“Being a lonesome girlie with a big gang of boys brings you down a bit”

She went to Elton John’s party!
She likes a few drinks!
She gets into cars with strange men!
She likes a good snowball fight!
She’s a Beastie Boys fan!
She loves the idea of being a film star!

How did theduet with Junior for ‘Another Step’ happen – did you know each other socially?
Not socially really, but I’d met him a handful of times at TV shows like Top Of The Pops throughout my career. We’d always got on very well – because he gets on well with everyone, he’s a very friendly natural sort of guy. I thought ‘Mama Used To Say’ was a great record and I’m such a fan of his voice, and his name came up when I was thinking about doing a duet for ‘Another Step’ which I’d written. I like the idea of singing in harmony – 1 really enjoy listening to songs by Simon and Garfunkel, and even though this song isn’t really like that, it turned out as a duet.”

Have you been writing most of your songs lately then?
“I wouldn’t say most but a lot of it, yeah, with other people. I really enjoy writing, particularly lyrics, and it’s a lot more satisfying. I’ve done a bit of the production too on the album, though it’s primarily produced by my brother.”

Did you have much to do with the video (which depicts kIm as a glam, film star-type arriving at the airport in Paris, swanning around singing in a flash car, and ending up mucking about dancing with Junior in a studio)?
“The idea came from Greg the director who I worked with on the ‘Hanging On’ video, and we got on very well. I like working with people I feel really good with and he’s great. His budget was good too, which always helps! I liked the idea af being like a film star, but only ‘cos 1 knew that the bubble would burst at the end of it – it wasn’t taken too seriously or maintained all the way through. In the end you see Junior and I having a laugh, as we always do.”

What’s Junior doing now?
He’s in the studio. He does really well in America – when we were in Paris all these Americans were coming up to him going, “Hey! Junior, my man!”.

You’ve just been to America, what was it like?
“‘Hanging on’ is just starting to climb the US charts which is the first time I’ve had a hit there since ‘Kids in America’. I did some PAs in New York and LA but the rest of it was cruising around in a stretch limo to various radio stations doing those dreadful IDs (a jingle plugging the station) for them. You’re meant to sit there and go, ‘Hi this is Kim Wilde and you’re listening to Power 96…’ or something. The ones the American acts do are really over the top and full of zest and they kept saying, ‘can’t you inject a bit more enthusiasm, Kim?'”

Do you get bored wlth that side of things?
“I’d only get bored if my career bored me. The main thing is the whole creative element of the music-the writing and recording. But there are times when I’m not up for the whole thing of being interrogated and photographed.”

Can you walk around in London without being recognised these days?
“Well, I live in London so I have to get around. The other day was weird though – I’d had lunch with someone in Soho and I was trying to get a cab home and there wasn’t one to be had. I was in Oxford Street, every one was staring, the wind was blowing, it was impossible toget a cab and it was getting a bit irritating. So, I turned off into a side street, and this car went by with a really handsome man hanging out the window calling my name. I couldn’t think who I knew who was that goodlooking, so I went over, and he said ‘you’re looking for a cab, aren’t you? Where are you going, because we’ll give you a lift’ and I looked in the car and there was a really lovely looking girl in there. So I thought, ‘oh, this should be alright’ and jumped in the back!
“When I got in though I suddenly realised how risky itwas, but thought, ‘sod it, I want to go home!’ They took me home and wouldn’t take any money so I gave them a Simply Red compact disc I’d just bought. It was a really lovely thing to do.”

Do you still enjoy all the travelling you do?
“This year I’ve been in Japan and Australia and America and France and Austria and Holland and Sweden. 1 always get a kick out of going to Paris – I’ve got some very good friends there, I love the language and I have a nice time. Promoting the record with Junior has been fun too – it’s been good really to know him. We both love music so we keep playing each other things – I’ve learnt so much from him, and I’d hope he’s learnt something from me. He’s an inspiration.

What music do you listen to?
“I’ve just bought CDs by Cameo and Simply Red – I like loads of stuff though. I brought back a whole lot of 12 inchers from New York like The Beastie Boys, Run DMC and ‘Lean On Me’ but they got pinched at the BBC. I’m a big pop music fan though.”

When you go out to a cIub, do you dance?
“I had a phase about a year ago when I used to go out dancing a lot with friends here, but at the moment I don’t really have the time. I do like to dance – I don’t do lessons though – but I get stared at a lot anyway so it takes a little bit more for me to go places where there are lots of people. You spent all day getting looked at, so who needs togo out and get stared at in the evenings?”

Are you very health conscious?
“I avoid junkfood – try to stick to things like white meat, wholemeal bread, vegetables – I watch my sugar intake, I don’t drink fuII fat milk and I eat a fair amount of fruit. And when I travel on planes I don’t eat the stuff that looks like its been scraped off the floor and crystallised! 1 like to have a few drinks, but not that much. I go skiing every year, but though I’ve been going for ages, my skiing still isn’t very good.”

Do you go on summer holidays and crash out on the beach?
“I did last year. I got a caravanette with some friends and we drove to a beach and stayed for a week – it was great. I’d do it again but it’s a shame the sea is so revolting in Britain, full of sewage and radioactive waste.”

What’s it Iike being on tour as the only female travelling with six male members of the band?
(Laughs) “You come out of the tour with very fixed ideas about men which take a long time to dispel. That’s no disrespect to the guys in the band, but bays will be boys and all boys together are just as bad as all girls together.
“1 wouldn’t make any judgements because 1 spend a lot of time with girls and I know we’re just as bad. Being a lonesome girlie with a big gang of boys does bring you down a bit, but on several tours my best friend has come along and done the catering.”

What do you do for fun on tour?
“Make the band have snowball fights! They weren’t really up for it because it was the middle of the night but 1 thought they needed cheering up a bit so we stopped the coach and I made them all go out and have a snowball fight! I was the only one who had leather gloves on, so 1 did OK.”

Are you flattered by compliments about your Iooks or are you ever tempted to lop off your hair and change your image completeiy?
“I don’t pay much attention to it really. I pretty much try to be myself. I can’t help it if my lips are slightly larger than other people’s. I think I’m like most women though, 1 like to feel comfortable and casual but fashianable too. I did get dressed up for Elton John’s party though because I had a glitzy dress I wanted to wear – I like to put on the glam sometimes. Every now and then I mobilise all my mates and we’ll go out shopping.”

Do you ever get hurt by criticism – or worry that you’ll open a Sunday sleaze paper to find someone spilling the beans on you?
“I try not the read things that attack me, but it’s funny how it always gets back to you. You can avoid it for months, then someone tells you and it can be upsetting. All 1 can say about the Sunday papers is that they’ve got nothing on me, mate! They’ll have to look very hard to find something on me…”

Do you look back at old photos and cringe?
“Yeah, most of them I hate. I’m very self-critical about everything – I’m my own worst critic because I don’t give myself credit where it’s due.”