She became a music icon after releasing hit song Kids In America in 1981, which peaked at No.2 in the UK and sold over three million records worldwide.
But over four decades after soaring to fame and dominating the charts, Kim Wilde has admitted that it’s a ‘beautiful surprise’ that fans are still loving her music and are willing to buy tickets to see her on stage.
In a candid new interview, the singer, 61, told how ‘I didn’t really believe that there would still be an audience for me due to the fact that she was now a married mum-of-two as opposed to the single twenty-something of her heyday.
As she prepares to head off on a new nationwide tour, the pop star reflected on her long career and shared her joy that her fans continue to support her, remarking that much of them have ‘grown up’ with her.
She told The Mirror: ‘I didn’t really believe that there would still be an audience for me as a married mum of two kids. I thought all the romance of Kim Wilde was being single and 21. That is a different Kim Wilde to the one that they are being presented with. But the audiences love it, which is a beautiful surprise.
The star went on to say that her followers have embraced her age and that she feels relaxed and happy enough to be her full self on stage.
She explained: ‘I think my audience have grown up with me, so there’s a sense we’re all in it together, there’s a joyfulness about that. I’m loving singing my hits, I like the way it brings my audience so much happiness and I love how generous they are to me. They know I’m 61 – nobody is pretending anything; they get me warts and all.’
However, while Kim adores being in the spotlight and belting out her biggest hits which also included You Keep Me Hangin’ On, Cambodia and Chequered Love, things hadn’t always been as rosy, with the star disappearing from the limelight at the height of her fame.
The star stepped back from the music industry to live a secluded life with her actor husband Hal Fowler, 54, and their two children, Harry, now 23, and Rose, now 21, with Kim blaming her iconic Kids In America track.
She explained how she had to ‘step away’ from the song after becoming ‘defined by it after consistently singing it for 16 years.
She explained: ‘I’d had enough of singing it, which is one of the reasons why I gave up. I fell out of love with it. I’d been defined by that song from the age of 20 to 36 and there was a part of that which is quite confining, so I needed to stop.’
The blonde bombshell went on to say that she needed time out as the ‘turbulence’ of being a pop star became ‘exhausting’ and that after decided to have a family with Hal, it seemed a ‘really good time’ to hit pause on her music career.
After the couple married within six month of meeting each other, Kim told how she reveled in her newfound anonymity after changing her surname to his, adding: ‘it was great’.
After venturing into a different career of horticulture, Kim told how she was ‘tempted’ back into her old music life by the 80s revival circuit, and felt that she’d finally ‘gone full circle’ after falling back in love with her songs.
Kim’s international anthem Kids In America was the work of her brother Ricky and dad, original British rock ‘n’ roller Marty Wilde, and at one stage she was shifting 60,000 copies a day.
She had seven more Top Ten singles in the UK but never a number one, however her reworking of the Motown classic You Keep Me Hangin’ On, which topped the US Billboard chart in 1986.
Last year, she spoke of missing out in the UK but achieving the US triumph, she said: ‘Although having a No 1 in America almost made up for it,’
She went on to sell more than 30 million records and won hearts thanks to her stunning good looks – something she took great pride in.
She said: ‘I feel very grateful that I got my mum’s gorgeous nose and my dad’s fabulous mouth’ however revealed she was bullied for her ‘Mick Jagger lips’.
Of her figure, she went on: ‘I had long legs and they did well with jeans. I knew how to wear a pair of jeans, that’s for sure.’