The Red Shoes

Album: The Red Shoes (1993)
Charted: 21
  • This song is about a dancer who tries on a cursed pair of red shoes, which make her dance "Until her legs fall off." The song was inspired by a character in the Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger film of the same title, which itself was inspired by the fairy tale of the same name by Hans Christian Andersen.
  • In the video, actress Miranda Richardson plays the mysterious woman who gives Kate the shoes. The clip was included in Bush's short musical film The Line, The Cross, & The Curve, which featured other visuals inspired by tracks on the album. The short debuted at the London Film Festival in 1993 and yielded a direct-to-video release shortly after. Due to late promotion, it took awhile to reach the US and in 1996 the film earned a Grammy nomination for Best Long Form Music Video. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Simon - Southampton, England
  • The Red Shoes is Bush's seventh studio album and her last release before a 12-year hiatus. The singer was going through many personal struggles, including the death of her mother and the end of her romantic relationship with her longtime bassist/sound engineer Del Palmer. She also regretted her decision to record the album digitally and said the process gave the songs a colder "hard-edged sound" she didn't like. She remedied the mistake on her 2011 Director's Cut album, where she re-recorded several of the tunes using analog equipment.
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 3

  • Anna from Ny, NyYes, it is a fragment of a fairy tale. Clarissa Pinkola Estes talks about the story at length in _The Red Shoes: On Torment and the Recovery of Soul Life_. This may be more than Kate Bush was thinking of when she wrote it, but the analysis is really cool and worth checking out. It tells the whole story and what the red shoes symbolize.
  • Philip from Akron, OhKate's inspiration this song was a movie (which is not unusual for her), Michael Powell's 1948 "The Red Shoes". Later, she met the director, and she wrote about THAT (among other things) in a song, too ("Moments of Pleasure").
  • Rob from Vancouver, CanadaIsn't this a Hans Christian Anderson fable?
see more comments

Matthew Wilder - "Break My Stride"They're Playing My Song

Wilder's hit "Break My Stride" had an unlikely inspiration: a famous record mogul who rejected it.

Richie McDonald of LonestarSongwriter Interviews

Richie talks about the impact of "Amazed," and how his 4-year-old son inspired another Lonestar hit.

dUg Pinnick of King's XSongwriter Interviews

dUg dIgs into his King's X metal classics and his many side projects, including the one with Jeff Ament of Pearl Jam.

Little RichardFact or Fiction

Was Long Tall Sally a transvestite? Did he really set his piano on fire? See if you know the real stories about one of Rock's greatest innovators.

Joe JacksonSongwriter Interviews

Joe talks about the challenges of of making a Duke Ellington tribute album, and tells the stories behind some of his hits.

Brandi CarlileSongwriter Interviews

As a 5-year-old, Brandi was writing lyrics to instrumental versions lullabies. She still puts her heart into her songs, including the one Elton John sings on.