16: Winter In America – Doug Ashdown

NeilTop 30 - Locations

Entered Top 40s: 7 February 1977
Entry Point: 36
Highest Chart: 30
Weeks In: 8
Watch On YouTube: Click here

I said yesterday that one measure of a great song is when you hear the intro, you just want to sing along from start to finish, even before the lyrics start. Tick – “the harbour’s misty in the morning, love, oh how I miss December”. I think another measure is that it takes you to where the narrator is, feeling what they feel, seeing what they see. Tick.

It’s just one of the great Australian ballads, sung by a bloke who is feeling cold in the US and thinking about his Australian summer. But do you know of it’s local connection?

According to comments of YouTube by a person who claims to have been the wife of the songwriter (not Doug Ashdown but someone called Chris Dyer), the song is about her and their marriage breakup. They had a frangipani in their front garden which looked out on to the local harbour. And the harbour in question – Queenscliff Harbour on the western tip of the beautiful Bellarine Peninsula. And in the lyric about “getting ready for the office”, it is suggested that the office was located right here in Geelong, our beautiful city by the bay. Small world indeed!