* * DREAMING * *

A 'Best of' Love-Hounds Collection


E3 - Books




Back to Dreaming E. MisK


Date: Mon, 21 Oct 85 01:30:06 edt
From: nessus (Doug Alan)
Subject: Break-Through and Fred Vermorel Bios

> I'd appreciate any thoughts on "Breakthrough" from y'all (this magazine may already have been discussed here, along, I'm sure, with the reprehensible Fred Vermorel bio, but remember, I've only been here for a few weeks...)

There hasn't been much discussion of any of this. I have just mentioned both. There are two Fred Vermorel bios, which are very different. There is "Kate Bush: Princess of Suburbia" and "The Secret History of Kate Bush". The first one is a parody of a National Enquirer style expose. It's complete with "proof" that Kate Bush was trying to control people's minds with Gurdjieffian hypnotism methods and ritual dancing and movement. Vermorel seems to like Kate well-enough in this bio (though I guess he seems to think she's a somewhat amusing figure or something, and he has many nasty things to say about her family and friends), so I have no idea why he chose Kate as the subject of a parody on scandal sheets. I can't find "Princess of Suburbia" too reprehensible, though most KB fans seem to think it is, because it can't possibly be taken seriously -- it's more funny than anything else. I'm told that Kate was quite hurt by it, though.

After "The Dreaming" came out, Vermorel seemed to totally change his mind about Kate. He decided that "The Dreaming" is the greatest work of art ever, and wrote "The Secret History of Kate Bush". This one, instead of being a biography, is a hundred page long love-letter to Kate. Which makes it kind of ridiculous. I'm not sure where Fred is coming from on this one. Maybe it's not supposed to be taken seriously -- maybe it's supposed to be a parody of a hundred page long love-letter to Kate.... But he sure seems serious.

This is chapter I:

We recognized her as we always do stars. A face "clicks", happens, transfigures anonymity. As the eye jumps to a pretty face in a croud, the word "sex" on a page. So decisively it seems a star is *born*, But not out of labour. Rather as a flying saucer crash-landed on earth. Gleaming mysterious and seamless in its crater. Surrounded by excited cameramen and fenced off by stern authority. A worldwide object of speculation: Gee! Is there anyone -- anything -- inside? And is it friendly?

So she burst through the telly in early '78. All wrists and lisp and dimples, all sweet and clever, all arms like water flowing over stones, as clean and delicious as a scoop of avocado pear. The suburbs breathed again. Fresh air after punk's foul blast. And very soon very famous. A hit, a gold, a number one. Introduced to gentry. An institution. Snap, crackle and pop. A campaign of champagne. Prizes, encore!, and: who the hell does she think she is? "The most photographed woman in Britain."

Then she disappeared.

And destroyed her talent. For two years worked to wreck her facility and build something more interesting in the ruins. As every artist has to. And has taken pop production its furthest yet. As frank as Cliff, as crisp as the Floyd, and as potent as the Pistols. And her work's now as sharp and inspired as David Hockney's (which it resembles). Only more important. For Hockney's art is defunct: fine art painting. But hers is the only art which really counts today. Not pop art, but the art of pop.

A strange, could be dangerous art. Crazy Kate, pop witch. She exorcises our madness. Lives and projects myths she can't always control. Or understand.

Also an unusual person with unusual reflexes -- a welcome antidote to most of us. How did she come about? I followed the fragile chances and distillation which produced her and her art and realized how nearly she never made it -- for which we'd be the poorer. And also followed her appearance through her folklore: Kate sphinx, Kate harlequin, Kate harlot... A history of our expectations and recognition.

"Fear cautions me, 'Remain a stranger,'
Yet longing urges, 'Do not wait.'
Her eyes spell secrecy and danger,
Yet they are my dark stars of fate."
(Heine, "Katherine")

This is from page 61:

I remember that first EMI poster which loomed from buses and tube stations to katenap my eye in '78. Grave, delicious Kate, plump owl in her tangled nest of puzzled hair with nipples blowing tiny kisses through a cotton vest. Kate and I joined in instant photolock. Kate Bush, bushy Kate laid out for me by the EMI artroom boys with a gourmet's delight like a table for guests. A strawberry tea spread, with eyes like doughnuts full of jam, and butter lips and full cream cheeks spread with a blunt knife by the vicar's wife...

So I turn Kate's glossy pages, crackling and soapy to the touch, paper which seems limp and heavy and wet with *realism*, as if her image were oozing and perspiring into my fascinated inspection. Where she opens herself ultra-bright and ultra-sharp with what seems like almost effusive precision. A kind of alacrity. An implacably sunny and heartlessly optimistic photoworld where I can dwell for ever and ever with no problem or effort, and no hope of change or decay, over her lambent skin and sticky promise of her tropical lips.

Kate Bush is our godess Frig. And like the Saxons we both revere *and* fear her. Shroud her in the mystery of her power and the power of her mystery.

A fertility goddess for our Nature: the Economy. Mother Commodity.

Kate Bush is the smile on the steel of EMI, the mating call of Thorn Industries, British capital on heat, the soft warm voice of mass media, the sweet breath of vinyl, the lovely face of bureaucracy, the seductive gaze of power. As every star is.

And she also incarnates pure adventure, total freedom: the ad made flesh, Fabulously rich, we rumor: an idol in our world-wide superstitious cult of celebrity, which is the only religion we all truly believe in now -- even a pope has to be a celebrity before we take him seriously. The negative image of ourselves. Of our anonymity and powerlessness. Which her images dramatise and expiate. Kate Catharsis.

No wonder EMI takes such care to show her with the same scrupulous art as Moscow depicts Karl Marx and Thorn industry its computers. Through hybrid images which hover just between photography and painting -- pictures which exist just beyond the camera's conventional vision but retain a ghostly residue of authority. The art of airbrush and stencil, soft pencil and rubber. The visual style proper to charismatic icons: celebrities are shown with its anonymous clarity, with the hard lustre of machinery and apothesis. They appear to *shine*, by virtue of apparently effortless and bland tonal transitions, sharp black and white highlights, and meticulously separated edges -- detail given with hypnotic brilliance which displays people as if they had suddenly loomed, ready-made and perfect, like smooth obelisks from a fog into which they might also disappear -- monumental and intangible.

But I like her so much because she spoils it for them. She has Monroe's flawed and flagrant presence. No wet-shine, deep-frozen cover girl. No Beauty. Not Debbie Harry's vacuous nonentity -- no blank screen for wet consumer dreams. But a woman who besides posing looks like she might menstruate, or sign checks -- or punch my nose. A self-contained exuberance which cheerfully stains the most pompous male tableau with female energy and wit.

And her favorite photolook is the gaze openly returned to a friend. Intimate, but not for sale.

He ends the book with:

Kate Bush:

"I think everyone is emotional and I think a lot of people are afraid of being so.

Gee... Could that be used as the theme for an album side?

They feel that it's vulnerable. Myself I feel it's the key to everything and that the more you can find out about your emotions the better"

Unusually sensuous, unusually generous. She wants to make us happy. Give us everything she has all at once. Superbly courageous, on a hire wire over ridicule, disdainful of her own safety, always ready to risk her talent and herself. She opens her heart with her mouth and throws herself at us with frightened urgency and that half anxious curl of her upper lip -- as if fearful of finding nothing on our side. And we would be most ungracious if she didn't. If we didn't respond to her warmth and vulnerability with some vulnerability ourselves.

Kate Bush is a profoundly *subversive* artist.



Date: Sat, 26 Sep 87 11:29 PDT
Subject: Kate Bush Complete

Kate Bush Complete is the title of a new and long-promised book that has finally been published by EMI/IMP Books. It is a collection of "all" of Kate's songs published to date. It includes the lyrics to sixty-six of her songs, followed by the sheet-music for all sixty-six. There are also about fifty or so smallish black-and-white photographs, a few of which have never been published anywhere before, although all are from familiar photo sessions. There is also an introduction by Peter Fitzgerald-Morris, the chief editor of Homeground -- "The International Kate Bush Fanzine".

And it's clear that Kate and her family were consulted at least to some extent on the plans for the book. Finally, there are a discography (U.K. releases only), a videography and -- most valuable of all, I think, although filled with gaps -- a month-by-month chronology of Kate's career. The quality of the paper and printing of this eight-by-ten paperback book are excellent, and IED's initial reaction overall is quite positive.

There are, of course, some errors of fact and one or two unfortunate omissions (two songs are missing, "Be Kind to My Mistakes" and the early, unreleased song "Maybe"), but to its credit the book is very carefully edited (both French lyrics, for example, are letter-perfect -- a real rarity in pop books!), and it even solves a few "mysteries".


Date: Mon, 30 May 88 11:38 PDT
Subject: Kate Bush Complete

Mike Pritchard, you ask:

> Finally got a copy of "Kate Bush Complete". Who writes out the scores? I recall Kate saying that she rarely writes out her songs, but plays it by ear. So are these the product of someone listening to them over and over and over...?

Well, no, strictly speaking. As far as IED can tell, they are the product of some nameless EMI drone listening to them once and only once, with one one ear, while soaking up quarts of cheap ale and watching that week's Watford match on the telly. Kate obviously has nothing to do with any of the musical transcriptions of her recordings. She can handle notation, and has written out some parts herself for session musicians to read from, but it takes her a long time and much trouble, so whenever possible, she avoids the process. The guitar part for John Williams in "The Morning Fog" is an example of a part that Kate wrote out note for note.

-- Andrew Marvick


Date: Mon, 22 Aug 88 17:10 PDT
Subject: The Whole Story

Late reports have surfaced of the release of TWO -- count 'em --new books about Kate Bush. Added to the music books published thus far, these constitute the eleventh and twelfth Kate Bush-related books to date (not counting The Garden, a publication of the possibly imaginary Wickham Street Irregular Press).

Even as the Love-Hounds read this, one book, a trade-size paperback "scrapbook" made up of clippings and photographs of Kate, has already started to turn up in import shops. It has been offered in Los Angeles stores for $20.00

Another book, entitled The Whole Story, should show up very soon. This one is described as a hardback "official biography" of Kate, and will be priced somewhere around $30.00 (!). It is supposed to be a very up-market production.

Earlier, Peter FitzGerald-Morris announced plans to publish a re-edited collection of his long Homeground series "Five Years Ago" in book form. IED speculates that The Whole Story may in fact be that book. The description of the hardcover book as an "official biography" might very well fit the Fitzgerald-Morris project, since he has already acted as Kate's fact-finder in a more or less official capacity for the Kate Bush Complete book.

Rest assured that IED will provide Love-Hounds with a thorough description of both new books just as soon as he can get his hands on copies. Meanwhile, if anyone else out there has any information, please share it!

-- Andrew Marvick


Date: Thu, 25 Aug 88 23:18 PDT

First, an apology for the prolixity of IED's prose in this posting, which is even more tiresome than usual. He spent the day in Victorian studies, and some of that era's style seems to have rubbed off on him, with unpleasant results.

KT News:

A copy of the first of two new books about Kate Bush has come into IED's hands, and it's a surprisingly worthwhile document. Its outward appearance is not auspicious of interior value. It's a glossy white paperback book, about 8x12" inches in dimension, featuring a black and white HoL -era publicity shot on the front, and the title "KATE BUSH WITH LOVE" in large pink letters. On the back cover is a distressingly silly love missile to Kate and her fans, which vows the compilers' utter devotion to Katedom in emotional but illiterate language, the tone and message of which are entirely offset by the writers' reference to " Cloudbursting ". (In IED's view, no true Kate Bush fan would ever commit that particular misspelling, but just about any money-grubbing bootleg scum would.)

The compilers, incidentally -- and the publishers, printers etc. -- are unidentified. In fact, there is no catalogue number, no price tag, no date or place of publication, no anything that might set a litigiously minded person on the path of the perpetrators of this illegal product. For illegal it certainly must be, consisting as it does exclusively of photo-reproductions of dozens of interviews, reviews and advertisements of/for Kate's work, dating from ca. 1978 to about 1986. In most cases the titles of the original publications have been excised from the facsimiles, although some of the IDs slipped by. It's obvious from this furtively anonymous presentation that no permissions were sought to reproduce any of the clippings included in the new book.

The layout is relatively professional throughout, although a few of the photos have been marred by the superimposition of smaller clippings over their surface. The efforts of the editors have not extended beyond the performance of these relatively simple organizational tasks -- no commentary of any kind accompanies the clippings. This is unfortunate, since by their unedited, unannotated reproduction all the errors of fact which appeared in the original articles are preserved now in more permanent form, thus greatly increasing the likelihood of confusion among novice Kate Bushologists.

Despite these faults, however, Kate Bush With Love must be counted a very valuable book. In it are included all three of Harry Doherty's important pieces from 1978, the Ted Mico interview, the second Kris Needs ZigZag interview and more than twenty more articles of nearly equal interest and importance. There are of course notable omissions, including Peter Swales's indispensible Musician interview and the Tony Myatt Capital Radio interview, both from 1985.

Still, any fan who is just discovering Kate in the late 1980s will be sure to appreciate having a healthy sampling of print interviews from the earlier part of Kate's career, now that the originals have become relatively elusive. Considering the collection as a whole, and in the context of presently available Kate Bushological scholarly materials, IED can recommend this slim but informative volume as a worthwhile purchase (approximate U.S. price: $12.00).


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 88 16:15 PDT
Subject: Kate Bush--A Visual Documentary

from the latest (32nd) issue of "Homeground":

A new book about Kate (newer than the "scrapbook" called "Kate Bush With Love", which IED reported on in detail earlier), is due in "late autumn" in the UK. It's to be called "Kate Bush--A Visual Documentary", and "HG" say: "Although we have not yet seen a copy of the book we do know that the authors have put in much time and effort to make it as positive and accurate as possible." This sounds to IED as though it's going to be something of a whitewash, a bit like Peter F-M's own chronology. Why should it be made as "positive" as possible? And how can one make it "positive" and "accurate" at the same time? The two desires are mutually exclusive. To slant the facts in favour of some misconceived notion of the artist's reputation is not the way to assure accuracy. (Yeah, yeah, IED's one to talk!) Ah, well, we'll have to wait and see what it's like when it arrives.

IED doesn't know for sure, but it seems that this book is the same one which he earlier reported as being called "Kate Bush--The Whole Story", a title which was given to import record retailers. This confusion will soon be resolved, however.

The report in "HG" once again makes vague allusions to some inside source, possibly the Bush family themselves; and as usual, the source's anonymity is scrupulously maintained. IED is frankly a little annoyed by these veiled references to unnamed sources. "HG" continues to insist (on its back page) that it is run "completely independently of any official fan organisation," yet they also continue to report news which time and again proves that they are privy to information which could only have come from an "official" source, and probably the Bush family itself. If the sources are not secret, why are they never identified? If they are, why can't they at least admit that they are? And above all, why can't they have the candor to admit when they're holding something back about their information and/or sources?


From: sco!scol!craig@uunet.UU.NET
Date: 10:45:21 PM Thu 01 Dec 1988 GMT
Subject: KATE BUSH: A Visual Documentary

I presume the recent profusion (is two a profusion? it is in this context!) of Kate biographies is due to the publishers trying to coincide with the release of KBVI - they should have known better!

Be that as it may, I was innocently browsing through my local bookshop (looking for a T.Rex bio, incidentally - are there any in print?), when I was assaulted by "KATE BUSH: A Visual Documentary" by Kevin Cann & Sean Mayes (a couple of thoroughly disreputable-looking musos, judging by their pics on the back cover - I liked them immediately!). Seeing as it was a paperback, I bought it there and then, even though it was 8 pounds 95 (logic? who said anything about logic!).

It's large format (9" x 11.5"), about 100 pages, and slightly more text than photos. Many of the photos are colour, full page. There are sidebars on every page of text with smaller photos and a chronology which roughly relates to the chapter headings.

The style is factual and informative, and the author's prejudices don't intrude (that could be just because they agree with mine, but I don't detect any obvious adulatory bias). It seems to be pretty comprehensive (I don't claim to be an expert, IED and |>oug are welcome to that position!) It covers much the same ground as Mr. Juby's book that I reviewed a couple of weeks ago, but its comparative shortness is due to the lack of the "gossipy" bits and personal opinions that spoiled that particular work for me.

The photos were almost all new to me - I found some of those of Kate to be perhaps unflattering, particularly the cover, but it's growing on me. There are a number of pics of relevant people and places (her school, the family, Del, etc.) which were interesting.

The best bit (by far, for me) is the appendix of various lists - the disc(+)ography is the most complete I have yet seen, including notable bootlegs, all the film work, books and compilation LPs (also the most up-to-date, including "Sister & Brother" with Midge Ure). There's a representative list of fanzines (including an address to get info on Jay's limited-edition photo-collection "Cathy"), and finally some amusing trivia lists (Kate's favourite artists, likes and dislikes).

Summary: all-in-all, I can't fault it. Recommended - buy it today!


Date: Sat, 03 Dec 88 22:45 PST
Subject: Kate Bush: A Visual Documentary

IED devoted the day to a careful annotative reading of the newest of KT biographies, called Kate Bush: A Visual Documentary. This time, mindful of his embarassing lapse in judgement in the Kerry Juby Affair (a lapse which he attributes to the dizzying effect that the release of any book about Kate is likely to have on his critical faculties), he took his time, read the whole book cover to cover (taking punctilious notes the while), and then went out for a calming dinner with friends (yes, IED has friends!) before commenting. He will report on the book's specific contents in a future posting. For now, however, IED will say that this latest book is the best of any unofficial biography to have emerged so far.

First, as a visual record, it's a great package. The photos are very well reproduced, with good colour and sharp resolution. And there are lots and lots of them, from every stage of Kate's adult career. (No photos of Kate as a child are included--with the exception of the same old blurry school-photos; but the years 1978-87 are well covered.) Naturally, the authors had absolutely no personal communication of any kind with Kate herself, but then that is nothing new. And naturally, as a result, all testimony from "former school-friends", etc., remains as suspect as ever. Still, the text--which has very little padding--has fewer errors of fact than any of the others; is less annoying; is both less unfairly critical and less sycophantic; and is better written than the others. This is not to say it's perfect.

There are errors, and many of them; it is not without its irritating points, foolish and ill-founded judgements, and moments of indecorous gushing; and it's not Shakespeare. Also, with the exception of one new source (the make-up effects team for the Experiment IV video-shoot) the new book contains almost literally no hitherto unknown information.

Nevertheless, IED can safely say that (excluding John Carder Bush's Cathy, of course, which is on an altogether different level) no book has yet appeared that can compete with A Visual Documentary. It's filled with facts, the preponderance of which are accurately recounted; and its authors have more than one or two interesting and plausible ideas about the meaning of Kate's work. (They also have a few silly ones, but that's not so terrible.) All in all, IED gives this book a grade of (gulp) A-. Which is damn high by his standard. For what it is--a general record of Kate's public life story, without many new insights but with a higher standard of factual precision-- Kate Bush: A Visual Documentary is really very good, and IED recommends it to all new but loyal fans. And he is very relieved to be able to do this, because now he can officially rescind any and all recommendations he may ever have made, in a moment of weakness, of any other unofficial Kate Bush biography.

With this new option in the bookshops, IED can advise with an easy conscience: "DON'T buy the Juby book--save yourselves $10 and get A Visual Documentary ." (IED paid about $20 for his copy).

Too bad Love-Hounds didn't get a mention at the back, but Robyn's Still Breathing and Erni Heramia's ever-improving Watching Storms both did--with the addresses spelled correctly and everything.)

-- Andrew Marvick


Date: Wed, 6 Dec 89 09:40:48 GMT
From: nbc%INF.RL.AC.UK@mitvma.mit.edu
Subject: Bush "fans" (Vermorel)

Fred and Judy Vermerol (sp?) were on Radio 4's Midweek programme this morning. Fred, who wrote an unofficial "pop biog" on Kate Bush was described as an expert "on the fan in history". He and his wife apparently have some new book out on fans (as in pop or film fans). The presenter made some reference to a description in the book of one Kate fan who apparently tried to collect Kate's bath water from the overflow pipe outside her house! This led on to a discussion of Fred's strange behaviour when he was writing his book. This included following Kate around and trying to climb up her drainpipe whilst drunk. He claimed that he was trying to understand the obsessive behaviour of many fans and just chose Kate as a suitable victim (my word). He likened his book to an absurdist novel. I have never read his biog. of Kate but it sounded like a load of <expletive deleted>. Neil


From: Doug Alan <nessus@athena.mit.edu>
Date: Wed, 06 Dec 89 18:12:07 EST
Subject: Re: Bush "fans"

> Fred and Judy Vermerol (sp?) were on Radio 4's Midweek programme this morning. Fred, who wrote an unofficial "pop biog" on Kate Bush was described as an expert "on the fan in history".

Actually Fred wrote two unofficial biogs of Kate. Kate and family sued over the first one and it got pulled from the shelves. The first one was written pre-*Never for Ever* and was a scandal sheet sort of affair -- containing photos of Kate's (alleged) first lover, etc. In this biography, he was highly critical of Kate. The second biography (done post-*The Dreaming*) was rather strange in light of the first biography. Instead of being critical, instead it seemed like the author was masturbating extensively while writing every sentence. It covered the history of the Bush clan back through the dawn of time, contained a photo of the very ditch that Kate's great grandfather supposedly drowned in while walking home from the pub, etc. When it gets to Kate it goes on and and analyzing the symbology of Kate's lips and nipples and does an analyses of her work with respect to David Hockney and Post Structuralist theory, etc.

I could never quite figure out where this bizarre dude was coming from. More recently, he said that his biogs of Kate weren't really biogs of Kate at all -- they were writing exercises. For the first one, he wanted to try his hand at writing a scandal sheet and Kate seemed like as good a subject as any. For the second biog, he wanted to write a book from the point of view of a crazed professor obsessed with a pop icon, and again he figured Kate was as good a subject as any. In light of this, it all makes sense. Vermorel is a weird dude.



Date: Wed, 1 Aug 90 11:37:41 PDT
From: ed@das.llnl.gov (Edward Suranyi)
Subject: Book: Fandemonium

Guess who's got a new book out? Fred and Judy Vermorel! Yes, the same folks who brought us Kate Bush: Princess of Suburbia and The Secret History of Kate Bush (and the Strange Art of Pop) have a new book, called Fandemonium. Those of you who have read their earlier works can imagine what this one's like. Page after page of weird things fans have done. Fortunately, Kate is mentioned only once, very briefly. They have a paragraph about the guy who saved bath water from Kate's outdoor overflow pipe.

In the "About The Authors", it says that the Vermorels "perpetrated books about Kate Bush.. ." I think "perpetrated" is an excellent choice of word.


Date: Tue, 21 Aug 90 13:55:08 +0100
From: Stephen Thomas <spt1@ukc.ac.uk>
Subject: Terry Pratchett Discworld book, "Eric"

I bought the new Terry Pratchett Discworld book, "Eric", today, and came across a footnote that may be of interest to Katefans. It concerns the spontaneous formation of matter in the universe :-) ...

"... raw matter is continually flowing into the universe in fairly developed forms, popping into existence normally in ashtrays, vases and glove compartments. It chooses its shape to allay suspicion, and common manifestations are paperclips, the pins out of shirt packaging, the little keys for central heating radiators, marbles, bits of crayon, mysterious sections of herb-chopping devices and old Kate Bush albums."

It gave me a chuckle, anyway.



Date: Tue, 4 Dec 90 19:02:18 PST
From: ed@das.llnl.gov (Edward Suranyi)
Subject: A Kate trivia question

I asked essentially the same question about a year ago, but got no response, and I forgot to give the answer. So here it is again:

Kate wrote the following poem less than five years ago.

1) Where did it appear?

2) What is the connection between Kate and the place of this poem's appearance?

Here's the poem:

What could be worse than losing someone you love?
They are both losing each other,
Both trying to make it easier for each other.
A mother and daughter with so much courage and love,
It hurts just to read it.
But you should.

-- Kate Bush

This time, I promise that I'll give the answer next week.


Date: Tue, 11 Dec 90 15:37:00 PST
From: ed@das.llnl.gov (Edward Suranyi)
Subject: A Kate trivia question -- THE ANSWER!

Last week, I asked some questions about the following poem, written by Kate a few years ago:

What could be worse than losing someone you love?
They are both losing each other,
Both trying to make it easier for each other.
A mother and daughter with so much courage and love,
It hurts just to read it.
But you should.

-- Kate Bush

It appears on the back of a book below quotes from M. Scott Peck, Jim Henson, and two others. The book is Give Me One Wish, by Jacquie Gordon. Yes, the title of the book does come from "Oh England My Lionheart". Here's the story:

Christine Gordon, the daughter of Jacquie, was a typical American girl except that she had cystic fibrosis. The book is about Chris's struggle for life, and her eventual succumbence to the disease. Chris was an alternative music fan, and according to Homeground, her mother said Kate was a great inspiration to Chris, keeping her alive longer than she otherwise would have been.

Here's the passage in the book in which Kate is mentioned. Chris had long had the nickname of "the Lionhearted", by the way. It's from pp. 313-314, for those interested:

A little later Chris asked me if I had time to pick up some new tapes for her. The new Split Enz, Time and Tide, and the Marshall Crenshaw album. She asked me to stay first and listen to a song from her new Kate Bush album, Lionheart. I asked, "Is Kate Bush popular? I don't know her at all."

She thought a minute. "She's English. She has a small cult following here, but she's better known in England."

I studied the back of the album cover while I listened. All the lyrics were there, but Kate Bush had written out the lyrics to this song in her own longhand. I read along as I listened to her haunting soprano.

[The lyrics from "Oh England My Lionheart" appear here.]

My face was still but my mind grabbed at the words and life tore apart inside me. Was she telling me at last? I had been waiting for her to speak. She had, but with such delicacy, I wasn't sure.

"It's a beautiful song. I love the way she sighs the chorus, 'Oh England.' Could you play it again?"


"Chris, do you remember when you were little I used to call you Christine the Lionhearted?"

"Yes." She sat on the sofa close to me as we listened again. There was no mistake. There were those words -- "the war is over.. .my funeral barge, give me one kiss.. .give me one wish.. .my shepherd who'll bring me home.. .I don't want to go."

I was numb and wordless. I had no answer, no poetry of my own. Years of pain felt no different from this moment of pain. It was all the same. I couldn't imagine what she must feel. I was hollow and an empty wind blew through me.

The book was published in 1987, I think. Kate was nice enough to write the poem that went on its back cover, basically as a blurb for the book!

Ed Suranyi


Date: Tue, 19 Feb 91 20:39:07 PST
From: ed@das.llnl.gov (Edward Suranyi)
Subject: "Leaving My Tracks"

Gather around, folks, and I'll tell you the story of Kate's autobiography that never was -- or was it?

Back in the early days of her career (around 1980, I think) Kate was asked if she'd like to write her autobiography, and she agreed. The book was to be called Leaving My Tracks. It soon became obvious that Kate didn't have time to write, so by 1984 this project had been shelved indefinitely like so many other Kate projects (the Ninth Wave film, for example.)

Then, in Homeground 31 (from 1988), the editors said that a mysterious review of this book has turned up! They said that the following review appears in the book Lives And Works :

Bush, Kate

Leaving My Tracks /Kate Bush. -- London: Sidgwick & Jackson, 1982.
144 pp., 8p. of plates: ill. (some col.) ports (some col.); 30 cm.
ISBN 0-283-98698-7 (cased). ISBN 0-283-98799-5 (pbk.) *

[* this book is The Whole Story by Kerry Juby. Compare the ISBN !! --WIE ]

In this beautifully illustrated book Kate Bush gives an account of her approach to her work, techniques, inspirations and lifestyle. An interesting, unselfconscious attempt at autobiography, it does not appear to be written with the aid of a ghost writer and is surprisingly fluent.

Homeground was flabbergasted, as you can imagine. A copy of this book, if it really exists, would be incredibly desirable. But they could apparently not find anything more about it than this paragraph. Well, I might be able to get one step closer to the truth now.

You see, I've actually found a copy of this book in the Livermore Public Library, of all places! (Not Leaving My Tracks, but Lives And Works ).

To start with, the book is in fact NOT called Lives And Works. That's the name of the chapter! If Homeground only saw a photograph of the relevant page, the chapter name is at the top, so maybe that's why they thought that that was the title.

The book is called Popular Music Since 1955, written by Paul Taylor, and published in 1985. Our library has the American edition published by G. K. Hall & Co. It was originally published in Britain by:

Mansell Publishing Limited
6 All Saints Street
London N1 9RL

So now what somebody in England should do is write to Paul Taylor, care of this address. I'd do it myself but it would be much faster and cheaper if somebody there would do it, since both the publisher and author are there. If the Homeground people read this, they might want to try this. It's my experience that most authors contacted in this way will eventually respond.

The question that should be asked is: "Did you have some sort of copy of that book? If not, what's the story about the review? If yes, WHERE IS IT NOW?"



From: Doug Alan <nessus@mit.edu>
Date: Wed, 20 Feb 91 14:48:59 EST
Subject: Leaving My Tracks

Don't bother. The book is not in print, nor has it ever been. I'd actually be surprised if it ever existed in any form, other than some handwritten pages by Kate, but this review of it is interesting. The only two reasonable hypotheses are: (1) Kate did finish it to some degree, some demo copies were printed and given to some people to mull over, and then Kate and/or the publishing company decided they didn't like it and cancelled its publication. (2) The publishing company paid off some critics to give it a good review before it ever even existed in expectation of its imminent delivery from Kate, who never actually delivered it.



From: Klaus Kluge <kkluge@Materna.DE>
Date: Mon, 8 Jul 1991 00:46:23 -0800
Subject: Terry Pratchett about KaTe Bush

A couple of months ago somebody wrote about the novel 'Eric' by Terry Pratchett (author of the Discword series), where he mentions KaTe Bush albums in a footnote (he loves footnotes).

According to the story the universe doesn't always start with small and simple things, but sometimes with quite complex ones. Old KaTe Bush albums are one of them.

This weekend I visited a local Science Fiction Convention which hosted Terry Pratchett as one of the Guests of Honour (together with Anne McCaffrey, Ian Watson & Paul Williams). So I took the chance to ask him about that and see if he is a KaTe fan as well. Unfortunately he isn't, but the story behind it is still worth to be written down.

For one thing he noticed that when he is doing a random selection from his record collection KaTe Bush albums seem to have a much higher chance.

The other story he told is that when he wants to get a tape to listen in the car he looks for one at the patrol station. And from the selection there KaTe Bush and Queen tapes (note: he's talking about Britain here) are the only ones where he doesn't risk to vomit.


From: Scott@cs.heriot-watt.ac.uk (Scott Telford)
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 1991 08:48:46 -0700
Subject: "Leaving my Tracks" citation

A while ago someone mentioned the item in Homeground 42 about a new reference to the mythical "Leaving my Tracks" book. Well, after scouring some bookshops, I found it (the reference, not LmT! 8^). It's in the 1991 edition of the "Oxford Companion to Popular Music". The entry for KaTe describes her as a "singer and composer", calls her work "experimental" and says she was born in Plumstead, Surrey (didn't think Bexleyheath Maternity Hospital was in Surrey... 8^). It gives two references: the Vermorel's "Kate Bush" (thptt!) and

K. Bush, "Leaving my Tracks", (London, 1982).

Curiouser and curiouser...

Scott Telford,


From: Scott Telford <s.telford@ed.ac.uk>
Date: Wed, 4 Dec 1991 05:31:59 -0800
Subject: New Kate Bush collector's guide, and some corrections

The new issue of "Record Collector" has an ad for a new publication: "The Illustrated Collectors Guide to Kate Bush" by Robert Goodwin (who did a critically-acclaimed Led Zep guide, it sez here). It's got 144 pages, over 350 illustrations of rare collectables and goes from "Wuthering Heights" to "Rocket Man". Features include international pressings, TV appearances and bootlegs. Price is L10.00 paperback, or L25.00 for a very limited ed hardback (a meta-collectable item?).


From: caen!bsbbs!ken@harvard.harvard.edu (Ken Saint-John)
Date: Fri, 6 Dec 1991 06:23:39 -0800
Subject: Collector's Guide

The following is an excerpt from a the last KATE BUSH SET SALE list I received form Tom Richards at C-SIDE Records. (813-461-4327)

" There is good news for those of you who seek up to date documentation of all of the rarest KaTe goodies. I am working with author Robert Godwin on a book about KaTe titled "THE ILLUSTRATED COLLECTOR'S GUIDE TO KATE BUSH". Robert Godwin has authored the LED ZEPPELIN book "THE ILLUSTRATED COLLECTORS GUIDE TO LED ZEPPELIN" in which attention to detail is excellent. This book will contain over 350 photographs of the rarest KaTe Bush collectables in the world and catalog numbers of all known releases both promo and stock LP's, CD's, 45's, radio and promo only items, plus video listings, books, sheet music and more. This book will certainly be a welcome addition to all KaTe Bush collections, and the first edition will be limited. I contributed much of the information contained in the book and have made arrangements with Robert to be the main supplier in the United States. The book is completed and at the printer now. I will have copies to ship on the release date of December 1st, 91. The advanced price of the book is $10.95 plus $3.00 shipping. I am taking orders now."


From: nbc@inf.rl.ac.uk
Date: Mon, 23 Dec 1991 01:33:38 -0800
Subject: The Illustrated Collectors Guide to Kate Bush

I received a copy of "The Illustrated Collectors Guide to Kate Bush" by Robert Goodwin in the post yesterday. I ordered this from the shop Scott Telford mentioned (Digest #7.389). I have mixed opinions about it though overall find it quite a nice thing to have (though not cheap at #10-00).

The most useful things about the book are the photos of the items such as different pic sleeves and promo items. Since it is almost impossible to include every pressing of a Kate disc the book is of necessity just a snapshot of the Kate Bush genre. As it says in the introduction, Tom Richards provide 90% of the rare stuff included. Hence, the book reflects the items Tom has obtained and tends to cover mostly US, Canadian, Japanese, German, French stuff etc. and there is less from more inaccessible countries.

I found the layout of the book a bit confusing at first as the text and photos are intermixed so that it is not immediately obvious what goes together. However, it does cover practically every medium - tapes, vinyl, CD, video, books, magazines etc. It includes catalogue numbers for practically everything. There is no attempt to put a value on any of the collectible items and only the occasional attempt to indicate the rarity of something. There is a small section on fanzines but no mention of Lovehounds :-(

Despite the reservations I do not regret buying it and it would be useful for anyone with the time and money who intends to build up a Kate Bush collection.



From: caen!bsbbs!ken@harvard.harvard.edu (Ken Saint-John)
Date: Mon, 23 Dec 1991 18:26:52 -0800
Subject: Collector's Guide

I received a rather interesting little book in the mail today.

"The Illustrated Collectors Guide To KaTe Bush"

This book was put together by Robert Godwin (who is also responsible for "The Illustrated Collectors Guide To Led Zeppelin") with apparently much assistence from Tom Richards at "C-Side Records". Robert credits Tom with providing 90% of the material used in this book.

The book itself is 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 and 142 pages in length. The cover is a color photo of a bunch of KaTe rarities that are laid out in jumbled sort of fashion. There are 550 listings covering albums, CD's, 45's and CD singles, LaserDiscs, Videos, Interview discs, promotional records and CD's, bootlegs and bootleg CD's, books, sheet music, fanzines, guest appearances and TV appearances. In addition there are something like 350 b&w photos. Needless to say this little book covers a lot of ground. Naturally there are many things listed within these pages I don't have, interestingly there are a few KaTe items in my possession that I have yet to find listed, perhaps closer examination will reveal them.

Ken SaintJohn


From: Scott Telford <s.telford@ed.ac.uk>
Date: Thu, 21 May 1992 05:42:02 -0700
Subject: Kate Bush - the First Twelve Years

I think I mentioned this a few weeks ago. It's a limited-edition (either 200 or 2000, can't remember which) publication (by the Never Forever fanzine folks) in the shape of two A4 photocopied volumes (each about 80 pages, it says - I haven't checked) and is basically a scrapbook of UK magazine and newspaper articles/interviews/reviews (plus one that looks like Dutch) in roughly chronological order, plus the Peter Swales interview and the story of Jamie Amos's Ninth Hound painting. Unfortunately, it's not possible to tell which magazine some of the articles are from and the photos don't reproduce well, but it's an interesting read.

A lot of the reviews of TKI and Lh seem to be fairly negative ("nails-on-a-blackboard" voice", "more like 1968 than 1978" etc.) but by the time HoL was released the reviewers were resorting to Anglo-Saxon expletives (eg. "Kate Bush is a f**king genius") to convey their impressions and using words like "subversive" and "threatening", which seem to be complementary if they come from music journalists 8^).

There's also at least one hilarious account of the HoL launch at the London Laserium ("Del Palmer was wearing some of his hair in a plait, but most of it in his sideburns").

Probably the best indictment of the British gutter press is an article about Al Murphy's funeral. There's a photo of KaTe looking rather distressed, with Del by her side. The caption reads "Kate being comforted by her brother Johnny". Aaarrggghhh....


"Kate Bush - with Love" Scrapbook: a table of contents
(by IED)

Here is a list of everything that's included in the new bootleg book "Kate Bush With Love". The book is printed entirely in black-and-white.


  1. "The Kick Inside"(w/Karla Bonoff debut LP), Bob Woffinden, 2/78
  2. "The Kick Inside", Sandy Robertson, 3/78
  3. "The Kick Inside", H.D., 3/78
  4. "Lionheart", Dave McCullough, 11/78
  5. "Lionheart", Chris Westwood (RM), 11/78
  6. London Palladium show, John Shearlaw, 4/79
  7. "Wow," 2 reviews, 4/79
  8. "On Stage," 2 reviews, 9/79
  9. "Never For Ever", Paul Du Noyer, 9/80
  10. "Never For Ever", Ronnie Gurr, 9/80
  11. "Never For Ever", Tony Mitchell, 10/80
  12. "The Dreaming" (LP), Rose Rouse, 9/82
  13. "The Dreaming" (LP), Leyla Sanai, 9/82
  14. "The Secret History of Kate Bush" (Vermorel), by Kate Zeserson, 4/83
  15. "The Single File" (box set), Tony Mitchell, 2/84
  16. "Krufts Original", review of Hounds of Love, Jane Solanas, 9/85
  17. "Puppy Love", review of Laserium debut of Hounds of Love, 9-10/85
  18. "Cloudbusting" single, 10/85
  19. "Hounds of Love" album, 10/85
  20. "The Bush of Ghosts," brief piece on "Hounds of Love" album, MM, 12/85
  21. "Bush Fire," long review of "Hounds of Love" album, Mick Wall, 10/85
  22. "The Whole Story" LP, Colin Irwin, 11/86
  23. "100% Fat-Free," review of "The Whole Story" LP, John Mc Cready, 11/86
  24. "Katherine the Great," review of "The Whole Story" LP, Roger Holland, 11/86


  1. "Kate's Fairy Tale," Mary Ann Ellis, 2/78
  2. "Kate Bush City Limits," Steve Clarke, 3/78
  3. "Bush Baby," Harry Doherty, "Melody Maker", 3-5/78
  4. "The Kick Outside," Harry Doherty, "Melody Maker", 7/78
  5. "Kate: enigma variations," Harry Doherty, "Melody Maker", 11/78
  6. "Bush Ranger," (very brief), "Sounds", 1-3/79
  7. "Wow Amazing," John Shearlaw, 3-4/79
  8. "Wow, Wow, Wow, Wow, Amazing, Amazing, Ama--," Danny Baker, 9-10/79
  9. "The Me Inside," Deanne Pearson, "Smash Hits", 5/80
  10. "The Shock of the New," John Shearlaw, "Record Mirror", 9/80
  11. "Among the Bushes," Mike Nicholls, 9/80
  12. "Dream Time in the Bush," Kris Needs, "ZigZag", 11/82
  13. "Bushy Tales," Karen Swayne, 9-11/82
  14. "My music sophisticated?...," Richard Cook, "New Musical Express", 10/82
  15. "The Barmy Dreamer," Jane Solanas, 10/83
  16. "Fairy Tales," Ted Mico, 8/85
  17. "Kate Bush," Chris Heath, 8-9/85

Miscellaneous bits:

  1. Letters page in reaction to Westwood review, RM, 11/78
  2. "Tokyo Rose Bush," brief Record Mirro piece on 7th Tokyo Song Festival
  3. Three brief reports on the tour, 3-4/79
  4. Ad for "The Kick Inside", 3/78
  5. Ad for "Lionheart", 11/78
  6. Competition for picture-disk of "The Kick Inside", 6/78
  7. Incorrect identification of Kate in photo of someone else
  8. Report of Kate and Cliff Richard for LSO anniversary concert
  9. "Melody Maker" Readers' Poll list, 1-10/80
  10. Lyrics of "Breathing", 5/80
  11. Announcements of release of "December" and "Babooshka," 5-11/80
  12. Ad for "The Dreaming" (LP), 9/82
  13. Ad for "The Single File" (box set), 2/84
  14. Fan's letter about Kate Bush, 2/84
  15. Ad for "Running Up That Hill", 8-9/85
  16. Announcement of the release of "Running Up That Hill," 8-9/85
  17. Photo of record sleeve of "The Man With the Child in His Eyes" single
  18. Photo of record sleeve of Spanish "Wuthering Heights" single
  19. Photo of record sleeve of Japanese "Moving/Wuthering Heights" single
  20. Photo of record sleeve of KBC-only promo for "Never For Ever" LP
  21. Photo of UK picture-disk version of "The Big Sky" single
  22. Photo of front of record sleeve of UK "On Stage" EP
  23. Photo of back of record sleeve of UK "On Stage" EP
  24. Photo of record sleeve of UK "Breathing" single
  25. Photo of record sleeve of Japanese "Breathing" single
  26. Photo of record sleeve of KBC (Japan)-only "Message/Let It Be" single
  27. Photo of record sleeve of Irish-only "Night of the Swallow" single
  28. Border designs of figure-silhouettes from "Breathing" single design


Date: Sun, 25 Sep 94 17:26 CDT
From: chrisw@fciad2.bsd.uchicago.edu (chris williams)
Subject: Re: Vermorel pics - where are they?

Fred Vermoral isn't a photographer. He (and his wife Judy) wrote a pair of books:

Kate Bush - Princess of Suburbia

The Secret History of Kate Bush (& the strange art of pop)

The first was a typical rock star exploitation book. No input from Kate, her family or actual friends. Some of the typical bits are a photo of Al Buckle, claimed to be "Kate's first lover" and some stuff about Kate's enjoyment of smokeable herbs. It contain's a fair amount of actual facts (confirmed elsewhere) dressed up in purple. It puts way too much emphasis on Kate's family's interest in Gurdjieff. Almost all the interviews were done with people who *used* to work with Kate. It does have a load of interesting photos. It originally sold for 95 pence and has been out of print for more than a decade. It was tall magazine size and only 32 pages. The front cover features Kate in an amazing gold dress.

The second book is much more interesting. Better written and with even better pictures. The whole first third is about Kate's ancestors in a small village called Pebmarsh, and a lot about her grandfather Joe, a concientious objector. Most of the rest is little bits about Kate and huge hunks of Fred Vermoral's obsessive musings about Kate. He has said some nasty things about Kate's fans, but frankly *his* writing shows an obsession far more excessive than anything I've ever seen in love-hounds. That said, he does make some very interesting points about Kate and her art.

Kate and family hate these two books, and the party line is that we are supposed to hate them as well. But with all their flaws, Fred's two books are a more interesting read than the Paul Kerton book or the Kerry Juby book. I have only read the Juby book once, and the Kerton book twice, but the Vermoral books are well-thumbed.


From: mty027@coventry.ac.uk (Andy Semple)
Date: 15 Aug 1995 09:43:51 +0100
Subject: Sean Mayes is dead

By the way Sean Mayes the co-author of the visual documentary book has just recently died, there was a small obituary in the latest Q magazine(the one with Mozza on the front).

-- Andy Semple

On to Cathy by John Bush

written by Love-Hounds
compiled and edited
Wieland Willker
Sept 1995 June 1996