The Carvells L.A. Run

The Carvells on Top of the Pops

The Carvelles had a bunch of skateboard songs on their 1977 LP Skateboard Rampage. In fact, out of ten songs, only two are missing the word “skateboard” from the title. Two of those are on the very good This Is Skateboard Music collection. This song, L.A. Run isn’t on that collection. All Music doesn’t have an entry for the Carvells, but they appear to be a vehicle for a guy named Alan Carvell, who had a UK hit in the 60’s and sang backups and harmonies for many well known acts in the 70’s and 80s. This video is a 1977 appearance from Top of the Pops. Check out the stage for assorted skateboard props, a ringer in the audience, and gratuitous stock footage from the U.K.. Who are those guys? The Benji Board team has been suggested, since they are skating U.K. spots. Check it out after the jump.

– Thanks to Eric Shea for the tip.


  1. They should have named themselves the Skate Boys.

  2. Naw, the Sidewalk Boys would be a better analogy.

  3. This is an attempt to copy Jan and Dean’s “sidewalk surfing” -came out 1965’ish. Which is a much better song and more legit. Jan and Dean actually loved skateboarding. These guys in the video most likely didn’t skate at all. Maybe I don’t know… doubtful

  4. pigcity on October 22, 2009 - Reply

    Isn’t that 80s Tony Hawk on keyboards???

  5. what other fad was so trendy it had bands making whole albums about it, yet it survived the trend status? remember “Pac Man” fever? is the keyboard player waving around a 60’s era board at the end? I’ll bet they skated but did not record the backing vocals themselves

    • Steve Talbot on July 13, 2013 - Reply

      Re; but did not record the backing vocals themselves.

      Every one of the the vocals on this single and also the album were sung by Alan Carvell alone.

  6. houseofneil on November 16, 2009 - Reply

    the song isn’t actually too bad. My mate Bugsy bought the single. I dig the totally gratuitous guitar solo at around 1:10. And did they really need 3 guitarists and a keyboard for this?

  7. Acid Eddy on February 8, 2010 - Reply

    Contrary to all opinions on here the band did play and still play now in different guises. In fact I know all of ’em and they’re all great guys.

    • Do you know the names of the band members? Who is the blond guy 1,35 minutes into the film?

  8. Omega 56 on March 11, 2013 - Reply

    Most of the band were from York England who were originally called RELAY and teamed up with Alan Carvell in 1977 the Keyboard player is a guy called George Hall who still lives in York and performs regularly with a very successful covers/party band called HUGE

    • Steve Talbot on July 20, 2014 - Reply

      The keyboard player seen on the video is Costa Couloris however the only person in that video who was on the recording was Alan Carvell who sang every vocal part.

  9. Beatle Bob on June 21, 2016 - Reply

    24-11-77:Original air dat of this TOTP episode: November 24, 1977 Presenter: David Jensen
    Also appearing in this episode:
    BONEY M – Belfast (and charts)
    THE CARVELLS – The L.A. Run
    WINGS – Mull Of Kintyre (video)
    (NEW) BONNIE TYLER – It’s A Heartache
    (DARTS – Daddy Cool/The Girl Can’t Help It ®
    (LEO SAYER – There Isn’t Anything
    (JONATHAN RICHMAN & THE MODERN LOVERS – Egyptian Reggae (danced to by Legs & Co)
    (HOT CHOCOLATE – Put Your Love In Me
    (THE BEE GEES – How Deep Is Your Love (video)
    SANTA ESMERALDA & LEROY GOMEZ – Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood
    (ABBA – The Name Of The Game (video)
    (THE JACKSONS – Goin’ Places (and credits)

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