Sunday, 25 December 2016

Review of the year - December 30th 1976


On the penultimate day of 1976 I looked back at the year, and amazingly found something worth writing about.

January was all exams, February I got flu and watched the Winter Olympics from my sick bed, March nothing much. April seems to have been the biggie, the school ski-ing trip to Italy, which I do indeed still remember 40 years on. Our band also made its debut performance, under the temporary name Mercury.



May's high point was inheriting 400 Scorcher comics, which I eventually returned to their original owner Dave Lyon earlier this year; June seems rather diary-self-obsessed, and July and August were the legendary heatwave. September I started at a new school, October I'm fascinated by TV and comics, November nothing to say, and December the band plays again and I start a comic strip which, 40 years later, I have yet to finish.

Wow. The best years of your life can seem pretty dull when you sum them up. No wonder I put so much detail into the decorations of the diary pages. And check out the most popular Record For The Day of 1976. Laurie Lingo and the Dipsticks? Dave Lee bloody Travis? Bring on punk, I say.







Kev F Sutherland, as well as writing and drawing for The Beano, Marvel, Doctor Who et al, runs Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, libraries and art centres - email for details, and follow him on Facebook and Twitter. View the promo video here

Christmas Day 1976


Merry Christmas everyone! Here is my teenage diary from Christmas Day 1976, full to the brim with the presents I got and the TV I watched. I think Christmas telly has improved in the last 40 years. As for pressies? What can improve on the the Look-In and Willy The Kid annuals, two Stan Lee Origins Of Marvel Comics books, and the Album Of The Soundtrack Of The Trailer Of The Film Of Monty Python And The Holy Grail? Not a lot, that's what.



Actually the TV wasn't that bad. Morecambe and Wise & Parkinson were still on the BBC, Bruce Forsyth was still on the Generation Game, Christmas Top Of The Pops was on just like it should be, and Airport and Oliver qualified as New-To-TV movies. And then, just as now, ITV either hadn't bothered or we'd forgotten it existed.  God bless us every one.

I didn't feature my usual Record For The Day on Christmas Day, instead listing the records that I got as presents. The album, Queen's Day At The Races, doesn't get its mention till Boxing Day. But here are all three treats.






Kev F Sutherland, as well as writing and drawing for The Beano, Marvel, Doctor Who et al, runs Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, libraries and art centres - email for details, and follow him on Facebook and Twitter. View the promo video here

Friday, 21 October 2016

Kneeling? What's that about? - October 21st 1976

An odd entry this, because I hadn't posted it up here on the blog until the BBC People's History Of Pop asked for a scan of it, following the interview I did with them earlier in the year. So this is clearly one of the spreads I thumbed through and read from, but not one that I'd uploaded yet. I can only remember referring to the passage about kneeling.


It reads "Lunchtime: Nick & I went to the music rooms and met some of those friendly fifth years. At least Nick did some kneeling - and if there hadn't been three of them...". So it would appear we were being bullied in the fourth year, and for the life of me I have no memory it whatsoever. I haven't read the earlier entries which might give us more of a picture of what was going on. I shall have investigate.

My Records For The Day, which is where People's History Of Pop's interest in my diary comes from, are outstandingly unmemorable. Does anyone remember The Coffee Song by Osibisa or One Love In My Lifetime by Diana Ross?


Thursday, 13 October 2016

Captain Britain meets Captain Genocide - October 13th 1976


"And that definitely is our new name!!" Rarely has a sentence been less accurate and more long-forgotten. I do not remember our band ever being called Captain Genocide (as legend recalls, we spent most of our time known as Walter Tottle). And I have no memory of a song called Mary. If anyone remembers better, and even better if the song was ever committed to tape, then I'd love to hear about it.

And elsewhere in this diary entry we find evidence of school bullying, which I'd also long since erased from my memory. "Nick and I sang his new song in the Music Rooms when in came three fifth years. Guess who got two fists in the stomach and resisted the temptation to crush the three of them?" Oh bless my little cotton socks. Such restraint. (The story continues in this October 21st entry)



Much more memorable is the subsequent music lesson where we found that, to any classical music - or whatever Mrs Blob chose to play us - we could sing "Nick Nacky Nick Nack Nicky Nacky Noo". And did.

Captain Britain was a new comic, about whose arrival I was very excited, and here was my first attempt at drawing him. I've gotten better. 


Records For The Day, our own "Mary" by "Captain Genocide" notwithstanding, and classics - Climax Blues Band and Joan Armatrading, a good week for new singles.









Kev F Sutherland, as well as writing and drawing for The Beano, Marvel, Doctor Who et al, runs Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, libraries and art centres - email for details, and follow him on Facebook and Twitter. View the promo video here




The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre do Shakespeare played at the Gilded Balloon at the Edinburgh Fringe August 2016. On Tour through Spring 2017.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Bar Mitzvah Boy - September 14th 1976


Talk about over compensating, how's this for the most boring diary entries ever - seriously, is there an interesting word in these two pages? - balanced by one of the niftiest layouts. 

I'm not sure how many teeth I thought I had (to be honest I'm not sure how many teeth I really do have, but I'll have a guess that it's not that many) but the design's pretty original isn't it?


The TV's pretty much a cross section of everything you think was on the telly in the 70s. If they made one of those "I remember the 1970s" talking heads shows and only mentioned Nationwide, The Sweeney, The Tomorrow People, George & Mildred, Some Mothers Do Have Em, Play For Today, Mastermind, Supersonic and Angels, you'd go "yeah, that's pretty much it" wouldn't you?


Records for the Day, both disco classics from the days before irony and pop music had been introduced.






Kev F Sutherland, as well as writing and drawing for The Beano, Marvel, Doctor Who et al, runs Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, libraries and art centres - email for details, and follow him on Facebook and Twitter. View the promo video here



The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre do Shakespeare played at the Gilded Balloon at the Edinburgh Fringe August 2016. On Tour through Spring 2017.

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Snerks? 4th Sept 1976


Among the familiar items in this flashback from 1976 we have the start of new series of Doctor Who, Tiswas, The Two Ronnies, and The Generation Game. And a hidden gem in the form of Lucky Feller, the sitcom written by Terence Frisby, about which I only just had a chat last week with his son Dominic off of the Sitcom Trials. Dominic's loaded some episodes online, let's check them out together.

But what is Simon Simon? A 1970 Silent Comedy? That's not Mel Brooks Silent Movie? That's ringing no bells. The same goes for the Records For The Day. Nice and Slow by Jesse Green? I'm guessing that describes its ascent up the chart.*


But the haziest memory for me is not the "circular haystacks" (any kid from the 70s remembers those), or the nine week summer holiday I describe (the 1970s, you had to be there). It's me painting my guitar. Oil painting my guitar. Oil painting my three string guitar? Maybe these are pages from someone else's diary?

Also Harry North, artist and writer of Doctor On The Go, what does Snerks mean? Answer Me!

*In order to complete this blog I googled Jesse Green's NIce & Slow. Of course I totally remember it. Just not his name or its title. Sorry Jesse, wherever you are. PS, do you know what Snerks is?





Kev F Sutherland, as well as writing and drawing for The Beano, Marvel, Doctor Who et al, runs Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, libraries and art centres - email for details, and follow him on Facebook and Twitter. View the promo video here




The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre do Shakespeare played at the Gilded Balloon at the Edinburgh Fringe August 2016. On Tour through Spring 2017.

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Comic reviews, cycling & cows - July 27th 1977

I reviewed a lot of comics in my teens, to no avail, for no actual audience. Yet I designed my diary as if it was as widely read as a twenty first century blog (well, more widely read than this 21st century blog. But, you know, a proper one). Check out the "Coming Soon" box. "An exciting new addition to this diary" is advertised. If you can use the word "advertised" when no-one's actually looking.

As for what the exciting new addition was, I can't imagine. I can tell you that, at the end of these two pages, I cycle out to a field and do a drawing of a cow. Who says my life wasn't a roller coaster of adventure?

The Records For The Day were a mix of songs that went on to be legendary and songs that went on to be virtually untraceable on Youtube.