Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Kate Bush

Early life

Catherine Bush was born in 1958 in Bexleyheath (Kent). Since her early age, she has been immersed in an artistic background; her mother was an Irish folk dancer and her father a highly talented pianist. Therefore, she began writing her own tunes and eventually added lyrics to them.


At 15 years old, Kate got in touch with David Gilmour (Pink Floyd’s lead guitarist) thanks to Ricky Hopper, a family friend. It enabled her to record her first demo. She signed to EMI Records one year later, but only began her career in 1977. In January 1978, her first song, Wuthering Heights came out, based on the novel of the same name, written by Emily Brontë. Catherine Earnshaw, the main female character in the book, is quoted several times in the song and especially in the chorus. It climbed to number one on the British charts and was part of her first album The Kick Inside.

Her first song opened the way to her future career, a number of literary references can actually be found in her work (e.g.: references to James Joyce, (Lord) Alfred Tennyson…).

Shortly afterwards, Lionheart, Kate’s second album was released. However, she was not satisfied with it, because she needed more time to work on it. She decided thus, to set up her own publishing company, Kate Bush Music, and her own management company, Novercia. This way she became more autonomous. She still had obligations towards EMI Records and had to go on tour in 1979, the only one of her career, The Tour Of Life.

In 1980, her single Babooshka became the first Top Five single since Wuthering Heights, whereas her third album Never For Ever was number one in the British Charts.

Her fourth album, The Dreaming, was also successful, but the single There Goes a Tenner was a failure. Fortunately in 1985, Running Up That Hill (song of her fifth album Hounds of Love), got Bush back on her feet, being the second biggest-selling single.

In 1987, The Whole Story shows the changes in her sound and her development as a writer and performer. This album is a compilation of her greatest hits.

The same year, she was elected “Best British Female Artist” at the BRIT Awards in London.

In 1989, The Sensual World was a success both in the UK and the US.

The Red Shoes is her next album (1993). In the meantime, she became a mother and retreated in her countryside home, so that she produced albums more sporadically. Her last albums are: Aerial (2005), The Director’s Cut, a collection of 11 remakes taken from The Sensual World and The Red Shoes, and, finally, 50 Words for Snow (2011).

British Icon

Kate Bush is a British icon for two reasons. Firstly, she is known for her keening vocals and unusually literate body of songs. Another reason is her absence from concert stage and the extended periods between albums. These two reasons resulted in Bush becoming one of the more enigmatic pop artists in England.

For more information about Kate Bush, surf on her official website.

Marie-Jeanne Bleuzet & Olivia Nisolle

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