Date: 8 October 1982
Originally published in: The Sun (UK)
Written by: John Blake
Just 15 minutes to go until Kim Wilde is due on stage for her first-ever British concert. And already the audience is cheering and clapping with anticipation.
Backstage, however, the scene is less joyous. Tiny Kim is standing on tip-toe and giving her famous father, Marty Wilde, a firm ticking-off for forgetting to bring a vital musical tape to the theatre. She is very nervous.
“We are always at each other’s throats”, says Marty later. “After that row I told her, ‘That’s it – I’m going home!'” But the squabble blows over as rapidly as it begins and moments later, Marty is wringing his hands with paternal nervousness as Kim bounds into the spotlight at Bristol’s Colston Hall.
His fears evaporate almost at once as the audience leap to their feet to dance, cheer and sing along with Kim on her hit Chequered Love. By the time the show ends with a thundering version of Kids in America nearly 90 minutes later, Kim’s mother is dancing in the aisles with the roadies and little Miss Wilde has confirmed her position as Britain’s classiest new girl singer.
“I must admit that being on stage was the best feeling in the whole world”, Kim says later at a party back at her hotel. “But I was more scared than I have ever been in my life. I even forgot the words to the song 2-6-5-8-0, though luckily the audience knew them so well they were singing them for me.
“Better than sex?”. She giggles. “Well that depends who with doesn’t it?” She tossed her huge blonde leonine mane back and roars with laughter.
Despite the quabbles, Kim makes no secret of the fact that she adores her parents. Nevertheless, Kim’s relationship with them has not always been so strong. Marty says: “When Kimmy was 14 1/2 she started staying out all night, night after night. Her mum was for booting her out of the house and that almost happened more than once.”
“But I said ‘No. What she is doing is crying out for attention. I had always pushed her elder brother Ricky. But Kim was being ignored. We could have said to her ‘You are a pain in the backside, off you go.’ But I’m very, very glad we didn’t.”