Journalism Archive

Much of what I have written over the years has been lost or never filed.
What I have posted here is a selection of some of the journalism I have written over the years

In konversation with Kate Bush

First published in the RTE Guide, 7 April 1978

This interview with Kate Bush was published in April 1978 when her debut single Wuthering Heights was at No 1 in the UK charts. It has not been seen since and, indeed, is listed as being among those early interviews with Kate Bush which are now missing. Here it is in full for those who wish to read it:

Kate Bush is not a sex-object, nor is she a Women's Libber. "It's something I'd rather not comment on, because, I think, they might have done a lot to destroy what we had." Now,a the age of 19, the petite Kate has made a memorable début onto the music scene with her hit Wuthering Heights and the album The Kick Inside. On a recent visit to Dublin she talked to Brendan Martin

Brendan Martin: The songs on your album The Kick Inside strike one as poems put to music.

Kate Bush: Well, for me the lyrics are very important in that I try to make them stand up in their own right, as I feel the music should as well. But it's up to people who hear the album to tell me whether I've done it or not. And if you say that, it's great.

BM: Apart from Wuthering Heights all the songs seem to be very personal.

KB: They are all very personal as they are all my own theories about things. But, in fact, I'd say that maybe one or two of them are relevant to my own experiences. What I've tended to do is to use my own experiences to get into someone else's mind, like in Wuthering Heights. I deliberately personalised them by talking about the main character as "I". That's very important because music is a very personal process. But not all the songs are necessarily to do with me.

BM: But in some of them, Feel It in particular, come across as your own experiences.

KB: I think, really, you only need a little experience to know how people's minds work. You can understand quite a lot. I don't mean everything but there are definite formulae. In normal relationships there are rules, like the possessive game. There you get "He's mine; he's not yours". Jealousy and all sorts of really quite irrational emotions enter into it.

BM: Apart from the obvious meaning of the album title The Kick Inside, some of the lyrics are very maternalistic. For example There's room for a life in your womb woman / Inside of you can be two, woman. That's very feminine and sensitive yet it's a song a man can understand and enjoy.

KB: That's really great for me. Because, I think, although I do understand the minds of some men, I'm much more in tune, obviously, with female minds just because I am a woman. If men can relate to that, that's great because it means I may be teaching them a little about the game women play. But really, what the song is about is my theory that because a woman is biologically made to bear a child, she has a stronger survival instinct. She has not only herself to look after, she's got the next generation also.

BM: Would you like to have children?

KB: I guess the answer to that is yes. But I don't think I would be unless I felt totally ready for it. For me, having a child is a really great responsibility because you've got something there that is depending on you for information and love until a certain age when it goes to school. I think the mother should be totally dedicated to this role, which for some years I won't be able to do because of my work.

BM: Did you feel pain when writing these songs?

KB: No, not pain. I think probably the only thing that is around in these songs is that I was really lonely when I wrote a lot of them. But it was really by my own choosing because I was devoting myself to songwriting and dancing and I wasn't really going out and seeing people. I had friends but I was spending a great deal of my time alone and for me that was vital because there's an awful lot you learn about yourself when you're alone.

BM: What about Wuthering Heights? Does the book have a special significance for you?

KB: No, not really because I didn't read it until just before I wrote the song. I'd seen the television series years ago. I just caught the last few minutes where she was at the window trying to get in. It's one of those classic stories that you vaguely know. I knew there was Heathcliffe and Cathy and that she died and came back. It just fascinated me. What an incredible situation that people should want something so much that even when they die they won't let go. It is a greed of some kind...or a greedy-need, that's the word.

It was just fascinating me so much, it kept coming into my brain. I thought the only way to get rid of it and stop it bothering me was to write it down. So I read the book and it amazed me. It was such a beautiful story. I made sure that I had read it as I was doing it as a tribute to Emily Brontë and anytime you do a something with somebody else's work, you should take care with it because you might well be abusing their expressions. But I found the book more than I had hoped for because for a girl so young it was beautiful that she had the strength to do it.

Quite an interesting coincidence between Emily and myself, that I didn't find out until much later, is that we have the same birthday, 30 July. I thought it was a nice tie-in.







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© 2008 Brendan Martin

Brendan Martin - Media Trainer and Journalist