Caught by the River

A Caught by the River Pick of the Year

30th December 2014

With seemingly no video evidence to back up the ‘Dappy from N’Dubz being kicked in the head by a horse’ story my vote for the television Pop moment of the year goes to this clip from Cilla, an ITV drama screened on British television back in September.

Though no fan of Cilla Black, I watched – and enjoyed – the entire series, but it’s this bit, the final minutes of episode 2, that totally got me.

I’m not talking about Sheridan Smith’s singing voice, what works for me (with a little help from the song itself, obviously) is the rest of it. From having to go to a public telephone box to get your week-one chart position from manager, Brian Epstein. To telling boyfriend Bobby – hair, cig, black leather jacket – that “It’s gone to Number One” – to the fantastically detailed Abbey Road studio (2) mise-en-scene:

Mouth to mic, hands over ears, drama in the vocal booth.
The hair and facial expressions of the backing singers.
The faces and jumpers of the blokes ‘on the job’ in the string section.
The pianist at work – fags, ashtray, action.
Brian Epstein and producer George Martin, caught in a moment. (I’ve been there, it’s a drug).

Nailed, and further proof that I’m getting soppy in my old age. (JB)