Video Killed the Literary Star? 10 Music Videos Inspired by Books

There are so many good songs that have been influenced by novels. For instance, Gang of Four’s, “We Live as We Dream, Alone” — a quote from Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, which Beth Orton also references in Trailer Park, is a twofold example. There’s also Syd Barrett’s “Golden Hair” from The Madcap Laughs, where the former Pink Floyd frontman makes haunting music from James Joyce’s “Poem V.” And who could forget The Cure’s “Killing an Arab,” a riff on Albert Camus’s absurdist opus, The Stranger? Following this tack, we decided to do a roundup of ten music videos influenced by novels, from established artists to young upstarts.

Kate Bush’s “Wuthering Heights” and Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

“Heathcliff, it’s me, Cathy, come home…” Kate Bush recorded this song in 1978, when she was only 19 years old, and it stayed at the top of the UK charts for weeks. In this video, Kate plays many roles, but mostly she is a possessed mime, trying to kick through the cold mist and climb up to Heathcliff’s window by any means necessary. The last 30 seconds are spent waving desperately with one white-clad arm, like an insane teapot. And then she is gone.