An open letter to Kate

This is by Krystyna Boswell “Sky Lady”, a long time fan and HomeGround reader, and our thanks to her.

kbnewsroses8Inspired by my dear friend Paul Thomas’ open letter to ABBA, here’s one to Kate Bush.

Dear Kate,

I have loved your music since the first time I heard Wuthering Heights. I’m sure it was on Capital Radio; I literally stopped what I was doing I was so blown away. I thought, “This is the music I’ve been waiting to hear all my life.”

I cut out and kept every news clipping about you I could find, I still have them in a scrap book, very old and faded now but treasures to me. I was too late to get a pic bag for the WH single, same for TMWTCIHE but after that I was there the moment the shops opened every time a single was released. Holding each new single, looking for the scratched message in the run off vinyl was pure magic. Waiting for every new Kate music release, every TV appearance, made my life bright.

Memories : the first time I received my KBC membership card (still have it); meeting people through the pen pal ads in the KBC magazine; the first time I met my friend Peter and he showed me his letters from Kate – I was awed. People used to tease me about looking like you; a group of schoolkids would sing Heights to me when they saw me in the street but I was totally delighted. For the first time in my life I felt worthwhile, not insignificant – even if it was because I reminded people of someone else, someone who had a profound effect on my whole life.

All my friends have been made through our mutual love of your music, good people who mean so much to me. We’ve shared great times, met to celebrate your birthday and album releases. Those treks across Haworth Moor; visits to the Farm at birthdays and Christmas and meeting your lovely parents; the Video cafe, the video shoot for The Big Sky – all such special memories.

I spent hours miming your dance routines in the bedroom mirror; I crimped my hair mercilessly to look like your Lionheart photos. You were doing exactly what I wanted to do but was too self conscious to try. It was years before I had the courage to start singing, and then writing music. You were my big inspiration. Now you live your life quietly, but still give us extraordinary music. You have been a part of my life longer than anyone else. And finally I’m ready to sing again, to get a band together. I’m slow to do things, not confident, but I think about you and all you have done and know it is possible. And that you will always be part of my life, along with my wonderful ‘Katy’ friends.

Thank you Kate. Without your music I would not have met some wonderful and extraordinary people who I know will walk with me as I go through life; I would never have realised just how beautiful true creative endeavour can be, and I cannot imagine a world -my world – without your music.

Sky Lady

About Peter

My Kate CV: Kate fan since 1978. Saw Tour of Life at the London Palladium 1979. Went to first KBC Convention 1980. Founded Homeground with Dave 1982. Worked on 1985, 1990, and 1994 Kate Bush Conventions, and the 1986 Video Party with Dave, Lisa of KBC and Krys. Appeared in videos for The Big Sky and Experiment IV. Wrote Introduction, Chronology and Discography for EMI Music Publishing's 1987 "Kate Bush Complete". Wrote the sleeve note for the remastered 1998 reissue of "Hounds of Love". Invited to write sleeve notes for other reissues which never happened. My other CV: born 1955 in Bermondsey London, educated at Galleywall Primary, Walworth Comprehensive, and London School of Economics BSc(Econ)(Hon) 1976. Currently an Officer of the Crown Court determining legal costs in crminal cases. Met Krys in 1982 through Homeground, we were engaged on Glastonbury Tor on Kate's birthday in 1983, and married in November 1984.
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25 Responses to An open letter to Kate

  1. Mark says:

    Fantastic letter Skylady! Keep posing these, guys!

  2. Jay says:

    Maybe there should be a separate area of the site for this kind of thing so’s to not confuse it with Kate news. I like to drop in and see if there’s anything new with Kate at a glance rather than sifting through fan posts too.

  3. Seán says:

    Feel very privileged to hear these words from a real, long-time fan…wonderful 🙂

  4. Dale says:

    What a lovely letter. Kate has moved so many people in so many different ways, but I think most of us would echo what you’ve expressed, Sky Lady.

    • Sky says:

      Thank you, Dale. Kate is indeed very special – her music creates worlds, paints landscapes, moves us in so many ways. She has been the biggest inspiration in my life.

  5. Rod says:

    That’s lovely SkyLady. I love hearing the stories of those early days because what’s often overlooked is that there’s something quite daring about pinning your colours to a particular performer, especially a new one, as Kate was then, and a female one at that. There were a lot of factions back then, I mean the aggro around music didn’t stop and start with the Mods and Rockers in the 60s, and it could be dangerous in the 70s and 80s being a Bowie fan, or a Punk fan, or a percieved “hippy”, and at the very least it could leave one open to ridicule and bullying, for not being one of the in-crowd or one of the herd or even for being a male who liked a female performer (I know that sounds ridiculous nowadays). Kate Bush herself had a very difficult time at the hands of some of the press back then, and it isn’t hard to imagine the likes of Sky, and others, standing up for their favourite star. I’m more than happy to read these tales and to see the photos from the old video shoots Homegrounders, I look forward to this new development.

    • Peter says:

      I’m hoping the HG book will fill in a lot of this early background as to what it was like to be a Kate fan in the 1980s and 1990s.

    • Sky says:

      That’s so lovely, Rod. The music scene was very mixed in the late 70s, very diverse. I am so glad I discovered Kate at the very beginning – I feel so privileged. I too look forward to reading other people’s thoughts and stories. The spirit of HomeGround will continue to live on.

  6. John V-W says:

    This is a very beautiful and moving letter, lovely to read. Kate’s music also helps to inspire me and helps me emotionally to cope with an often unpleasant and nasty world. Long may she continue to inspire hope and inner peace through her art.

  7. Barbara says:

    There was also a very sweet bit in Rob Brydon’s ‘Small Man In A Book’ where he spoke of his admiration for Kate around his teenage years. There was a girl who was the absolute spit of Kate circa Lionheart – crimped hair and all – who worked in his local branch of Holland & Barrett and he was absolutely gobsmacked by her!

    He’d stand by the window and just gaze at her and he couldn’t pluck up the courage to go in and speak to her.

    Rob and Steve Coogan have since sung WH in ‘The Trip’, and I’m convinced that Steve wanted to be Kate’s Heathcliff all along!

  8. Nanette says:

    That’s a great letter, Sky Lady. Sounds like you have some great memories.

    I’d like it if the site could have a “letters/stories/poetry” section too. Sometimes, I just want news; other times, I feel contemplative, and would like to read “lit’ry” stuff. I’m also afraid that the artists that are promoted here might get lost in the shuffle if everything is posted higgledy-piggledy. Just my opinion, of course.

    • Peter says:

      As I’ve posted elsewhere, the posting topic, and the topic menu (in the right hand margin) are the easiest way to find postings relating to particular matters.

  9. Del Palmer says:

    A beautiful letter!!..
    This is the kind of thing she loves… More than any award…
    This is what you do it for, to touch people like this…

  10. Millais says:

    What a lovely letter, Krys!
    Thank you for sharing your beautiful memories here. It is always such a pleasure to read about other people’s reactions to Kate’s music.
    She is such a unique artist, and her music is cherished in so many people’s hearts because of her direct, original, unmistakably personal approach to composition, both lyrically and musically speaking, and for the way she is able to speak the emotion through her voice. The passion and love is still there, after such a long time. May she continue to inspire us all with her work for years and years to come…

  11. Lisa Oliver says:

    So lovely to read your heartfelt words, Krys. You have expressed so succinctly and beautifully how it feels to be a fan of Kate’s work and that her music is indeed ‘interwoven’ through our lives. Wonderful xoxo

  12. giulio says:

    Thankyou so much for sharing with us your thoughts and sensations about kate (and your life). So many of us may feel similar things. Kate’s music has always been so
    important… And she’s such a wonderful being. 😉

  13. Corxin says:

    Good on you Sky Lady, that makes for a fantastic read. I really identified with our habit of reading the etched messages on the run offs of the 7″ singles. BTW loved Kate’s hair on the Lionheart sleeve and especially the Hammer Horror 7″ sleeve so fair play to you for having a similar look! Happy new year and all the best for 2013. x

  14. james s says:

    i completely identify with your Kate love. When my dad came home to find me and my sisters dressed as Kate doing a wuthering heights routine, he put on a brave face.

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