Countdown Memories

AN INTERVIEW WITH MICHELLE

Jason: When did you start watching Countdown?

Michelle: When it began, 1974. I was a music show junkie from a very tender age.

Jason: What are amongst some of your greatest Countdown memories, favorite Countdown episodes?

Michelle: They pretty much were the early years, although I have a memory tattooed in my brain of Iggy Pop off his tits scaring the shit out the teenage girls. I love that sort of behaviour!!! I also loved the Bowie interview that Molly did, I think it may have been 1980. It was a major factor in my world back then. I remember cold, dark winter Sunday nights, sitting in front of the heater, eating dinner and watching Countdown. Always the highlight of my week. Hold it while I wipe the tear away!

Jason: Who were your favorite artists during the 70's and 80's that Countdown introduced you to?

Michelle: All the New Wave bands. I used to listen to 3RRR and it was exciting to see some of them on T.V. I remember seeing La Femme for the first time singing "I Wanna Be Your Man", also The Boys Next Door doing "These Boots Are Made For Walking". When Molly on Humdrum showed five seconds of The Damned with "Smash It Up", I weed myself upon seeing Dave Vanian on the screen. I do remember being a huge Hush fan thanks to Countdown. Les Gock, another demi god I urinated myself over. (I was a bit younger then).

Jason: What were or are your favorite segments of the show? Michelle: I used to enjoy the segment where they introduced new bands, especially the early 80's as a lot of those were the New Wave of bands that were up and coming (going where and coming where was another area!)

Jason: How many times did you attend Countdown?

Michelle: A few times, I think about three or four times.

Jason: And was it exciting at the time, and which bands and artists did you see perform whilst at Countdown? Michelle: Hmmmm - The Human League (I swear I'm not rubbing this in J), The Reels - they were so nice (I sound like my mother!), Jimmy And The Boys (or was it Boyz?), The Cure, I'm sure it was Simple Minds and also Split Enz. I'm having a harder time remembering all this, there were other bands but cant recall. I would have loved to have seen The Ramones and Iggy!! Yes it was exciting! I urinated myself in the corner where they kept us unruly children.

Jason: What is your favorite period of Countdown, and why?

Michelle: Definitely the 70's through to the early 80's. They're all basically sentimental. I unfortunately lost contact with Countdown from then as I was a hardcore (I am saying this with sarcastic tones) Melbourne Punk!

Jason: Were you shocked when the show ended?

Michelle: No because I was a hardcore punk. Nothing shocks us!

Jason: What do you think it is about Countdown that still makes it stand up today, and what is it that makes Countdown so special to you?

Michelle: I think it may be due to the fact it was a forerunner for other music shows. Its format was original. Live Bands, Videos, Guest Host, Molly, the segments and the audience were an integral part of the show. Also the association factor, Sunday nights, food, heat, you didn't have to pay any bills yet!!

Jason: Do you think that given the chance Countdown could have kept going to this day?

Michelle: Unfortunately no. We went into a "Too Cool" phase and Countdown wasn't in that pathetic league. There were actually a lot of factors at that point.

Jason: Do you think it's important that Rage keep repeating Countdown so that a new generation may be introduced to the history of Australian and Overseas music through Countdown, and just for generally having the respect to look back and celebrate such a landmark program?

Michelle: YES!!!! We cannot dismiss something such as Countdown, which had such value and importance to our cultural growth.

Jason: How do you feel about the ABC wiping so many 70's Countdown episodes and maybe very early 80's episodes from their archives, and not understanding the power and importance of the most historical program to come out of not only the ABC but also Australia?

Michelle: OOOHHHHHHH it makes me mad! (In a John Cleese voice). I really cant fathom that sort of stupidity. How much does a new reel of tape cost anyway? To omit such things for good is really disrespectful to the general viewers. Give me a name, I tell ya!!

Jason: Do you think the ABC should repeat Countdown on a regular basis? Michelle: Yes! I guess they've also deleted a lot of G.T.K's because I remember a lot more of those when I was a youngster (yeah I'm an old fart!)

Jason: Do you think it would be a great idea for the ABC to bring out a collection of Countdown episodes on DVD?

Michelle: YES! But I think it would be good for all the free to air channels to pull the fingers out of their arses and do the same. Sounds from 7 etc, hey does anyone else remember a show from the early 70's on channel 10 (then 0) called something like Uptight 74 or was it 73? Had to ask it's driving me mad! So all you folks keep supporting this site and enjoy!