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Fish (The Funny Farm Interview - July '95, Dick Bros) said: "Kayleigh was a way of saying sorry. I dunno, I was very confused at the time, you know, I had a lot of long term relationships, a lot of 'deep and meaningful' relationships that, basically I'd wrecked because I was obsessed with the career and where I wanted to go. I was very, very selfish and I just wanted to be the famous singer but I was starting to become aware of the sacrifices that I was making, and I think that Kay was one of those sacrifices that went along the road.

"Kayleigh was not just about one person; it was about three or four different people. The 'stilettos in the snow', that was something that happened in Galasheils (S.E. Scotland - Ed), when I can remember going down one night and we were both really drunk, and, you know, dancin' under a street light, and 'dawn escapes from moon-washed college halls' was part of the Cambridge thing. And it was also part of the... in that where this girl Kay used to live; she was exiting in the morning before the matron caught us, etc."

The name Kayleigh was based on one of Fish's former girlfriends, Kay who had had the middle name Lee. Fish told the story in a piece for YouTube site Top 2000 agogo.

A partial transcript is below:
"Kay and I had started going out and about 1981 and she was a pharmacist at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Alyesbury and I met her and went "Wow!" right and we started going out and we fell in love and we were incredibly close but I mean the band was just starting and I was like a kid in a sweetie shop, right, I mean seriously on every level, and Kay was a part part of the whole kind of thing but when I went and joined Marillion I gave up everything, it was like this is what I'm going to do.

"So we split up in '82 when we recorded the Script album, we got back together again in '83 and we kinda bounced about and then we moved to Belsize Park - very expensive, in a very lovely area of London, and then I went away to America on a tour and came back and she'd gone and she just that was it. I mean I came back to the flat and it was only my record collection that was left there and my record player and that was it, she'd gone.

"We never got back together again. When I wrote Misplaced I was still dealing with the whole thing you know I have I done the right thing, you know, it's just yeah I wanted to kind of get it out of my system, so the whole Misplaced theme was based around Kay, but at the same time recognizing, you know, that my whole life had completely changed.

"We lost touch completely and out of the blue, she got in contact with me. We were playing in Bradford and she came along to the gig and we met for the first time since 1984. It was really strange; it was like I hadn't seen her for a week.

"Yeah, there was nothing about, it was just really good old friends talking about bringing kids up and talking about relationships, you know. And then she disappeared for a while and then she told me that she's been diagnosed with cancer.

"You know, we had this kind of contact, just support; that's what really what we're doing, was supporting each other through what were difficult times. She came up to Edinburgh and we went out for lunch together when I gave her the album and she said, "I've never heard it." She said she'd never listened to the album and she phoned me up the day after and she said, "I cried all the way back home!" She said, "I never realized that that was how you felt at the time" and she never realized. She said, "I never realized you'd put so much into that album" and the next thing I got a phone call of a friend of ours and said she died of cancer.

"In the last year Kay was telling everybody 'I'm the girl in that song' and she was really proud of it. To be able to kind of complete that circle in a way, was was nice."

On 24 October 2012, Fish made public that Kay had died.

'Belsize Park'
An area of north west London.

'Dawn escapes... college halls'
Fish (The Funny Farm Interview - July '95, Dick Bros) said: "[In 1980] Diz and I moved down to Cambridge where I had a girl friend who was an archaeology student at the time. So we were actually living in this all-female block down in Cambridge; I think it was Newlands College or something, having to sneak during the day through the windows because there were no males supposedly allowed in the college."

Songs with a link have explanations.

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  1. I tried desperately to allow my wife to let us name our first daughter Kayleigh. She steadfastly refused and wanted to name her Hayden. We settled on Kayden, and she is (in part) a name sake of this song. We thought we had made the name up, but have since come to know several others by the same name. All boys. Grateful for the memories.

    1. I agree with you. A beautiful song and a lovely name. Had I been in the market for another child she would be called Kayleigh. Hardly likely as I'm 74! I've just been presented with a new granddaughter called Callie so almost!

  2. Congratulations for this blog. I am a very fan of Marillion but, as a brazilian guy, never understood lyrics 100%.
    Now I begin to understand.
    Thank you.

  3. My son is called Caelan, partly for the reason that a) he wasn't a girl and b) my wife didn't like he name Kayleigh anyway. I suggested this as it was fairly close and she liked it :-)


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