I'm Doin' Fine Now _________________________________________________________________________________
Performed byNew York Cityand reaching number 20 in the UK charts _________________________________________________________________________________
Original broadcast date17/08/1973Duration of dance - 2.33 mins _________________________________________________________________________________
Dancers: Babs, Cherry, Dee Dee, Louise, Ruth _________________________________________________________________________________
A link to the dance:
New York City was an American group which formed in 1972 under the name "Tri-Boro Exchange" (whatever that means). With the help of two well-known producers, Wes Farrell & Thom Bell, they released two albums and a number of singles, but only one record made the Billboard Top 40 and the UK Top 50. That's why they are regarded as a one-hit wonder today.
In the UK, "I'm Doin' Fine Now" spent two weeks at No. 20, so it wasn't exactly a big hit. Nevertheless the song is quite well-remembered, probably because 19 years later, in 1992, The Pasadenas took a cover version to No. 4 in the charts.
On 17/08/1973 "I'm Doin' Fine Now" was on its way up from No. 25 to No. 23. The TOTP show on that day featured a truly eclectic mix of artists: Hudson Ford, Dawn Feat. Tony Orlando, Donny Osmond, Bobby Goldsboro, Geordie, Medicine Head, Carpenters & Gary Glitter all crammed into app. 30 minutes. Unfortunately, as with most shows of that era, the BBC wiped the tapes and all we have now is a black and white recording from the PVL. Well, better than nothing!
The routine is more or less standard Pan's People fare - synchronous dancing, well-known gestures, a complete lack of solos - nothing to get too excited about. What sets this performance apart from other dances is mainly the camera trickery. Some effects are similar to "You Can Do Magic" like the doubling of the dancers. Even so I think these effects work quite well. I especially like how Louise's and Cherry's faces are shown enlarged in the background.
This is not a clip that I watch very often but when I do, I thoroughly enjoy it. It's just infectious to see how the dancers keep smiling brightly during the whole of the performance. It seems to me that Ruth's smile is the brightest of all! I guess it helps that I like the song as well. My rating for this dance will be
Thanks for posting this routine VV. We really have no right to be watching a show wiped 40 years ago in 2016! Interesting chart information as I had always thought this was a bigger hit than it actually was. Very reminiscent of the era, perhaps that's why. The dance is rather Pans by numbers to be honest. Almost like a computer had been asked to devise a routine indicative of the early 70s. Having said that the ladies look decidedly glamorous in those dresses, though I thought the editor had an off-day interspersing the midget Pans into the dance towards the end. Looked a bit weird.
I would agree with the previous correspondents that this is rather average fare, even though that implies very watchable and quite enjoyable when you're talking of Pans People. I thought at first they were donning the Pans Logo for the first time but on closer inspection I think not. The white outfits are a nice focal point but those darker and slightly chunky shoes are not favourites of mine (I know I'm guilty of a bit of shoe discrimination but there it is). Anyway I do like the smiles and the energy on show and overall it's a 7.5/10 and if there had been a DotD and if it were going to be registered and tabulated and then paid attention afterwards it would have been Cherry for me
Some Dancers who gave a good time, broke all the rules, played all the fools, yeah yeah yeah they blew our minds
Although its impossible for Pans to be bland this routine somehow lacks inner pep, while the special effects simply clutter things up. If it had a spot of colour in its cheeks I might go higher, but its a 5.5 with Babs standing out as my Dotd. (But then everyone is allowed a quiet day now and then, and a fortnight later Flick struck emeralds when she created one of the very best routines.)
Yep this is pretty much standard fayre Pans from around that time, but at least the video effects add that bit of extra interest. Lots of smiles on show which is nice, but its only a `6.5 out of 10` from me.
Thanks for posting this VV. I really loved this song and more so when Pans danced to it. I was quite amazed at the low chart placing of it as it had heavy radio play on Radio 1 but moreover always seems to crop up on soul compilations.
The routine is good for Pans People but not too good which is a rarity for me. Having had this for some years now it is not one I go back to and watch. It has nothing to with it being black and white it always comes across as a potential 24 hour routine but maybe I am being too picky. The outfits were good which was the only excellent issue with this. I will award this one eight out of ten and best dancer awarded to Louise.
Everywhere, wherever you look, manipulation rearing it's head.
Flick followed the standard 'Pans' template for this one and the result is a pretty good dance which lacks a wow factor.
The costumes look good and I also like the images of Louise and Cherry played onto the background. I'm not so keen on the double dancer effects towards the end. I don't think the addition of colour would make any difference to my score, which sits at 7.75 out of 10.
Louise would be my DOTD.
A fairly lightweight routine to a fairly lightweight soul record: but enjoyable none the less.
I like the outfits, particularly the unusually heavy cloggy-sandal-shoe things: they set off the long white frocks well.
And I enjoyed the video effects: heavily used throughout, but not getting in the way of the dancers performaces.
I'll say a good 7.5 out of 10, and I'll give Babs the dancer award, for extra gusto.
I like the song and I think it was worthy of a much higher chart placing. I also like the special effects. I'm guessing that they were pretty much cutting edge back then. All in all I enjoy watching this even if the dance can be considered a bit basic. 9/10. As for Dotd they all looked great and are worthy of such award. I think I'll give it to Louise, Ruth, Cherry, Dee Dee and Babs.
Sandy Borne and Tricia Roberts Appreciation Society
Yes, the sum of this can be rounded to Pan's by-numbers then doubled. But the song's a perennial and that at least prevents boredom, I was as surprised as our resident arbiter of chart injustices Dancer about its lowly peak position. The ladies look a bit of all white in their slit dresses which are familiar but not jaded either. It's nice and sunny stateside and I don't find this twee as I sometimes do with dances in this general style, perhaps it's the perceived edge provided by the theme of survival that prevents it. However, when week after week we're enjoying the rich fruits of Flick's protean and seemingly inexhaustible imagination for all things Legs & Co it would be dishonest of me to match ratings for the same old in B/W.
I'd say the 'Tri Boro Exchange' probably comes from the word borough (Boro being a shortened version) and NYC is known for its five boroughs.
So from the off we appear to be in mid dancing mode!?, no build up here. Once the intro is out of the way it calms down a bit and the effects start to make their presence known with a giant background close up of Louise, so far so good. There may be a lot of standard Pans moves throughout and a few literal bits thrown in for good measure, but combined with the effects (which i think on the whole are very good) i like the energy and general bouncyness of it all and the song is rather good too, so no complaints from me. 9/10 DOTD Louise
♥♥♥♥ Cherry, Louise, Patti and Ruth Alliance ♥♥♥♥. Do you know where you're going to?, do you like the things that life is showing you?
This feels more than the sum of its parts - a fairly standard routine but to a good upbeat track and the visual trickery adds to the appeal even though it is just basic chroma key or CSO (colour separation overlay) as the BBC liked to call it. That's the technique of placing a person or object in front of a coloured background (generally blue in those days) then electronically replacing the background with the output from another studio camera or other picture source. As soon as TOTP went colour in November 1969 they were using this technique, although Beat Club in Germany had been doing it for a few years prior to this in black and white using a different method. This is illustrated in the Pan's 1968 performance to Over Under Sideways Down appraised elsewhere in the comments section.
The difference in this usage is I expect down to Flick's vision for the piece and subsequent careful planning of the camera angles to achieve the desired result. Apart from that there's nothing revolutionary about the effect but because it does work so well here and there are some great close-ups, generally radiant smiles and an overall high fun factor I find this very enjoyable. 8 Dotd Ruth