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Opus III

electronic techno chillout dance female vocalists

Opus III was a techno and house music group from England who had major success on the UK singles charts and on the U.S. Dance chart. The group consisted of vocalist Kirsty Hawkshaw and producers/musicians Kevin Dobbs, Ian Munro and Nigel Walton. The group members also promoted a strong environmental message through their lyrics, album liner notes and photo and video imagery.

Their debut album Mind Fruit produced the track "It's a Fine Day," a cover of a 1983 single by Jane & Barton, which topped the U.S. Hot Dance Club Play chart in 1992 and reached number five on the UK singles chart.

The song, now considered a house music classic, is the basis of Orbital's 1993 track, "Halcyon + On + On", found on their second eponymous album (the "la la la" section of the "It's A Fine Day" chorus was backmasked and sampled throughout the song). Norwegian artist Erlend Øye also covered the song on his album that was part of the DJ-Kicks series.

Interestingly enough, Hawkshaw, impressed with the Orbital track, returned the favor by appearing in the video for "Halycon + On + On" playing a housewife who was 'under the influence' (even though she looked like she was daydreaming, but that could be disputed). The other single release from "Mind Fruit", was "I Talk To The Wind". This was not a big chart success in the UK, only reaching number 52.

Opus III's second album Guru Mother surfaced in 1994 and produced another number-one dance song "When You Made the Mountain". A third U.S. dance chart entry, "Hand in Hand (Looking for Sweet Inspiration)" hit number 14.

The group disbanded after their second album. Hawkshaw is still a major presence in dance music, lending her vocals to a number of electronic and dance music artists and tracks well into the 21st century.


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