Friday, 27 April 2012

Memories of the 60's & 70's X is for X-ray Specs and Xanadu

Well what a little blighter the letter "X" is, but I have done my best and I never want to see it again. Here are my X's.

My brother read American comic books in the sixties, Batman, Fantastic Four, etc. I read Richie Rich and Casper. There were always adverts inside for lots of special things that as a child we had never seen before.
Sea monkeys, black soap,an ant farm, miniature submarine. The one that I wanted was X Ray Specs. we really thought you would be able to see through clothes and skin, because that's what the advert told us. How did they get away with telling such lies?
At the cost of one dollar it would have cost us more for the postage from America to the UK.

X-Rated In 1970 the British film censors raised the age at which you could view an X-Rated film  from sixteen to eighteen years. I remember at the tender age of thirteen being dismayed at this because as a child you always want to do what older people are doing and don't like to be "banned" from doing anything. The same year an AA rating appeared which meant you had to be over fourteen and accompanied by an adult. That was the year Love Story came out with the lovely Ryan O'Neil and Ali McGraw. I was only thirteen and didn't get to see it and my mum took my older cousin. I can still feel my disappointment at what I thought was the unfairness of me not getting to see what was billed as, "The greatest love story ever told "

XTC were formed in Swindon in 1972 and were a new wave/college band. Their songs included,
Making Plans For Nigel
Senses Working Overtime
Dear God.

X-Ray Spex , A London band formed in 1976 who sang Punk Rock. Some of the songs were,
Oh Bondage Up Yours
I am a Cliche
The Day the World Turned Poseur.

I know nothing about punk rock and never listened to it but I'm sure somebody who reads this will know this band.

Blondie sang X- OFFENDER IN 1976. Blondie released some good songs in the seventies , I think this was her first one and it was never a hit. Hanging On the Telephone and Heart of Glass gave her number five and number one hits respectively.

This is where I cheat and give you Xanadu  by Olivia Newton John. Yes, it begins with X but it was released in 1980 and not in the seventies but what's year between friends?
It also  gives me a chance to mention Olivia.
Olivia Newton John is an English/Australian singer, she was the girl next door and we took her to our hearts.
She frequently appeared on the Cliff Richard show on television and always sang a duet with Cliff.
We really thought those two would get together.
The Banks of the Ohio
Take Me Home Country Roads
In 1974 she was the UK entry to Eurovision with, Long Live Love.
I Honestly Love You.

Olivia starred in Grease with John Travolta in 1978 and the show produced lots of hit records for her.
Your The One That I Want
Summer Nights
Hopelessly Devoted To You.

In 1980 She starred in the musical film Xanadu with Gene Kelly and Michael Beck. The film wasn't hailed as a great success but the album from the film did much better.
I did want to leave you with  Cliff/Olivia  singing "Suddenly" from the album but this is and "X" post so I'll leave you with the title song, Xanadu. but Suddenly is on you tube if you want to hear it.

For what "X" was all about in the fifties and sixties Rosalind tells it all at Writing in the Rain


  1. I am a Richie Rich girl all the way!!    Not much for Xanadu, even if it DOES begin with an X!

  2. Stopping in from the A to Z Challenge to say hello! I made mention of that old ad for Sea Monkeys on my Facebook page and it reminded me of these glasses. I ordered them and of course they didn't work. 

  3. As an adult I got those Xray glasses.  What a riot.  I think there's a feather in the lens so when you look thru it, it looks like bones.  LOVED XTC and I love "Oh Bondage Up Yours" too.  Xanadu....well, as an ELO fan I was so thrilled that they were doing the soundtrack and the music that came from it was better than their album the year before, 'Discovery', or as we called it, "Disco, Very".  lol

  4. Hi Jlimburg, I did enjoy Ricie Rich. As for Xanadu ,well you have to take what you can find for the horrible X letter. Lol!

  5. Hi Stephen,thanks for stopping by. I really wanted sea monkeys too with their smily faces they looked so cheeky on the advert. Even as children I think we knew it couldn't be true.

  6. They gave an x ray hair and free in a comic it must have been a similar thing. I knew someone would have heard ofXTC because I hadn't .

  7. It will come as no surprise to you that I know nothing about punk rock but those x-ray glasses look a real hoot. It's the sort of thing I'd have wanted when I was a kid. Aren't we glad X is over ;-)

  8. Oh at x already! Don't want this to end start all over again ! Lol I really loved Olivia Newton john - especially when she was involved with cliff as he was someone both you and I looked up to in her teens well done with this Anne- you're a star - Lou x

    1. Hi Lou, no I'm not starting all over again for you! Lol! You'll just have to read my normal blogging.

  9. I don't know anything about it either.Im so glad X is over only two more to go then we get our lives back.

  10. I remember the movie xanadu but that's all that i do of your post today!

  11. I'm impressed with the number of Xs in the 70s!

  12. X was hard to do I don't remember the groups either.

  13. Annalisa,I was too.

  14. hah, I do remember the X ray goggles as well as Olivia Newton John and funny!

  15. In Xanadu did Kublai Khan...

  16. lol... you must be so glad the "little blighter X" is over.  You did really well.  I remember those magazines although not the glasses nor the  rock bands.  Love Olivia Newton John and anything she sings.  Good for you only two more to go ..yay!


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