Gary Pickford-Hopkins: Journey’s End

Gary Pickford-Hopkins

Gary Pickford-Hopkins

One of the finest singers of his generation, Gary Pickford-Hopkins never gained the recognition he deserved. Having come to prominence as a member of Welsh soul rockers EYES OF BLUE and added his voice to ANCIENT GREASE’s cult classic "Women And Children First" before joining ex-JETHRO TULL bassist Glen Cornick’s WILD TURKEY with whom Gary cut two powerful, if also underrated, albums: 1971’s “Battle Hymn” and 1972’s Turkey”.

Then came the call from Rick Wakeman who needed two singers for his “Journey To The Centre Of The Earth” live extravaganza, and that’s how Pickford-Hopkins started to play high-voiced angel to Ashley Holt’s low-toned devil. This vocal combination proved so magical that Gary stayed on for the Caped Crusader’s next album, “Myths And Legends Of King Arthur And The Knights Of The Round Table”, and then moved on away from stardom to play locally. In 2003 the singer returned to a dimmed spotlight with a solo record, “GPH”, and was also involved in the “Journey” 30th anniversary celebration – only to back out again.

Some years ago, he was diagnosed with cancer, and this battle 65-year-old Gary Pickford-Hopkins lost. Spin the records and relish this voice.

June 26, 2013

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