How Did Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill” End Up in “Stranger Things”?

Kate Bush
Kate Bush. Photo by Richard Young/REX/Shutterstock (68789e)

The fourth season of Stranger Things is out, and its soundtrack is a true love letter to the ’80s. If we had to pick a single stand-out song that made a splash this season, it would be Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill”, but how did this iconic hit end up on the beloved Netflix show?

Spoilers are ahead, but if you’ve already seen the new season of Stranger Things, you know that “Running Up That Hill” happens to be Max’s favorite song and that she used it to break Vecna’s spell and escape Upside Down in the episode “Dear Billy”.

The show’s music supervisor, Nora Felder, discussed the song’s role with Variety, explaining that she spent a lot of time finding a song that perfectly fit Max’s complex feelings.

“It immediately struck me with its deep chords of the possible connection to Max’s emotional struggles and took on more significance as Bush’s song marinated in my conscious awareness,” said Felder.

Once Felder found the perfect song, they just had to get Kate Bush on board. Sony Music Publishing’s Wende Crowley received the request and sent the singer script pages and footage for a review because she’s very selective when it comes to licensing her music.

It turns out Bush was already a big fan of the show, and it didn’t take her long to give Felder permission to use the song in Max’s pivotal scene. It was the right choice to make because “Running Up That Hill” reached No. 1 on iTunes after being featured on Stranger Things.