Song written by Fredrik Thomander, Ricky & Kim Wilde.
'Shine On' started during a writing session at Palma Music Studios in Majorca. Although originally recorded as a solo song, Kim eventually recorded it as a duet with Boy George for inclusion on the greatest hits compilation ‘Pop Don’t Stop: Greatest Hits’ in 2021. A music video for the song was recorded on 18 March 2021.
The song was premiered on BBC Radio 2 on 24 June 2021, and released as a single digitally on the same day.
Kim about Shine On
I think it's really great when a pop song leaves you asking lots of questions, it doesn't give you all the answers. 'Shine On' is like that. It doesn't tell you what this song is about on a plate. It alludes to themes, very important ones, and it allows the listener to interpret. I think that's the great skill of writing a pop tune. You don't have to put it all out on a plate. You give it, as a gift. (1)
Freddy Thomander has the beautiful Palma Studios in Mallorca, he invited us over, and I said to Rick 'come on, let's go and see what this studio is like and let's write a few songs to put on the new greatest hits'. Cherry Red had already started collating it and getting licenses from various record companies. (...) We got on a plane and we got over there and we stayed there for a week. I remember I was in the kitchen of the studio and I heard the chorus of 'Shine On' coming out through the room where we were working. I just dropped everything, rushed in and said 'What's that? What's that?' Rick had just written the chorus of 'Shine On'. It started off initially from a lyric point of view, which I came up pretty quickly after a conversation Ricky and I had had, which was actually really a very personaly relationship, it was about Barbara Windsor and her son Scott and how they had been battling dementia together. A very, very moving conversation we had about it. I based, initially, the first set of lyrics around that, which is where the line about 'chemical demons' and controlling the fire in her and everything [comes from]. And then we got back, the pandemic hadn't quite hit in, I actually went to Thailand with my daughter and then Scarlett was listening to the song that we'd gone home with. At that time the tempo was quite up. It sounded great, but Scarlett listened to it, Ricky played it to her while I was in Thailand, and she said 'I think we need to take a totally different road'. And I just fell in love with it. It was like one of those zen moments. 'Love is a temple', I was sitting in temples, I was surrounded by temples, and it was all very much... it was written in Thailand actually, the rest of the lyric. So it came together from different places. And then eventually George had been contacting Ricky and I for some time about maybe doing a project. By the time I got back from Thailand we were in dead-on lockdown and the next thing I know I'm doing this Zoom with George and he said 'Come on, we've got to work together, let's make this happen. Will you do this thing that I'm doing, this Cool Karaoke. 'Name and Number', it's got your name on it', and so I did that and then I said 'Listen, George, I've got a greatest hits coming out and I really want you on. I mean there's not a bigger icon in the world, is there. I was so proud and happy when he said 'yeah'. (2)
(1) Unsung Heroes podcast, 23 July 2021
(2) Unsung Heroes podcast, 23 July 2021
Drums: Jonathan Atkinson
Lead guitar: Neil Jones
Backing vocals: Scarlett Wilde
Produced by Ricky Wilde & Scarlett Wilde
Mixed by Sean J. Vincent