1982 Kim Wilde – Kids In America
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Kim Wilde’s father was a teen idol, and her brother Rickie recorded a record that was #1 in Sweden when he was only eleven, so Kim grew up surrounded by show business.
In 1980, she accompanied her brother to one of his recordings to sing backup vocals and caught the attention of producer Mickie Most (who was the producer for songs by Herman’s Hermits, Donovan, the Animals, and a lot of other British acts).
When Mickie expressed an interest in recording Kim, Rickie went home and worked up Kids In America. Their father helped finish up the lyrics for the song, and Kim went back and recorded it. Mickie was not completely happy with the recording, but working on a remix left him happier. It took another year, but they finally released the finished record in 1982.
Sales in the UK were much better than expected; the record reached #2 and sold over a half-million copies. They eventually released the record worldwide, which sold over three million copies. The single only reached #25 on the US Hot 100.
Kim continued to have a string of hits in the UK through 2006. The only other time she reached the US top forty was with her version of You Keep Me Hanging On. That record reached #1 on the Hot 100, thanks to the kids in America who helped make it the biggest record of her career.
Kim was also extremely popular in Germany, where her records hit the charts nearly as often as they did in the UK. She even appeared regularly on German television shows to promote her records.
She still does live appearances and recorded her 14th studio album in 2018.
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