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Kate Bush
Feb 11 2021

#RockHall2021 Nominees


Kate Bush creates music that is at once spellbinding, ambitious, complex, and lush. A visionary, Bush steered the course of her career from its infancy, fighting her record label for her debut single in 1978 and maintaining control of her eclectic musical aesthetic by establishing a home recording studio and her own publishing and management companies. Bush burst open doors for women artists to experiment more radically with their music, image, and theatricality, inspiring Björk, Tori Amos, Solange, St. Vincent, and countless others.  


Bush's thematic allusions to literature, myth, cinema, and history – combined with storytelling and an early use of sampling – won her hip-hop admirers including Tupac and Outkast's Big Boi. The esoteric Emily Brönte-inspired debut single “Wuthering Heights” from her inaugural album The Kick Inside (1978) made Bush an overnight sensation as the first female artist to reach number one on the UK charts with a self-written song. The album was soon followed by 1978’s Lionheart and Bush’s first and only concert tour – “The Tour of Life” – described by The Guardian as an “extraordinary, hydra-headed beast” that combined music, dance, theater, poetry, mime, burlesque, and magic. The show’s 17 costume changes and demanding choreography led Bush to become one of the first musicians to use a wireless headset microphone. This novel approach to stage performance, along with her stylized music videos and short films, was acknowledged by Elton John as “a benchmark for people’s shows in the future.”  


Bush’s seventh studio album The Red Shoes (1993) marked the beginning of a 12-year hiatus before her return with the critically acclaimed double album Aerial (2005). In 2014, Bush returned to the live stage – 35 years after “The Tour of Life” – for a concert residency at London’s Hammersmith Apollo. Tickets sold out in 15 minutes, and the acclaim that followed drove eight of her albums to chart simultaneously – another first for women in rock. Singer, writer, multi-instrumentalist, and producer, Kate Bush is not only a rock superstar, but a legend.    


 Selected discography:   
“Wuthering Heights,” The Kick Inside (1978) • “Wow,” Lionheart (1978) • “Babooshka,” Never for Ever (1980) • The Dreaming (1982) • “Running Up That Hill (A Deal with God),” “Cloudbusting,” “Hounds of Love,” Hounds of Love (1985) • “This Woman’s Work,” The Sensual World (1989) • “King of the Mountain,” Aerial (2005) • “Among Angels,” 50 Words for Snow (2011)  


SoundBites: Nominee Kate Bush

SoundBites: Nominee Kate Bush

#RockHall2021 Definitive Kate Bush

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