Then and Now (June 22): Kate Bush

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Then: Bush first recorded a studio demo in 1975, when she was just 16 years old. While that demo didn’t gain much traction, it impressed Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmore, who helped Bush create a more professional demo track. She continued to make small projects until she graduated in 1978, when she released her debut album The Kick, later releasing The Kick: Inside, an expanded version of the album that sold over 1 million copies in the UK alone. “Wuthering Heights” topped the UK and Australian charts and became an international hit. Bush became the first British woman to reach number one on the UK charts with a self-written song. “The Man with the Child in His Eyes” made it onto the US Billboard Hot 100 where it reached number 85 in early 1979, and went on to win her an Ivor Novello Award in 1979 for Outstanding British Lyric. According to Guinness World Records, Bush was the first female artist in pop history to have written every track on a million-selling debut album.

Now: After being included on the soundtrack for series 4 of the Netflix series Stranger Things, Bush’s 1985 single “Running Up That Hill” gained newfound popularity in May 2022, becoming the most-streamed song on Spotify in the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and globally. On the US Billboard Hot 100 issue dated June 11th, 2022, the song re-entered the chart at number eight, surpassing its original peak of number 30 in November 1985 to become Bush’s first US top-ten hit. A week later it climbed to number four in the US. The parent album, Hounds of Love, also reached a new peak in the US, charting at number 28. With the song reaching Number 1 on the charts, Bush replaced Cher as the oldest female chart-topping artist at 63 years and 11 months.

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