S04E11 – Lord of the Reedy River (Donovan song)

Welcome to the first of only a few episodes of the b-sides/collabs part of The Dreaming season. This week, we’re discussing a song that Kate didn’t write, so this marks the first officially released cover song in Kate’s repertoire!

The famous 1960s folk singer Donovan (known for hits like Sunshine Superman, Catch the Wind, and Mellow Yellow) wrote Lord of the Reedy River for his album H.M.S. Donovan, released in 1971, an album that Kate cited as an absolute favorite. Only a few years before Donovan’s released version, the Welsh singer Mary Hopkin got a hold of it and released her version for her debut album Post Card. Then, more than a decade later, along came our Kate to put her own take on this rather mournful folk song, using a disused swimming pool at Townhouse Studios and a brand new expensive toy: the Fairlight CMI.

To discuss this song this week, we have Frezno from Newfoundland, a younger fan of Kate who loves this song for its strange qualities. We get to talk about the production of this song, how Kate changed the pronouns in the song to make it more personal and put it from a feminine point of view, how Kate came to choose this song to record, and…. wait, the single for Sat in Your Lap had THIS on the b-side? Talk about a whiplash of moods!

Song clips used:

Donovan – Lord of the Reedy River (from his 1971 album H.M.S. Donovan

Donovan singing Lord of the Reedy River in the 1969 film If It’s Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium

Mary Hopkin – Lord of the Reedy River (from her 1969 album Post Card)

Kate Bush – Lord of the Reedy River

S04E10 – Get Out Of My House

Unlike Kate in this song, we will let you in to show you all about the clattering and downright scary Get Out of My House, the last album track on The Dreaming. And what a closer this is! If you thought Breathing from the last album was epic, this one is even more so!

To discuss this song, we have two super fans: Richard Campbell from Toronto, Canada, a fan who was last on the show to talk about In Search of Peter Pan. Rick talks about his history with this song and what it was like to listen to The Dreaming when it was first released in the 80s and how forward-thinking Kate was in her production techniques in this song. Rick also discusses how much this song reminds him of the 60s movie The Haunting.

Super fan number two is Zoey P, for whom this song is an absolute favorite. Zoey digs into the theme and lyrics of this song and how it relates to a woman’s experience of feeling invaded and violated, and how it ties into Kate’s own experiences as a very public figure who “had to prove [she] was an artist in a woman’s body.”

Song clips used:

Get Out of My House

Other links mentioned:

Mr. Marrs fan-made video for Get Out of My House

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

S04E08 – All The Love

This week’s song title may have the word “love” in it, but there doesn’t seem to be much love for this song. No discussion of it either on gaffa.org or….. much of anywhere!

Time to fix that!

Zoey P has joined us again for an extensive discussion of the album track All The Love, the eighth track from The Dreaming. This week, we’re talking about the theme of the song and how strangely relevant is it to our modern times (communication and letting people know how we really feel about them), the spooky song production, as well as trying to figure out who is who in the answering machine messages at the end of the song!

So let’s show this underrated gem a little love and dig into the song a bit. Maybe you’ll come away loving this song too! 🙂

Song clips used:

All the Love

Fan remixes/other versions:

All the Love (Medieval Version by Alphan Music)

All the Love performed by Cloudbusting

S04E07 – Night of the Swallow

Come with us on a hired plane, with no names mentioned, for a fun ride through the seventh track on The Dreaming, the Irish-tinged/power ballad hybrid Night of the Swallow. In one of our most enthusiastic episodes yet, we have our good friend of the show, Zoey P, for whom this is her ABSOLUTE FAVORITE Kate Bush song. And for Cecilee, this is her overall favorite on The Dreaming!

So, with two huge fans of this song, get ready for a very enthusiastic episode! We get to talk about the narrative structure of the song (a dialogue!!), its release as a single (but only in Ireland!), the instrumentation (uilleann pipes!), our favorite lyrical moments, and more!

Song clips used:

Night of the Swallow

Documentary on history of uilleann pipes

 

S04E06 – The Dreaming

Time to flip the record over and start the second side of The Dreaming! On now to the title track, a dark and mysterious song with dense production and even more dense discussion of the song’s themes.

To dissect this week’s song, three guests have joined the show. We have input from Tomer Feiner, a Kate fan from Israel. We also get to hear from Liza Behrendt, a longtime Kate fan from Boston, Massachusetts.

And most importantly, our third guest lives in Brisbane, Australia. A few months ago, a good friend of the show, Christine Kelley, reached out to a friend who was more familiar with Aboriginal culture in hopes of finding someone to discuss The Dreaming on the show. So we will get to hear from Lizzie Orley, a Gamilaroi woman who works for a Brisbane-based Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community radio station called 98.9FM. When asked about Kate’s song, she had MUCH to say!

Song clips used:

The Dreaming

Dreamtime

Vox: The Sound that Connects Bruno Mars to Stravinsky (about the orchestra hit)

Interviews used:

The Old Gray Whistle Test

Official video:

The Dreaming (Official Music Video)

Live performances:

The Dreaming (live in Italy)

The Dreaming (live in Germany on Na Sowas, the “giant lizard” version)

For more about Aboriginal culture:

Clans

The Gamilaroi Dreaming

Documentary about the 1982 Commonwealth Games protests

More about the 1982 protests

Dark Emu by Bruce Pascoe

S04E05 – Leave It Open

We can tell you what we’re letting in: a new episode of Strange Phenomena! This week, we’re talking about track five on The Dreaming, the strange and compelling Leave It Open. Christine Kelley, the author of Dreams of Orgonon, the Kate Bush blog, joins us for a discussion of this song this week. Listen as we discuss about the lyrics (at least, what we can decipher of them!), the theme of the song, and Cecilee gets to nerd about the music production too (SO. MANY. VOCAL. EFFECTS!). We’ll also get to hear some thoughts from fellow Kate fan, Daniel Thomas, who we got to talk with earlier this season for Pull Out The Pin.

Are you ready to let the weirdness in?

We hope so!

Other links:

Dreams of Orgonon: The Songs of Kate Bush

Song clips used:

Leave It Open (album version)

Leave It Open (demo version)

Intruder

S04E04 – Suspended in Gaffa

Can you believe we’re almost done with the first side of The Dreaming? This week, we’re talking about a song that was released as a single in continental Europe, the lively but thoughtful Suspended in Gaffa. To discuss one of the more lively and, admittedly, more accessible tracks on an otherwise very experimental album, we have a longtime Kate fan named Emery Bonannella on the line from California! This week, we’re talking about the rapid-fire lyrics, the instrumentation, the video, the rather varied TV performances to promote the song (marionettes! French tennis stars!), and our own histories and personal thoughts on Suspended in Gaffa.

Song clips used:

TV Performances Mentioned:

Houba Houba, October 1982, French TV

Champs-Elysées, French TV, 1982

Live on German TV, the “marionette” version, November 1982

S04E03 – Pull Out the Pin

On to the third track from The Dreaming, the dense, jungle-scented Pull Out the Pin. An album track that stands out for its atmosphere and percussion, Pull Out the Pin continues in the vein of Kate songs that are told from a character’s point of view. This time, we as the listeners are transported to a thick, humid jungle in Southeast Asia in the middle of the Vietnam War as Kate tells us a story about a Vietnamese soldier stalking his prey: an American soldier.

To discuss this song, we have Daniel Thomas from Seattle, Washington on the line. We discuss our personal thoughts on the song and how it was a song that initially scared both of us, but which we’ve both grown to love. We also talk about the theme of the song and its implications, the inspiration behind the song, and speculate what a live version might look or sound like.

Song clips used:

Pull Out the Pin

The Dreaming Interview, 1982

S04E02 – There Goes a Tenner

No need to wait any longer for a new episode of Strange Phenomena! This week, we’re continuing into The Dreaming with a discussion of the second track, the one single that didn’t even chart (what???), There Goes a Tenner.

Released as the second single in the UK, with the French-language original Ne t’enfuis pas on the b-side, There Goes a Tenner is a pastiche of various film references tied up in a story that could’ve been something out of an old movie: a bank robbery gone wrong. To discuss this song this week, we have Dani Llamas, who was on the Kidnapped on a Building Site episode, and Diego Ortega, another young Kate fan from California. We’ll talk about the Paul Henry-directed music video, the many film references, the song structure, and speculate on why this song didn’t chart.

Also included is another essay about There Goes a Tenner from Kate fan Daniel Thomas!

Song clips used:

There Goes a Tenner

Pebble Mill at One, October 8, 1982, interviewed by Paul Gambaccini

The Dreaming Interview, 1982, unknown interviewer

There Goes a Tenner live on Razzmatazz

There Goes a Tenner music video