How We Met: Alison Moyet & Emma Kennedy: 'I knew we'd be friends because she was happy to make a prat of herself'

 

Alison Moyet, 52

One of the most enduring pop stars of the 1980s, first as part of Yazoo, then solo, Moyet (left in picture) last year returned with a new album, 'The Minutes'. A mother of three, she lives with her husband in Brighton

I first met 'Ma on Twitter. I have a terrible memory, but she tells me I was in the middle of a conversation with Clare Balding, and she interrupted with a joke. It must have been a good one. I liked, straight off, that she was an arsehole, and I say that as an arsehole myself. She didn't take herself seriously, despite being very clever, an Oxford graduate and all the rest of it.

We eventually met a few months later at Clare's book launch. I knew almost straight away we'd be friends because she was happy to make a prat of herself in person, just as she was online. When I first spotted her, she had her back to me. I went up to her and pushed her knees forward so she almost fell over. She turned around with this beatific smile on her face. I knew then that she was the kind of person you could hang out of a window and she'd still laugh.

To be honest, I wasn't very aware of her beforehand; I hadn't read her books. I knew she had been on television a bit, but that was about it. And I don't think she had been a fan of my music, which suited me just fine.

I was going through a transitional period in my life at the time. My children were all grown up and I wanted to socialise more, to find a group of women to hang out with. I've always been quite remote, and because I was in the music industry, which was male-dominated, I'd never met very many women. That said, maybe there were lots of women in the music industry and I just never met them? Anyway, the point is, I was determined to make female friends, and I found them. Specifically, Emma.

She's helped me come out of my shell, and helped me manage my social anxiety. I need very clear signals in order to communicate with someone, and she is very good at that.

About six months into our friendship, it suddenly dawned on me that she might be right for my manager, Georgia. I'm not saying either was on the look-out for a partner, but I did think that they might be suited. Neither of them are players, both are straightforward. So I arranged a double-date, me and Georgia, Emma and her friend Sue Perkins. They spent the evening not really talking to each other, both too shy, but there was still a spark. And now they're getting married.

We still talk all the time, only now we are more a three than a two, and I love that. Emma came with us on tour; we had a terrific time.

She's been writing this animated series for CBBC, Strange Hill High, and she let me do one of the voices; I'd always wanted to be the voice of an animated character. How generous is that? But that's Emma all over. She is funny, sharp, and the most generous person I know.

Emma Kennedy, 46

The bestselling author of books including 'I Left My Tent in San Francisco', Kennedy is also an actress and stand-up comedian and one of the writers behind the CBBC series 'Strange Hill High'. She lives in London

MoYo – sorry, I can't call her Alison; she's MoYo to me – has this terrible memory, so she doesn't really remember our first meeting. She was tweeting with Clare Balding – this was a couple of years ago – and I did that irritating thing people do on Twitter: reading someone else's conversation, then interrupting. When she replied, I felt a flush of real excitement. Within minutes of us chatting, I knew we were very much on the same wavelength.

I have to be honest, though: I was never a fan of her music. Not that I didn't like it, just that it passed me by. I must have been about 14 when Alf, her big album, was in the charts, but I paid a lot more attention to Simple Minds, the Pretenders and Eurythmics. I'm sure I snogged a lot of people while her music was playing somewhere in the background, but I never actually owned any of her records.

I knew we'd be friends when I invited her to Emma Freud's house to watch the final of Celebrity MasterChef in 2012, which I had won. I hadn't told anybody the outcome, but she wheedled it out of me, as she told me she wouldn't bother watching otherwise. So she turned up to Emma's house with a tagine, which happens to be my favourite food, though she couldn't possibly have known, and a Congratulations card. When I opened it, a fiver fell out! Just like your nan would do! I must have laughed for 10 minutes straight.

We have a lot of fun together. We went to a park once and she ended up pushing me up a tree, physically, hands on bum, and far too high. I got stuck. Another time, she took me to Thorpe Park for my birthday because she knew how much I liked rollercoasters. Thing is, I hadn't been on a rollercoaster in 20 years, and this one looked huge. We had to build ourselves up to it, doing the teacup rides first.

It's like having a school friendship in middle age, which means I found the perfect person to hang out with – like, ever – at the age of 46. That's not something you expect, is it?

Then she interfered with my love life, too. Everybody was baffled that I didn't have a long-time partner. MoYo wasn't baffled; she thought it was all completely understandable. But she introduced me to Georgia, and now we're engaged. The wedding's next July.

Because I write during the day, I don't have much to do in the evenings, so I ended up going on tour with her over the past few months. I must have seen her show 30 times, and I didn't get bored once. I think that when you are a creative person yourself, and you hang around with a creative person, it inspires you to be better yourself. That's what MoYo has done for me.

The new series of 'Strange Hill High' begins on CBBC from 29 April

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

HR Analyst - Banking - Bristol - £350-£400

£350 - £400 per day: Orgtel: HR Analyst - Banking - Bristol - £350 - £400 per ...

HR Manager - HR Generalist / Sole in HR

£30000 - £35000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - HR Generalis...

Business Analyst - Banking - London - £350-£400

£350 - £400 per day: Orgtel: Business Analyst - Banking - People Change - Lond...

HR Manager - Milton Keynes - £50,000 + package

£48000 - £50000 per annum + car allowance + benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Shared...

Day In a Page

Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment