By Steve Spears
80s pop icon, author, gardener, DJ, TV presenter and proud mom Kim Wilde burst onto the music scene in 1981 with classics “Kids In America” and “Cambodia.” To date, she has had over 30 million record sales spanning 12 albums and some of the most memorable hits of the 80s.
Most recently the British artist released Pop Don’t Stop, a career-spanning boxset featuring her greatest hits, B-sides and videos, marking 40 years since her breakthrough hits.
We caught up with Kim, who will be joining us on The 80s Cruise for the first time. She joins Devo, Bret Michaels, The Church, Morris Day and The Time, Howard Jones, Living Colour and more!
Here’s a quick message from Kim, then read on for more!
Your song “Kids in America” was written by your brother and father and romanticizes life in the U.S. What was your perception of American teens at that time?
My father Marty Wilde, who wrote the lyrics for “Kids In America,” certainly did love all things American, especially their cars, Elvis and Rock’n Roll. My dad was a rebel without a cause and still is, and the song reflects the rebel he saw in me!
In addition to being the most-charted British female solo act of the 1980s, you’re equally renowned as a landscape gardener. What inspired that interest?
I have always been a nature girl at heart, but having children ignited a deep and instinctive urge to reconnect with the natural world. Growing a seed is still one of the most awe-inspiring things I do every year, living in constant wonder at nature’s miracles.
How long has it been since you’ve toured North America? We’d love to see more of you. Is this stop on The 80s Cruise a taste of what the U.S. fans can hope for in coming years?
My concerts in America are long overdue, so I have a lot of making up to do and I can’t wait!
What are you most looking forward to on The 80s Cruise 2023?
Meeting my American fans at last!
What would you like to bring back from the 80s?
We had a great music show here called TOTP, everyone I knew tuned in to see the biggest hits of the day, I performed on it many times. Music is so fragmented now, I miss that sense of community.
How did your personal 80s experience influence you as an individual and as an artist?
Growing up in the 80’s as a Pop star was mostly incredible fun, and developing as a songwriter one of the most important things I focused on. Although I’ve always performed live, it has mostly been in the last 20 years that I feel I’ve grown into the performer I always hoped I could be.
Check out the rest of The 80s Cruise 2023 lineup!