Song Of The Day 7/8/2013: Sherbet - "Lady Of The Night"

Australian '70s Music Week: Sherbet from Sydney was one of the marquee names in Australian pop music during the 1970's, racking up almost as many hits as Skyhooks, whom we'll discuss tomorrow. Their biggest hit was "Howzat," which not only stormed the charts in their homeland, but internationally as well. Except in America. "Lady Of The Night" was from the Howzat album which was released in 1976. The main reason I chose it -- besides its being probably the only true adult contemporary song I'll be putting up here this week -- is the remarkably low-maintenance, narratively trim promotional clip. The singer's talking about how internally sad the title woman is, when from all appearances he's the one that's miserable, cordoning himself off at the bar making judgments about her. And she appears to be having a grand old time, untroubled by any emotional concerns she might have at the moment because that's what you go to bars for. And despite the loaded, "professional" subtext the title implies, there's no reason to believe this woman is an actual prostitute. She's just "of the night." It envelops her. I don't get what's so wrong with that. You know, I think these two were involved at one time and he hasn't gotten over it. Or maybe they weren't involved but he wanted to be. Or maybe he's just your grade-A stalker and this is gonna end in police tape. See? Music: making you think since caveman days.

We'll get back on track tomorrow, I promise.

UPDATE: Our man in Australia, Colin Donald, checked in with some comments about Sherbet:
"Not all Australian 70’s rock had a hard edge. A smoother, softer approach worked for many acts, especially Sherbet. Often through appearing on colour TV (which was new for us in those times) in front of live audiences - and wearing appealing costumes - these bands were propelled to success on the back of the appeal they held for hordes of screaming young girls. Alongside Sherbet you could add Stylus, Mark Holden, Ray Burgess, Clive Shakespeare (yes, that was his name) who ended up in posters on teenage bedroom walls. But Sherbet ruled the roost through actually writing their own songs that had some lasting musical value. ‘Summer Love’ and ‘Magazine Madonna’ were hits but to this day every one remembers ‘Howzat’. Based around a common phrase from the immensely popular game of cricket (‘How’s that?’ means the umpire is asked for a decision), just the chorus from Howzat would still be earning royalties for Sherbet. Lead singer Daryl Braithwaite disappeared into the nothingness of being a council worker but in the 80’s was enticed into a very successful comeback as a solo artist – big single ‘Horses’."

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