27 Oct 1973 – Series One (5)

Just Oliver. Image © The Stage Media Company Limited

Episode five saw a debut on the judges panel for the ATV announcer and host of the Tingha and Tucker Club, Jean Morton. Jean was joined by Tony Hatch and Clement Freud with Derek Hobson in his familiar host’s chair.

Of the six acts of the line-up for this episode, only four are known;

  • Just Oliver (vocalist) from Warrington
  • Diana Ball (vocalist)
  • Dri Jinja (folk trio)
  • Leslie Melville and Madame Charmaine (magician / clairvoyant)
  • Fascinatin’ Rhythm (four-piece comedy group) from Norfolk
  • Unknown Act

The winners on the night were the folk trio from Surrey, Dri Jinja, who would go on to appear in the Grand Final on 29 December 1973.

We would get to see Just Oliver again when he was invited back to appear in the opening show of series two having won the viewers vote from his appearance here.

Fascinatin’ Rhythm were the first East Anglian group to appear on the show. They were John Chandler (drums), Trevor Leeder (bass, vocals), John Jarvis (vocals) and Mike Green (guitar, vocals) and from the early 1970s they had been managed by the Chic Applin Agency who were based in Norwich.

Fascinatin’ Rhythm were John Chandler, Trevor Leeder, John Jarvis, Mike Green. Image: John Jarvis

Previously, in 1963, drummer John had shown his expertise behind the drum kit when he joined his first band, The Surf Riders. Band member Mike Green became a lifelong friend and by the time John Jarvis joined them, they changed their name to 5 by Five.   

By the mid-1960s, John Chandler had left the music scene to concentrate on his career as a driving instructor and school bus driver. But the end of the 1960s, along with Trevor, Mike and John Jarvis coaxed John Chandler out of music retirement, and they formed the group East Coast. When they signed with Chic Applin they changed their name to Fascinatin’ Rhythm.

Following the comedy impression groups performance, judge Clement Freud said, ‘They will do well in clubs for short sighted, hard of hearing people.’

After splitting On 29 May 1979 the group reformed for a one off show at the Tudor Hall, Norwich. In the early 1980s, now as the trio, Star, John Chandler, Mike and Trevor, became the resident band at the former Norwood Rooms, Norwich and Northrepps Country Club, near Cromer.  The four members of Fascinatin’ Rhythm played together again on the 1984 John Jarvis LP Nostalgia Is A Thing Of The Past

John Chandler, affectionately known as ‘Notchy’ sadly passed away, aged 74 in November 2020 following a brief illness.

Leslie Melville and Charmaine the clairvoyant hen. Image © The Stage Media Company Limited

Leslie Melville contacted me to say he appeared in the first series with his clairvoyant hen, Madame Charmaine.  He couldn’t recall the date or the other acts, but his perfect recollection of the judging panel line up put his appearance on this show.

Leslie and his hen’s act proved a fast-moving comedy mind-reading act and great visual entertainment.

Missing Details

This show is missing the names of one of the acts that appeared on this programme.

If you have any details of the missing acts then please leave a comment on the page of use the Contact Me page to send in any information you may have.

Credits: Thanks to Trevor Leeder (Fascinatin’ Rhythm) for the placement of the band on this show.

4 thoughts on “27 Oct 1973 – Series One (5)

  1. The group comprised of Ian Yaxley, Nicky Watts & Barry Liddell. They had been performing together in Folk Clubs around SE London, Kent, Surrey & Sussex.


  2. Thank you for the information! I see that it was exactly 46 years ago! Wow!
    ‘Just Oliver’ is the only name that I remember from that time!
    But thanks again for your interest!
    Charmaine, of course, is now in ‘The Great Scratching Shed’ in the Sky – and I am more or less retired – but it was all great fun!



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