BBC2 Late Show, October 1991

lateshowThere is, sadly, no video material I’m aware of from the 1990 Jordan tour. In 1991, Prefab Sprout did do a performance at the French Ricard Festival which was filmed by the French channel M6, and although bits and pieces of the show it may have been on have turned up on Youtube and elsewhere, not a trace exists anywhere of the Sprout portion. Unless of course VOUS AVEZ UNE PETITE IDEE, OUI, VOUS!

However in October 1991, the band turned up in full concert configuration to play “Jordan: the Comeback”  and “Do Wop in Harlem” for the UK BBC2 Late Show. This is often confused with the Irish RTE Late Show, but was definitely the BBC2 version. And a great performance it is too.

Not my finest hour for the transfer though. It was the first VHS transfer I ever did myself, and with the careless insouciance of a neophyte I started with a £20 Sony standard VHS player, having borrowed the precious and unique cassette from “MrDamo” from Youtube. And, horrifically, there was a speck of grit on the head which scratched the tape which I failed to notice for ages, plus the transfer was rubbish. Thankfully the SVHS player I quickly bought on recommendation from a professional smoothed out some of the damage, but I don’t think I’ve ever been so mortified in my life. This particular version is constructed from a couple of recordings, there’s a poor intro section but it eventually settles down into a reasonable quality remainder.

Hopefully a better tape will one day surface. I can’t believe no one else recorded it, this would have been the height of Sprout fandom and there were plenty of people who might have done. But it’s in the BBC archive awaiting a cunning plan to extract it, which I will get to at some point. For the moment though, this is what we have, and it’s hugely enjoyable.

One thought

  1. So pleased that you managed to track this down eventually and keep it for posterity. I remember posting about it on various PS forums down the years, asking if anyone had a copy, all to no response. I’d actually stumbled across the original broadcast in 1991 but only managed to see the end, i.e. Doo-Wop in Harlem. Sadly I did’t have a blank video ready to go inside the VCR, anyone remember having to do that just in case anything good came on by chance? Ah the days before the iPlayer…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.