"People usually think I'm a girl who just looks like Kim Wilde!"

Date
Published in
Look-In (UK)

Kim Wilde's pretty pleased with life. Not only has she toured with Michael Jackson this Summer, but she's also had a hit single, You Came, and a new album called Close. She told us all about it...

How did you feel when Michael Jackson asked you to tour with him?
My first reaction was 'I can't do that!'. Then my mum said, 'Why not?' 'But I can't!' I screamed. 'He's the greatest performer on Earth, he's in a different league!'
My mum kept on and my dad joined in, then the entire family until I started to think that it might not be such a bad idea. 'It's a challenge,', I thought. 'I could fall flat on my face, or I could be brilliant and have something to be really proud of.' So I did it. And I'm really proud.

Where did the tour take you?
I've been to Italy, France, Holland, West Germany, and, of course, Britain. And I'm also off to Poland this month for a music festival. I've never been to Poland, so it should be interesting.

What was Michael Jackson like?
At the beginning of the tour I sent Michael some red roses as a thank you for asking me. I understood completely why I didn't meet him for such a long time. He's a shy and sensitive person, and because of all the security around him it was very difficult.
One night in Paris, I came off stage all hot and sweaty looking forward to a nice bath and a bit of a rest. Then my manaer, Nick, asked if I could be ready at 9 o'clock to do something. He was very mysterious. I was really tired, so I told him I didn't want to do anything except relax. 'But Michael wants to meet you', Nick said. So of course I was ready!
When I met him he took some photographs of the two of us, and he told me how great he thought my show was. I just said thank you and it was a great honour and that his show was brilliant, too!

Is it true your younger brother and sister met Michael before you did?
It's true! He heard my little sister, Roxanne, and my brother, Marty Jr, were on the tour with me at the start, and he made a special request to meet them. Everyone was green with envy. I think he's happiest when he's with children.

Do you have any plans to go away on holiday now?
I'm going to get a bunch of my mates together and we're going to go to Cornwall. All I've done these past few months is sit in hotels, waiting rooms, on buses and planes. So although it might not sound as exciting as travelling Europe with Michael Jackson, a holiday for me right now would be to go round Cornwall. Even if it's raining I won't mind too much, as long as I can treat myself to the occasional cream cake!

Tell us about your new LP
It's my sixth LP and I'd say it's my best yet. I used to worry that I'd never be good enough to get involved in writing and contributing ideas in the studio. But as I work with my brother, Ricky, and my old friend, Tony Swain, they've encouraged me to write songs a lot more. I co-wrote my current hit You Came as well as my last single, Hey Mr Heartache. And I'm really pleased with them both.

You've now had more hits than your dad, Marty, had when he was a pop star in the 1960s. Is he jealous?
Not at all. He's really thrilled. Dad still performs occasionally, but there's no rivalry. He's as proud as any dad could be.

What's your new home like?
It's a lovely old barn out in the Hertfordshire countryside. It's full of hay at the moment, but I'm making it into a home. I love it. I can get away there and forget I'm a famous person. I really enjoy the space the barn gives me because much of my life is spent in confined areas likebuses and dressing-rooms.

What are your favourite TV programmes?
I love good comedies, like BBC's Yes, Prime Minister. It's difficult for me to get into any of the soap operas like EastEnders and Neighbours because I've been so busy. I haven't managed to watch TV since almost the beginning of the year. But, if I get the chance I'll watch a really good Bette Davis film, or a good play or documentary. They're great to relax to.
Actually, I've been wanting to catch up on all the latest films at the cinema, because I'v ebeen missing them all while I've been travelling on the tour bus.

How do you avoid being recognised when you go out?
Well, I slick my hair back and take my make-up off and go out in jeans and a t-shirt. Some people might glance at me but they usually think I'm a girl who just looks a bit like Kim Wilde! And that's fine by me.