A Chronology of
Kate Bush's Career
[This chronology is basically a revised and slightly enlarged version of a
chronology by Peter FitzGerald-Morris, the editor of Homeground, the
International Kate Bush Fanzine. Peter's chronology was included in a book of
sixty-six of Kate's songs entitled Kate Bush Complete.
That book is an absolutely essential part of any serious fan's collection.
It may be more valuable for its chronology than for its transcriptions of the
music. The latter, unfortunately, are not an improvement over earlier
publications, offering only the basic melodies notated in drastically simplified
form and punctuated at intervals by shorthand chord indications. Kate
Bush Complete, however, also presents an edition of the songs' lyrics,
and it marks an improvement over earlier available printed versions.
The book was originally edited by Cecil Bolton and published by EMI Music
Publishing, but it is widely understood that virtually all of the research for
the chronology and the lyrics was undertaken by Peter FitzGerald-Morris. Much of
the information which appeared in Peter's
Kate Bush Complete chronology had appeared in installments over a
period of five years, in issues 1 through 25 of the fanzine
Homeground. In Kate Bush Complete the chronology
was entitled Retracing All the Scenes: An Outline of Kate's Career To
Date. The following version, which draws from several sources in addition
to the FitzGerald-Morris chronology, is by
- July 30, 1958
- Catherine Bush born at Bexleyheath Maternity Hospital, South East London.
- Kate has an ordinary childhood in a loving and supportive family, immersed
in music, art and literature. [This statement, sweet but almost comically
uninformative, is the first of many conservative and protective remarks in
FitzGerald-Morris's chronology, which seems -- quite understandably -- to have
been designed at least partly with an eye to defending Kate against various
kinds of criticism in the past.]
- ca. 1964
- [The Bush family visit New Zealand and Australia for a few months. Kate is
- September 1969
- Kate starts at St. Joseph's Senior School, Bexley. She is obliged to take
up the violin, as all pupils have to learn an instrument. She plays well, but
does not enjoy it. Also at about this time she begins to set her poems to her
own chord formulations. By 1971 embryonic versions of songs such as The Man
With the Child in His Eyes and Saxophone Song begin to emerge.
- Kate's brother Paddy needs someone on piano to accompany his violin
playing. Kate's father shows her the C Major chord and she begins to play.
Kate follows her elder brother John and begins to develop her poetry. Her
piano playing is an outlet for her frustration. She is heavily influenced by an
interest in Greek mythology.
- At the suggestion of Kate's family, Ricky Hopper, a friend with music
business connections, tries to place "demo tapes" of Kate's songs with
a record company, with a publishing deal in mind. At this stage Kate considers
herself more of a writer than a singer. These original tapes have over thirty
songs on each. [An unfortunate wording, since it may mean that there was one
collection of thirty songs which was duplicated, and of which one copy was sent
to each publisher; or that there were actually several different thirty-song
collections.] All the major companies are approached. None accepts. Kate's songs
are described as "morbid", "boring" and "uncommercial".
- Kate feels that she cannot pursue a career in music and considers the
alternatives: psychiatry or social work.
- Unable to help further, Ricky Hopper makes contact with Dave Gilmour of
Pink Floyd, whom he knew at Cambridge University. Gilmour, who at this time is
spotting for talent that he can assist, is persuaded to listen to the demos and
then to hear Kate perform. He is impressed, and agrees to help.
- Kate records at Gilmour's home studio. The backing band is comprised of
Gilmour himself on guitar, and Peter Perrier and Pat Martin of Unicorn on drums
and bass, respectively. The songs recorded at this stage include Passing Through
Air (later to surface on the b-side of the 1980 single Army Dreamers) and a song
now known as Maybe.
- [Again, a bit more detail would have been welcome here. There is no
mention of how many songs were recorded during these recording sessions.
Incidentally, an excerpt of this version of the so-called Maybe, which
presumably first appeared on Kate's original demos, was played by Kate during a
radio programme called Personal Call. It should not be confused with the
presumably more professional version of the recording which was made the
following year (see below) but which has never been heard by fans.]
- The new demos are again circulated to record companies with no result.
- With no progress in her musical ambitions, Kate seriously considers a
career in psychiatry.
- Kate takes her "O Level" examination and obtains ten "Pass"
grades, with best results in English, music and Latin.
- Gilmour decides that the only way to interest the record companies in
Kate's talent is to make a short three-song demo to full professional standards.
He puts up the money.
- June 1975
- Kate goes into Air Studios in London's West End, with Gilmour as producer,
Andrew Powell as arranger, Geoff Emerick as engineer. The three songs recorded
are Saxophone Song (also known at this stage as Berlin), The Man With the Child
in His Eyes, and a song which fans refer to as Maybe.
- July 1975
- Kate takes her "mock A Level" examinations.
- While Pink Floyd are at Abbey Road Studios recording Wish You Were Here,
Gilmour plays the three-track demo to Bob Mercer, then General Manager of EMI's
pop division. Mercer is impressed and negotiations are opened.
- The deal takes some time to conclude. It is much discussed at meetings
between Kate, her family, Gilmour and EMI.
- Kate gets a small inheritance, and decides to leave school to concentrate
on preparing herself for a career in music. She buys an old honky-tonk piano for
200 Pounds and begins screeching into existence her unmistakable voice.
- [This statement implies that the twenty-two demo-recordings which are now
circulating among fans date from no earlier than 1976. I do not know what the
basis is for Peter's assumption, however.]
- The EMI deal begins to take shape. A publishing contract is settled first.
- March 1976
- Kate takes her driving test and fails.
- July 1976
- Kate finally settles a recording deal with EMI. The contract is for four
years, with options at the end of the second and third year. Kate receives a
3,000-Pound advance [and 500 Pounds for publication rights]. EMI are content for
Kate to take time to write songs, sharpen her lyrics, train her voice and
generally have time to "grow up".
- Kate pursues her dancing, first at the Elephant and Castle, South London.
But after seeing Lindsay Kemp perform in Flowers, she attends his classes at the
Dance Centre in Covent Garden. After Kemp goes to Australia, Kate trains with
Arlene Phillips, choreographer of Hot Gossip. [It is probably at this time that
Kate's association with Gary Hurst and Stewart Avon-Arnold, her longtime dancing
- August 1976
- Kate takes her driving test again and passes.
- During the first year of the contract Kate makes two further demo tapes.
[Very possibly these include the twenty-two recordings now making the rounds
among fans.] She resists EMI's attempts to "commercialize" her songs.
She pursues her dancing. She moves away from home and into a flat in a house
owned by her father in Lewisham, Southeast London, with her brothers as
- March 1977
- Wuthering Heights is written at the full moon.
- April 1977
- Kate's brother Paddy forms a band with his friends Del Palmer, Brian Bath
and Charlie Morgan. Kate is asked to be the vocalist, and the band adopts the
title of the KT Bush Band. Starting at the Rose of Lee public house in Lewisham,
and then in pubs and clubs in and around London and the Home Counties over a
three-month period, the band perform a varying set consisting mostly of
rock-and-roll standards (Honky Tonk Women, Heard It Through the Grapevine, Come
Together, Sweet Soul Music, Satisfaction, etc.), although latterly Kate sings
Saxophone Song and James and the Cold Gun from her own repertoire.
- August 1977
- Kate is finally called in to record material for an album. The producer
chosen is Andrew Powell, and the backing band are half of Pilot and half of
Cockney Rebel. Though the songs recorded are all Kate's own material, her role
is confined to vocals, some piano-playing and some simple piano arrangements. It
is decided to use eleven songs from this session and two from the 1975 Gilmour
demo on the album.
- September 1977
- EMI want to release James and the Cold Gun as the first single. Kate wants
Wuthering Heights, and she gets her way.
- November 4, 1977
- The original release date for Wuthering Heights. At a late stage Kate asks
EMI to change the artwork on the picture-sleeve from the "pink top"
photo to Del Palmer's photo-concept of Kite. She gets her way, and all the
campaign materials are altered. By the time the new campaign material is ready,
Christmas is approaching and EMI are unwilling to launch their new artist into
the pre-Christmas maelstrom. The release date is put back until the new year.
Many demos [i.e., promos] of the single have already been sent out to radio
producers. EMI tries to retrieve them to prevent premature airplay. Eddie Puma,
producer of London commercial station Capital Radio's Late Show, and Tony Myatt,
the presenter, admire the record so much that they decide to play it, and
continue to play it throughout November and December. Other radio stations
follow. Wuthering Heights is an airplay hit two months before release.
- January 1978
- At a three-day sales conference for EMI International delegates, Kate
sings live [song or songs unidentified], and Bob Mercer predicts that she will
be one of the major talents of the future.
- January 20, 1978
- Wuthering Heights is finally released. Kate does her first live radio
interview on Tony Myatt's Late Show.
- Airplay for the single rapidly builds on British commercial radio, on
Radio Luxemburg, and on BBC Radio 1.
- February 7, 1978
- Wuthering Heights enters the "official" BMRB chart at number 42.
- February 9, 1978
- Kate makes her first-ever television appearance in a disused tram depot in
West Germany, for the famous Bio's Bahnhof on WDR-TV. She sings Kite live,
backed effectively by the KT Bush Band, and Wuthering Heights to a backing tape.
The backdrop, which is supposed to represent the Yorkshire moors, includes a
volcano. Following her performance the host, Dr. Alfred Biolek, carries on an
entirely one-sided onstage conversation with Kate--in German.
- February 14, 1978
- The single moves up to number 27. Having cracked the magic "top forty",
the gates open and Kate appears on...
- February 16, 1978
- Top of the Pops. She performs in high heels and slacks. Kate says later, "It
was like watching myself die...a bloody awful performance."
- February 17, 1978
- Kate's first album, The Kick Inside, is released, and a huge promotional
campaign is unleashed.
- February 21, 1978
- The single moves up to number 13.
- February 25, 1978
- Kate performs live on BBC TV's Saturday Nights at the Mill, singing Moving
and Them Heavy People and giving a brief interview. She also appears on the
- The first major interviews appear in the music press, and Kate is the
subject of intense media attention. She begins preparing for a live tour,
projected for mid-year.
- February 28, 1978
- The single moves up to number 5. Kate is said to be the most photographed
woman in the U.K.
- March 2, 1978
- The Keith ("Keef") MacMillan-directed video for Wuthering
Heights is shown on Top of the Pops. It is the second video for the song. The
first, made by Rockflix in an [unidentified] outdoor setting, is rejected for
British promotional use, although it is used in other territories.
- March 7, 1978
- Wuthering Heights is number 1 on the British singles chart, displacing
Abba. The press turn it into a nationalistic celebration. EMI celebrate with a
champagne reception for Kate, and dinner in Paris. She celebrates by buying a
7,000-Pound Steinway piano. The single celebrates by going silver in the U.K.
- The single remains at number 1 for four weeks.
- March 16, 1978
- On the same evening as her second "number 1" appearance on Top
of the Pops, Kate is interviewed on the BBC TV current-affairs programme,
- Mickie Most asks Kate to appear in the pilot edition of his new pop-rock
television programme Revolver. She is introduced by Peter Cook and sings Them
Heavy People (which EMI want to release as the follow-up single) live. The
programme is screened on May 20, 1978. [This is not the performance included in
the video compilation The Single File.]
- March 25, 1978
- Kate starts a four-day promotional trip to Eire, appearing on the top show
in the Irish ratings, The Late Late Show.
- [The Kick Inside is released in the U.S.A., unchanged except for an
inappropriate U.S.- and Canada-only front-cover design, not authorized by Kate.
This is sometimes known as the "mirror" cover. To this day the cover
continues to be used by Harvest, EMI's distributor for Kate's recordings in
Canada, but it was discontinued in the U.S. in July 1978 when Kate's contract
was transferred to the newly launched EMI-America label.]
- The album's reception in the U.S. is somewhat quieter than in Europe and
England. [To put it mildly!] Capitol-EMI wait for FM radio-play to determine a
- April 4, 1978
- Wuthering Heights moves down to number 3. The Kick Inside reaches its
chart peak at number 3.
- Kate is off to Europe to promote single and album in the Netherlands, West
Germany (a second time) and France. In The Netherlands, Kate makes a 25-minute
promotional film of six tracks [Peter inexplicably writes "seven",
though only six tracks were filmed] at De Efteling is in Kaatsheuvel, a gothic
horror theme-park. Her visit is commemorated by a new gravestone. She performs
on the Voor De Vuist Weg television programme. In Germany Kate appears on the
television programmes Scene '78 and Top Pop, performing Wuthering Heights on
both shows. Other guests on the former programme include Dr. Feelgood and The
- During this month Kate also makes a brief trip to the United States for
promotional purposes, arriving back in the U.K. by April 21st.
- Tour plans are put back to the end of the year.
- May, 1978
- Kate makes her first promotional trip to the U.S.A. and Canada (although
she gives no performances and makes no U.S. television appearances), and then
takes a short holiday. [This must be the same trip which is mentioned
immediately above, for April. The U.S.-made interview album Self Portrait may
have been cut during this trip.]
- Wuthering Heights goes gold in the U.K. (500,000 sales). Kate presents the
disk to Tony Myatt. For four years it hangs in the foyer of Capitol Radio's
- EMI allow Kate to have her way over the choice of the follow-up single in
the U.K. It is to be The Man With the Child in His Eyes, which Kate had always
wanted to be a single, as she felt it showcased her real songwriting talent. It
is less of a novelty, and more of a standard. Dave Gilmour (executive producer
on the track, which actually dates from the June, 1975 demo-sessions) is also
pleased. In Japan, the U.S. and elsewhere the follow-up later in the year will
be EMI's first choice, Them Heavy People.
- May 28, 1978
- The second single is released in the U.K. Airplay and sales are very good.
- June, 1978
- Kate goes to Japan to participate in the 7th Tokyo Song Festival. On June
18 she performs Moving (which is the debut single in Japan) live before an
audience of 11,000 at the Nippon Budokan. The television audience is nearer 35
million. The single is boosted on its way to number 1 in the Japanese chart.
Kate wins the Silver Prize jointly with American group The Emotions [!].
- During her visit, on June 23, Kate performs abridged versions of two
Beatles songs, The Long and Winding Road and She's Leaving Home, on the Japanese
television programme Sound in S, taped at Tokyo's TBS G Studio.
- Also during her visit to Japan Kate makes her only television
advertisement, and her only endorsement for a commercial product--a spot for
- On her return to Britain Kate has under four weeks to get material
together for her second album. She does not like being under such pressure. In
the time available, three new songs are written, and a number of old ones are
revamped. These songs, making up the basic material for Lionheart, are demoed in
a studio designed by Paddy Bush and built out of the royalties from Wuthering
- July 1978
- Kate is the best selling female albums artist in the U.K. for the first
quarter of 1978. Wuthering Heights has been number 1 in the Netherlands,
Belgium, New Zealand (five weeks), and Australia; and "top-ten" in
Germany, France, Brazil, Argentina, South Africa, Denmark, Sweden and Finland.
- July 4, 1978
- The Man With the Child in His Eyes reaches its chart peak in the U.K. at
- The Kick Inside is re-released in the U.S.A. on a new label--EMI-America
[and with a different but equally inappropriate cover, now sometimes referred to
as the "country-western" or "Tammy Wynette" cover.]
Wuthering Heights is finally released as a single in the U.S. There are some
good notices, but Kate is considered by radio programmers to be "too
bizarre" for the American market.
- July 7, 1978
- Kate travels to Superbear Studios in Nice, France to record her second
album. She had had good reports of this studio from Dave Gilmour, who recorded
his first solo album there. The recording is a much-needed break for Kate. In
the sunshine and the mountain air she recovers from almost six months of solid
promotion, and pursues her real vocation, making music.
- August, 1978
- It takes ten weeks at Superbear to record twelve tracks, of which ten are
used for the new album. [These two unreleased tracks have never been
identified.] Kate has definite aims for this album. She sees her first album as
having affected the senses. Lionheart is to be aimed at the guts. In this she
comes into some conflict with Andrew Powell, who is again acting as producer.
She is allowed more of her own way in the studio, and after applying some
pressure, she is able to bring the KT Bush Band in to play on some of the
tracks. Kate is credited as assistant producer, but Lionheart is the end of the
road for the Bush-Powell partnership.
- September 5, 1978
- Kate debuts one of the tracks from Lionheart on a U.K. children's
television programme, Ask Aspel. She later explains that she wanted to sing In
the Warm Room, but felt that it was too risque for a children's show. She sings
Kashka From Baghdad, a song about two gay lovers, instead.
- As the album takes longer than expected, Kate is recalled to London by EMI
to do some prior promotion. At her own request, Kate is interviewed by a diverse
collection of publications ranging from The Sun, to Vegetarian and Vogue (the
last featuring Kate in photographs by David Bailey).
- October 11, 1978
- From completing the final mix of the album, Kate is straight on a plane
for Australia, where she is to preside with that month's teen pop sensation Leif
Garrett over the Tenth annual TV Week King of Pop Awards before a live audience
of 1,000 in a circus tent, and a television audience of two million on the Nine
- The next day Kate also performs live on the television programme
Countdown, debuting the routine for Hammer Horror, devised in her hotel room.
Hammer Horror is planned as the first single from the new album.
- October 17, 1978
- Kate moves on to New Zealand, specifically Christchurch, for a television
special. There she again performs Hammer Horror.
- The live tour is put back to February 1979.
- November, 1978
- Julie Covington, who has known Kate and her family for many years,
releases an album including her own cover version of The Kick Inside.
- Kate promotes Lionheart in the Netherlands, German and France [although I
have no record of any television appearances dating from the trip].
- November 7, 1978
- Hammer Horror enters the British singles chart at the unexpectedly low
place of number 73. [Contrary to usual record-company theory, saturation of the
market place with new, rushed product nearly immediately after the success of a
debut album is more often than not a poor business move, and usually does as
much damage as good to the artist's budding popularity. The commercially
mediocre sales of Lionheart should not have surprised anyone.]
- Lionheart has its international launch at the 14th-century Ammersoyen
Castel, two hours' drive from Amsterdam. 120 guests, from EMI Europe, Canada and
the UK, and including disk jockeys Tony Myatt and Kenny Everett, as well as Dr.
and Mrs. Bush, attend the reception. After dinner, in the grounds of the castle,
Leo Bouderwijas, the President of the Association of Dutch Phonographical
Industries, presents Kate with the prestigious Edison Award for the best single
of 1978. Kate is also presented with a platinum disc for sales of the album in
- November 8, 1978
- Kate flies back to the U.K. for a private buffet at The Venue for the
presentation of the Melody Maker 1978 Poll Awards. In the first year of her
public career Kate has been voted Best Female Vocalist and Brightest Hope of
- November 10, 1978
- The international release of Lionheart.
- November 17, 1978
- Kate performs Don't Push Your Foot on the Heartbrake on The Leo Sayer
Show, on BBC TV. She is off on a personal appearance tour of British record
- November 21, 1978
- Hammer Horror reaches its chart peak, number 44. Lionheart enters the
album chart at number 36.
- December, 1978
- Kate is off to promote in the U.S.A. for the release there of The Man With
the Child in His Eyes.
- December 9, 1978
- Most importantly, she performs two songs on the U.S. NBC-TV programme,
Saturday Night Live. [This is the only live entertainment programme on U.S.
television, and is the most influential programme for the pop music market, as
well the most important American showcase for "alternative" music.
Kate performs The Man With the Child in His Eyes, seated on a piano, to the
accompaniment of veteran rock keyboardist Paul Shaffer; and Them Heavy People,
in a raincoat and Fedora hat. Nothing remotely like it has ever been seen on
American television before.]
- She is invited by Eric Idle, who is host of that edition; and she is
visited by Mick Jagger. Paul Simon drops in to watch her performance.
- Kate does press and radio promotion and moves on to Canada for more of the
same. She is known to have made no other North American television appearances
during this trip, however.
- Back in England the Kate Bush Club, the official fan club, is formed.
- January 6, 1979
- Kate is voted Best New Artist of 1978 in the Record Mirror annual poll.
- Kate is guest of honour at the San Remo Song Festival in Italy. This is
screened in most of Europe, but not in the U.K.
- Preparations for the live tour begin in earnest. Kate's own concept is to
combine poetry, music, songs and dance in an entirely new way. Her dance ideas
and training will be supervised by Antony Van Laast, of the London Contemporary
Dance Company (who had appeared with Kate in the video for Hammer Horror). Kate
will be backed by a seven-piece band, the core of which will be Paddy Bush
(mandolin, backing vocals), Del Palmer (bass), and Brian Bath (rhythm guitar) of
the KT Bush Band, supplemented by Alan Murphy (lead guitar), Kevin McAlea
(keyboards, saxophone), Ben Barson (keyboards), and Preston Heyman (drums).
- January 20, 1979
- Kate appears on The Multi-Coloured Swap Shop on BBC TV, and is interviewed
by Noel Edmonds and via a phone-in by the viewers.
- February, 1979
- Kate records the song The Magician (music by Maurice Jarre, lyrics by Paul
Webster) for the film The Magician of Lublin. [The song has never been released,
and is virtually inaudible in the film--a shameful waste of talent.]
- Penny Allan, a women's-column feminist for The Guardian, lambasts Kate for
"cultivating a childlike voice and encouraging her audience to act like
- February 17, 1979
- The Man With the Child in His Eyes enters the U.S. Billboard Hot One
Hundred, the first of Kate's singles so to do. It remains there for four weeks,
peaking at number 85.
- February 18, 1979
- Kate travels to Leysin [Lausanne?], Switzerland, to take part in a mammoth
European television co-production. The results are carved up into three
television shows, and it is planned that Kate will appear in two. For the first,
an Easter Abba Special, she records a routine for Wow. At the rehearsals the
cameramen and journalists break into spontaneous applause, and the press
coverage verges on the hysterical. For the second programme, a Christmas
programme to be called The Winter Snowtime Special, she records a version of
Wuthering Heights barefoot in the snow of the Swiss Alps. [The latter film was
never aired, though photos appeared in the U.K. press.]
- On her return to Britain Kate goes into Air Studios in London with Jon
Kelly, the engineer on The Kick Inside and Lionheart, to determine the
possibilities of working as a co-production team on Kate's next album. [This
statement implies that some music was recorded at this time, but if so it has
never been identified.]
- The video for Wow, the next single, is made at Wilton's Music Hall in East
London, directed by Keef MacMillan.
- February 27, 1979
- Kate takes part in BBC Radio 1's first-ever phone-in programme, Personal
Call, answering listeners' calls for 60 minutes and jamming the Broadcasting
- March, 1979
- The tour rehearsals switch from Covent Garden and WoodWharf Studios, South
London, to a film soundstage at Shepperton Film Studios, so that the dancing and
the music can be put together.
- March 4, 1979
- Kate attends the Capital Radio Annual Awards dinner at the Grosvenor House
Hotel to receive the accolade for Best British Newcomer and Best British Female
- March 5, 1979
- The video for Wow is shown on television for the first time on The Kenny
Everett Video Show. The tickets for the tour go on sale the same day (except for
certain venues, which are to cause much embarrassment by jumping the gun).
- March 6, 1979
- Kate is interviewed on the Thames-TV programme Thames at Six about the
upcoming tour and the new single.
- March 7, 1979
- As part of a new Arts programme on BBC-2 TV called Musical Chairs, a
documentary recording the making of the Wow video is shown.
- March 9, 1979
- Wow, Kate's fourth single, and the second from Lionheart, is finally
- Kate is training to the pitch of an Olympic athlete for a tour that will
last a month and a half, with Kate on stage almost continually for two and a
half hours for most evenings during that period. (Only the Copenhagen, Hamburg
and Amsterdam dates would be shortened, due to illness.)
- March 20, 1979
- The tour is now completely sold out. Extra dates are announced at the
London Palladium, the Birmingham Hippodrome, and the Manchester Apollo. These
are also sold out in days.
- Kate is meanwhile maintaining absolute secrecy on the style and content of
- March 22, 1979
- The chart position of Wow is such that it is listed to be shown on Top of
the Pops. Kate has no time to record an appearance, and the BBC refuse to screen
the video, a certain section of which they consider unsuitable for their younger
viewers. Kate records another performance and leaves it to the BBC to cover up
the offending gesture. They do, and the clip is shown.
- London's Rainbow Theatre is taken over for the final dress rehearsal
before the commencement of the tour. Despite very tight security, a free-lance
photographer obtains entry and takes photos of the performance. He is discovered
before he can escape. He is ticked off by Kate, and his film is confiscated.
- April 2, 1979
- The tour playdate at Pool Arts Centre in Dorset. The performance is a
total success, but is marred by the death of lighting engineer Bill Duffield,
who falls from the lighting galley as the show is being packed up.
- April 3, 1979
- The Liverpool Empire date, the first official date of the tour.
"Kate Bush is a love affair, a poignant exposition of the bridges of
dreams that link the adulated and the adoring." (Andrew Morgan, Liverpool
Kate holds press conferences at each tour date, and is interviewed by the
local press and radio.
- BBC TV screen a short documentary film as part of the Nationwide series,
on the preparation and rehearsal for the tour.
- April 4, 1979
- The first Birmingham Hippodrome date.
- April 5, 1979
- The second Birmingham Hippodrome date.
"Kate Bush's eerie dance and mime works twice as well on stage as on
Top of the Pops." (Kate Faunce, Birmingham Evening Echo.)
"The most magnificent spectacle I've ever encountered in the world of
rock...Kate Bush is the sort of performer for whom the word 'superstar' is
belittling." (Mike Davies, Melody Maker.)
"Kate's dream-machine techniques are by far the best I've ever
encountered on a British rock-and-roll (sic) tour." (Sandy Roberts,
- April 6, 1979
- The Oxford New Theatre date.
"Yeah, Kate Bush...you're amazing." (MVB, Oxford Times)
- April 7, 1979
- The Southampton Gaumont date.
"There is no doubt that such a performance merited nothing less than
the five-minute standing ovation it received." (Steve Keenan, Southern
- Wow falls in the singles chart from number 23 to number 27.
- April 9, 1979
- The Bristol Hippodrome date.
"A major artist by any standards...Each aspect was perfect in
itself...Spectacular entertainment." (David Harrison, Bristol Evening
- April 10, 1979
- The first Manchester Apollo Theatre date.
"Oh yes, Kate Bush is amazing...Her stage performance evaporates all
doubts and adds a totally new theatrical dimension to the rock medium."
(Roy Kay, Manchester Evening News.)
- At her hotel in Manchester, Kate is photographed with the Prime Minister,
James Callaghan, who, fighting Mrs. Thatcher in the 1979 election campaign, is
looking for all the support he can get.
- April 11, 1979
- The second Manchester Apollo Theatre date.
- Kate takes a short break from the tour to attend the presentation of the
Nationwide Radio 1- and Daily Mirror- sponsored British Rock and Pop Awards for
1978. She is presented with the award for Best Female Vocalist.
- April 12, 1979
- The Sunderland Empire date.
"Wow, wow, wow, Kate Bush is really unbelievable...A sensational
performance which threw out of the window all previous ideas of how a rock show
should be presented...The most revolutionary visual concert I've ever seen."
(Newcastle Sunday Sun.)
- April 13, 1979
- The Edinburgh Usher Hall date.
"Sexual, stunning, startling, beautiful, breathtaking." (Billy
Sloan, Clyde Guide.)
- April 14, 1979
- Wow moves up to number 14 in the singles chart, where it remains for three
- April 16, 1979
- The first London Palladium date.
- After Kate's first London date the morning press conference is a media
"A dazzling testimony to a remarkable talent." (John Coldstream,
"Kate Bush live for the first time was very impressive." (Robin
Denselow, The Guardian.)
"Kate Bush lines up all the old stereotypes, mows them down, and
hammers them into a coffin with a show that is -- quite literally -- stunning."
(Thorsen Prentice, Daily Mail.)
"A triumph of energy, imagination, music and dance." (Susan Hill,
"The best welding of rock and theatrical presentation that we're ever
likely to see." (John Shearlaw, Record Mirror.)
- April 17, 1979
- The second London Palladium date.
- April 18, 1979
- The third London Palladium date.
- April 19, 1979
- The fourth London Palladium date.
- April 20, 1979
- The fifth London Palladium date.
- April 21, 1979
- The Abba Special is aired on BBC TV, including the routine for Wow.
- Kate announces that she will play a special benefit gig for the family of
Bill Duffield when she returns from the European leg of the tour. Her special
guests will be Peter Gabriel and Steve Harley, with whom Bill Duffield had
worked in the past.
- Further extra dates are announced, including one at which the entire
performance will be videotaped by the Keef MacMillan organization.
- April 24, 1979
- The European tour commences at Stockholm Concert House.
- Kate contracts a throat problem, and the next three dates are cut short.
- April 26, 1979
- The Copenhagen Falkoneer Theater date.
- April 28, 1979
- The Hamburg Congress Centrum date.
- [Excerpts from this performance are filmed, and included in a German
documentary on Kate and the tour called Kate Bush in Concert.]
- April 29, 1979
- The Amsterdam Carre Theater date.
- Kate is nominated for three Ivor Novello awards for Best Song Musically
and Lyrically (Wuthering Heights), Best Pop Song and Best British Lyric (The Man
With the Child in His Eyes). She wins in the first category.
- May 2, 1979
- The Stuttgart Leiderhalle date, now restored to full length.
- May 3, 1979
- The Munich Circus Krone date.
- May 4, 1979
- The Cologne Guerzerich date.
- May 6, 1979
- The Paris Theatre des Champs-Elysees date.
- May 8, 1979
- The Mannheim Rosengarten date.
- [Excerpts from this performance are filmed, and included in a German
documentary on Kate and the tour called Kate Bush in Concert.]
- May 10, 1979
- The Frankfurt Jahrhunderthalle date.
- At her London Palladium concerts Dusty Springfield includes a cover of The
Man With the Child in His Eyes.
- May 12, 1979
- The first Hammersmith Odeon date.
- This is the date of the Bill Duffield benefit gig with Peter Gabriel and
- May 13, 1979
- The second Hammersmith Odeon date.
- This is the concert which was video-taped and recorded for both the video
release and (in a different mix) the On Stage EP.
- May 14, 1979
- The third Hammersmith Odeon date, and the final date of the tour.
- Kate declines the offer to sing the theme song to the James Bond film
Moonraker, saying that although it was a good song, it wasn't right for her.
- Following the tour, Kate takes some time to recover from what amounts to
physical and mental exhaustion.
- June, 1979
- The Kick Inside reaches British platinum status (300,000 sales for an
- Kate begins writing songs for her third album.
- August, 1979
- Kate and Jon Kelly mix the live tapes from the May 13, 1979 concert date
to produce the four-track EP, On Stage. This is such a success that Kate decides
to produce her third album with Jon Kelly, and she moves into Air Studios to
begin a three-and-a-half-month stint.
- September 3, 1979
- Release of Kate Bush Live On Stage, with Them Heavy People as the leading
- November 18, 1979
- Kate participates in the concert to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the
London Symphony Orchestra, with Cliff Richard. Kate gives the first (and to date
the only) public performance of Blow Away, the song she dedicated to Bill
"Miss Bush was in breathtaking form...She emerged as the only star."
(Simon Kinnersly, Daily Mail.)
- November 28, 1979
- Kate attends the Melody Maker Annual Poll Awards dinner at the Waldorf
Hotel. For the second year running she is presented with the Best Female Singer
- During November Kate records a track called December Will Be Magic Again,
which she wants to release as a Christmas single. [For undisclosed reasons the
release is postponed.]
- November 30, 1979
- A new recording of Lesley Duncan's Sing, Children, Sing is released, with
Kate, Pete Townsend, Joe Brown and Vicki Brown on backing vocals. (Kate's voice
is indistinguishable.) All profits from the single are to go to the U.N. Year of
the Child fund.
- December 21, 1979
- The Winter Snowtime Special is aired on BBC TV. This is the second of two
films for which Kate had contributed performances on February 18, 1979. However,
the original film of Kate singing Wuthering Heights while walking barefoot in
the snow is not included. Instead, a hastily filmed video for December Will Be
Magic Again is aired on the programme.
- December 28, 1979
- Kate, a forty-five-minute television special, is screened on BBC TV,
featuring songs old and new. Some of these were filmed during live
television-studio performances, others were videos prepared in advance and
featuring studio recordings in more or less the same form as their album
counterparts. Among the songs performed are Violin, Egypt, and Ran Tan Waltz
(which would emerge as the b-side of Babooshka in 1980). In addition, one or two
small pieces of incidental music are recorded specifically for the programme,
which includes a guest appearance by Peter Gabriel, and a duet by Gabriel and
Kate of Roy Harper's song, Another Day.
- January, 1980
- Kate goes into Studio Two at Abbey Road for the five-month recording
session which will complete her third album, Never For Ever.
- January 12, 1980
- Kate is voted Best Female Artist of 1979 in the Record Mirror poll.
- January 19, 1980
- Kate is voted Best Female Singer of 1979 in the New Musical Express poll.
- Kate breaks off from recording her own album to do some session work for
Peter Gabriel, on his third solo album. She does backing vocals on two tracks:
Games Without Frontiers and No Self Control, which will be released as singles,
and encounters the Gabriel method of working with rhythm boxes and the Fairlight
- February, 1980
- Kate breaks off again from recording her own album to do some session work
for Roy Harper on his Unknown Soldier LP. She duets with Harper on the track You
(The Game Part III).
- February 12, 1980
- At the Music Week Annual Awards Gala at the Dorchester Hotel, Kate is
presented with the award for Top Female Artist of 1979.
- February 27, 1980
- At the British Rock and Pop Awards ceremony (this would eventually become
known as the BPI Awards) at the Cafe Royal Kate is presented with the Top Female
Singer of 1979.
- March 1, 1980
- Kate is voted Best Female Singer of 1979 in the Sounds poll.
- March 3, 1980
- At the Capital Radio Awards ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Kate is
presented with the award for Best Female Vocalist of 1979.
- March 20, 1980
- Kate records two visual presentations (Babooshka and Delius) for a Dr.
Hook special to be screened on BBC TV the following month.
- April 11, 1980
- Breathing receives its world debut on the BBC Radio 1 review programme
Round Table. The reviewers are literally stunned.
- April 14, 1980
- Breathing is released. The video, which includes a scene of a nuclear
explosion, is controversial enough for the BBC to disallow it from being
screened in its entirety on Top of the Pops. (Note: This is PFM's
interpretation. More likely they just felt that it was too long and slow for
that programme's format.--)
- Kate tapes a long interview for German television for use in a forty-five
minute documentary comprised of discussions of Kate's career with her family and
excerpts from the Hamburg and Mannheim live shows, to be called Kate Bush in
- April 25, 1980
- Kate appears on the BBC TV programme Nationwide to be interviewed about
her "protest" song. The controversial part of the video is screened
for the only time on British television. (Again, this may be misleading:
Nationwide simply played the video, for a programme devoted to the subject of
- May, 1980
- Edited parts of the Breathing video are shown twice on Top of the Pops.
- May 10, 1980
- The Kate Bush Club holds its first convention at the Empire Ball Room,
Leicester Square in London. Kate attends. The edited version of Keef MacMillan's
recording of the May 13th concert is given its first public showing.
- After working twenty or more hours a day, Kate finishes Never For Ever.
Its release is put back, however, until September. Kate takes a badly needed
- June 23, 1980
- Babooshka is released. Because the technicians at the BBC are on strike,
the video cannot be shown. Babooshka, however, is Kate's most successful single
since Wuthering Heights.
- Kate takes a few weeks out to rest from her exertions on the album.
- August, 1980
- Kate puts down the first ideas for a new album, beginning the two-year
project that would produce The Dreaming [which remains to this day the single
greatest piece of music of the twentieth century (OK, so this chronology was
transcribed by a Kate fanatic. Surprised?)].
- September 8, 1980
- Never For Ever is released. Kate undertakes a very heavy promotional
- September 11, 1980
- The album's head is wetted at a huge party for dealers in Birmingham. Kate
is meanwhile engaged in a personal appearance tour, signing albums in Edinburgh,
Glasgow, Newcastle, Liverpool, Manchester (where she kisses over 600 fans),
Birmingham and London (where the queue awaiting her stretches over 100 yards
outside the record shop and down Oxford Street).
- September 16, 1980
- The album enters the official chart at number 1. Kate is the first British
solo female artist ever to reach the number 1 position on the British album
- September 1980
- During this same month, Kate promotes the forthcoming album (Never For
Ever) in Germany and France. First, in Germany, she performs the famous "Mrs.
Mopp" version of Army Dreamers, one of at least three quite different
visual presentations that Kate has prepared for the song, on RockPop, along with
a solo performance of Babooshka. Then she visits Venice, Italy, to perform a new
version of Babooshka with her dancing partner Gary Hurst for a live broadcast
which also features Peter Gabriel. After that, she returns to England to film
the official video for Army Dreamers. While in England she polishes the final
mix of Warm and Soothing.
- Army Dreamers, the third single from Never For Ever, is released.
- Back in London again at the end of the month, Kate attends a concert by
Stevie Wonder. The energy of the event has a profound effect on Kate, and on the
following day she puts down the first full demo version of Sat In Your Lap, the
key to her next album, The Dreaming.
- October, 1980
- Kate resumes writing and making demos for the next album. She returns to
Europe for more promotion in Austria (interviews only), Holland (the same
routine for Babooshka that was performed in Germany, and a new version of Army
Dreamers), Germany (Hamburg and Munich for more print and radio interviews), and
France (for still another performance of Babooshka).
- October 4, 1980
- Kate is voted Best Female Singer in the Melody Maker poll for the third
- November, 1980
- Kate writes an article for the magazine Woman's World, entitled How Can
You Eat Dead Animals?
- Meanwhile she returns to the studio to record the single version of
December Will Be Magic Again.
- November 17, 1980
- December Will Be Magic Again is released. No promotional video is made for
- Kate is working with Peter Gabriel. They record a new version of Roy
Harper's song Another Day, for a projected single. They also attempt to co-write
a song for the b-side, and a song called Ibiza results. (Note: PFM spells this "Ibizza",
but this is probably an error. "Ibiza" is the spelling for the Spanish
coastal resort island.) They are not satisfied with it, however, and the project
- November 25, 1980
- Kate appears on the BBC TV chat programme The Russell Harty Show for an
edition dedicated to the composer Frederick Delius. She is interviewed with the
cellist Julian Lloyd Webber and Delius's assistant and collaborator Eric Fenby.
Following a screening of part of Kate's Dr. Hook video of Delius, Fenby suggests
that the composer would have seen it as "a very gracious tribute."
- December, 1980
- Babooshka, which, outside the UK, has been the lead single from Never For
Ever, is an international hit, reaching "top ten" status in most
countries in Europe, as well as Australia and Canada. Kate's music has still
made little impact in the United States, however. Her second and third albums
have not even been released there, although a small but fiercely devoted cult
following cause a vigorous trade in imports.
- Meanwhile Kate tapes an extensive interview at her home for a Canadian
television production company which is preparing a series of programmes entitled
Profiles in Rock, with interviewer Doug Pringle, to be aired on CITY-TV,
- December 30, 1980
- The first of two special forty-five minute programmes is broadcast on BBC
Radio 1, in which Kate plays and discusses with DJ Paul Gambaccini some of her
favourite music by other artists. This programme is devoted to traditional and
- December 31, 1980
- The second forty-five minute programme is aired over BBC Radio 1, this one
including some of Kate's favourite tracks by "popular" artists.
- January 1, 1981
- Kate is voted Best Female Artist for the third consecutive year in Capital
Radio's listeners poll.
- Kate takes two months off from everything to "recharge her batteries.".
- At the first MIDEM Video Awards Keef MacMillan wins the Best International
Production Award, and Kate wins the Best International Performance by an Artist
Award, both for the Babooshka video.
- February 1981
- Kate's childhood home, East Wickham Farm, which has at its core a
14th-century hall, is listed as a building of special historic interest.
- Kate does some session work on a cover version of her song Them Heavy
People by new EMI artist Ray Shell.
- February 21, 1981
- Kate is voted Best Female Singer of 1980 in the Sounds poll.
- March, 1981
- Kate is making demo tapes of the material for her next album at her own
- April 1981
- In a special Sunday Telegraph opinion poll Kate is voted "most liked"
and "least liked" British Female Singer.
- May 1981
- Kate goes into Townhouse Studio with Hugh Padgham as engineer to begin the
recording work of The Dreaming album. The backing tracks for three songs are put
down before Nick Launay takes over as engineer. In a session that lasts until
the end of June more backing tracks are laid.
- Kate is tempted by the offer for her to play the Wicked Witch in the
Children's TV series Worzel Gummidge, but she is already too far involved in the
album and has to turn down the offer.
- June 1981
- The video for Sat In Your Lap is made at Abbey Road.
- June 21, 1981
- Sat In Your Lap is released. A pivotal point in Kate's career.
- July 1981
- Kate goes into Abbey Road studios with Haydn Bendall as engineer to
complete the backing tracks.
- Kate goes to Dublin to record the track Night of the Swallow with members
of Planxty and The Chieftains.
- July 14, 1981
- Kate appears on the children's programme Razzmatazz to explain how the Sat
In Your Lap video was made.
- August 1981
- Kate goes into Odyssey Studios with Paul Hardiman as engineer to record
the overdubs on all tracks in a four-and-a-half month session.
- August 6, 1981
- Kate appears on the BBC TV programme Looking Good, Feeling Fit.
- October 1981
- Kate is working to exhaustion again on the album, and decides to take a
short break, to visit Loch Ness.
- The edited version of Keef MacMillan's video recording of Kate's live show
is released on video-cassette.
- November 12, 1981
- Kate attends a party at Abbey Road Studios to celebrate the studios' 50
years of operation. She cuts the celebration cake with Helen Shapiro.
- November 21, 1981
- Kate appears on the commercial TV programme Friday Night Saturday Morning,
a new chat show, at the invitation of the host, zoologist Dr. Desmond Morris, to
talk about her music and expressive dance.
- December 22, 1981
- Kate takes a break from recording to tighten melodies and lyrics.
- January 1982
- Kate goes into Advision Studios with Paul Hardiman as engineer to complete
the final overdubs on the album. The session is to last for three months.
- Kate turns down an offer to play a leading role in the West End production
of The Pirates of Penzance.
- March 1982
- Kate finishes the overdubs and goes into the final mixing of the album.
This session lasts two months.
- April 1982
- Kate's projected book Leaving My Tracks is shelved until early 1983.
- The album's release date is put back to September for marketing reasons.
- May 1982
- The Dreaming album is completed, after a combined work period of more than
sixteen months. Kate goes off to Jamaica for a holiday.
- June 1982
- Kate does some session work for Zaine Griff, who with her had attended
Lindsay Kemp's mime classes back in 1976. She does backing vocals on a track
dedicated to Kemp, called Flowers.
- The release of the single The Dreaming is delayed.
- The first issue of Homeground is prepared. 25 copies are run off on an
- July 21, 1982
- At 48 hours' notice Kate is asked to take David Bowie's place in a Royal
Rock Gala before HRH The Prince of Wales in aid of The Prince's Trust. She
performs Wedding List live, backed by Pete Townsend and Midge Ure on guitars,
Mick Karn on bass, Gary Brooker on keyboards and Phil Collins on drums.
"The best moment by far was Kate Bush's number, a storming success..."
(Sunie, Record Mirror)
- July 27, 1982
- The single The Dreaming is finally released, to excellent music press
reviews saluting Kate's creative courage. The single is stifled, however, by the
radio producers and presenters, particularly on BBC Radio 1, who will not play
it. The plans for a twelve-inch version are aborted.
- August 1982
- Despite no daytime airplay on Radio 1, The Dreaming enters the singles
chart, but peaks at number 48.
- September 10, 1982
- Kate appears live at a special Radio 1 Roadshow from Covent Garden Piazza
to be interviewed briefly about her new album.
- September 13, 1982
- The album The Dreaming is released. Written, arranged and produced by Kate
around the rhythm box and the Fairlight CMI. The radio programmers and most of
the British reviewers are mystified. The album demands more of them than they
- September 14, 1982
- Kate makes a personal appearance at the Virgin Megastore in London's
Oxford Street. The queue again exceeds 100 yards in length.
- Kate proceeds by train to Manchester, using a specially cleared goods car
to rehearse for a video for the next single. In Manchester Kate records an
interview for the BBC TV programme The Old Grey Whistle Test for use on the
17th, when the video for The Dreaming single is shown for the first time on
- September 21, 1982
- Kate makes an appearance on the commercial TV programme Razzmatazz,
performing There Goes a Tenner, which is to be the next single.
- The album enters the charts at number 3.
- Kate goes on to Europe to promote the new album. In Munich she performs
The Dreaming single [on Na Sowas -- the so-called "giant iguana"
version] and is presented with a Gold Record for German sales of Never For Ever
during the same television appearance.
- The next stop is Milan, where Kate gives the first of four performances of
The Dreaming single [on the Italian television programmes Happy Magic, Zim Zum
Zam, Riva del Garda, and Disco-Ring.
- [She may also have visited Spain during this trip, but I have no
- October 1, 1982
- Kate appears on the BBC TV programme Saturday Superstore to be interviewed
about the new album.
- Kate makes personal appearances in Glasgow, Newcastle and Birmingham. The
album goes Gold.
- October 8, 1982
- While in Birmingham, Kate records an appearance on the BBC TV programme
Pebble Mill at One, being interviewed by Paul Gambaccini about the new album.
The interview is screened on October 29th, and part of the video for There Goes
a Tenner is shown; the only time that this video is aired on British TV.
- Kate is off again to France for more TV promotion of the album [including
a lip-synch performance of Suspended in Gaffa, which is released as a single in
Europe; and an in-depth interview for French TV station France-Inter]
- November 1982
- Kate is in Germany promoting album and single. [She gives a lip-synch
performance of Suspended in Gaffa, known as the "puppets" or "marionettes"
- November 2, 1982
- There Goes a Tenner is released in the U.K., and Suspended in Gaffa is
released in all other territories. There Goes a Tenner is the "lost single".
It is not promoted and gains no airplay on radio. It is the only single of
Kate's not to enter the official chart. Suspended in Gaffa is, however, a great
success, going top ten in most European countries and in Canada [? Top ten?] and
- November 13, 1982
- EMI-America releases The Dreaming album, which enters the Billboard Top
200, the first of Kate's albums to do so. The album begins to get a crop of very
good U.S. reviews praising its creativity. The album is pushed by spots on U.S.
college radio, and towards the end of the year airplay begins to pick up. Kate
begins to expand her small cult following in the U.S. to attract a wider
- January 1983
- The Dreaming is in the top ten of "U.S. progressive radio stations"
- Kate is under great pressure to tour to make up for the lack of obvious
single success in the U.K. A tour is in fact very seriously considered, but
finally not pursued. Kate decides that she will, after some time off, press on
with another album.
- May 1983
- Kate's book Leaving My Tracks is shelved indefinitely.
- June 15, 1983
- EMI-America releases an eponymous mini-album of five tracks (six in
Canada) to continue the momentum in the U.S.A. At the last moment a scheduled
promotional tour by Kate of the U.S. is cancelled, due to engine failure on the
Queen Elizabeth II.
- Realisation of a long-planned project begins with the construction of
Kate's own full standard studio, initially equipped with 24 tracks, then
expanded to 48. Construction and equipping is to take six months.
- July 1983
- The U.S. mini-album enters the Billboard Top 200.
- Ne T'enfuis pas (coupled with Un Baiser d'enfant) is released in France
- August 1983
- Attempt by Conifer, a leading record importer, to release Ne T'enfuis pas
in the U.K. This is prevented by EMI, but leads to ill-founded speculation that
Kate is to be dropped by the company.
- September 1983
- Kate begins some writing and demoing for the next album.
- November 1983
- To continue the buzz in the U.S., EMI conceive the idea of touring the
Live at Hammersmith Odeon video around the American colleges. 32 venues are set
up, with a competition for the college radio programmers for the best
presentation. The prize will be a trip to the U.K. to interview Kate. One
college hires an art gallery and combines the event with a wine tasting. Another
invites 700 guests, including the local state Senator, and the then Speaker of
the House of Representatives "Tip" O'Neil. The debut date of the tour
is held on the fourth floor of the Danceteria in New York, where the College
Media Society are meeting.
- November 21, 1983
- Night of the Swallow is released as a single in Eire.
- December 1983
- The Single File video compilation is released. Kate makes personal
appearances in Kingston and Holborn.
- January 1984
- The new studio being more or less ready, Kate begins work on her fifth
album, directly demoing the songs and building on the original demo rather than
- January 16, 1984
- Kate helps launch the Sky Channel, the first satellite TV station in the
- January 23, 1984
- The Single File box set of singles is released, further fuelling rumours
that Kate is to leave EMI.
- EMI-America release Lionheart and Never For Ever, begin a heavy
back-catalogue promotion under the theme Looking Back to See Ahead.
- February 1984
- The Single File video is the best selling music video in the U.K. for two
- March 1984
- Lionheart enters the Billboard Top 200 in the U.S.
- June 1984
- Kate begins overdubs--which have become the biggest job in Kate's
recording process--on the new album. This time overdubs and mixing will last
nearly 12 months.
- June 1985
- Kate's fifth album Hounds of Love is completed.
- August 1985
- Kate appears on the BBC TV programme Wogan to perform Running Up That
Hill. The single is released the same day, two years and ten months after the
flop of There Goes a Tenner. Media attention and airplay is immediate. A
twelve-inch version of the single is released--Kate's first use of that format.
- In the U.S. EMI-America organise a large convention of regional sales
representatives in New Orleans to prepare for their largest attempt to break
Kate in the American market.
- August 13, 1985
- Running Up That Hill enters the British singles chart at number 9. It
garners enormous airplay and critical acclaim. It peaks at number 3 and is
Kate's biggest single success since Wuthering Heights, far exceeding Babooshka
- In the U.S. the cable music channel MTV shy away from using the
promotional video for Running Up That Hill, considering it to be too erotic.
[This is certainly not the reason. MTV probably didn't like it because Kate
didn't do any lip-synching and because it wasn't garish enough for their horrid,
smarmy, miserable format. But too erotic for MTV? Hah.] Instead they use the
Wogan performance. It remains on moderate rotation for two months.
- August 22, 1985
- Kate appears on Top of the Pops for the first time since 1978, performing
Running Up That Hill.
- August 30, 1985
- Kate goes to the Berlin Music Festival. While in the city she appears on
the prestigious TV programme The Before Eight O'Clock Show [Show Vor Acht],
performing Running Up That Hill and Cloudbusting.
- September 1985
- Running Up That Hill enters the U.S. Billboard chart at number 95. The
twelve-inch version enters the Billboard twelve-inch sales chart.
- Running Up That Hill goes silver in the U.K.
- September 9, 1985
- Kate's fifth album, Hounds of Love, is launched at a massive party at the
London Laserium, at which the whole album is played and accompanied by a
dramatic laser light show. Kate appears for the first time in public in the
company of her boyfriend of seven years, the bassist and engineer Del Palmer.
- Running Up That Hill is a huge international hit, being top ten in most of
Europe, Australia and Canada.
- September 16, 1985
- The Hounds of Love album is released to very good reviews.
- Kate promotes in Germany and France, appearing on the French television
programme Rockline for an interview; and performing lip-synchs of Running Up
That Hill on the French programme Demain c'est Dimanche, and of Running Up That
Hill and The Big Sky on the German TV programme Peter's Pop Show (later
re-broadcast on French TV, as well).
- September 20, 1985
- Hounds of Love enters the official album chart at number 1.
- The Cloudbusting video is made partly on location in the Vale of the White
Horse in Oxfordshire. It features Donald Sutherland as Wilhelm Reich, with the
design of the cloudbusting machine itself undertaken by the artist H. R. Giger
[constructed by Ken Hill].
- The second single, Cloudbusting, is released in seven- and twelve-inch
- October 4, 1985
- Hounds of Love enters the U.S. Billboard album chart at number 74.
- November 17, 1985
- Kate flies on the Concorde to New York (via Washington, D.C.) to promote
the album and single. She makes a personal appearance at the Tower Record Store
in Greenwich Village for which the queue extends for hundreds of yards around
the block. She appears on the local New York news programme Live at Five, and
tapes an interview for later airing on the cable programmes Night Flight,
Heartlight City and Radio 1990. She also visits the MTV studios to tape a brace
of short interviews. She is also interviewed by Love-Hound Doug Alan.
- A track from the new album, Hello Earth, is featured as background music
for a scene in the then-top-rated U.S. TV series Miami Vice.
- From New York, Kate travels to Toronto where she tapes at least five more
interviews (all from the same studios). These will appear on various Canadian
programmes, including the national evening news, Much Music, The New Music, Good
Rockin' Tonite, and various local news reports.
- November 30, 1985
- Running Up That Hill peaks at number 30 in the U.S. Billboard chart.
- Meanwhile Kate goes straight from Canada to Holland (taping an interview
for Count Down), France, and Germany (where she gives a lip-synch performance of
Running Up That Hill on the programme Extratour), and still manages to return to
England in time to attend the first Convention organised jointly by the Kate
Bush Club and Homeground. This is held at the Dolphin Centre in Romford.
Approximately 400 fans attend. At the convention Kate is presented with a
Platinum Record for the U.K. sales of Hounds of Love. [All of Kate's family and
Del Palmer are present, as well.]
- December 14, 1985
- Hounds of Love reaches its peak position of number 30 the U.S. Billboard
- December 23, 1985
- In the annual Record Mirror poll Hounds of Love is voted Best Album, and
Running Up That Hill is voted Best Single.
- January 11, 1986
- In the annual Sounds poll Kate is voted Best Female Vocalist of 1985.
- February 10, 1986
- Kate performs Hounds of Love live at the British Phonographic Industry
Awards presentation. She is nominated for (but does not win) three awards: Best
Album, Best Single and Best Female Singer.
- February 17, 1986
- The third single, Hounds of Love, is released in seven- and twelve-inch
- Kate records a duet with Peter Gabriel for his fifth solo album. The track
is called Don't Give Up.
- Kate abandons the plan to make a film version of The Ninth Wave side of
the new album.
- March 6, 1986
- Kate appears on Top of the Pops to perform Hounds of Love.
- March 19, 1986
- For the making of the video for The Big Sky Kate assembles over one
hundred fans on the sound stage of Elstree Studios.
- Kate records a live performance of Under the Ivy at Abbey Road Studios for
the 100th edition of the Tyne Tees TV programme The Tube.
- April 4, 1986
- Kate participates in the first of three Comic Relief shows at the
Shaftesbury Theatre. She performs Breathing live and performs a duet of Do Bears
Sh... in the Woods? with Rowan Atkinson.
- April 5, 1986
- The second Comic Relief show.
- April 6, 1986
- The third Comic Relief show.
- May 25, 1986
- Kate joins in the Sport Aid mini-marathon at Blackheath, South London,
along with many other celebrities.
- May 1986
- The fourth single, The Big Sky, is released.
- Kate does some session work for Big Country on the title track of their
album The Seer.
- June 16, 1986
- The videos for the four Hounds of Love singles are released as a video EP
under the title Hair of the Hound. It goes straight to the number 1 spot on the
music video chart.
- Hounds of Love passes the double platinum mark in the U.K.
- October 20, 1986
- Don't Give Up, the duet with Peter Gabriel of his song, is released as a
- October 23, 1986
- Kate participates in a personal appearance of the Comic Relief stars at
the Claude Gill Book Shop, Oxford Street for the launch of the publication of
the Comic Relief Book.
- October 27, 1986
- A new single, Experiment IV, is released in seven- and twelve-inch
- October 31, 1986
- Kate appears on the BBC TV programme Wogan for the second time, giving a
lip-synch performance of Experiment IV [with violinist Nigel Kennedy].
- November 1986
- Kate directs the video for Experiment IV, which is made on location at a
disused military hospital in South East London and a street in the East End. The
film features the Comic Strip regulars Dawn French and Hugh Laurie.
- November 9, 1986
- Kate interrupts the shooting of the Experiment IV video to attend a party
at the Video Cafe organised by the Kate Bush Club and Homeground.
- November 10, 1986
- The Whole Story, the first Kate Bush compilation album, is released. It is
promoted by the most expensive TV advertising campaign EMI has ever mounted.
Sales are massive.
- Despite reservations by Kate herself, EMI resolves to release a video
compilation of The Whole Story. Again, sales are enormous. The worldwide
commercial success of the album is greater than that of any of her earlier
- Meanwhile, Kate dives into the recording of a new studio album.
- To date, the main part of Kate's creative activity since the middle of
1986 remains a mystery.
- February 1987
- Kate appears at the 1987 British Phonographic Industry Awards, and this
time wins the competition for Best Female Singer, despite the fact that the
album for which she won was released more than a year earlier.
- Kate also wins in the same category of the U.S. College Music Awards, and
accepts the award in a brief comic film shot at her home in England.
- Kate records an original song for the Nicholas Roeg film Castaway, called
Be Kind to My Mistakes.
- March 28/29, 1987
- Kate performs Running Up That Hill and Let It Be live with David Gilmour
at Amnesty International's Secret Policeman's Third Ball concerts.
- March 1987
- Kate does some session work for the second album by Go West, called
Dancing on the Couch: she sings backing vocals on the track The Kind is Dead.
She also contributes vocals to a single release of Let It Be, the proceeds from
which are targeted for the families of the victims of the Zeebrugge ferry
- Kate also writes and records a song called This Woman's Work for the John
Hughes film She's Having a Baby, which is finally released in February 1988.
- late 1987
- Kate agrees to lend her name to a new vegetarian campaign launched by the
Vegetarian Society to publicise excessive cruelties within specific areas of the
- Publication of The Kate Bush Club Newsletter is suspended pending the
release of Kate's still-unfinished sixth studio album.
- Kate attends a concert by Davy Spillane, an Irish musician formerly of the
band Moving Hearts, who contributes uillean pipes tracks to Kate's new album.
She also attends concerts by the Momentary Lapse of Reason incarnation of Pink
Floyd, and by violinist Nigel Kennedy.
- April 1, 1988
- A report is printed in The Guardian that Kate has taken on a lead role in
the longrunning television series Dr. Who. The date of the report is overlooked
by some fans.
- July 30, 1988
- Kate celebrates her thirtieth birthday by participating in an AIDS charity
project involving some 200 celebrities. She serves as a shopkeeper for the day
at Blazer's boutique.
- August 22, 1988
- Kate comments on London for a BBC2 television programme, Rough Guide to
- September 1988
- Midge Ure releases a new album, which features a guest duet vocal with
Kate on the track Sister and Brother.
- Fall 1988
- After making contact with Joe Boyd, co-producer of the Balkana compilation
album of traditional Bulgarian vocal music, Kate travels to Bulgaria to meet
with Yanka Rupkina, Eva Georgieva and Stoyanka Boneva, nationally famous
soloists who perform and record together under the group name Trio Bulgarka.
Meeting again with the Bulgarians in England, Kate records three vocal tracks
with Trio Bulgarka for the sixth album, and makes an appearance with the
Bulgarian vocalists for a video-taped segment of the BBC series Rhythms of the
World, which is broadcast in the spring of 1989.
- Summer 1989
- Kate appears briefly in a video for a worldwide television programme about
ecological issues called Our Common Future. She is seen in a London studio with
many other artists, singing two lines from a song written for the programme (not
by Kate). The song is called Spirit of the Forest. The programme, with the
pre-recorded video, is aired on June 4, 1989.
- There is also a report that Kate appeared at the United Nations with Peter
Gabriel and other artists in support of the campaign to save the rain forests;
but as of presstime this report had not been confirmed.
- Kate's sixth studio album is finally finished at the end of May.
- Fall 1989
- Kate's new single, The Sensual World, is released on September 18th, and
her sixth studio album, The Sensual World, is released at last on October 16th.
The video for the first single is debuted during the week of September 15th.
Meanwhile Kate's new U.S. label, Columbia Records, decides to release Love and
Anger as their first Kate Bush single, and Kate, apparently trusting the
company's knowledge of the American market, must rush to produce an accompanying
- Back in England, the new single debuts at number 12 in the Music
Week/Gallup chart, sinking to number 15 its second week; but the BMIRC chart
tells a quite different story, listing the single's chart debut as number 16,
but placing the record at number 10 the second week.
- The album does rather poorly in England, mainly for two reasons: the radio
stations' refusal to play the music, and Kate's unwillingness to offer any more
than minimal support for the record. She makes no personal signing appearances,
and makes only a few brief television appearances.
- At the end of the year Kate's longtime electric guitarist Alan Murphy dies
prematurely, and she attends his funeral in England.
- In the U.S., the single Love and Anger has considerable college and
alternative-market success, and its accompanying video is aired often by MTV.
Unfortunately Kate's new U.S. label, Columbia Records, fails to offer more than
nominal support for the album, and as a result its phenomenal commercial
potential--indicated in dozens of alternative rock charts throughout the
nation--is completely wasted, and the album never becomes known to the general
record-buying public. It is unable to crack the top forty, but it does have a
remarkable longevity, remaining in the Billboard Top 200 for a total of six full
months. A golden opportunity has been squandered by Columbia.
In response to the unusual college interest, in January Kate finally does
make a brief trip to New York in support of the album, but she does not schedule
nearly as many interviews as she had done in 1985, and she makes no personal
appearances. As a result, she is seen only extremely briefly on U.S. national
news, and in five or six ten-second (that's right, ten-second!) interview "sound-bites"
on MTV in January and February. (She also gives a twenty-minute phone-in
interview, in which a large number of radio disc jockeys joined in for a
conference call and ask a large number of too-familiar questions.)
Meanwhile, the second British single, This Woman's Work, is released. Kate
does perform a lip-synch of the song on The Wogan Show, but the record has only
a very slight success.
About this time Kate's longtime dance partner Gary Hurst dies from
complications arising from AIDS.
Kate also goes into the studio with Roy Harper in the first half of 1990 to
record the title track of Harper's forthcoming album, Once.
The third UK single, Love and Anger, released in February, is no more
successful than its predecessor. It contains three of the six pieces of music
which Kate recorded as a soundtrack for an episode of the British comedy series
The Comic Strip. (The episode is called GLC). Also in February/March, Kate
appears in an acting role on a different edition of the same series. (That
episode is called Les Dogs.)
- April 1990
- On April 10, Kate is in France to work on producing two tracks of Alain
Stivell's new album. While there she does do a little belated promotion, giving
several television interviews, including one for the Eight O'Clock News on La
Cinq (Channel Five); but apparently she does not perform any music.