Philly Dog _________________________________________________________________________________
Performed byBill Black's Combo _________________________________________________________________________________
Original broadcast date11/10/1973Duration of dance - 2.27 mins _________________________________________________________________________________
Dancers: Babs, Cherry, Dee Dee, Louise, Ruth _________________________________________________________________________________
A link to the dance:
"Bill Black's Combo" was founded in 1959, named after William Patton "Bill" Black, an American musician who had also worked with Elvis. Black passed away in 1965, but nevertheless the band kept on going, eventually cutting more than 20 albums. Wikipedia notes that "Black's main stand-up bass is today owned by ex-Beatle Paul McCartney, who received the instrument as a birthday present from his late wife Linda McCartney in the late 1970s. The bass can be seen in the video clip to McCartney's song Baby's Request". In 1968 Bill Black's Combo (sans Bill Black) released a longplayer called "Turn On Your Love Light" which included the instrumental "Philly Dog". The track was composed by Rufus Thomas who is famous among Pan's People aficionados for writing and recording another animal-related tune called "Do The Funky Chicken", a song that Pan's People danced to in April 1970. An earlier version of "Philly Dog" by The Mar-Keys had reached the dizzy heights of No. 89 in the US charts in 1966.
Bill Black seems to have been influential on a number of other musicians. Dave Edmunds even recorded an instrumental tribute called "Black Bill" in 1970 for the B-side of his number one single "I Hear You Knocking".
Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett, better known as "The Two Ronnies", were given their own show by the BBC in 1971. Of particular interest to fans of the dancing troupes is of course the third season which started in September 1973 and featured seven appearances by Pan's People ("Our Story" claims there were eight but on the officially released DVD set one episode is Pan's-less). Unlike TOTP, it weren't the top hits of the day that they performed to. Due to the nature of the production, the routines could be rehearsed properly and didn't have to be rushed.
"Philly Dog" was the second of the seven performances. With more than 2,500 views on the YT channel, it seems to be quite popular there. But will it be as popular here, I wonder. Ok then, let's start with the setting. Oh, err, right, there isn't any, just the studio floor and a black backdrop. Furthermore, all the girls are wearing the same plain costumes, so this isn't exactly a colourful routine. What I like about this dance is that you can't help but notice that the girls are having a lot of fun, and their dancing looks well-rehearsed, not only when they are executing the pelvic thrust which no doubt is the most prominent feature of this performance.
Yet there is something missing here. Somehow I find this dance not as thrilling as other performances. Maybe it's the monotonous setting, or maybe it's the music which just doesn't do anything for me. I haven't watched this one very often, and my estimation did not change while I was preparing this introduction. This dance still leaves me cold - as cold as the ice blue costumes and the naked grey floor.
I like this one, the lack of set is a plus for me as there are no distractions or objects to block our viewing. Not so sure about the music but this is a typical *BS dated Pans routine which is always a pleasure to watch. 8/10
DOTD Could be *LL or *RR but Babs takes centre stage for this one.
In 1973 I went to parties where girls wore outfits like these, rarely so well fitted , but still fun. The dancers look lovely Music is dull but still must be an 8. How did Louise look so beautiful while being so energetic ?
A great dance routine befitting of inclusion within a programme featuring comedy sketches, the ladies certainly look as though they're performing for laughs, with they're crazily fast hip-thrusts, alongside the Benny Hill style chasing around the block sketch type music, & yet also looking totally elegant in they're floor-length aqua metallic coloured dresses.
The dance routines from the Two Ronnies shows are something of a mixed bag for me, so I'm pleased you've kicked off with this one as to my eye it is one of the better ones. As for those costumes, well I like them. They may be ICB but they still manage to raise my T. Unfortunately the music is more grating than great, but at least it lends itself to an energetic and lively routine. More care with the edit at the 2.12/2.13 mark would have been nice but that isn't the fault of the girls who all do a fine job and appear to having a good time. So an 8 for this dance with Cherry just pipping Babs as my Dotd.
...and yes I do like it. I find the blue figure-hugging outfits quite tremendous and I just love the fun the ladies exude here. The music is not my favourite part but I find it doesn't detract too much from this performance and it certainly seems to allow pelvic activity to be maxed out! I love the close-ups and the highlight for me is definitely Cherry's little air-sparring episode. Anyway I really enjoy this one and although technically there might be issues with background and music I find it is pure enjoyment that counts for me in this performance so it's a 9.5/10 and definitely another Gillespie triumph for DotD although they all look great in blues
Some Dancers who gave a good time, broke all the rules, played all the fools, yeah yeah yeah they blew our minds
One would be forgiven for thinking that Pans saved up all their best stuff for TOTPs but not a bit of it judging by this. I really like this, from the cool music to the figure hugging trouser suits, and the barren featureless set works very well to.
All five girls are simply outstanding in this and selecting a DOTD is so difficult. Ive gone for `Cherry`, that look at 1.13 minutes were she is breathing quite heavily whilst still smiling secures her my vote.
Rating. Well our host gives a measly and quite surprising 6.5, but im going the whole hog and giving this `10 out of 10`. Yep top marks for this faultless and pleasing performance.
Thanks for all your comments, I guess I should brace myself for the rotten tomatoes now. Yet I had to pass my honest opinion, and even though I'm an out and out Pan's People fan, there are some routines that I do not like that much. I have to agree that the girls are wonderful here, but after just 30 seconds of the music my finger keeps moving towards the stop button.
Thanks to The Two Ronnies we have seven mostly excellent routines saved from the bin, and this is one of my favourites (and a few other people's as well, it having been much overdubbed on You Tube - even by Mark Ronson). Seven or eight ... well there's some suggestion that the eighth might have been used for In Concert, and if I had to guess which, I'd say Willow Weeps For Me. Still I'd better get back to the subject or I'll have Dee Dee on here ticking me off .
Well, I really like this one ... and thanks to the brainy VV I know what the music is now as well. As for the costumes I'd say 'less is more' - less colour leaves one to concentrate on the form and energy of the dance, the swirling flares contrast with the rest of the costume and add to the effect, the choreography is well suited to the music, and everyone looks as though they are really enjoying themselves. Good - that this group of dances were kept. Bad - that others weren't, and why not for goodness sake. I'll score 9.5 /10 and favourite dancer Dee Dee for her radiant smile and tousled mane.
Hooray for the 2 ronnies- still the only pans you can buy on dvd legitimately !( other than spirit in the sky on the totp dvd I think)
Loads to like about this- great camera work and backdrop- makes the totp studio seem shabby
They look more gorgeous than ever
hadn't watched this for a while and wow
Not so good
Girls wearing babs colour
Track has a silly name
the other sketches
9.0 and dish of the day Cherry- an eyecatching cutie throughout
There are a couple of 2 ronnies tens in my locker but not this one.
VV when you hit the stop button is it because you flick forward to Hip Hug Her ?
The stage set is quite bare but that doesn't really matter. At least it is well lit and the girls throw themselves into an energetic performance and seem to be enjoying themselves. I do like their dresses as well but the song less so.
I will score this 8 out of 10. Babs captures my eye the most and gets DOTD.
Ahhh I do like these Two Ronnies instrumentals. And i like this one particularly.
Yes, they're in the same colour but it makes them look like a team and the bright blue contrasts well the the dark plain background. Nothing to distract us from the Pans here, and no solo spots leave the girl quite tired at times.
Lots of fun and lots of smiles, although it's pretty standard PP fayre. With which there is nothing wrong of course!
The lighting and picture quality are top-notch. And the dancing is lots of bouncy energetic fun. It's just a pity about the music, which is best suited to a bloopers compilation. And it makes a routine with a wealth of positive attributes seem disposable.
i dont like to say this really ,but to be honest i only ever preferred the dances that pans people performed on totp ,truth was it was the pop music of the day ,plus pp interpretating it that hit the spot for me ,i did used to watch other shows that pp performed on at the time ,but it honestly did not have the same exiting factor for me if they werent dancing to a pop song ,i do appreciate the dancing is good on these other shows ,but i very rarely watch them ,ill give a 7 for performance ,but i cant give any higher marks because the music doesent grab me at all ,and im afraid if the music doesent grab me neither does the dance much
What a vision in blue this is, i just love those shiny fitted trouser suits with those skirt like flares that fly out whenever they spin. I'm sure similar ones are used on totp but these are the bees knees. Without all the usual clutter of the totp studio we get a back to basics performance but one that is highly energetic, fun to watch and sexy to boot, particularly Cherry and Louise. The ladies don't keep still for a second even running off camera for a few seconds before flying in backwards in sequence, lovely stuff. Cherry makes a couple of uncharacteristic errors but she smiles through it and is still the most watchable dancer for me with her uber cute solo camera pieces, but i will give the DOTD to Louise who is great throughout.
The score an 8.5/10 as they make good use of the track, but there maybe a couple more TR performances to edge it.