She is an icon of the British music industry but Kate Bush is almost as famous for her shame as her shaving career.
Now the success of his powerful 1985 hit single, Running Up That Hill (A Deal with God), used in a thrilling scene in Netflix’s youth drama Stranger Things, has brought him back to the attention he always strives to avoid.
This week the 63-year-old Bush broke his usual stockpile and made a statement via his website, thanking a new generation of fans for elevating the 37-year-old to an unimaginable height in streaming charts.
He said the song ‘is being given a whole new life by young fans who love the show – I love it too!
‘Because of this Running up that Hill is charting all over the world. It’s all very exciting! ‘Thank you so much to everyone who has supported the song. I am waiting for a long breath for the rest of the series in July. All the best, Kate. ‘
Kate Bush (pictured in 2014) made a rare statement on Sunday thanking fans of Netflix’s Stranger Things program for the re-emergence of her 1985 hit Running Up That Hill (A Deal With God)
Since then, the song has pushed Harry Styles to second place and become number 1 on the Spotify international chart three times, with up to 8.5 million streams per day.
Still the voice of Bush and his fans is usually low and pleasant. He may be worth around £ 30 million and lives in an Oxfordshire mansion for £ 6.4 million but avoids bling with glitz or any look-at-me antics of the Instagram generation of pop stars.
So who exactly is he – and how did he get his reputation as, in his own words, ‘a man of integrity’?
To his neighbors in the sleepy village of Thameside, he is just an ordinary man – though he is also happy to sign unusual notes when asked.
She may be worth around £ 30 million and lives in a luxurious Oxfordshire mansion worth £ 6.4 million but avoids bling and glitz or any jokes watching me of the Instagram generation of pop celebrities.
Post Colin Mildenhall, 67, who sends Bush home almost every day, said: ‘We’m talking about gardening, the weather and other things. He never talks about his work and I never asked him about it.
‘You can never imagine that he is a big star and he doesn’t impress me as someone who is fascinated by that kind of stuff. He is a very quiet person, he never leaves his house and I have never seen him wander around. He goes out to see some of his neighbors and that is about it. ‘
Mr Mildenhall revealed that following the re-emergence of Bush’s song in Stranger Things he asked him to autograph some of his previous records that he had owned since they were originally released.
He added: ‘My manager also wanted Kate to sign a book to accompany me one day so that she could meet him. He was delighted to do so and even gave her a copy of the original, which she owned, because it was a false one. ‘
Retired Chris, who lives in a small house near the main entrance to Bush’s home with his wife, Pam, told MailOnline: ‘He has been a great friend to us for years and we have always been close friends with him.
‘She always comes out for a chat and sees how Pam is doing, because she’s not okay lately. Kate is a very nice and normal person. I know his music is becoming popular again, but I have never talked to him about it or asked anything about his work. To us, he is a good friend and a generous neighbor. ‘
He added: ‘We are talking about the weather, the garden and how the flowers are growing. He does not like that popularity, that is obvious and he often does not go out but if he does, it is London to do his music stuff. ‘
Bush ‘s life as a monk has led to unconfirmed rumors over the years that he may suffer from mental health issues, anxiety, panic attacks or is a heavy drinker – but it has actually exacerbated his extraordinary status as the most unique music star.
Bush, 63, shares his £ 6.4 million Grade II house listed at home with her 30-year-old husband, guitarist Danny McIntosh and their 24-year-old son Albert.
To her neighbors in the sleepy village of Thameside, Kate Bush (pictured starring Apollo in 2014) is just an ordinary person – though she is also happy to sign the autograph when asked.
The 63-year-old wrote on his website: ‘You may have heard that the first installment of the Stranger series was recently released on Netflix. It features a song, Running Up That Hill which gives you a whole new life by young fans who love the show – I love it too! ‘
But evading the world of showbiz and the red carpet did not stop him from accumulating wealth. He is believed to have a £ 5 million property package that includes a flat London Central and Devon sea retreat.
The doctor’s 19-year-old daughter from Bexleyheath, south-east London, entered the music scene in 1978 with her sad song, Wuthering Heights.
Before entering the charts, the singer-songwriter was considered a strange child. He learned to play the piano at the age of 11, then an organ and violin and, by his youth, had composed more than 200 songs.
At the age of 14, Bush was spotted with Pink Floyd guitarist Dave Gilmour, who helped him secure a record deal.
But his sudden popularity with the first No. 1 player saw him being labeled an ‘sex bomb’ in an improper way, as he jumped onto the stage wearing a leopard-skinned leopard skin.
During his career, he has visited only twice, in 1979 and 2014 and has put together two collections of new material in the last 28 years. During his best-selling concerts in 2014 he urged fans not to record him on their mobile phones as he saw it ‘interfering.’
Despite enjoying great popularity, Bush does not appear regularly at industry events, rarely gives interviews to journalists and in 2012, turned down the opportunity to perform at the closing ceremonies of the London Olympics. A year later, she seemed uncomfortable receiving the CBE from the Queen.
Kate Bush was photographed in a short music video for the 1978 song ‘Wuthering Heights’.
Wuthering Heights, Bush’s most successful song, elevated him to international prominence and the wealth of millions, but in the years that followed, he became increasingly isolated.
During one of his rare interviews in 2005 he confessed: ‘I am a quiet person who can not get involved and who has been wandering around for a while.’
As his biographer Graeme Thomson was reported to have said: ‘He has spent the last 30 years going backwards. His biography has been a growing process of withdrawal. ‘
Bush’s withdrawal from public life is believed to have begun as a response to his grief in the early 1990’s. Guitar and his friend Alan Murphy died of AIDS in 1989, just as his sixth album, The Sensual World, was released.
Then, in 1990, his closest dancer, Gary Hurst, also died of AIDS. Two years later, her mother, Hannah, died of cancer.
She was so protected by her personal life that the news of her son’s birth in 1998 came to light five years later when her friend, singer Peter Gabriel, said ‘Kate’s mum now’ during a TV interview.
Being a mother also made Bush sensitive to her weight, which was evident when she released her album Aerial in 2005, which was widely praised.
Bush, 63, shares his £ 6.4 million Grade II house listed at home with her 30-year-old husband, guitarist Danny McIntosh (pictured together in 1991) and their 24-year-old son Albert.
Director Jimmy Murakami, who shot the video for the album King Of The Mountain, told his biographer Mr Thomson: ‘I thought he looked good, but he continued to lift his weight. I told her she looked lovely. You can’t go back to your youth, and to me he still looks so good. ‘
This is not the first time Bush has hired a new generation of young fans. Last year his 1980 song Babookshka was distributed on TikTok and was used in thousands of videos.
Running Up That Hill highlights Netflix’s Stranger Things’ fourth season, a sci-fi series about teenagers in the 1980s Indiana, as a favorite song by teenager Max Mayfield (Sadie Sink).
The show’s host Nora Felder said she chose the song because it was accompanied by Max’s pain and loss.
“I think it’s very emotional for a lot of people because it really touches the isolation of the emotional struggles that most of us go through at one time or another in life, especially as teenagers,” he told US reporters.
Felder approached Bush to get permission to use it, but he was apprehensive about the response because of the singer’s reputation for being aggressive with his music.
As it turned out, she was already a fan of the drama and happily accepted.