A Breath of Fresh Air Sept 11

Written by on 09/12/2023

A Breath of Fresh Air With Sandy Kaye
Tuesdays 1pm EST
and Fridays 8pm EST

English singer-songwriter, Nik Kershaw was a 1980s teen idol; he spent 62 weeks on the UK Singles Chart in 1984-5 and beat all other solo artists at the time. He appeared at Live Aid in 1985, and penned a number of hits for other artists, including a UK number one single in 1991 for Chesney Hawkes “The One and Only”.

Nik played guitar and sang in a number of underground bands from 76 before deciding on a career as a songwriter. However, he ended up performing his own songs rather than giving them to others, and signed a record deal in 1983, which spawned a debut single, “I Won’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me”, which just missed out on the UK Top 40. At the beginning of 1984, he made his breakthrough when “Wouldn’t It Be Good”, which reached Number 4 in the UK charts. He enjoyed three more Top 20 hits from debut album Human Racing, including the title track and a successful re-issue of his debut single, which ultimately proved his biggest hit as a performer when it got to Number 2 in the UK.

Nik won multiple awards and attracted admirers for his writing such as Elton John & Eric Clapton. He also gained a huge teenage fanbase, a phenomenon Nik says was extremely difficult to manage.

When he released the single “The Riddle”, fans, journalists and linguists were sent into overdrive, as each tried to figure out what the meaning was behind the strange set of circumstances and clues which Kershaw put in the verses and chorus (though it in fact later turned out to be hastily created nonsense).

In 1985 Nik was among performers at Live Aid at Wembley Stadium. He tells us that performing there was one of the scariest days of his life. Soon after, Nik retired from recording music in favour of his original career path as a songwriter. His prowess as a songwriter served him well in 1991 when his song The One And Only, appeared on the soundtrack to the Brittish movie Buddy’s Song and in the American film “Doc Hollywood”, and provided a UK Number 1 single for the star of the film, Chesney Hawkes (son of the Tremeloes’ Chip Hawkes). In 1993 The Hollies had a minor hit with another of his songs, The Woman I Love.

1999 saw the release of the Britpop-styled 15 Minutes; later on a collection of acoustic-led songs and ‘EI8HT’, a commercial MOR pop album. Nik released Oxymoron, in 2020 and is currently in the process of releasing a series of EPs, Songs from a Shelf. For more information visit the official site at http://www.nikkershaw.net

Sandy Kaye

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podcast: https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/a-breath-of-fresh-air/id1618650164


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