• This week 4TR focuses on the Women of Ausmusic who have, often against the odds, dominated charts locally and internationally for decades, and at the same time produced vastly under-appreciated records in an industry that is/was blokey and male -dominated. While Australia’s two most successful bands are AC/DC and the Bee Gees each with global record sales in excess of 200 million, you may be surprised to know that the next three highest-selling Aussie acts are Olivia Newton-John and Kylie Minogue both on approx. 100 million sales each, and Helen Reddy with global sales of 80 million, and lets not forget the Seekers who without the peerless vocals of Judith Durham, would not have sold 50 million records. As 4TR has already featured Judith, Helen and Kylie several times in previous posts, we are taking another look at ONJ in our Australian #1 Hits post with her biggest solo global hit Physical, as well as reviewing several great songs from – Diana Trask, Wendy Matthews, Margret RoadKnight (yep, that’s how she spells it), and Renee Geyer.



Di Trask 4


  • Diana Trask was one of the first to try her luck in the US in the early 60’s after she had performed as support act on tours of Australia with Frank Sinatra and then Sammy Davis Jnr, who both encouraged and supported her in her quest for success in the States. Di Trask became the first Australian singer to land a contract with US network television when she, along with Leslie Uggams, were signed to anchor the first series of what became NBC’s hugely popular Sing Along With Mitch Show. Others followed in her footsteps including Lana Cantrall, Janice Slater, Patsy-Ann Noble and ultimately the mega-successful Helen Reddy and then ONJ, this week in our Years Ago post we listen to Diana’s top ten hit from 1975 – Oh Boy (the Mood I’m In).





  • Canadian emigrant Wendy Matthews was one the foremost female singers in Australia in the period 1988-93, firstly as lead singer with supergroup Absent Friends and then as a solo artist, winning the ARIA Song of the Year award in both 1991 and 1993, and taking five singles and five albums into the top 40, she was a gifted singer and in our ARIA Winner post this week we review the two songs that took out those ARIA awards – the uber funky (I Don’t Want To Be With ) Nobody But You and the wistful, bittersweet piano ballad, The Day You Went Away.




Margret Roadknight 1

  • In 1976 writer/comedy monologist Bob Hudson penned several songs about his home town of Newcastle (NSW), one was a classic comedy take on a young Novocastrian by the name of Normie and his efforts to find true love cruising the main drag known as Hunter St on a Saturday night entitled The Newcastle Song which hit #1. The other was a haunting, melancholic, insightful ballad entitled Girls in Our Town recorded by famed blues/folk singer Margret RoadKnight which climbed to #53, but should have been an international hit, hear and see this classic song again in our Special Feature post this week.




REnee Geyer 2


  • Renee Geyer has emerged in the last forty years as the foremost soul singer in Australia, her debut hit was an incendiary version of James Brown’s macho classic It’s a Man’s Man’s World in 1975 and she has tracked a career path through a string of classic hits whilst embracing Motown, pop, jazz, reggae and Latin rhythms on the way through. In addition to her debut hit we also revisit Heading in the Right Direction, a local soul classic lifted from her stunning 1975 album Ready to Deal, in our ARIA Hall of Fame Heroes post this week.



Matt Taylor


  • In coming weeks look out for the 4TR Blues Special Feature which showcases the great blues records of Ausmusic from such performers as Jeff St. John, Matt Taylor, Wendy Sadington, Chain and the Drones; and in the first week of July we acknowledge NAIDOC Week by highlighting the songs of our First Nation artists – Jimmy Little, Kev Carmody and Archie Roach and other performers who have voiced their support for Aboriginal causes over the years – Midnight Oil, Goanna and Paul Kelly.





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