Saturday, August 23, 2014

Kate Bush and the acceleration of time as you grow older

Having watched the BBC documentary on Kate Bush last night, I naturally called in at HMV in Leicester on the way back from visiting my mother in hospital to buy a copy of her 50 Words for Snow.

I got talking with the young man on the till.

He asked if I had seen the documentary. I said I had, but that for me her first LP would always be the most important.

"Was that 1979?"

"No," I said, "1978."

In fact, as I could have told him, it was February 1978.

For a few years in your teens, every month feels different and you are acutely aware of changing trends and fashions.

My misfortune was that, for me, the years when this was true for me coincided with the reign of glam rock in the singles chart and then that odd period when we listened to novelty hits like Kung Fu Fighting and waited impatiently for punk.

I know most hits from the 1980s, but because this was my decade of political activism, I know them from the pub after canvassing or council meetings. So I can struggle to tell you what they are called.

After that it is all a blur and it is hard to know which decade a song come from.

But for a few years in the Seventies I was cool, even if the singles chart was not.

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