lead singer of the rock band Vera Cruz. She also toured as backing vocalist for musical acts such as Climie Fisher, Paul Young and performed on Duran Duran's 'Big Live Thing Tour'.
- Assistant Floor Manager: Valerie Matheson
- Production Assistant: Gillian Ewing
- Production Manager: Liz Scott (1983: Val Stephens)
- Costume: David Beeton (1983: Rona Anderson)
- Make-Up: Judith Morgan
- Graphics: Peter Capaldi, Catriona Millar (1983: Catriona Davis, Peter Capaldi)
- Rostrum Camera: Malcolm Paris
- Videotape Editor: Peter Hayes (1983: Bill Stephens)
- Film Sound: Charles Clark (1983: Roy Argyle)
- Film Editor: Colin Commander (1983: Chris Mason)
- Film Cameraman: Dick Johnstone
- Senior Studio Cameraman: Stan Bradley (Harry Barclay, second episode of each series)
- Vision Mixer: Trish Girot (1983: Donalda Noble)
- Sound: Brian Dewar
- Lighting: David Ogle
- Designer: Tim Dann (1983: Campbell Gordon)
- Producer: Anne Somers (1983: listed a Executive Producer)
- Director: Rod Natkiel (1983: is listed as Producer)
- 'Showcase for rock with a Scottish flavour', Glasgow Herald, 25 March 1982, 11.
- Joe Coyle interview, GlasBand80.co.uk.
- 'Last night's view', Evening Times, 12 April 1983, 15.
- See BBC Genome programme listing and BFI entry.
- 'Sounds Special', Radio Times, 20–26 March 1982, 23.
- Jacqui Copland (Duran Duran wiki)