Television soap operas have always been fertile spawning grounds for novelty spin-off records; in Britain the practice dates back as far as 1963, when Chris Sandford’s ‘Not Too Little, Not Too Much’ was an early attempt to inject a little ‘youth appeal’ into Coronation Street. The practice was getting a little tired by 1996, however, when the single ‘Hillbilly Rock, Hillbilly Roll’ was recorded, supposedly by a trio of regulars from the ITV soap Emmerdale. This cod-country effort was released to unanimous critical derision, but still made it to the Top 10 and even spawned an album, an equally lame attempt to profit from the contemporary ‘line-dancing’ craze. What this had to do with the lives of a fictional West Yorkshire farming community seemed to get lost in somebody’s marketing strategy.
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