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Cathedral Song

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"Cathedral Song"
Single by Tanita Tikaram
from the album Ancient Heart
A-side"Cathedral Song"
B-side"Sighing Innocents, Fireflies In The Kitchen, Let’s Make Everybody Smile Today, Over To You All [LIVE]"
Format7", 12" , CD single
GenreFolk rock
Songwriter(s)Tanita Tikaram
Producer(s)Peter Van Hooke, Rod Argent
Tanita Tikaram singles chronology
"Twist in My Sobriety"
"Cathedral Song"
"World Outside Your Window"

"Cathedral Song" is a song released as a single from the album Ancient Heart by Tanita Tikaram. An extended length music video was made from the song, portraying a love story between two swimmers in a Summer setting. The video was shot in black and white, and Tikaram appears only in studio footage, not on the external footage. The single peaked at #48 in UK.[1] Most of the music video was filmed in Portugal, in Praia Grande, Praia do Guincho, Estoril and Cristo Rei sanctuary.


WEA released a limited edition 7" EP box set which had three prints from the video. Other formats also had live tracks - "Over You All" (CD/7" box), "Let's Make Everybody Smile Today" (CD/12"/7" box) and "Fireflies In The Kitchen" (12"). Studio versions of the latter two were not recorded.


Upon release, William Shaw of Smash Hits wrote: "It's a pleasant enough tune; a dreamy, floaty thing, full of haunting organs and guitar pluckings. But, if like me you spend all your time wondering what Tanita is singing about, then the sepulchral beauty of the whole thing kind of passes you by."[2]


Chart (1989) Peak
Australian Singles Chart[3] 120
Dutch Singles Chart[4] 36
German Singles Chart[5] 71
UK Singles Chart[1] 48


The song was covered by Brazilian singer Zélia Duncan. Her version, which has a similar arrangement but lyrics in Portuguese, was released in her second homonymous album (1994) and became a smash hit in Brazil and "Catedral" (the Brazilian title of the song) is still considered a classic tune. The translated version has also been covered by Leandro, from the duo Leandro e Leonardo. The song was also covered by Renato Russo from the Legião Urbana band.


  1. ^ a b "Official Charts > Tanita Tikaram". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
  2. ^ Shaw, William (11 January 1989). "Review: Singles". Smash Hits.
  3. ^ "Response from ARIA re: Tanita Tikaram ARIA singles chart history, received 19 September 2017". Retrieved 19 September 2017. N.B. The High Point number in the NAT column represents the single's peak on the national chart.
  4. ^ " > Tanita Tikaram in Dutch Charts" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
  5. ^ "Tanita Tikaram – Cathedral Song (single)" (in German). GfK Entertainment. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
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