KT Cloudbusting -- Kate Bush In Her Own Words



"Delius'' is a tribute to an extraordinary man both in body and spirit. (1980, KBC 7)


I'm wondering if this next composer was one that you were introduced to by your family, and this of course is delius. And you've written a song about him on your never for ever album. You are a fan of several of his pieces.

Yes, Delius was really introduced to me by Ken Russell, on television. I think people have probably heard about Song of Summer that was shown - a beautiful piece of film, about Delius's later life.

How old were you when you saw that?

I must have been about ten. But the imagery was just so beautiful, you just don't forget it. It's the most incredible film. And if I could make a plea, I really wish the BBC could show it again. There are so many people that could benefit greatly from seeing it.

The piece that we're going to play next is called ``Song to be Sung of a Summer's Night on the Water.'' This is a line I used, in fact, in the song on the album. And there's a quote from Delius as to his favourite retreat, that he imagined, and I thought it would tie in rather nicely, going into the music. He says: ``White butterflies flitting from petal to petal, and golden brown bees murmuring in the warm, quivering summer air. Beneath the shade of the old trees flows a quiet river with water-lilies, and in a boat, almost hidden, two people. A thrush is singing in the distance."

[An excerpt from song to be sung of asummer'snight on the water, from a suite of three songs for a cappella choir, is played.]

An extract from song to be sung of a summer night by delius. Kate, we know that many devotees of a particular form of music are intolerant of others. In the early days of rock 'n' roll, for example, classical music-buffs would condemn rock. And unfortunately some rock fans are intolerant of classical music. Have any of your fans questioned the fact that you wrote a track about delius?

Not one. I think the thing about music is that it isn't something that should be labeled; and I think it's the human element that labels it. Music should be all-embracing. There should be no snobbery, because music is one entity. It's not lots of different things. But no, I've not found that from any of my fans, I think they're all extremely openminded people who appreciate music as one thing. Not sectionalised devotees, yeah. (1980, BBC)


You did see the 1968 omnibus [???] film?


It stayed with you in your head.

Yes that was what was responsible really for inspiring the song and me getting into his music as well.

You listen to him?

Yes, I have. But really only in the last year and I can't understand why I didn't listen before, it's so beautiful.

But you mention eric fenby's name in your song.


I'm not sure whether you heard that dr. Fenby, but you are up there with the greats - kate - at the moment. [Everybody laughs]

Fenby: Indeed, yes.

What's the actual line, kate?

It says, ``in B, Fenby."

In b, fenby. It says in b, fenby.

Fenby: Who's b?

In the key of the B?

Fenby: Oh, in the key of b.

Harty: The b key not bzzzz. [Everybody laughs]

Fenby: Oh, I see, yes.

What do you think frederick delius would have thought if he'd seen that kate bush display that we just witnessed [Kate's delius video]?

Fenby: Well, delius was a great individualist and I think he would have applauded you for at least doing your thing your own way [Audience laughs] because he hated copiests, whether it was in music or anything else and I think he would accepted that as a very gracious tribute.

[Interviewer interrupts] but it is quite a great gracious tribute isn't it?

Fenby: It is, I think so, yes.

Harty: [Interrupts kate attempting to speak] you do push your targets, kate, you push your targets fairly up market don't you. I mean, we've had, ah... Haven't we been into bronte land, haven't we?

Yes we have.

No, was it cathy and heathcliff, yes of course it was. Now into delius, where is the arrow of your powerful intellect going to fall next, I wonder?

Well I think the key is emotion, Julian said it just a moment ago. The thing about Delius's music is it's so emotional...

It is.

Fenby: Yes.

... And really that is what art is, art is pure emotion. And so anyone that is full of it will attract me, obviously, because I'm looking for the same thing, I'm tuning into the same thing. Delius is...

Fenby: But there was only one delius, wasn't there?

Only one!

Fenby: Yeah.

[Interrupts again] did he... He quite liked popular music though, because in the film... In ken russel's film, do you remember, there is one evening that wind [Up granford ???] he said, ``put on old man river.''

Fenby: Well, that reminded him of his time on a florida plantation when he was about twenty-two. Went out from england to avoid joining the family [Wooling ???] business. (1980, The Russell Hardy Show)


What is sung during delius, after the bit where delius is dictating to fenby?

Can't you tell? (1984, KBC 17)


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