May 1, 2016

20160423_203838_resizedMy thinking cap has been on, mulling over what disturbs me so much about modern communications.

It’s the overload, the jabbering, nattering, twists n’ turns, no apparent constants. Everything is over in a Tweet.

35 years ago I would have sold my soul for the invention of Facebook, Twitter etc. I would have LOVED my life to have been on TV or viewed through a web cam. Now it seems sinister.

A thought occurred to me that apart from the “distracting” nature of it all, it isn’t helping me organise my thoughts, in fact my thoughts seem to have become a jumble because of the constant un-constants the modern world bleeds into our lives.

One attempt to fight this is I am embarking on doing a miniature painting per day of the year…..watercolour/ acrylic/ pencil/ pastel ANYTHING to focus my mind the hour before I have to open my e-mail.

So far so good, these happen really quickly, instantly and seem to release a stop valve of mental pressure where my over loaded mind can pull focus.

It is a visual meditation.

If, and I mean IF, because this project is loaded with contradiction (should I go to the gym, should I shop on line) and irony (time not being available being the biggest) I mange to pull off the 365 notebook paintings it will be interesting to see if the style/subject/methods achieved reach more clarity or more mental jumble as the year progress’s.

Seeing FRIPP N’ ENO together is always a joy. All three of us have our birthdays across three consecutive days. FRIPP 16th May, ENO 17th May, TOYAH 18th May……there are similarities between us, comfort possibly being the most obvious. FRIPP n’ ENO are big gigglers and love “silly” humour….the absurd.

Having popped over to Eno’s for a playback of his latest music/ art instillation THE SHIP, instructions where we can walk around, make phone calls, do handstands, play silly buggers and rummage through his belongings, even, we would be forgiven for leaving half way through with out saying goodbye.

Afterwards in a conversation between Fripp, Eno and Professor of mathematics J. Doyne Farmer (lovely man who was genuinely interested in me) I was explaining that as a child of Punk it was fair to say the “Glitterati” of music see me as a little uncouth (as my mother would say) and Eno said “no we don’t think you are uncouth. You are just not cool like me”. Mutual giggles from the evil twins FRIPP/ENO.

You have to admire male self-confidence.

I wrote a thank you card to Eno the next day “ Dear Eno, thank you for inviting us to hear THE SHIP. It was good you got to see FRIPP before his sex change. He has been a big girls blouse since “ No Pussy Footing”. Love Toyah”

notebook paintings

Cripes! After a great time at THE VICTORIA AND ALBERT MUSEUM with Professor John Pitcher and multiple luminaries of media, publishing and design, my having spoken briefly about playing MIRANDA in JARMEN’S THE TEMPEST on Shakespeare’s birthday, I thought I’d drive home to Chiswick down Kensington High Street to see what was in the shop windows whilst I sat in traffic.

There was a huge police presence, more police than members of the public. Kensington Palace Gardens was lined with police vans and I thought there must have been one hell of an incident to warrant this.

Then the President Of The USA’s motorcade started to appear from Kensington Palace and I realised I am 50 feet from the President.  Now that must be a first and last all in one moment!


Next day I am ambling along the side of the River Thames on my way to see Steve Oram for a bite to eat before a screening of AAAAAAAH! At the NFT and there’s all these policemen and armored vans around The Globe. My path crosses’ Barack’s path again.

Boy Oh Boy I love my liberty. Imagine having this entourage for the rest of your life!darlow_toyah_april16

Is it me or are the priorities in the press and media skew-whiff?

I am beginning to feel cannibalised by a monster that is exploiting and anaesthetising my soul.

Was Pink Floyd right? Are we being sucked into a convenient numbness?

Is our culture becoming a moronic hell?

So my antidote…..

I read…. things I normally cannot focus on that make my head hurt…one very good book for this has been A.C.GRAYLINGS “THINKING OF ANSWERS. It initially made the cogs of my brain crank with rusty noises but now I can hardly contain myself after reading two pages each morning…it has unlocked me from monotony…I am rediscovering free will, free thought again. Rushing to my lyric notebook and writing, writing, writing!

Reading FRANCIS THOMPSON AND WILFRED MEYNELL, KEATS, WORDSWORTH, anything, Sy-Fi, Comedy, Cookery, anything written before the invention of the internet, makes me feel I’ve freed my self from a George Orwellian hell.

May is one of my favourite months. Simon Darlow and I are penning away for the project we will soon be able to announce…sounds so mysterious… is fun.

For my birthday I will be in Seattle….Yippee…then back for a summer of festivals, acoustic shows, filming and fun!