Peak UK Chart Position: #8 in June 1986.

Rita Maria Crudgington – perhaps not the most showbiz of names, so Cheryl Baker to you and I – celebrates her 63rd birthday today. Born in Bethnal Green, London, she entered music in her early twenties, performing with Eurovision hopefuls Co-Co and bagging 11th place in 1978. Better success came with being a member of Bucks Fizz, not only 1981 Eurovision winners with “Making Your Mind Up”, but a group that scored an impressive 13 top forty hits between 1981 and 1986, three of which got to number one. Nowadays, Baker is part of a line-up alongside original members Jay Aston and Mike Nolan that bill themselves ‘Formerly of Bucks Fizz’ due to fourth original member Bobby G owning the rights to the actual Bucks Fizz name.

Quick facts:

  • “New Beginning” was their 1986 comeback single, following on from a near-fatal coach crash, and Aston’s departure (replaced by Shelley Preston).
  • It had been originally recorded a year earlier by Force 8 – who were actually pop group The Dooleys under an assumed name.
  • The writers were Mike Myers and Tony Gibber – the latter being responsible for “Get Out Of That”, which replaced “The Wizard” in 1991 as the Top of the Pops theme.
  • It would prove to be their seventh top ten success, and final foray into the top forty.

Here’s a performance of the track from an uncredited television show, minus the hordes of drums that other outings of the track seemed to exhibit.

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