This month I have managed to do Voiceovers in a studio in Bristol, in complete isolation, all run via Zoom and operate remote cameras for Ch5 from our kitchen via Zoom too. I feel I have the potential to be a technical wiz.
I recorded a main vocal for a new stage musical from my office desk and am well on the way to having enough material for the next Toyah album.
Two days ago I was in London for the first time since 12 March, having filled my car with unleaded for the first time in three months.
The car was still working!
It was a bizarre feeling, one of “should I be here, is this necessary?” nestled next to the overwhelming emotion of “YEHHHHHHHHHHHH I AM OUT OF THE HOUSE! AT LAST!”
It completely lifted my mood to have this sense of normality, even though I was venturing onto a very different and unexpected world.
On Friday (3 July) just gone, there was the release of the entire works of TOYAH & THE HUMANS, the beautiful box set NOISEIN YOUR HEAD and four stunning vinyls, including LIVE AT THE SCALA with Robert Fripp guesting with us.
It is the most beautiful package. I am immensely proud of it.
I am proud of the sound, the attitude, the journey and above all the memories. This project took me from Estonia to Seattle to New York and London, one of the best times in my life.
This has made me reminisce about Bill Rieflin big time and all the adventures we had around the world.
One of the loveliest nights of my life was Valentine’s Day 2014. I cannot remember why Robert wasn’t with us, he was most likely en route from the USA, but Bill, Tony Levin, myself and Pat Mastelotto ended up in a tiny but gorgeous Japanese restaurant in Dunstable, on a deserted pedestrian High Street. It was pouring rain and like a surreal film set! There were only four or five tables and we were the only people there. It was so romantic to be out with three great men!
All had such an extensive knowledge of Japanese food that they were talking to the proprietor in Japanese and ordering ‘off-menu’.
I was training for a 5 metre high dive in nearby Luton the next day. Luton is one of the rare swimming pools in the UK that has Olympic high diving boards. I was going to dive live on ITV’s Splash on the Saturday and the boys were rehearsing the rhythm section before a King Crimson tour at Gavin Harrison’s place. So we thought we would stick together on this particular night when it’s not fun to be alone.
As usual Bill and Pat ate their food and my food off my plate, to my amusement, then we all walked back to the Premier Inn and downed a bottle of Port in Bill’s room. This might not sound super exciting but I’ve spent so many what should be special days apart from my hubby because of his touring schedule that this particular evening was magical…. VALENTINES IN DUNSTABLE!
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The next morning I joined them all for breakfast before going off training, it was one of those buffet events and I left my phone on the table in case the Splash team needed to talk to me.
Unbeknown to me Bill randomly went through my phone book and chose a name that interested him and sent this text “ OMG so sore from rampant sex in a Premier Inn off the M1, I am exhausted love Toyah”.
When I got back to the table he was smiling his demonic smile when a text came in from the Features Editor of The Daily Mail “So pleased you’re having a good time, I wish I was!” when I scrolled to the message before I couldn’t believe my eyes. Bill and Pat were rolling on the floor by this time.
I sent my apologies to the journalist and explained what had happened and prayed she believed me.
These kind of things were regular with Bill, it was like the other time he told the “take out” counters at restaurants around Seattle my name was Daisy and I spent a couple of days wondering why people all over the city kept shouting “Daisy you’ve forgotten Bill’s potato salad!” at me……..I was constantly on the receiving end of his wicked humour.
As many of you know Robert and I love doing our Sunday Lunch films, last week we recorded Dance In The Hurricane, coincidentally having just watched Will Farrell’s brilliant film EUROVISION, where his costumes where rather worryingly similar to some clothes I have worn in the past!
Last Sunday I was going to wear a rather spectacular silver dress for this “at home” shoot and I got scared I might look like a Eurovision entrant in the eyes of someone 6000 miles away. Then I thought “heck! Why not?’ I might as well wear a rather gaudy pair of silver horns I had made for a stage show 12 years ago and really enter into the Eurovision spirit anyway but I got cold feet because Americans are not famed for understanding English irony.
One of my favourite parts in the film is Will Ferrell on the hamster wheel….. dare I say first done by French and Saunders in ‘88 with me guest starring, singing Because The Night. (You can see this on BBC iPlayer right now, starts at 13m 20sec) both French and Saunders were dressed as farmers on a huge hamster wheel interrupting my performance, great ideas never go away, they just re-surface.
Many times I am asked whom would I love around my dinner table as the perfect guest combination and it would have to be Will Ferrell, Anthony Bourdain, Janis Joplin, Bowie, Samuel L. Jackson, Maya Angelou, Joe Strummer, Germaine Greer and Jimi Hendrix. That conversation would be thrilling.
In the last month I have taken up, rather unexpectedly…..BOXING.
Having to get “world” ready after lockdown I started intense training for muscle strength four weeks ago, within a week of starting I was deadlifting 60 kilo, I weigh 54 kilo!
I never thought I would ever be able to do that again in my lifetime and to be honest it isn’t something I want to do too often but under supervision I am happy to do it to prove something to myself …….if I ever have to carry a small adult, I CAN!
Now my next task is to get Robert moving. I fear lockdown has knocked his confidence in his body and the outside world…. so over the next few weeks we will venture outside into this Brave New World.
Our veg patches are producing wonderful courgettes, tomatoes, chard, beans….even peaches in the hot house and I am teaching Robert how to harvest and cook them, which he loves.
In the meantime keep sending in your questions for Saturday’s Toyah At Home, I adore responding and the music will keep coming lockdown or not.