Foreign Affairs (Sharon O'Neill album)

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Foreign Affairs
Foreign Affairs by Sharon O'Neill.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedMay 1983
GenrePop, pop rock
LabelCBS New Zealand
ProducerJohn Boylan
Sharon O'Neill chronology
Smash Palace
Foreign Affairs
So Far
Singles from Foreign Affairs
  1. "Losing You"
    Released: March 1983
  2. "Maxine"
    Released: May 1983
  3. "Danger"
    Released: October 1983

Foreign Affairs is the fourth studio album by New Zealand singer and songwriter Sharon O'Neill. It was O'Neill's final studio album release on CBS. The album was certified Gold in New Zealand.[1]

Background, writing, and recording[edit]

Late in 1981, O'Neill moved from New Zealand to Sydney, New South Wales, Australia to pursue her music career,[2] where she wrote "Maxine", a song that chronicled the life of a prostitute.[3] In a 2016 interview, O'Neill said; "I was living in a hotel in Kings Cross when I got the inspiration to write "Maxine". She was always out there working at 3am when we'd get home bleary-eyed from a gig".[2]

The album was produced by John Boylan with local studio musicians. O'Neill, asked afterward whether this was one of the more enjoyable recording sessions, she said no, "but it was a highlight for me because it was done on the West Coast of the USA with a very important person in my life at the time, John Boylan..., who was so enthusiastic over my songs and pulled it all together and pulled in so many friends. I was such a fan of these people who came and played on the album that I was shaking in my shoes when they came into the studio".[4] People who played on the album, she said, include Tom Scott, saxophonist with the ensemble L.A. Express, on "Maxine"; and David Lindley, the guitarist.[4]


Three singles from the album charted: "Losing You" (#26 in Australia, Kent Music Report[5]); "Maxine" (#16 in Australia, Kent Music Report;[5] #16 in New Zealand[6]); and "Danger" (#78 in Australia, Kent Music Report[5]).

Track listing[edit]

Vinyl/cassette (237889)
Side A
1."Danger"Sharon O'Neill4:06
3."One of a Crowd"O'Neill4:11
4."Radio Lover"O'Neill3:47
5."Kids in Our Town"O'Neill4:00
Side B
1."Losing You"O'Neill 
2."I've Got You to Thank"O'Neill 
3."Take the Fall"O'Neill 
4."Hearts on the Run"O'Neill 
5."All the Way Down"O'Neill 


Chart (1983) Peak
Australian Kent Music Report [5] 17
New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[7] 12


  • Bob Glaub – bass
  • Scott Chambers – bass
  • Mike Baird – drums
  • Mike Botts – drums
  • Tom Scott – saxophone on "Maxine"
  • Brent Thomas – guitar
  • Timothy B. Schmit – backing vocals
  • Don Henley – backing vocals
  • Sharon O'Neill – keyboards


  1. ^ "Gold and platinum New Zealand albums to 2013". teara. Retrieved 5 March 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Twelve Questions with Sharon O'Neill". NZ Herald. 23 February 2016. Retrieved 8 March 2017.
  3. ^ "SHARON O'NEILL. MAXINE". Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision. Retrieved 8 March 2017.
  4. ^ a b Cammick, Murray (6 May 2014). "Sharon O'Neill: The 9/12 transcript". Audio Culture.
  5. ^ a b c d Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. NOTE: Used for Australian Singles and Albums charting from 1970 until ARIA created their own charts in mid-1988.
  6. ^ "Sharon O'Neill – Maxine (song)". Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  7. ^ " – Sharon O'Neill – Foreign Affairs". Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 March 2017.