Mike Hurst...

 

Mike joined The Springfields in February 1962, and had hits on both sides of the Atlantic. The Penguin Encyclopedia of Popular Music states that The Springfields, jointly and severally, were probably responsible for more hits than any other British group except the Beatles, over 50.

 

The group disbanded in October 1963. In 1964, Hurst formed a band called the Methods, featuring Jimmy Page and then Albert Lee on guitar, as well as Tony Ashton on keyboards. After leaving the band Hurst began producing for Andrew Oldham (Tony Rivers and the Castaways) and Mickie Most. In September 1965 he oversaw Marc Bolan's first recording session at Decca, when he recorded "The Wizard".

 

In 1965, after a brief collaboration with Bolan, he discovered singer-songwriter Cat Stevens, and signed him to the new Deram record label (an imprint of Decca) and produced his first five hit singles including "Matthew and Son" and "I'm Gonna Get Me a Gun". During this time he also produced recordings and hits for P. P. Arnold ("The First Cut Is the Deepest"),The Move ("Curly"), Manfred Mann ("Mighty Quinn"), Spencer Davis Group ("Time Seller"), Neil MacArthur (a pseudonym for Colin Blunstone), Warm Sounds, Ayshea and Alan Bown.

 

In 1970 and 1971 he recorded two albums for Capitol Records, utilising sidesmen such as Tony Ashton, B. J. Cole, Clem Cattini, Ian Paice, Jon Lord, Rod Argent and Nicky Hopkins. In 1973 he formed his own production company, Solid Gold, and wrote and produced for the band Fancy, achieving US chart success with the singles "Touch Me" and a cover of The Troggs "Wild Thing". The same year he signed Showaddywaddy to Bell Records and produced a string of UK hit singles for them. These included "Under the Moon of Love", "Three Steps to Heaven" and "When".

 

Following his success with Showaddywaddy, he produced Modern Priscilla, a disco album for Cilla Black, started managing Shakin' Stevens in 1978, and produced his first hit "Hot Dog" in 1978. He formed a vocal group with Mary Hopkin called Sundance and toured with Dr Hook appearing on the Parkinson and Russell Harty TV shows. In 1984 he became head of Lamborghini Records, famous for discovering Samantha Fox.

21st century work includes production for Belle & Sebastian (2002), and his son's band, Jonas and Plunkett (2007). He also runs rock schools for youngsters through his Rockmaster company, and is a foremost lecturer on the history of English speaking popular music from the Middle Ages to the present day, appearing at schools, U3A groups etc. throughout the country. 

 

 

 

 

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