To the Reaching Out (Interviews) Table of Contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 89 11:59 PST
From: Andrew Marvick (IED)
Subject: French Best Magazine by Gerard Bar-David November 1989
This interview was conducted in English by Gerard Bar-David, then translated into French and published in the November 1989 issue of France's music magazine, Best. The following is a re-translation back into English, by IED. Love-Hounds are therefore advised not to mistake any of Kate's statements for verbatim quotations.
The Sensual Bush
"If you know nothing of music, what good is it to be Irish?"
In dizzying profusion, minibuses and limousines follow each other on the straight path which leads to the manor of Chilston Park, the place designated--no doubt at the command of Mr. EMI--to serve as the epicenter of the explosion of the new and long-awaited (four years--how time flies!) opus signed by Lady Kate Bush.
With its eighteenth-century paneling and elaborate bric-a-brac, this splendid "rustic English" domicile is the perfect decor for rediscovering the babe--Bush--who baptised her latest single The Sensual World in opposition to the ubiquitous crudeness of our sexual world. In the age of software, Kate battles for the comeback of softness.
In such a place as this, one dreams of a portrait-gallery. If you had to collect one, Kate, whose faces would be found in it?
"That's a very personal question, but amid those faces that I'd like to collect, Hitchcock's would definitely have to be included among my favourites, because he was absolutely brilliant. He was a genius. He saw life with the vision of a camera, as though his eyes were the view-finder. Most of the other portraits would be friends who have mattered a lot to me. It's a little like this album, where each song is a painting of a friend, or of a privileged moment."
A friend like Alan Stivell, who in fact is found on your record?
"I've always adored his music. My brother John had already been a fan for years. He listened to his songs endlessly at home. My meeting with Alan was an amazing coincidence. Once we had begun working on this album, I thought that it would be fantastic to integrate Stivell's harp into the songs' atmospheres. We had never met, Alan and I. Two days later, by the purest chance, I found a little note in my letterbox signed 'Alan Stivell': he knew that we had never met, but perhaps I had heard some of his music; in any case, he said, he would love to work with me. What a coincidence! I telephoned him, and he came over to contribute to the album. It's a lovely story."
In your portrait-gallery, one would no doubt find your "mentor", David Gilmour, who put his guitar to service on your Sensual World .
"Let's see...Where can we put David? Over the mantle-piece, no doubt. It was a dream to have Dave with me on this LP, because in all these years we had never really worked together, and he's such a great virtuoso. And was I terrified when we first met! He was such a big star, and me, I was still nothing but a tiny little plant. A friend we had in common had known him since high school. At the end of the '70s Dave was looking for new artists to foster, and his friend told him, 'You absolutely have to hear this girl'. Dave freaked out, and helped me to produce my very first demos. I could never have succeeded without him, and to have him on my album was like a little girl's dream come true."
With Irish acoustic musicians, Greek bouzoukis, Celtic harps and the Mystere des Voix Bulgares, is your Sensual World your tour of the best possible worlds?
"I've always wanted to use Irish musicians. So I went to Dublin to throw myself into its roots. The Irish are affectionate and warm, and the music there strangely resembles them in that way. Like their language, which is intense, musical and spiritual, their music knows how to transport me. My mother is Irish, and since I was a child I've always been immersed in its sound. At home there were always members of our family who would come over to play on the fiddle or the accordion. In our group everyone could play at least one instrument, and you'd be taken for a real fool if you didn't listen to any music. My mother often said: 'If you know nothing of music, what good is it to be Irish?' This music, it's really a part of myself.
"As for the Bulgarians, I experienced an amazing musical contact with them. I discovered their music, and I had hoped to include them in my album. So I went to Bulgaria to meet them. These women have been singing together for twenty years--thirty years--and they worked so hard. I didn't speak a word of their language and in ten minutes they opened their house to me. After the dinner, we were sitting in their kitchen and one of them picked up the telephone to listen for the dial tone. Eva then gave the tone to the others, and they began to sing. I was so moved that I broke into tears."
To the Reaching Out (Interviews) Table of Contents
"The pull and the push of it all..." - Kate Bush
Marvick - Hill
Willker - Mapes
Grepel - Love-Hounds