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Big Boi teases further details of his upcoming Kate collaboration!

Yes, we’ve been hearing snippets from Big Boi for years now about his work with Kate but it does indeed seem to be simply awaiting release at this point. He has given his most in-depth comments about this long-teased collaboration speaking to producer/DJ Mark Ronson on The Fader Uncovered podcast.

Speaking to Ronson about his various collaborators throughout the years, Big Boi said: “I have a monster hit with Kate Bush that I’m just holding.” Adding: “It’s a dream come true and the people are going to fucking love it. It’s fucking incredible.” Here’s the full transcript from that portion of the podcast episode:

Mark Ronson: Has that gotten any further, doing a record with Kate Bush? I know you’ve been putting it out into the ether for a minute.

Big Boi: I have a monster hit with Kate Bush that I’m just holding.

Are you serious?

I’m holding it. It’s a fucking monster.

So you’ve made music together.

Yes, we have. Yes, we did.

That’s fucking incredible.

Yeah, you get it here first, buddy. Yeah, it’s a dream come true and the people are going to fucking love it. It’s fucking incredible.

Oh my God. So how long did it take? Because you’ve been saying this for so long and you almost sound like you were trying to will it into the universe, just sending good energy. How long did it actually take for her to come back and be like, “Hey yeah, let’s do something,” or whatever? However Kate Bush talks.

Well, she’s a very, very, very classy lady, and when we were on the Outkast 20 tour, I got tickets, me and my wife, and we went to go see her show that she had, played the live shows. And so from there, I get invited backstage, we have some wine and we talk. And her kid is there, he’s about the same age as my kids, which is cool. And she signs an album for me and give me her number. So after that, about a year or so pass, and I told her I was coming back, I just said, “Hey, when can we do a song?” Just send her a text every now and then. I talked to her on the phone, “Hello. Hello. So lovely.” And so I came back and she’s like, “Let’s go to dinner.” So we went and she took me to dinner to this cool little pub place where I had almond cognac. And we was both throwing them back. It was the coolest experience.

So we had dinner and then we’re like okay. Her son was going off to college and she was just like, “Okay, I’m going to try to get to something when I get my studio set back up.” And so my manager, being the great, great manager he is, he reached out to her manager a couple years ago and was like, “Hey, we need to make this happen.” And I just so happened to have the right song that is fucking phenomenal, and sent it to her. And it had the words on there and she just had to sing the words. And then I wrote my verse and my boy Go Dreamer wrote her parts and wrote the hook. And it is incredible. It’s incredible.

Is it going to come in the next year? Is it just you’re going to hold on, whenever the universe, whenever it’s right?

Yeah, whenever I think they deserve it, I’m going to give it to them.

That is a big scoop you just gave us. Thank you very much.

Yeah, it’s a big scoop. And I’m going to tell you another thing too I was thinking too, because you know how these NFTs are supposed to be works of art, so I’m thinking maybe this is that perfect art piece to have something stunning visual to go along with it as an NFT, I’ll fucking blow the whole world up.

That will. Or you could just make only one copy, like the Wu-Tang album, pocket $30 million or something.

No, the world got to hear because it’s uplifting.

Of course.

It’s uplifting.

So that collaboration right there was the last piece of the puzzle?

That collaboration right there was the last piece of the puzzle.

Yeah.

You know what I mean? As far as my legacy goes. The only other person I wanted to work with would’ve been Bob Marley.

Yeah.

And I’ve worked with everybody that I wanted to work with now. You know what I mean?

Yeah.

And this one right here is special because I’ve been a fan of hers since I was in middle school. You know what I mean? She’s one of the reasons why I started doing music.

How did you discover her? Were you just listening to the radio or …?

No. Everybody got the weird old uncle, right?

Okay.

My mom’s brother, her younger brother, my uncle Russell, he turned me on to Prince. He turned me on to Genesis, Phil Collins, Guns and Roses. And he turned me on … He listened to everything, Michael Jackson and all that. And so he had this record player and he had Kate Bush and he would tell me the stories behind the songs. And I was just intrigued. You know what I mean?

Yeah, yeah.

Oh, this is deep. And then to find out that she was producing and writing all this stuff. And then she worked with Peter Gabriel and I love Peter Gabriel. I used to ride my bike to school, listening and running up that hill. Crazy as a boy. And now as a grown ass man with three kids and a grandson.

Oh, congratulations.

Yeah, man. For sure. Like God is good. I’m blessed and highly favored, man.

BBC2 Screening 1979 ABBA special featuring Kate!

Following the release last week of ABBA‘s first new studio album in 40 years, Voyage, BBC2 in the UK will be airing an evening of ABBA-themed programmes from 8pm on Saturday 13th November. At 11pm they will screen the 1979 TV special ABBA in Switzerland, which famously features Benny and Björn introducing Kate’s unforgettable performance of Wow, which sent the British popular press into a frenzy at the time. Warm congratulations to Anni-Frid, Agnetha, Benny and Björn on their wonderful new album and enduring success.

ABBA in 2021 – in their performance capture ABBAtar outfits!

Remembering our friend, Lise Gerrard

Lise Gerrard, 30th July 1983 in Regent’s Park, London after having visited East Wickham Farm with gifts and cards for Kate’s birthday. Photo: Sky Boswell.

We are all reeling from the news that our friend, Kate Bush fan Lise Gerrard has died. A remarkable person, and passionate fan, Lise coped with mounting health issues for a number of years with great humour and determination. Two of her close friends and fellow Kate Bush fans, Paul and Sky, pay tribute below. We send our sincerest condolences out to her son Noah, her parents, her family and friends.

Lise Gerrard with Lindsay Kemp (centre) and Paul Thomas, Sept 2016

Paul Thomas: Mementos of Pleasure – a tribute to Lise Gerrard

There are advantages to being a hoarder. I would much rather hear “good job you kept that” instead of “what a shame you threw that out”. Our dear friend Lise has left behind a mountain of mementos for me. Old concert and train tickets, bundles of postcards and letters, all in her beautiful, distinctive handwriting, and hundreds and hundreds of photographs. Then there are all the gifts she bought me- vinyls, CDs, books, T shirts and Christmas tree decorations. These now serve as mementos of a special friendship that spanned 5 decades. I am so pleased I kept them all and when I look through them next I know memories will flood through my mind like a film projection.

Recounting all those wonderful times. The many nights out, parties, concerts, the photo-booths, getting the milk train after keeping each other awake at a London train station. Then there are all the memories connected to Kate Bush, who essentially was responsible for us knowing each other in the first place. Holding hands with each other whilst Kate performed “Breathing” live at a Comic Relief benefit gig in 1986, the visits to the farm and sharing tea with Kate and other members of the Bush family during the 80s (especially with Kate’s dear mother). And more recently, Guido Harari’s book launch where Lise was thrilled to meet Guido as well as one of her idols, Lindsay Kemp. There are many special people in my life that I may not have met if it wasn’t for Lise. She seemed to be a linchpin for many friendships. Lise was very well known and loved not just within the Kate Bush fan community but many other communities too, where she left her mark with her wit and kindness.

We met when we were teenagers, the age when we start discovering things about the world around us, thinking how grown up we are when in fact we were babies and so green about everything. Our friendship was built upon the love of the same music, primarily Kate but also Leonard Cohen, David Bowie, Joni Mitchell and more recently Father John Misty. We also had many other things in common, including a similar sense of humour and a love of animals. She was easy to talk to, compassionate, funny and so very kind, traits that have been inherited by her beloved son, Noah. I know she was loved by so many and leaves a huge hole in our lives but we should be grateful that we knew Lise, our crazy, beautiful friend. I am sure she feels this outpouring of love from wherever she is now.

Just one more thing, “Love you more” – I win.

Lise Gerrard with Sky Boswell

Sky Boswell: Lise was the most selfless person I ever knew.  Despite her many challenges in recent years she never moaned about her lot, and endured with patience, grace and an extraordinarily resilient sense of humour.  She was one of a core group of close friends who met and bonded over our shared love of Kate’s music in the early 1980s when, like the almost-children we still were, we all thought we would live forever.  In her healthy times we shared so much fun and laughter and, thankfully, I have wonderful memories and lots of photos of her and of us together.  She was an utterly unique and amazing person, incredibly witty and funny, strong, sincere, kind, generous and selfless.  I can’t get my head around the fact that she has gone from this world.  Goodnight, darling Lise. I will miss you so much but I’ll see you again some day.

[Note: Below is Lise’s contribution to the Record Collector Presents Kate Bush magazine published in November 2020 – you can download a larger PDF of this article here]

Happy Birthday, Kate!

Wishing Kate a very happy birthday today! We hope you’re having a fantastic day and having lots of fun. Gives us a chance to say THANK YOU for being you and for giving us your wonderful music! xxx

HMV limited Hounds of Love on recycled vinyl snapped up by fans!

Fans pick up Kate limnited vinyl at HMV stores in UK
Fans get their hands on the limited edition in HMV stores in the UK

So, when the artist you love hasn’t released anything in a while, even a reissue on limited coloured vinyl can spark quite a lot of excitement. This was the case yesterday up and down the UK in HMV stores when the special vinyl release of Hounds of Love went on sale as part of the music chain’s centenary celebrations.

Stock was very limited in many stores, with a total of just 1,500 copies of this edition pressed up. Those who queued early (some as early as 6am!) were assured of their copy as HMV staff allocated stock to those queuing on a first come first served basis. Only 1 copy of Hounds of Love could be purchased per customer. There were 37 albums in total made available as part of this campaign, Kate’s being #4. This edition is the same as the 2018 Remastered version of Kate’s 1985 album, and a nice touch was the re-use of the original album font on the circular hype sticker on the shrink wrap. Some of the vinyl albums were available online on HMV’s site at 4pm on the day but sold out almost immediately, with as many as 100 copies showing up on Ebay straight away for inflated prices, something we unfortunately see happening with Record Store Day releases also.

HMV centenary edition vinyl colour variations

For fans and collectors this edition is somewhat unique in that no two copies of the disc will look the same. The unique marbled effect is the result of using various recycled materials available from other coloured vinyl runs. In this case, thanks to many fans posting images of their discs, we can see that the colours run from rich reds and plum colours to dark and light greys, with flecks and marbling of other shades running through. Did you manage to get one?

RIP Alfred Biolek, German TV star who championed Kate

Alfred Biolek pictured on the German Wuthering Heights 7″ sleeve

Our friend Michael Guth in Germany lets us know that sadly Alfred Biolek passed away today, aged 87, the man who was so important for Kates career in Germany. He is even pictured on the rear cover of the German 7″ Wuthering Heights sleeve. Michael writes: “He was a true legend! Bio’s Bahnhof was the title of an entertainment show hosted by Alfred Biolek, which was broadcast by ARD in Germany from 9 February 1978 to 28 October 1982 in 30 episodes from the former depot Hall of the Köln-Frechen-Benzelrather Eisenbahn live.

A special feature of the program was that the artists performing were from all styles of music: pop as well as folk, avant-garde and contemporary music. With the exception of Vicky Leandros in the first episode (due to a cold), all artists sang live.

Alfred Biolek proved (in collaboration with his editors) an extraordinary sense of future stars. Among others, he presented Sting, Helen Schneider and Kate Bush to the German audience for the first time.

Indeed, Kate made her very first television appearance at Bio’s Bahnhof, performing Kite and Wuthering Heights on 9 February 1978. The backdrop, which was supposed to represent the Yorkshire moors, included a volcano.” (Thanks Michael)

I contacted various record labels, which artists might be suitable for my new show. One day I was sitting at EMI in London, and all sorts of names were mentioned – and I suddenly I noticed a song that sounded softly over the office speakers. I interrupted the conversation, listening. And I was thrilled! I asked: “Who is this?” And they said: “A brand new artist, she has only just begun”. And I thought we could just invite her.

Alfred Biolek

Brontë Stones mastermind gets letter from Kate about his new Brontë book

Michael Stewart is a multi-award winning writer, born and brought up in Salford, who moved to Yorkshire in 1995 and is now based in Bradford. You will remember that in 2018 Kate took part in the Brontë Stones project in Yorkshire which he instigated, four monumental stones situated in the landscape between the Brontë birthplace and the parsonage, inscribed with poems by Kate, Carol Ann Duffy, Jeannette Winterson and Jackie Kay. (you can read about Kate’s Brontë Stone in our news item here)

Michael has just published a new book, Walking the Invisible, dedicating it to Kate, which Grazia magazine has described as “an imaginative and elegant trek through the landscape of the Brontës.” Having sent a copy of the book to Kate he was delighted last month to receive a hand written note from her, saying in a tweet: “It’s not every day you get a letter from Kate Bush!”

The book is available from Amazon UK here or to support local bookshops in the UK visit https://uk.bookshop.org You can read more about Michael at his website here or follow him on Twitter here. As an Amazon Associate this site earns revenue to support running costs from qualifying purchases.

HMV announce limited unique recycled vinyl “Centenary Edition” of Hounds of Love

HMV limited vinyl Hounds of Love

Update 21st July: Kate’s official site has posted with more information about the discs themselves: “It is a recycled coloured vinyl which is completely individual in its colour variation, so no two are the same. The unique marbled effect is the result of using various recycled materials available from other coloured vinyl runs.”

Recycled vinyl discs

With their upcoming 100th birthday this month, HMV, the UK-based music and film retailer, have recently launched their new and exclusive 1921 Centenary Editions. “We have carefully curated a selection of the finest albums and soundtracks from the last 100 years and had them specially pressed onto some beautiful limited edition vinyl – all of which will be available exclusively in hmv stores on Saturday July 24.”

Describing the album as “a timeless classic from a truly unique artist”, Hounds of Love joins their 1921 Centenary Edition series with a new and exclusive reissue pressed on recycled vinyl and limited to 1500 copies. We note that this is not a coloured vinyl, as with some other editions in this series. Kate’s album is No.4 0f 37 albums in this set of vinyl reissues.

HMV say that these exclusives will be available on a first come, first served basis, and they recommend that you head to your local store nice and early so you don’t miss out. While stocks last there will also be a very limited number of copies of Hounds of Love 1921 Centenary Edition available in their online store from 4pm on July 24. You can see all the other HMV vinyl exclusives here.

Remembering Joe Cassidy…

It was with great shock and sadness that we learned this week of the death of Belfast-born singer, songwriter, producer, composer and front-man, Joe Cassidy. Just last autumn, Joe contributed his intensely beautiful version of Kate’s Top of the City to the I Wanna Be Kate: Remastered and Expanded project, using his band name, Butterfly Child. Sending our sincere condolences to his family, loved ones and many friends.

Thomas Dunning, who knew Joe well and produced I Wanna Be Kate has shared the following:

Joe was a dream of a friend and a profoundly gifted and hard-working musician of exceptional generosity.  He mentored so many in the art and joy of music-making, whether they were professionals, saw themselves as creatives, or not.  His extraordinary kindness and love of animals were as well regarded as his magnificent pop, rock and orchestral creations. I will miss him and I am so grateful to have had his love and music in my life.  It is an honour that his last musical release was his brilliant contribution to I Wanna Be Kate with the sweet closing line, ‘Put me up on the angels shoulders. Mmmm, Yes!’   I’m sure that’s exactly where he is.  What a blessing he was in my life. ~ Thomas Dunning

Joe Cassidy’s career in music spans almost three decades. Joe moved from Belfast to Manchester, then London, and then Chicago—finally landing in Los Angeles in 2007. His career was a study in duality: his projects have been picked up by hot indie labels Rough Trade and H.ark!—and major giants Arista/ BMG, Hit It!/ Tommy Boy, Dedicated/ BMG, RCA, and Universal. Joe has written scores for string quartets made up of members of the Liverpool Symphony and the Chicago Lyric Orchestra—and for films like “Bettie Page Uncensored”, “Stan” and “Hollywood”. Joe also worked on the 2011 Sundance Grand Jury Prize Winner “We Live In Public” and the 2011 Emmy winning documentary “Hold At All Costs”.

His band Butterfly Child is known for its symphonic love songs; his band Assassins is known for its electro-pop dance tracks—both have devoted fan bases. Joe even had the honour of producing song writing legend Jimmy Webb with Glen Campbell in the room. He performed across the USA and Europe including Lollapalooza and has supported New Order, Muse, Travis and Duran Duran to name but a few.

Perhaps Joe demonstrated success across genres and continents because of what Rolling Stone called “his mastery of the simple pop song.” At the heart of every one of his compositions is a melody infused with deeply satisfying musical—and narrative—resolution. As was said of Joe Cassidy’s style, “If you’ve ever been drunk in a pub, staring at someone beautiful, just watching them move, in a blur, this was probably the music in your head.”

Here’s what Joe said about his version of Top of the City on I Wanna Be Kate

top of the city always resonated with me. i remember buying the red shoes album the day it came out and i loved this particular track instantly. there are some songs that i could never dream of covering like the sensual world as it is basically beyond perfect but top of the city felt like i could have fun with the arrangement and do my own spin on it, including the molly bloom references at the end. i listened to the live version from the before the dawn album, borrowed a couple of things from that and just got on with it really. it was a very fast recording process as i tracked everything in a day by myself in the studio and then worked on the mix for a little longer. 

kate bush is indescribable. her voice, her dancing, her beauty and her song writing will long live eternal. – Joe Cassidy, 2020

Thomas has now made the track available for free download here.

Kate: Inside the Rainbow by John Carder Bush reprinted!

Kate’s brother, John Carder Bush, has let me know that his stunning book of photographs of Kate throughout her career, Kate: Inside the Rainbow has been reprinted by Little, Brown and made available again on Amazon and other sites. This is great news for anyone put off by the ever-increasing prices the book was being sold for on the used book market the last couple of years. Order here from Amazon UK or to support local bookshops in the UK visit https://uk.bookshop.org. As an Amazon Associate this site earns revenue to support running costs from qualifying purchases.

Kate: Inside the Rainbow includes outtakes from classic album shoots and never-before-seen photographs from sessions including The Dreaming and Hounds of Love, as well as rare candid studio shots and behind-the-scenes stills from video sets, including ‘Army Dreamers’ and ‘Running Up that Hill’.
These stunning images are accompanied by two new essays by John: ‘From Cathy to Kate’, describing in vibrant detail their shared childhood and the early, whirlwind days of Kate’s career, and ‘Chasing the Shot’, which vividly evokes John’s experience of photographing his sister. Kate personally helped John to choose the final selection of shots. A limited signed boxed edition of 500 copies with three fine-art prints sold out rapidly when the book was first released in October 2015.

Preston Heyman interview exclusive in new podcast episode!

In this new episode of the Kate Bush Fan Podcast, Bush Telegraph (Darrell and Paul) talk all things ‘Sat In Your Lap’ as they celebrate its 40th anniversary! They reveal an exclusive interview with Preston Heyman, who played the iconic drum pattern on the single. Preston is a brilliant and revered drummer in the music industry, and here we get to hear how he collaborated with Kate on this special and unique song. ‘Sat In Your Lap’ would catapult Kate into the progressive singer/songwriter that we know and love today, and this interview shows how incredible and special her approach was. As book-ends to the interview, Bush Telegraph reminisce about the day it came out, when they rushed to the record shop to see what the cover looked like and listening to the single and B-side ‘The Lord Of The Reedy River’ on the turntable for the first time. They also talk about the demo, the Roundtable radio reviews, and a whole lot more!

You can subscribe to the Kate Bush Fan Podcast on iTunes or on any podcast app you happen to use, such as Stitcher or Tunein or listen below on Soundcloud.

New Classic Pop magazine looks at Kate’s albums

Classic Pop issue 69 May/June 2021

The new May/June 2021 issue of Classic Pop magazine in the UK (Gary Numan cover) has a 4-page Album-by-Album feature exploring Kate’s recorded work. Buy a single issue of the magazine direct from them and get it delivered to your door: bit.ly/2Rav5pa Also available from selected WH Smith High Street, WH Smith Travel, Easons, Tesco and McColls stores in the UK and Ireland.

‘Finding Kate’ project now funded. Last chance to be named in the book!

Double page spread from ‘Finding Kate’ on the song The Sensual World (1989)
Finding Kate – out December 2021

It’s been fascinating seeing an ambitious project like this come together and become a considerable success! It is now 100% funded and will now definitely be produced with a publication date of December 2021. Michael and Marius have shared two more spreads from Finding Kate with us exclusively to illustrate what the inside of the book will look like. To recap: A pair of creative collaborators from Ireland, Michael Byrne and Marius Herbert, have launched a Kickstarter campaign to realise their goal of publishing a rather unique and beautiful book which “visually and textually celebrates the genius and the music of Kate”.

There are still two weeks left, as with book crowdfunding campaigns of this sort, to avail of rewards including having your name printed inside the book as a funder, all details on how to do that are here but these rewards are only available for the next 14 days.

A 1985-1989 divider section of the book themed on The Ninth Wave
Two page spread about the song Wild Man (2010)
A 1993-2005 divider section of the book themed on Aerial

Kate joins campaign to change the UK music industry

Kate, Paul McCartney, Stevie Nicks

Kate has added her name to a new campaign #BROKENRECORD organised by the Musicians Union’ in the UK calling for changes in the music industry, including equitable remuneration to support the next generation of artists. It takes the form of a letter to the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. The signatories, over 150 in total, include Kate, Damon Albarn, Joan Armatrading, Billy Bragg, Brian Eno, Peter Gabriel, Annie Lennox, Paul McCartney, Stevie Nicks, Robert Plant, Robert Smith, Sting and many more. Full text of the letter below. (thanks to Pekka for letting us know)

Kate donates signed items to cancer charity auction!

Kate Bush Signed Remastered in Vinyl box set

Kate has donated six newly signed items to a cancer charity auction. She has signed one each of the Remastered in Vinyl box sets plus a copy of the How To Be Invisible book and a 50 Words for Snow CD. There’s also a Red Shoes promo box that has been donated by an ex EMI Marketing Director and a copy of the 2011 50 Words for Snow vinyl.

Kate Bush Signed Remastered in Vinyl box set

Cabaret vs Cancer is a small independent charity that works to raise money to support people living with the effects of cancer, especially children who have lost someone. Our very own Dave Cross has been an ambassador for the charity for two years now and has put together this, their first music charity auction. The auction also includes very special signed items from Kylie Minogue and Kim Wilde, plus other items from Elton John, U2, Steps, Iron Maiden and lots more. The auction is live now and will be open until Sunday 25th April – you can start bidding here! Well done, Dave, fantastic work on this!

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