Interviews & Articles


Good Rockin Tonight
With Nan Devitt(?)
Nov. 1985

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Date: Tue, 28 May 91 00:04:54 PDT
From: rhill@pnet01.cts.com (Ronald Hill)
Subject: More Canadian Interviews 1985

88. Good Rockin' Tonight, Much Music, The New Music, Toronto Evening News, etc.: excerpts from interviews (all dating from the same day, in the same Toronto studios) conducted by Christopher Ward, Nan Devitt and Daniel Richler in late November, 1985.

These interviews have a strikingly better atmosphere than their U.S. counterparts, which had been conducted only a day or two before. Much of the credit for this must go to the excellent interviewing techniques of the Canadian hosts, particularly Mr. Ward and Mr. Richler. Both men had prepared well for their interviews and both show evident respect for their guest on camera. Kate responds, consequently, with greater frankness and fluidity than she had in any other interviews of the 1985 promotional campaign.

[Transcribed by Ronald Hill, above note by IED. Boy does Kate look good in these interviews! ]

[Third interview - Good Rockin Tonight]

O: On behave of Good Rockin Tonight Nan Devitt talked to Kate about why she left school to study dance and mime.

K: I think that actual decision about going for it was just before I left school and that's why I left school. I didn't feel that I could get what I wanted out of school anymore in a way that was going to encourage me getting involved with music. I really had to leave and go into a more artistic kind of lifestyle and dancing was a particulary good one to choose I think.

Well, when I left school I knew very much that I wanted to go into the music business, that that's what I wanted to aim for. And I wanted to do something that would fill my day, that would be a good discipline for me, and that would be complimentary to the music. And dance was something that I'd only just discovered recently at that time. And I felt that there was a whole world of expression there that I'd never experienced and that perhaps the combination of that with singing would make an interesting performing vehicle. So I started training with a mine artist called Lindsay Kemp, who was a very big inspiration for me, and then started dancing at a school. And since then, though the videos the dance has been an incredibly useful thing for me.

[A portion of Wuthering Heights is played]

K: As I've gradually gone through the business I've become much more involved in other areas. And I've found that when I worked in the studio, there we all these areas that were connected to the song that were changing it in a way perhaps that I hadn't intended when I was initially writing the song. And I felt that a natural progression for me was to get involved in production, so that then I could take much more control over the whole thing and therefore end up with a result that I felt was my expression, rather than an indirect expression through lots of other people. And again that was a gradual thing, where I went into co-production, and finding that to be pleasing and quite successful, went into producing solely.

I: Since then you've built a studio in your home, can you tell me about that?

K: That's right, again that was another sort of realization on the last album. That as I producing and getting closer to the whole thing, I found that the way I'm working now is so experimental, it takes me a lot of time, I like to play around with ideas. And in a commercial studio it's costing so much money every hour that I found that was becoming anti-productive, I was so nervous, because I shouldn't be taking so much time playing around with things, that it was stopping me trying things. And we felt the only way really to cope with this was to have our own studio and then also I'd be able to write in the studio and just do as much as I could there and make it all part of the same environment.

[The Man With The Child In His Eyes is played]

K: During the gap between the last and this album, I'd seen quite a few videos on television, that other people had been doing. And I felt that dance, something that we'd be working in, particulary in the earlier videos in quite a foreway, was being used quite trivially, it was being exploited: haphazard images, busy, lots of dances, without really the serious expression, and wonderful expression, that dance can give. So we felt how interesting it would be to make a very simple routine between two people, almost classic, and very simply filmed. So that's what we tried, really, to do a serious piece of dance. [Laughs]

[Part of Running Up That Hill is played]

K: I think until this album I've always treated them as individual songs, and you just work on one at a time, trying to do the best you can to get the best atmosphere across. But with this album I really wanted to try a conceptual piece, something I'd wanted to do for a while but hadn't really gone for. And I felt rather than making a whole of it, it would be interesting to have a side that was conceptual, and then make the other side a kind of counter-balance. And it was a lot of fun working like that, I'm so used to working on a piece of music that's no more than five minutes long. And although these are individual songs, they're all linked and they all have the same theme and atmosphere, so you're definitely working within one entity. And it was very challenging.

I: Buy you decided not to do the whole album as a concept.

K: Yes, I think there were a couple of reasons for that. One, I'd felt that half an hour was a good length of time to get involved in a story. And I was worried that I wouldn't be able to make something sustain over a whole album and that I stood a better chance of doing that with one side of it. And also, I wasn't sure if was even going to work until I'd written a few of the songs. So it made sense for me to secure myself by witting a couple of other songs for the other side while I was working on that side. [Laughs]

I: What do you think you'll do next?

K: I don't know, it's a very strange point in time for me here, where I'm in the middle of promoting the album. And we'll be making videos for the next singles next year. And sometime during this period I have to decide what I'm going to do next. There are a few things that attract me equally. Going straight into another album is something that I have a lot of enthusiasm about. And perhaps turning the conceptual side of this album into a film, in an idea I'm toying with. So, I'm not sure, we'll have to see what I'm feeling like at the beginning of next year.

[Cloudbusting is played]

K: Hounds of Love is about someone who's scarred of falling in love with someone, of being trapped, and sees it as a simile of a pack of hounds that are chasing them. And instead of being happy about it, terrified, so they're running for their life really. [Laughs]

I: Is that something - is that personal for you or... is that something you've observed about other people ?

K: I think that everyone is scarred of relationship on some level or other, but actually the song in many ways was inspired by an old english black and white movie called Night Of The Demon, which is just one of those great movies that managed to get through a whole phase of other movies that were incredibly corny and not effective, and has a real atmosphere about it.

I: Do you have a favorite album of yours, a Kate Bush album?

K: It's a very close tie between this and the last one. I think probably this one. The one that you've just done is normally your most favorite and then becomes your least favorite and you want to get on and do something else and make it better. [Laughs]

I: What do you know about Canada?

K: I know very little about it. I wish that I had more time here to actually go and see the country because it's one of the most beautiful countries in the world. I've only seen it on film, but it's beautiful.

[Other quotes from the same interview, shown at a later date. Starts with the Hounds of Love quote above]

K: Well touring is one of those things that could easily be the next project. I think what's put me off committing myself to it is the amount of involvement - it enormous. I mean it's financially costly, very tiring, and a tremendous amount of effort goes into it. But it's so rewarding. And we only did the one tour in '79, around England and Europe. And I had to wait until I had another two albums worth of material to be able to tour again, which only took me to the end of the last album. And since then, I haven't really been prepared for that kind of commitment.

I: Well, what would a tour involve, what would a concert - a Kate Bush concert - involve? Would there be dancing...?

K: Yes. Well this is how we approached it the last time. Very much inspired by the initial influences of people like Lindsay Kemp and the dance that I'd taken up. I felt that it was a really interesting combination to use music, theatre, poetry, in live form. And although all the songs we'd worked were off the albums, we had lots links and different extensions to the music and that. And so it really does become a very involved process. And I think the last three albums, which if we did a tour would be what we'd cover, actually lend themselves better towards being visualized theatrically, but I just don't know if we'll every get 'round to doing it. [Laughs]

To the Reaching Out (Interviews) Table of Contents

"The pull and the push of it all..." - Kate Bush

Reaching Out
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Marvick - Hill
Willker - Mapes
Grepel - Love-Hounds