I never expected to meet Kylie. And never on the same day that my unauthorised biography of her was published. I just thought the chances of meeting her then or at anytime were pretty slim. And I really have Neil Rees to thank for making it possible.
Today when people ask me what was it like to meet Kylie Minogue, what was she like, and what was your impression, I always remember Elvis Presley at a press conference in 1972 saying that the image is one thing and the human being is another, and how hard it was to live up to an image. I think you can always be disappointed when you meet the image in real life. Most people who had met Kylie before told me to be prepared for how tiny she is – and she is. But meeting her was such a thrill, especially on the day Naked was published and I can honestly say that all my expectations were exceeded.
You have to remember that she had just finished a very physical two hour concert and I was quite prepared for her to be exhausted and for the meeting to last only a few minutes, like a quick hello. Neither were we sure that we would be able to sit and talk to her for any length of time because we thought there would be at least another dozen people or so wishing to do the same, or in the room with us at the same time. You can imagine it, can’t you, everyone firing questions at her, and frightening her off. But as soon as she walked into the dressing room that only we had been shown into - to wait for her to come along from wherever she was, she was fantastic. She was so unpretentious that it was just so refreshing to meet someone in show business that wasn’t over the top, and had, I thought, a very humble attitude. She’d changed out of her stage costume, obviously showered, had her hair tied back in a pony tail, and was wearing blue jeans and a pink jumper and looked more energetic than I or Neil most probably did. Something I did notice was how crystal clear her blue eyes were, more so than in any photograph I had seen of her, before or since. She seemed to be very concerned that we had enjoyed the show. And she was very easy to talk to for what seemed like a good thirty minutes or so. I know this sounds a bit of a cliché, but without stage make-up, and what she was wearing, she really did look like the girl-next-door. Quite plain, but very pretty. And certainly not like the icon we had just watched go through her paces.
For the life of me, I can’t remember every little detail of what we talked about, apart from one moment when I was talking about Locomotion, saying I was old enough to remember the original, and how her version of it was currently the most played track on my CD player, simply because I had, a few days earlier, picked up a cheap copy of the Mushroom25 issue of her Greatest Hits album. And I do remember her joking about it, about being relegated to the bargain basement. It was a bit like when you’re being interviewed for TV, if you don’t do it regularly, you come out with all sorts of crap, and immediately after I’d said about picking the CD up for £5.99, I wish I hadn’t!