Toyah’s Blog: December 2022

Dec 22, 2022


I hope you are all ready to PARTY!

Robert and I are slowly winding down for what we hope will be a quiet season catching up with friends we have not managed to see since the beginning of lockdown.

We live in a very close knit town, our friends are only a few doors or one street away from us, but because we have had a flat out year away from home we have only seen our friends to wave to with promises of catching up soon.

Our Christmas day will be just the two of us, with a large margarita cocktail each and lots of pressie opening.

We have our first carol service in 3 years to look forward to this week………3 YEARS, that’s crazy.

Christmas lunch will be interesting. Since my last covid jab food tastes completely different, nothing like what the taste should be. Beetroot tastes like its been in a sewer and chocolate tastes like lard.

When faced with a plate of food I  don’t want to eat I pile it onto Fripp’s plate when he is not looking, it’s as if he is eating an eternal meal.

Without a shadow of a doubt it has been an absolutely astonishing year. It’s has been positive, surprising, rewarding, stressful and sometimes heart breaking.

There’s been four amazing tours which have allowed me to form a new band and a new sound that will lead into the shows for TOYAH AND ROBERT in 2023.

The Electric Ladies Tour in June was epic.

Hazel O’ Connor was greatly missed but two equally remarkable artists stepped in, Saffron and Lene Lovich.

Being part of a multi artist bill is more of a party for me, the weight of the tour doesn’t rest solely on my shoulders.

This year I had a PA with me, again this has allowed me to put 100% into performing instead of dealing with being lost in cities.

I left all that to Lee, I think we drove around Birmingham Town Hall at least ten times before we found the entrance slip road and I was born in Birmingham!

I sincerely hope we will do another Electric Ladies in 2024.

Then finishing off with ANTHEM. I’ve fallen in love with this amazing album all over again.

My favourite songs of the whole year to perform have been POP STAR, MARIONETTE and DEMOLITION MEN. They sent shivers down my spine.

When the whole band sing their harmonies it’s thrilling.

The drama of these songs works so well and even though they are over fourty years old they sound as fresh and new as ever.

Frippy and I are taking a break in Newquay for four days.

Courtesy Gary Pearson Photography. All rights reserved.

Seeing my sister and brother for the first time in 12 months.

Frippy has been suffering from long covid and I need to get him away from the work front…..we have failed so far but we are in a calmer environment as we tackle our daily e-mail.

The idea is we actually rest, perhaps swim in the hotel pool, eat out, walk, even sleep.

It has been the craziest three months, any chance of a restorative rest isn’t going to happen just yet but the mountain summit is only feet away and then I can look out over the glory of 2022.

Have you noticed how the last twelve months been ramped, full on, stressful to the max? Parts of the year have been like completing a 1000 piece jigsaw only to find six pieces are missing. I was greatly relieved to hear from my sister Nicola that she feels the same, it gives a reassurance that I am not over reacting.

My sister is determined 2023 will not be as stressful, allowing herself time away from the frontline of her work to see the world.

I have a fantastic team around me, Craig Astley, Darren Shortt, Fripp himself, my agent Craig Latto, a wonderful accounting team and brilliant lawyer and we have all been flat out, ironing wrinkles that shouldn’t be there.

Daily my inbox of “to do’s” has been non payments of invoices that only I have picked up on, because only I have access to all the accounts. Miscalculations from other companies, pages and pages of contracts and insurances that don’t seem to make any sense.

This year has taught me to tackle problems head on without any sense of guilt of being “pushy”, without embarrassment or fear of people thinking I am difficult. In fact I am proud of how I have stood my ground in many instances especially when life has felt like a constant appearance on Dragons Den.

Yes, I have taken on new ventures such as purchasing a chemist shop in town that has been trading as a chemist since 1815, renovating the Georgian building and the outgoing family welcoming in a female chemist who is starting her first independent business. The town are going to love her, she is caring and determined.

Courtesy Gary Pearson Photography. All rights reserved.

Fripp says I have the sharpest instincts he as ever come across in his life.  This is a boast ……I can look at a letter, a business statement, a contract and see an error immediately. Rather than stew over it, which I would have done in the past, I now hit it head on.

My dyslexia deliberately mixes up words in my head and makes me stumble in speech but somewhere in my brain my ability for complex math even surprises me and it’s getting stronger and stronger.

In the 1980s so much slipped by because no artist was interested in the paperwork and we paid for it with missing millions.

As I become more successful I realise I am stepping out of my comfort zone big time, those fantasies of a quiet retirement are just fading away on the horizon but I trust my life is gearing up for something, I have no idea what, but I will sum up the last 12months as going way beyond my comfort zone and in 2023 this zone will be more familiar as Robert and I start our new venture…….Touring together.