Paul McCartney produced this debut album of twee but pretty, romantic pop-folk. Besides "Those Were the Days" (which actually originally appeared only on the US version, though it's on the CD reissue now available throughout the world), the highlights are Donovan's "Lord of the Reedy River" and "The Honeymoon Song," which McCartney himself had sung with the Beatles way back in 1963 on the BBC. If there's a fault to be found, it's that there's too high a percentage of pre-rock/pop standards à la "There's No Business Like Show Business." As it turns out this was more due to the leanings of McCartney than Hopkin, who preferred the more simply arranged folk numbers such as the Donovan covers and the Welsh "Y Blodyn Gwyn." Also on board is a rather nice composition, "The Game," by Beatles producer George Martin, who contributed some piano and orchestra conducting to the album. The CD reissue includes George Gershwin/Ira Gershwin's "Someone to Watch Over Me" (which was on the original U.K. version of the LP, but was taken off the American counterpart), as well as the "Those Were the Days" B-side "Turn! Turn! Turn!" and versions of "Those Were the Days" that Hopkin sang in Italian and Spanish.
This box contains 16 Apple Records albums, originally issued between 1968 and 1974. There is also a brand-new single compilation Come And Get It: The Best Of Apple Records. Each original album has been re-mastered and the vast majority features bonus material, as well as new packaging that includes updated notes and visuals.
It might amaze anyone who only knows her for "Those Were the Days" to realize that of the 17 songs on this imported CD, only four appeared on either of Mary Hopkin's albums, and that only "Those Were the Days" has been available elsewhere on CD since the mid-'90s. Who would have thought she'd released that much music in just three years? This collection is partly related to the similarly titled 11-song LP compilation of Hopkin's work that appeared during 1972. That release was premature, a result of Apple Records' thrashing about trying to generate revenue, but time has made the need for such a collection a little more clear. Hopkin ended up leaving behind a considerable number of singles that never made it onto albums, all of which are featured here along with most of their B-sides; the latter are extremely important, because Hopkin usually preferred the B-sides, feeling they represented what she was really about as a singer far better than her A-sides.