Top of the Pops tradition goes on


Top of the Popsmay have spun its last weekly disco ball in 2006, but the show has continued its Christmas and New Year specials over the last few years.

Hosted by Fearne Cotton and Reggie Yeats, this year’s Christmas Day show will be broadcast on BBC1 at 2pm, and will feature performances by Lily Allen, La Roux, Dizzee Rascal, Alexandra Burke, Kasabian, Muse, Florence and the Machine, the new look Sugababes, and Diversity, the dance troupe that beat Susan Boyle to the Britain’s Got Talentcrown.

The act that nabs the Christmas Number One spot (producers will surely have to Factor them in somehow ...) will get the programme’s prime slot.

The New Year’s Eve show will be broadcast at 6.30pm, and will feature a look back at 2009. Performers will include Robbie Williams, N-Dubz, Shakira, Tinchy Stryder and Calvin Harris.

Top of the Popsoriginally ran on a weekly basis from 1964 onwards, but was culled in 2006, although there have been several revivals for Comic Relief since.

Neil Tennant of Pet Shop Boys criticised the BBC earlier this year for ending the show, calling their decision “defeatist”.

Other music news: The sound of 2010?

The BBC has unleashed a longlist of bands they expect to make an impression in 2010. There are 15 artists touted for inclusion on their "Sound of 2010" list, including Irish band Two Door Cinema Club, Marina & the Diamonds, Joy Orbison, Delphic, The Drums and Stornoway (see New Music, p5). Little Boots won the accolade this year. The list will be announced next month.

O'Connell up for Grammy

Ennis-born singer Maura O'Connell has been nominated for a Grammy for her latest album, Naked With Friends. O'Connell's release competes against Loudon Wainwright III, David Holt and Josh Goforth, Jimmy Sturr and His Orchestra, and Singing Through The Hard Times: A Tribute to Utah Phillipsby various artists, with Jacqui Morse, Kendall Morse & Dan Schatz, producers.