Before the breakthrough of "Venus," the group had a minor hit in 1968 with "Lucy Brown Is Back In Town". Once Mariska Veres took over the vocals bigger hits followed:
The group charted a world-wide hit with the song "Venus," which reached #1 on the U.S.Billboard Hot 100 in February 1970. Initially the disc was a big hit in the Netherlands, where it reached #3 in the summer of 1969.It subsequently sold 350,000 copies in Germany, and topped the U.S. chart for three weeks, becoming the Netherlands first American #1 hit. It sold over one million copies there by January 1970, and received a gold disc awarded by the Recording Industry Association of America. Global sales exceeded five million copies.
Other hits include "Send Me A Postcard" in 1968/69 and "Long and Lonesome Road" (often mistakenly named as Long Lonesome Road) in 1969. "Hot Sand", the flip-side of "Venus" was also heavily plugged on Dutch radio.
Many more Dutch hits followed including "Mighty Joe" in 1969/70. This was the group's second million seller. In 1970 "Never Marry a Railroad Man" (flip-side "Roll Engine Roll"), their third to sell over one millionand "Hello Darkness". In 1971 there followed "Shocking You", "Blossom Lady" and "Out of Sight Out of Mind". In 1972 came "Inkpot" and "Rock in the Sea"; plus "Eve and the Apple" in 1972/73 and finally "Oh Lord" in 1973. None of these latter songs charted in the U.S.
In 1974 female lead singer Mariska Veres left the group to start a solo career. Her only solo hit was "Take Me High" in 1975. From the 1990s, Veres toured with a new group under the Shocking Blue banner, with permission of her former bandmates. On December 2, 2006 Dutch news service ANP reported that Veres had died from cancer at 59.