We are not young. We are not old. We are golden. That’s who we are.
Profound words indeed, written and performed by a lady I have supported and ‘idolised’ for more than thirty years. Is that unhealthy? I think not.
We all have our interests, our ways to escape from the normality of everyday life, work and sleep. Music is my passion. As small boy, my awareness of music has been acute. From ABBA at the end of the 1970’s to the emerging new wave/synth pop scene of the early 1980’s with groups like Culture Club, hearing music either through the medium of radio or playing my parents vinyl on an early 1960’s record player, formed a large part of my childhood. So by the time my age had reached double figures, I considered myself fairly well versed in 80’s pop culture, whether that be the music of Wham!, Bananarama, Madonna or the new romantics.
But from 1986 a new style of pop music began to emerge and make itself known to me. A catchy, bouncy pop with an infectious beat that guided me ever nearer. It began with the song “Venus” by a group I was already very aware of, by of all things, at football matches every Saturday afternoon! Why you ask? Well every time my home team scored a goal, the ground was deafened with the sound of “Na Na Hey (Kiss Him Goodbye)” to taunt the away team! I reserve the right to reveal the name of my home team, suffice to say that back in the 80’s they did rather well in what was then the premier league, division one!
Anyway, that was the music of producers Mike Stock, Matt Aitken and Pete Waterman coming through in the Summer of 1986 and “Venus” was the song I simply couldn’t stop singing or dancing to. Fast forward to the beginning of 1988 and by now I was hooked on more marvellous numbers from “Toy Boy” to “Never Gonna Give You Up” and “Love In The First Degree” so imagine my surprise when my Mother (who was completely in tune with my music interests) bought me another Stock/Aitken/Waterman single for my eleventh birthday. It was a new release. A song called “I Should Be So Lucky”. “It’s that girl from Neighbours!” I declared, starring at the photo on the sleeve of the 7″ single! I immediately ‘plunged’ the vinyl on our record player (still the old early 60’s wooden box thing!) and listened. And listened. And listened again.
Magic flowed through my ear passages like never before. I even played the B side – the instrumental – so I could sing to the music myself, but it wasn’t the same as hearing the voice of the person of side A (I never did get round to sending that demo tape to PWL…!). Having followed the song’s meteoric rise up the British singles chart to the very top, I now feel pleased that I was one of the first to own a copy when it had just entered the top 40, before anyone really knew what was to come. So my ‘following’ of Kylie really does start from the very beginning, at least here in the UK (at the time I was unaware of “The Locomotion” in Australia the previous year).
And the rest, as they say, is history. From the highs of “Better The Devil You Know” and the “Rhythm Of Love” album (my personal, all time favourites) to new beginnings with the amazing “Kylie Minogue” album in 1994, letting the “Light Years” begin at the dawn of a new century and then “Fever“pitch! I just “Can’t Beat The Feeling” of the “Aphrodite” album or the majesty of “Into The Blue” (a crowning glory if ever there was). I would of been lost without Kylie in 2018, but thankfully she released “Golden” which featured another outstanding recording, “Lost Without You”. Time and time again, Kylie has proven her ability to write and record the songs I want to hear and remember. There hasn’t been one bad egg in the ‘boombox'(!) Flawless dancefloor classics stretching from “Hand On Your Heart” to “New York City” and unforgettable anthems from “lucky, lucky, lucky” to “for youuuuuuuuuuu”!
Who or what is a Kylie Superfan?
I guess we all have our ideas on what that means. If it’s someone who has bought all the artists singles and albums on multiple formats, then I tick that box. If it’s someone who has seen the artist perform live on numerous occasions across many decades, then I tick that box. If it is someone who collects press cuttings, magazine articles, posters, single/album reviews and promotional literature, then I tick that box. If it’s someone who has written about their love for the artist in reviews, articles, features and playlists, then I tick that box. What else is there left? For me, the only thing that eludes me above all else is meeting Kylie herself, in person. To say “I’ve bought all your records” (something she’s probably heard a million plus times no doubt) before promptly fainting, would be the completion of this long and obsessive journey and probably the most memorable thing I am ever likely to achieve, before I have to sing “I wanna go out dancing“!
I have come close to Kylie many times in recent years. The pictures below were taken at The O2, London in 2018 as I stood at the very front of the stage while Kylie performed her amazing Golden tour show to me and tens of thousands of other delighted fans. She did look and acknowledge me on two occasions but those pictures are slightly more blurry than those I have submitted here. Whether she noticed me from Radio 2’s festival of music in Hyde Park two weeks earlier or the previous occasions I have made sure that I am at the front of the crowd, I don’t know, but I guess we all like to think she remembers us. That’s the beauty of Kylie, she has never been spoilt by success. She is NOT a diva. Kylie respects and remembers her fans for all their support and love, no matter how long they have been on her journey. As she herself said at Glastonbury this year “We are all together in this moment. Not only this story but our story. Thirty plus years together”. She wasn’t the only one fighting to hold back the tears.
How often do you get emotional about someone you don’t know or have never met? Madness, isn’t it. But when the worst news of all came in early 2005, that’s when you realise it’s not just the music you love, it’s the person and their life you are involved with also. Tears of joy in December 2006 when they come out on stage to a standing ovation, uncontrollable tears when you lose a loved one who should of been there in 2008 at the X world tour to share in the moment, tears of euphoria when Jason Donovan walks out on stage for “Especially For You” in front of 50,000+ equally emotional and surprised people.
That’s a journey like no other. A journey not spent with any one else. A special journey, that is tied up in the DNA of your life, development and often parallels with events so close to home.
This is my journey.
Thank you Kylie xxx.
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