Almost 38 years ago, a mysterious holiday song was released to the record-buying public. Not just any holiday song. December Will Be Magic Again!
The history of this song is a curious one indeed. First premiered to the public on the Kate Bush Christmas special in late 1979, December Will Be Magic Again didn’t get an official record release until almost a year later. Though the song reached the UK top 30, this song never had a video, curiously enough! However, Kate did perform this song live on TV, in a different version with bongos and slide whistles (!!).
To discuss this song and what it means to us, we have our resident Boston Kate fan Keith DeWeese on the show. Back when we first started talking about Kate, Keith mentioned this was one of his favorite KB songs, so of course, we’re talking about it this week! Listen as we talk about the different versions of this song, how it was performed on that famous TV show with Kate in her pajamas, and our take on the lyrics and music. Also Cecilee’s inner music nerd comes out further when she gets to talk about the intriguing structure of this song (major to minor in one song!).
Song clips used:
December Will Be Magic Again (live on the 1979 Kate Bush Christmas special)
December Will Be Magic Again (live on the Christmas Snowtime special, December 22, 1979, [bongo version])
Welcome to another episode of the show! This week we’re digging into Ran Tan Waltz, a sprightly little number that was released as the b-side to Never For Ever‘s second single Babooshka. Rather fitting that Ran Tan Waltz, a song about a dysfunctional marriage, was the flip side of a song also about a dysfunctional marriage.
Cecilee is joined by Keith DeWeese in Boston to discuss this little number. They discuss the only time this song has ever been performed live (on the Kate Bush Christmas Special, featuring Kate dressed as a man from Fiddler on the Roof), the theme of the song, and what it means to be ran-tanning.
It’s all here in this episode!
Ran Tan Waltz on the Kate Bush Christmas Special, 1979
All we ever want for you is to listen to this new episode of Strange Phenomena!
All We Ever Look For doesn’t seem to be a song that is discussed much in the Kate Bush canon, and it’s really quite a shame! Because we found not one but TWO fans of this song to discuss it this week, and they have a lot to say.
This week, we’re joined by two guests who both love this week’s song, All We Ever Look For, the fourth track from Never For Ever: Keith DeWeese, who joined us on Oh England My Lionheart, and Zoey P, a favorite guest on our show last season and this season! With both of our guests, we dig into the complex psychology in the lyrics (especially from Zoey!), the sweet-sounding-but-not-quite arrangement (what Keith called “Kate Bush fairy music”), and one of Zoey’s favorite Kate Bush vocal moments, among many!
Not bad for a song that doesn’t seem to get discussed very much!
Also in this episode, hear a clip of a live orchestral rendition of All We Ever Look For performed by the Göthenberg Symphony Orchestra for their special Kate Bush tribute show, This Woman’s Work: A Tribute to Kate Bush, which is available to watch here:
Song clips used:
All We Ever Look For, sung by Jennie Abrahamson and the Göthenberg Symphony Orchestra
We promise we won’t be moody in this episode all about the beautiful song Delius (Song of Summer), the second track from Never For Ever. As a matter of fact, this episode will be cheery as the summer, since this is Cecilee’s favorite song on Never For Ever, so she has a lot to say!
And so does our guest, Keith DeWeese, who was the guest on Oh England My Lionheart last season! Listen as Keith and Cecilee discuss the production of this song as well as the song’s inspiration, the 1968 BBC movie Song of Summer, a movie about the British composer Frederick Delius. They also discuss who Fenby is, why it’s important that he’s being told “in B,” and the intriguing music video for this song, filmed in early 1980.
It’ll all make sense in this episode!
Movie clips used:
Song of Summer, 1968 BBC film
Song clips used:
Two Songs to Be Sung of a Summer Night on the Water by Frederick Delius
Hymn of the Fayth by Masashi Hamauzu and Nobuo Uematsu, featuring lyrics by scenario writer Kazushige Nojima
Interview clips used:
Russell Harty Show, November 25, 1980
Dr. Hook, April 7, 1980
Kate may not like this song much these days, but we do here at Strange Phenomena! And so does Keith DeWeese, a super fan of Oh England My Lionheart, the fifth track from her second album Lionheart. This week, we talk about a song that Kate spoke about very positively when the album was released, but of which she now has actively voiced her disapproval. We get to talk about the many English references in this song (Spitfire planes, wassailing, London Bridge, Tower of London), what the song means to us, and why this song should be better appreciated. We also talk about the only live performance of this song, which was done as the first encore on Kate’s sprawling Tour of Life in 1979.
Song clips used:
Oh England My Lionheart live at the Hammersmith Odeon
Where Are the Lionhearts? (piano demo)