(Post by Colin ‘Jackie’ Jackson of Glasgow – June 2021)
Views expressed in this article are of the author himself, founded more on observation alone and with no forensic analysis of statistics whatsoever. Please don’t send abusive letters and dog poo through the post, should you be offended by the non-inclusion of your favourite ‘Page Niner’- or indeed by the inclusion of one you consider a Front Pager.
(Other Teen Heartthrobs are – or at least, were – available.)
I read in my sister’s copies of Jackie magazine, my sister told me about Jackie magazine, I believe the most popular teen heartthrobs of the early to mid Seventies would have been, in no particular order: Donny Osmond; David Cassidy; David Essex, Marc Bolan, Rod Stewart, David Bowie and each of the individual Bay City Rollers.
A weekly magazine featuring only those stars would still have sold in tens of thousands.
Who, though, were the others? Who were the stars that didn’t make the front, back on centre pages so often? Who were more likely, the Page 9 ‘fillers?’
OK – so we’re almost fifty years too late, but let’s show some love for the Teen Heartthrob ‘also rans.’
You can comment and vote for your favourite from the following list of ‘second division stars’ in the poll which features on the
Attracting fame for his starring role in the hit Seventies TV series ‘Starsky & Hutch,’ he actually set out to be a musician. He first came to the attention of American TV audiences as ‘The Covered Man’ – a 1966 ‘Masked Singer’ feature on The Merv Griffin Show.
The TV detective series quickly established itself in USA and UK, and his partner in (anti) crime, Paul Michael Glaser also became a bit of a pin-up in girls’ magazines.
However, it’s David Soul’s additional musical output that sees him make our poll.
In total, David Soul spent fifty-six weeks in the UK music charts, hitting Number One in both the UK and US with ‘Don’t Give Up On Us’ and matching that in the UK with ‘Silver Lady.’ Both were released in 1977. In the same year, ‘Going In With My Eyes Open’ reached number two, and ‘Let’s Have a Quiet Night In’ managed number eight. The following year, ’It Sure Brings Out The Love In Your Eyes’ was held up just outside the Top Ten at number twelve.
PETE DUEL & BEN MURPHY
Pete Duel (Hannibal Heyes) and Ben Murphy (Jedediah ‘Kid’ Curry) were the stars of the hit TV comedy / western, Alias Smith & Jones. The series ran to fifty episodes over three series, though the final seventeen saw the character Hannibal Heyes recast after Pete Dual had sadly taken his own life at the end of 1971.
Merely watching the introduction in the following video reminded how much I loved this programme – I still knew it almost word for word.
Like ‘Starsky & Hutch’ and ‘Happy Days,’ ‘Alias Smith & Jones’ succeeded in harnessing cute looking actors to a dynamic and entertaining story-line, thereby appealing not only to teenage girls but to action focussed boys and adults alike.
Pictures of both actors will have adorned the bedroom wall of many a young girl. I may be wrong here, but my perception was that Ben Murphy slightly edged it in the ‘hot’ stakes?
Having already played the lead role (alongside Jodie Foster) in the film version of the hit kids’ musical, ‘Bugsy Malone,’ the now sixteen year old Scott was introduced to fans of the fantastic ‘Happy Days’ television series as Chachi Arcola, the young cousin of The Fonz. He then went on to star in the spin-off series, ‘Joanie Loves Chachi,’ in the early 80s.
It’s for the former role that I remember Scott … and why his Jackie or Look-in magazine photo adorned the bedroom wall of many a young girl in the Seventies.
Straight outta left field, this one! Although he had toured with Rocky Horror Show and appeared in ‘Tommy’ as Tommy’s vicious cousin, ‘Cousin Kevin,’ Paul Nicholas was largely unknown in UK … until he set out to conquer the UK music charts in 1976 with three single releases: ‘Reggae Like It Used To Be,’ ‘Dancing With The Captain’ and ‘Grandma’s Party.’
I suspect it was more his smiling, cheeky-boy looks than delivery of cheezy Seventies pop songs that prompted the swooning and cut-out photos stuck onto school jotters. For eight months in 1976 though, Paul Nicholas owned the pre-mid / post-mid pages of Teen magazines everywhere.
(Greater fame was of course to follow though, in the Eighties, when he concentrated on acting, starring first in the short-lived TV sitcom ‘Two Up, Two Down,’ and two years later in the hugely popular ‘Just Good Friends.’ And more recently, of course, ‘Eastenders.’)
It’s very easy to be dismissive of Barry Green (real name) as a bit of a watered down version of ‘he that shall not be named.’ His two biggest hits, ‘(Dancing) On A Saturday Night’ and ‘Do You Wanna Dance’ were both from 1973, his three other lesser successes coming the following year. Resultantly, he would have hovered around Page Nine of Jackie etc, for only a short period of time.
However, prior to that he had co-written ‘Sugar Me’ with Lyndsey de Paul and played bass in the rock band Spice … which later morphed into legends, Uriah Heep! And then, subsequent to all that, he wrote a million seller for Brotherhood of Man and penned hits for artists as diverse as Diana Ross and Andrea Bocelli.
He may have been a good deal older than your average Teen Heartthrob of the time (thirty-one, when he scored his debut hit ‘My Coo-Ca-Choo’ in 1973) but as I recall, he was all over the popular magazines throughout 1973 and ’74.
There’s a lot to be said for the leather and studs look, I guess.
Formed initially as Salvation in 1970, they played the local clubs and bars of Glasgow, before changing some personnel and name to Slik around four years later. I’ll bet I’m not the only one reading this who saw them play a least once in the famous Clouds Disco, above The Apollo venue.
Probably more famous now for being Midge Ure’s first band of note, they never-the-less scored a Number One hit with ‘Forever And Ever’ in 1976, followed later in the year by ‘Requiem.’
They were quite obviously targeted for the teenage girls market, but though I didn’t stare longingly and doe-eyed at a poster on my bedroom wall, like many lads of my age, I harboured a grudging admiration for Slik.
And there you have it – the Once Upon a Time in The ‘70s list of Teen Heartthrob also-rans. Is your second, third or even fourth favourite in there?
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