S04E09 – Houdini

It’s an epic episode about an epic love story: Bess and Harry Houdini! Our song this week is Houdini, the ninth track from The Dreaming and what a song it is! There’s Broadway singing, there’s light, pure vocals, and of course, the famous screams in the chorus! And mystery! Can’t forget the mystery either (don’t let it go now!)

We have two big fans on the show this week: Zoey P and Luke McQuillan, who was on the show back in season one to discuss Wuthering Heights. With Zoey, we get to talk about the feminist implications of Kate writing a song from Houdini’s wife’s point of view rather than Houdini himself, the symbolism of keys, and our favorite lyrical and vocal moments. With Luke, we talk about how strange the music is (that chord progression!) and dissect how he came up with his own piano/vocal version of Houdini by ear!

Song clips used:

Houdini (piano/vocal version by Luke McQuillan)

Houdini (piano instrumental by YANTA)

Interview clips used:

Rare 1982 interview with an opera singer

Paul Gambaccini interview, Pebble Mill At One, 1982

Other links mentioned:

Luke McQuillan – The Gauntlet

Sheet music for Rosabel, Sweet Rosabel