Interviews

Kylie Minogue

Sarnies and a quick chat about 25 years in the biz with the fabulous Kylie Minogue. Why not, eh?


The other week we went for afternoon tea with Kylie Minogue in a posh London hotel. She was beautiful, tiny and very, very lovely. And she posed for pictures with everyone – see, lovely. Although don’t pose for a picture with Kylie if you’re worrying about your weight.

Anyway, we digress. The reason for afternoon tea? Why her new album of course – The Abbey Road Sessions. It’s out now (and you can buy it here or get it on iTunes) and it celebrates 25 years in the business. Obviously we’re FAR TOO YOUNG to remember the early stuff (we remember the early stuff).

So we shared a table (and some odd questions) with some celeb journalists and the very lovely Kylie – and here you are!

You’ve got a new album, what’s it all about? What inspired the album? Where’s the disco?

Don’t worry, the disco is coming back. Don’t panic. It actually has been quite a few years of Steve Anderson, who is one of my producers who does all my live shows, and he and I at any given opportunity will do a bit of a flourish, you know, a segment of a show and reinterpret. Like Lucky, we first did it as a torch song in 1998 on the Intimate live tour, a kind of jazz version of, so no, it’s kind of been happening for a while, and this album started as something very basic and acoustic which we did backstage on the Aphrodite tour. I guess after so many months on the road with your band you just muck around and do something different, so we did a little acoustic version of Breathe backstage, uploaded it and got a really good response from fans. So the initial idea was, ‘OK, K25 next year, what if we just, they’re loving this kind of backstage stuff so we’ll do a few of those, put them all in a day and upload them through the year. Great idea!” One thing leads to another and to another and to another, and we end up suddenly, it’s orchestral and it’s costing my record company a fortune in Abbey Road, hey, what’s wrong with that?

Hard work and a lot of pain?

Erm. it was fun work. It was really fun work. We just spent time in a cheap rehearsal studio beforehand with the band, and to have four BB’s is really lush trying different versions of the songs. Some fell by the wayside because they weren’t different enough or they didn’t really do anything. We ended up with the versions pretty much that you hear and rolled up to Abbey Road.

Can I just ask, out of all of the 25 years: all-time favourite and secret not so favourite of your songs! There’s gotta be one where you’re like ‘oh god’

There was one that used to really wind me up, but I’ve come full circle. It was What Kind Of Fool.

You’ve got a terrified Kylie fan here…he’s going to be restrained

No, I detested it at the time. I don’t know, but then when I hear it now I kind of go oh right, and kind of appreciate it. That’s the one that comes to mind.

All time fave?

Oh God, that’s really nearly impossible. I don’t know. Like, I believe In You, I love because it’s the day I met Jake and we just wrote it that day.

In My Arms, I love. God, every song’s got a story. Locomotion I would think about, you know, recording. I recorded it as a demo when I didn’t have a record deal so that was, you know, all in the studio. I have different reasons to love most of them.

What’s the gayest thing you’ve done in your career?

Someone tweeted a funny thing like, as it happens now online people, it’s just like a picture with words or something, well it’s not a picture, it’s just text and it says “You are gayer than Kylie riding a unicorn over a rainbow”. Stuff like that – it’s not the answer to the question but it did make me laugh. What’s the gayest thing I’ve done? Where do I start? In a bathtub in G.A.Y, being carried on in a bathtub, that was little-known but quite flamboyant. I don’t know, arriving on the anchor, flying on my angel, wearing a showgirl outfit. I don’t know, I thought pretty camp was the Olympics arriving on a giant flip flop. Yeah.

Which leads into a handy segue…It’s a bit cheeky if you don’t mind me asking, 2012 is 25 years for you in the business and the Olympics, I wondered if there was going to be an Olympics between you, Pippa Middleton and Kim Kardashian for the best bum, who’d win?

(laughs) I think I’d be third. I don’t know who would come first out of those girls but you know, I’m hanging in there but I don’t know, maybe the glory days are behind me, pardon the pun.

Really?! But like there’s that video in Katerina Jebb—does it amaze you that your bum is news?

It actually is still news. I was just in New York not even a week ago on the Wendy Williams show, which is about a million miles a minute just trying to get a word out. But she was like “so, your butt was recently number one”, but honestly I was a bit embarrassed because I thought I think that’s an old poll, I don’t know if you’ve got the most recent poll. But I did meet Pippa Middleton after the jubilee, and there had just been a bit of a mini tabloid scandal, from something that Alan Carr had said something to me. It’s like oh Alan, you, ok I’m going to have to live with this for a few days, so it was just happening around that time with the whole Bumgate and I’ve got my team at this after party going “go talk to Pippa” and I was like “I’m not going to annoy Pippa”. So anyway Pippa ended up coming over, so we said hi, she was wearing one of my sisters Project D dresses which was fantastic and blah blah blah, and then I just couldn’t, I just blurted, I said “Look, I don’t know if you’ve heard but there’s this whole thing going and I didn’t say anything, it’s Alan’s fault, point the finger at Alan.” So we did talk about the butt and she was very gracious, she said “you’d win hands down” and I was like, that’s very kind but, um, I’m not sure about that. So, well in answer to the question I’m still surprised that it’s got so much attention. Stunt bum? No, but it’s a good option for the future. Clever editing. Ok, there’s no K26 because K25 has been pretty full-on.

Are there any of those days where you think ‘I’d quite like to take this easy’?

Yeah, no, I do. I actually took this whole weekend easy because I did a trip – a whole weekend, yeah – I was like seatbelt strapped to my couch watching all the Saturday night TV shows and pottering. I did not leave.

What’s your take on X-factor this year?

I think Ella has just got an extraordinary, how she makes it look so easy, it’s infuriating. She’s just fantastic.

Who do you want to win?

Oh God, I’m trying to rack my brain, who’s in there, um, Ella or Jade. I think they’re my favourites and potentially where they could go to.

What do you think about Rylan?

I think Rylan has been fantastic, it wouldn’t be X Factor without someone like him. I think he’s just provided us with so much entertainment and no one is going to cry like him for the next decade. It’s sweet when you see him just being very straight forward, and you know, he’s quite beautiful to look at, and he says “oh, I��m just a boy from Essex, you know”. It’s sweet, I like him very much.

In your 25 years you’ve obviously seen people come and ago—Like One Direction for a random moment are 18-19 years old…

I know, I was drinking with them at James Cordens birthday, I was, you know, down with the team.

Did any of them try it on with you? Because they have an eye for the older lady, but although you are still only around 29-years-old! Can you understand why there’s so much appeal around One Direction?

Oh my God, of course I can.

Especially with older women, there was a thing in Grazia about how older women are hunting north London looking for Harry, it’s a new trend for older women.

You’re kidding? Ok, well I’m not one of those women. But no, I remember when they were on X Factor and they just were adorable and course we get it, you know, we all get it, and they’ve had the songs that have backed it all up. And they’re nice guys.

And what do you think, in the last 25 years, because you’ve seen people come and go, what do you think makes you stay where you are? What do you think people like One Direction will have to do to maintain that on-going success?

I think you need to…hmm. I don’t know what the secret formula is, and I haven’t always got it right, but I think you need to take risks sometimes and kind of learn who you are. I didn’t know who I was in the beginning. Learn that, and find your strength, work on your weaknesses. I’m still working, I don’t just roll out and do something. I fret and I have anxiety and I work and I’m nervous before doing the Proms. I’ve never actually done anything like that. I don’t know, be open. I think that sometimes I’m guilty of being too open to opportunity, it’s like “hey here’s something, do you want to do it” and I’ll go “I’ve never done that, ok” as opposed to “is this the best move to actually, or the best decision to make?” but the music biz, you need the songs.

Will you be doing Hit Factory Live in December?

The most burning question! I know, I just can’t commit to it yet, and I’d hate to commit to it when I can’t do it. I’ve just got so much going on, I’m literally cross-eyed looking at my schedule January, but obviously I’d love to because I was ready to do it last time. We did the rehearsal, which was quite funny because Jase and I, we had to stop and think about it and go “er, did we ever, did we do this live?” We didn’t ever do it live. It was back in the Top of the Pops, you know, they shove you out there without even a microphone, you’re just completely miming and doing the jump and swirl in the arms, you know, that manoeuvre. I don’t know if I’m going to do that manoeuvre. Can you imagine doing that manoeuvre? What is that manoeuvre called?

I just wanted to ask you if you were annoyed that Jean-Claude Van Damme finally said that he had an affair with you after all these years?

Well I think affair is a bit of an overstatement, but nah, he was a nice guy and for many reasons that was not the film to do. It was just, er, actually my favourite part was learning how to kick box. I can’t do it now. But, you know, its part of life’s rich tapestry