Arriving several minutes late at the London recording studios, Kim Wilde, dressed in jeans and leather-studded jacket, launched breathlessly into a string of ingenuous excuses, bringing instant pardon.
"I overslept... I couldn't get my car started. I had a late night... went out to dinner... had a bit to drink. Anyway...." she ran a hand through her spiky blonde hair, and the pouting lips broke into a big smile... "anyway, I'm sorry."
Her lifestyle quickened alomst exactly a year ago, when she was 20, with her first big hit Kids in America. Since then her name has never been out of the British charts. There have been three further hits, and a Top Newcomer award. She has sold more than 1m. records in eight months.
"My recording chief, Mickie Most, wants to make me an international star", she said in matter-of-fact voice. "I will also do my first concerts, probably in summer. That's a big step."
Kim's songs are written for her by her singer-composer father, Marty, and 19-year-old brother, Rick, who also produces the records. She went on: "I haven't always been happy about being pointed out as a pop star's daughter. There was a period when I felt my parents' position was ruining my life. I'm in no hurry to leave home. I'm dubious about flat-sharing. I could not live with a boyfriend unless I were deeply in love. I don't think my parents would object to that. They know about present day attitudes."
And what about her friendship with rock star Steve Strange? Kim wriggled uncomfortably. "We're just good friends", she said.
As we talked Marty entered the room. He, too, will have a record released soon, a version of the old Roy Orbison hit In Dreams. He listened as Kim continued: "I'm fairly pleased with my appearance. Quite like the way I look. It's me, not an image. But I'm getting a bit bored with constantly seeing pictures of myself."
Marty nodded approval. "I think success has made Kim a nicer person", he said. "She is doing what she wants to do. And she is not conceited. Conceit is one thing I would not tolerate - not while she's living under my roof."