Kim Wilde: "I think I'm the kind of woman Harry Styles might like!"

Date
Published in
Best Daily website (UK)
Written by
Sofia Zagzoule

80s pop queen Kim on her new Christmas album, what her teen kids make of her comeback and what she nicked from Michael Jackson's tour.

A YouTube video of her drunkenly serenading shoppers on a packed London underground with her mega hits Rocking Around the Christmas Tree and Kids in America is an internet sensation with over TWO million hits.
But it helped give Kim Wilde the push she needed to produce her Christmas album. Now there's a comeback tour in the pipeline too..

We caught up with Kim, 53, this afternoon to find out how she's finding it all...

Welcome back Kim – how does it feel to be back in the limelight again?
We've had some lovely reviews for the album and everyone seems happy to have me back!
For the tour we're going to be doing some greatest hits of mine and some songs people will know. They'll be festive surprises- a few invited 80s faces but you'll have to wait and see who.

How many of the 80s gang did you keep in touch with?
Me and Rick Astley both have shows on Magic FM so we've remained pals. The two of us made a video the other day in Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park for one of my songs, that's out soon. We've released five so far. There's a video for every song on the album!

What does your husband, actor Hal Fowler, make of it all?
Well I haven't seen much of him! We've got a date to get together on Christmas Day! Poor thing. He's not around much anyway. Hal's appearing in the Light Princess at the National Theatre so we are basically strangers in the night, passing ships. He's very supportive – he always sends me texts after TV appearancest.

What about your children Harry and Rose?
Well my son Harry isn't interested! I think he finds me a bit embarrassing. He's got a rock band, and they've got their own gigs so he's focusing on that. My daughter Rosie is a lot more in tune with what I am doing.

So they have both followed your footsteps into music then?
Yes they are both musical. Watch out for them both in years to come! Rosie is inspired by singers like Emeli Sande and Ellie Goulding, she's loves singer-songwriters and she gets on her guitar and writes lovely songs. She's only 13. And my son's is alternative rock, punk. He is the lead guitarist in Blighty Inc.

Was the Christmas album inspired by the drunken YouTube video of you singing on the train home?
Well the YouTube video helped me to get on with it. I just thought: "I'd really love to do this." I love Christmas.

You and Mel Smith had a huge hit with Rocking Around the Christmas Tree in 1987– did you keep in touch until his death this year?
He wasn't a close friend of mine but I have very fond memories of working with him. He was amazingly good fun, and I am really proud to have my name associated with his. We shared a very special song. Whenever I'm in the supermarket and I hear it I'll have a huge smile.

Do you always get recognised wherever you go?
I do now because I'm doing a lot of promotion but for quite a few years I was able to slip under the radar which I really rather enjoyed.

Did you miss it while you were away?
I really thought when I got out that I would never get back in. I'm a bit of an all or nothing person and when I met my husband, we wanted to get married and have kids and that was all I wanted to do. I was bored of being Kim Wilde – it was a rollercoaster I'd been on since I was 20 and I was 36. I wanted to get off. I wanted to have a family and it was a good time to bow out gracefully.

What is the highlight of your fame?
The obvious ones were getting a Brit Award at the start of my career. And being on the Michael Jackson tour was an incredible experience.

Do you have memorabilia from MJ's tour?
I have got a signed drumstick from the Michael Jackson tour and I've still got my VIP pass all areas. I wish I had got more stuff really!

Did you meet MJ and David Bowie?
Someone like Michael Jackson was very remote. David Bowie was less in the Ivory Tower. Michael Jackson invited my little sister and my little brother on stage with a whole bunch of other kids. Bowie would pop his head around the door and say: 'Have a good one.' It was his Greatest Hits tour so I'd be sitting there putting on my lippy and listening to Jean Genie wafting through dressing room door – it was a real privilege.

Do you have any new young fans that you know of – like One Direction?
I guess I will find out if I do in the next few months! I might be the kind of woman Harry likes. I know he likes an older woman!

Wilde Winter Songbook is out now. Kim's tour dates are on www.kimwilde.com, tickets at www.ticketweb.co.uk.