Wuthering Heights (song)

Wuthering Heights (song)

Infobox Single
Name = Wuthering Heights

Caption =
Artist = Kate Bush
from Album = The Kick Inside
A-side =
B-side =
Released = January 20, 1978 (UK)
Format = 7" single
Recorded = 1977
Genre = Pop
Length = 4:26
Label = EMI
Writer = Kate Bush
Producer = Andrew Powell
Certification =
Chart position = * #1 (UK, Australia, Belgium, Netherlands, New Zealand)
Last single =
This single = "Wuthering Heights" (1978)
Next single = "The Man with the Child in His Eyes" (1978)
Misc =

multi-listen item
filename=Kate Bush Wuthering Heights Sample.ogg
title=Kate Bush "Wuthering Heights" (1978)
description=Sample from Kate Bush's "Wuthering Heights".

"Wuthering Heights" is a song by Kate Bush released as her debut single. It appears on her 1978 debut album, "The Kick Inside", and was also re-recorded with new vocals for her 1986 "best-of" album "The Whole Story". The B-side of the original 1978 single was another song by Bush named "Kite" - hence the kite imagery on the record sleeve.

Chart performance

It quickly reached number one in the UK Singles Chart, staying there for four weeks, and propelled the singer to fame. Its release unwittingly pitted Bush against another female vocalist, also charting with her first hit: Debbie Harry with her band Blondie, and their single "Denis." Amid much public discussion about the two singers' merits, Bush came out on top, while Blondie stalled at number two.

"Wuthering Heights" eventually lost its crown to Brian and Michael's celebration in song of the then-recently deceased artist L. S. Lowry, "Matchstalk Men and Matchstalk Cats and Dogs," thus having the number-one slot feature a classic of English literature followed by a tribute to a renowned painter. In reaching number one, Bush became the first woman to write and perform a UK chart-topper. [cite news|url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/musictv/popontrial/decades/index.shtml?d=70s&a=show&t=show&c=show&n=40&q=hide&m=hide|title=Pop on trial|publisher=BBC|accessdate=2008-02-11]

Charts Worldwide

Music video

Two music videos were created to accompany "Wuthering Heights." In one version, Bush can be seen performing the song in a dark room filled with white mist while wearing a white dress; in the other, the singer lip-syncs in an outdoor environment while wearing a red dress.


Written by Bush when she was just 18, the song's lyrics are based on the story of the novel of the same name. Kate Bush was inspired to write the song by the last ten minutes of the 1970 film version of "Wuthering Heights". [http://gaffa.org/cloud/music/wuthering_heights.html] She then read the book and discovered that she shares her birthday (July 30) with Emily Brontë. Bush reportedly wrote the song, for her album "The Kick Inside", within the space of just a few hours late at night, looking to the moon through her open bedroom window for inspiration.

Lyrically, "Wuthering Heights" borrows liberally from the novel's utterances of its protagonist Catherine Earnshaw, most notably in its chorus, with Bush utilizing the famous ghostly phrasing "Let me in! I'm so cold!", as well as in the verses, which reference Catherine's confession to her servant of having "bad dreams in the night."

In an August 2008 survey taken by hearing aid firm Amplifon the song came out tenth in the all time most hilariously misheard pop lyrics. Listeners misheard "It's me; I'm a tree, I'm a wombat. Oh, so cold at the end of your winter" when the actual lyrics are "Heathcliff! It's me, Cathy and I've come home oh, so cold, let me in-a your window". [ [http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/celebritynews/2593781/Sting-is-top-of-the-misheard-pop-charts.html?mobile=true Sting and The Police have come top of the charts again, for writing the most misheard pop lyrics of all time The Telegraph 21 August, 2008] ]

Guitar Solo

The guitar solo at the end of the song is played by Ian Bairnson, best known for his work with Alan Parsons. It is placed rather unobtrusively in the mix, something engineer Jon Kelly now regrets. [ [http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jun04/articles/classictracks.htm CLASSIC TRACKS: 'Wuthering Heights' ] ]


"Wuthering Heights" has been recorded by a number of other artists, including Brazilian power metal band Angra, Pat Benatar, Hayley Westenra, Josh Pyke, China Drum, Albert Niland, The Decemberists, Jer Ber Jones, Susan Egan, the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, Australian band Mr. Floppy, Italian singer Cristina Donà, Dutch rock singer Birgit Schuurman, Placebo and The Puppini Sisters in 2006. It is also performed a cappella by the title character in the British TV series "I'm Alan Partridge", played by Steve Coogan. The Icelandic singer Margrét Eir recorded an Icelandic version called "Heiðin há".


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