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Sherbet were Australia's most popular pop group of the 70s with 20 consecutive hit records and 17 album, accounting for 10 platinum and 14 gold disc awards.
In 1969 the Sydney entertainment scene was almost totally geared towards satisfying the money-rich comfort-starved American Vietnam troops who came for official Rest And Recreation. Sydney's nightclubs gave them what they wanted - r&b, soul, funk, good-time rock - and these influences spilled over into the pop group Sherbet, formed without singer Daryl Braithwaite, but completed by his falsetto-capable vocals. They were the archetypical 70s girl fodder pop band - groomed hair, colorful satin stage outfits.
In July 1976 the group's eighth national top ten hit "Howzat" became their first number one, ending Abba's record breaking fourteen week at the top with "Fernando." Sherbet's album of the same name as the hit also made number one, also replacing Abba. The "Howzat" single was released in England where it made Top 10, was a hit in several countries in Europe and South East Asia, and also received extensive airplay across America. Sherbet now set their sights on conquering the rest of the world. In June 1978 they recorded their seventh studio album in Los Angeles. At the insistence of RSO Records Sherbet changed their name to Highway. They wanted to be seen as serious about their music and Sherbet was considered too frivolous and poppy a name. In Australia they only released one single as Highway, preferring to shorted their name to The Sherbs.
Trying to balance between winning America and keeping their Australian following happy the band lost its momentum, and in late 1983 they announced they were splitting up. At the height of their popularity singer Daryl Braithwaite had released several successful solo singles. Taking some time off to put the Sherbet years behind him, Braithwaite relaunched his solo career in 1988, with eight more hit singles and two big selling albums, Edge and Rise. Sherbet's main songwriter Garth Porter has become one of the cornerstones of the contemporary Australian country music scene, in particular as producer and occasional songwriting partner for Australia's "Garth Brooks", Lee Kernaghan. ~ Ed Nimmervoll
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