Toyah’s Blog: Nov 2023

Nov 12, 2023


Our Christmas lights are on, the tinsel is up and Father Christmas is already delivering Mr. Fripp seasonal surprises.

Any perfectly wonderful excuse to buy treats for Master Fripp and what better than Diwali last weekend. We LOVE the Festival Of Light and it’s generous message of giving a gift of love, so a box of creamy, sugary, spicy treats arrived to surprise him.

When I was a rebellious teenage I was taken in and mentored by a fabulous Hindu family and they taught me about this beautiful festival, the positivity AND the sweets! This was the first time I ever tasted a Mango and it blew my mind. These memories are so happy and I often re-visit them at Christmas time.

2024 is shaping up. There are some unexpected things happening. One particular tour in discussion may take ’til early 2025 to finalise as it involves about 20 people on stage. It will be part of TOYAH AND ROBERT and it will also be about our individual musical pasts.

The ball is very much in our court when it comes to the next two years. This is a very positive situation. There are no pressures to meet other people’s demands, we are highly independent as artists.

On the October tour our fab sound person Bill recorded every show on multi-track. The sound and the band are exceptional, it sounds like studio recordings, everyone is so tight and in the groove. It excites me to know all this material is available.

We now have 15 shows fully recorded. Robert is insistent that mixes are completely right and this means a lot of detail but we have this in the can……….we now just need acceptable mixes for Robert.

The documentary crew are back with us soon and one of my targets is to get this film project closer to a release date. In the couple of weeks we have been home from touring we are both finding the confidence to venture out into crowded spaces again.

Live in Newcastle 2023. Photo: Dave Charlton. All rights reserved

On tour we were pretty much isolated backstage every day. It could be having had Covid twice in the past years that we both fear getting it again, before covid we went out without fear, we did things on a regular basis and this week has felt that we can do that again.

We both had our latest vaccine a week ago, it knocked me for six, I was gaga for a week, but by Sunday we where excited to see Robert Plant and Saving Grace at Birmingham’s Symphony Hall. I bumped into so many friends I hadn’t seen for four years. Nick Owen, Bev Bevin and many more, my heart was singing.

Mr. Fripp stayed in a facemask and at the end of this stunning show he said to me “let’s do this again”. This resulted in him coming back to Birmingham with me last Wednesday and joining me on stage to turn on the Christmas Lights at Millennium Point. IT WAS FANTASTIC!

We had a pre-covid day. Meal on New Street, Christmas shopping, enjoying being with bustling crowds and a beautiful event at Millennium Point. This day out was such a relief! You can only hide away for so long. It also lead to a conversation for WEIGHTLESS to potentially show this month at the B’ham Film Festival. 

About a year and half ago Chris Wong and I were joining the P&O BRITANNIA in the Faro Islands to perform for a week as it returned to Southampton. Gareth Gates was on board too performing and we would meet up for lunch most days, he was training daily in the gym and looked amazing.

He confided in us that he was getting ready for Celebrity SAS and I saw this week that he WON! I am so happy for him. He is such a sweet person, it is amazing he toughed this horrendous experience out and made it to the end. CONGRATULATIONS GARETH!

It has been a year on the road and now I am trying to find my old routines again. In my head I have visualised myself practicing guitar whenever I could so as not to loose the language I have learnt over the past four years. It hasn’t been possible to carry a guitar and certainly no time at the venues to practice. I have missed it so much.

On tour Fripp and I travelled in one car. In the end I grew to dislike it, sitting on the back seat surrounded by luggage……it was like being a four year old again. This year has taught me so much about myself. I am wildly independent and I can only compromise so much…..there’s a limit.

Next year I will drive myself if I can. Robert now has our personal manager Lee to drive him. We do have security issues on the road but that’s now a daily fact of life. Tour buses are not the solution for either of us. In the past I have tried the big sleeper buses…..YIKES, HELL ON EARTH.

This year we drove to Glastonbury in a multi-seater van, somehow I feel “swallowed in a void” in these situations. Imagine if you have a cat or a dog that you put in a carrier to go to the vet and it freaks, well that’s me! I’d rather be on the roof rack!  In bed at night I would rather be under the stars. I like and need my own space probably far too much.

We will keep you up to date on what’s coming in 2024 on my socials.

In the meantime I cannot wait for Christmas and catching up with friends we have not seen this year. It is my favourite time of year and I hope it is for you too.