Interviews & Articles


Breathing Interview
April 25, 1980

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Date: Mon, 5 Aug 1991 22:17:45 -0800
From: rhill@pnet01.cts.com (Ronald Hill)
Subject: Nationwide Breathing Interview, April 25, 1980.

40. Nationwide: Kate is interviewed briefly about Breathing, U.K. TV, April 25, 1980.

This is the brief interview during which segments from the Breathing video were aired--segments which Peter FitzGerald-Morris claims had been "banned" by the British music-video programmes.

[Transcribed by Ron Hill. Above note by IED. Thanks to IED for providing me an audio tape of this television program.]

I: Now a much used phrase in the fifties and early sixties was "living in the shadow of the bomb." And those of us that remember the CND, the Campaign For Nuclear Disarmament's marches will also remember that ban the bomb ballads from singer's like Joan Biaz. Well today many people believe that with increasing tension in the middle east, we've never been closer to the prospect of nuclear war. And with headlines echoing that fear, over last few weeks it's not surprising that a singer should produce a song with the same sentiments as those in the fifties [sixties], but with a style that belongs entirely in the eighties. The singer is the British star Kate Bush, and the song is called Breathing.

[Breathing is shown]

I: Kate, that's a total departure from the sort of romantic songs you've been associated with in the past. Now is there any significance in that?

K: I think only significance in as much as it's a subject that's very real and it's obviously more outspoken then a lot more of my songs, yeah.

I: When you said real - to you personally?

K: Um, I think to me personally and especially to the public.

I: Do you seriously believe, for instance, that the world is drifting towards war and that concerns you?

K: I hope not, I hope that we're not drifting towards war. But it does concern me tremendously, yes it does, as one of the one of the human beings on this earth. I think we should be very concerned about looking after each other [rather] then destroying each other, which we are doing gradually anyway.

I: But what do you say to the criticism that might be put that actually that kind of song is a commercial exploitation of difficult world situation?

K: Yes, absolutely I think that's people would.. they're quite likely to say, and I would expect that of people, quite rightly so. But, in fact, when I did write the song it was from a purely emotional personal point of view, that I was incredibly struck at what we were doing to each other. And that just one button, one bomb, could do one hello of a lot to any of us. And I thought it was just something I had to say. And at the time it wasn't something I was thinking of commercially it was purely an emotional exercise.

I: Do you think in any sense that it marks a return to the kind of protest songs that were so familiar in the sixties?

K: Yes, I think that's a very interesting angle, I think. People were very aware at that time of what could happen. And I think at this time again, people are even more aware because there is such a real shadow of it happening, all over the world.

I: Well, Kate thank you very much, indeed. Lots of luck with the song, indeed I don't think you need best wishes for luck because it's moved up fifteen places I gather in the past week. Let's now have another look at the sequence from the video tape from your new song Breathing.

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