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Apple Scruffs
Mary Hopkin
Paul McCartney John Lennon George Harrison Ringo Starr The Beatles Tribute Bands Other

b. 3 May 1950, Pontardawe, Glamorganshire, Wales. Hopkin's career began while she was still a schoolgirl. Briefly a member of a local folk rock band, she completed several Welsh-language releases before securing a slot on the televised talent show,

Opportunity Knocks. Fashion model Twiggy was so impressed by Hopkin's performance she recommended the singer to Paul McCartney as a prospective signing for the newly formed Apple label. "Those Were The Days", a traditional song popularized by Gene Raskin of the Limelighters, was selected as the artist's national debut and this haunting, melancholic recording, produced by McCartney, topped both the UK and US charts in 1968. Her follow-up single, "Goodbye" reached number 2 the following year, but despite its excellent versions of Donovan's "Happiness Runs" and "Lord Of The Reedy River", the concurrent Post Card showed a singer constrained by often inappropriate material. Nevertheless, the Mickie Most-produced "Temma Harbour" was another Top 10 hit, while "Knock Knock Who's There", Britain's entry to the 1970 Eurovision Song Contest, peaked at number 2. "Think About Your Children", penned by Most protégés Hot Chocolate, was Hopkin's last Top 20 entry, as the singer became increasingly unhappy over the style of her releases. However, a second album Earth Song/Ocean Song, was more representative of Hopkin's talent, and sympathetic contributions from Ralph McTell and Danny Thomson enhanced its enchanting atmosphere. Paradoxically, the set was issued as her contract with Apple expired and, having married producer Tony Visconti, she retired temporarily from recording.

Hopkin resumed her career in 1972 with "Mary Had A Baby" and enjoyed a minor hit four years later with "If You Love Me". The singer also added backing vocals on several sessions, notably David Bowie's Sound And Vision, before joining Mike Hurst (ex-Springfields) and Mike D'Albuquerque (ex-Electric Light Orchestra) in Sundance. Having left this short-lived aggregation, Hopkin resurfaced in 1983 as a member of Oasis (not the UK indie band). Peter Skellem and Julian Lloyd Webber were also members of this act which enjoyed a Top 30 album, but was brought to a premature end when Hopkin was struck by illness. Her subsequent work includes an appearance on George Martin's production of Under Milk Wood, but she remains indelibly linked to her million-selling debut hit. biography