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Mary Hopkin

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It was the British supermodel Twiggy who alerted Paul McCartney to the Welsh singer Mary Hopkin when Apple Records was looking for talent in 1968. The waifish soprano scored a huge worldwide smash with her first Apple single, the melancholy but rabble-rousing ballad "Those Were the Days," in late 1968; it actually knocked the Beatles' own "Hey Jude" out of the number one position in the U.K. Paul McCartney lent Hopkin a further hand by producing her first album and writing her second single, "Goodbye," which was also a hit. More comfortable with refined, precious ballads and folky pop than rock, Hopkin scored several more hit singles in the U.K., although she never entered the American Top 40 again. Her commercial success diminished as Apple's fortunes dwindled in the early '70s. ~ Richie Unterberger

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03 May 1950 in Pontardawe, Wales

Years Active:

'60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s