Could this song be a hit today? I first heard "Midnight At The Oasis" performed by Maria Muldaur on NBC's "Midnight Special" in 1974. That summer, it went to #6 on the charts and was Grammy-nominated for Record Of The Year and Song Of The Year. But when I heard it again yesterday for the first time in a long while, I wondered if it could make it today, in a country where anything that sounds remotely Islamic or Arabic generates blowback from loudmouths on TV and radio.
Take these lyrics for example...
You don't have to answerWait, what's that about a sheik? Alert the xenophobes! And then there's this:
No, there's no need to speak
I'll be your only dancer, prancer
And you can be my sheik
I know your Daddy's a sultanThat's going to get the Islamophobes and the women's rights groups upset. But there's also the most confounding lyric:
A nomad known to all
With fifty girls to attend him, they all send him
Jump at his beck and call
Midnight at the oasisIn what world was some guy choosing a camel over Maria Muldaur?
Send your camel to bed