Christmas Belle – Kate Bush

It’s now time for my annual Christmas song from a female singer who also happens to be a style icon. Last year I chose 2000 Miles from The Pretenders, one of my absolute faves and pretty well known. This year I’ve opted for another fave lady, but with a song that is a little less well known. This year’s Christmas bell(e) is Kate Bush, and the song is December Will Be Magic Again, which she performed live on a Christmas special in 1979, and was then released for Christmas 1980, but only released number 29 in the charts. This was in the same year that the Christmas Number one position was held by St Winifred’s School Choir, so go figure. At this time of year there is absolutely no accounting for taste!

I love this song, it is the sort of record that sends a shiver up the spine, beautiful and just a little haunting, like a Christmas ghost story from M R James. I discovered it on side 2 of a three disc Christmas CD about 10 years ago and feel in love with it, Kate’s voice is as beautiful and unique as ever and just soars through the stunning lyrics. It is perfect, bringing to mind roaring fires, mulled wine and ‘It’s a wonderful Life’. Christmas encapsulated in just under 4 minutes.

Kate Bush – style icon.

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Kate-Bush

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KATE BUSH

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Taking a little inspiration from La Redoute and the Language of Love

A brand new Ad campaign from stylish French brand La Redoute has been launched this week, with a real emphasis on telling your most cherished loved ones how you feel about them. Called ‘The language of love’, it features the rather gorgeous Mr La Redoute, aka French model and actor Florent Thevenot, delivering a series of beautiful messages of love, in French, to a whole range of women, messages that actually come from special people in their lives, from spouses and partners, sons and daughters, even a godmother and a god-daughter.

The inspiration for the campaign comes from some rather sad statistics about how often British people actually tell someone that they love them. It seems we Brits really are restrained when it comes to expressing our feelings, and although 82% of us would love to hear the words ‘I love you; every single day, the reality is only 30% of us actually say it that often. We assume that those closest to us know how we feel, and so the words are not needed. La Redoute is encouraging us to stop keeping those feelings to ourselves, and let those closest to us know how we feel. To be a little more like the passionate, expressive French.

So here goes…

I’m not sure that I tell my other (better) half Peter just how much I love him, and how special he is to me. I certainly don’t tell him enough. This year was a special one for us, we celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary, but 20 years since the day we met (20th June 1994). The twenty years have had ups and downs, fabulous highs and terrible lows, but I really couldn’t imagine spending the rest of my life with anyone but him, I want us to grow old disgracefully together. Nobody knows me like Pete does and no one loves me like he does. And it is totally reciprocated.

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Train selfie on the way to see Kate Bush.

Wednesday night was a very special one for us. I hit the big 4-0 this year and Pete treated me to tickets to see Kate Bush. I adore Kate and her music – it was the absolute perfect present, the truly grand gesture. Pete, however, is not the greatest fan, and admitted he knew just three songs from the set list. But sometimes it is the smallest gesture that can bring the lump to the throat, and when Pete squeezed my hand when Kate sang my favourite song ‘Running up that hill’. that’s exactly what happened. He knew how much hearing that song live would mean to me. He was happy because I was happy – and I guess that’s what love is all about.

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Why don’t you take a minute to tell someone how much you love them today?

 

1978 style icons – Kate Bush and Debbie Harry

Hurray! The ‘Top of the Pops’ 1970s reruns are back, and this year the focus is on 1978. The introductory series ‘The Story of 1978’ was shown on BBC4 last night and got my very excited about this years focus, as it was the year that two of my absolute, all time style icons really found fame. I’m talking of course about Blondie’s Debbie Harry and the inimitable, unique Kate Bush.

These two ladies helped change the perception of female singers. Not mere puppets or sex objects, they were woman in control, talented females whose music and personal style have stood the test of time. Kate was just 18 when she rocketed to number one with the incredible ‘Wuthering Heights’, her strange, ethereal singing style so different from anything that had come before. She combined this with a look that was decidedly boho, almost gypsyish, with acres of scarves and floaty materials, along with pieces that looked forward to the early 1980s dance obsession. Kate was an otherworldly beauty, sort of girl next door, but only if you were lucky enough to live next door to one of the most beautiful women in the world. Her look and temperamental talent has influenced a generation of singers, notably Natasha Khan of Bats for Lashes, and also singers like PJ Harvey.

Debbie Harry found fame when she was in her 30s, after years of playing in venues like CBGB’S in New York. Her music was a melodic version of punk/New Wave, and Debbie’s eye-catching looks soon caught the attention of the music buying public. Rumours swirled that she was the illegitimate daughter of Marilyn Monroe, with her blue eyes, peroxide blonde hair and bee stung lips. I loved Debbie’s style as a young girl because she decided not to conform to any set image, at home in a gorgeous white cocktail dress a la Parallel Lines album cover as she was in a beaten up leather jacket. Never just the pretty front (Blondie is a group was one of their slogans), Debbie was a strong role model for me growing up, one who showed that being beautiful and feminine could be used in a powerful way.

I salute my 70s icons of style and beauty.

Debbie Harry

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Kate Bush

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