No mystery why Princess of Punk gone all Posh Pop

Once known as the Punk Princess, Toyah has proved she is no one-trick pony.

By Nigel Booth
Wednesday, 2nd February 2022, 12:30 pm
Updated Tuesday, 8th February 2022, 9:41 am
Punk princess Toyah (above) has gone all Posh with new album release
Punk princess Toyah (above) has gone all Posh with new album release

She is an actor of note, featuring in films such as Jubilee, Quadrophenia and recent The Ghosts Of Borley Rectory, as well as TV shows such as Shoestring, Minder, Kavanagh QC and Maigret.

She has supplied her voice to animated Mr Bean series and Teletubbies and has “done” Shakespeare’s The Tempest, writes Martin Hutchinson.

But to most of us, she is a singer who took the charts by storm when she first erupted on the scene in 1980. After five releases that failed to interest the mainstream chart, despite going top ten in independent charts, Four From Toyah EP –that included the fantastic It’s A Mystery – reached number four in mainstream UK singles’ charts and was the first of four consecutive releases to top UK independent charts.

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Toyah (right) heading out on tour

She followed her breakthrough with I Want To Be Free and another release Thunder In The Mountains, both of which were top ten hits, before follow-up EP Four More From Toyah.

Toyah has also had ten chart albums, including 1981’s Anthem, which got to number two in the charts.

Her 2008 album In The Court Of The Crimson Queen – a reference to her husband Robert Fripp, whose band King Crimson’s breakthrough album was In The Court Of The Crimson King – returned her to the album charts after a 33-year gap.

In August 2021 she released a new album Posh Pop.

Recorded during lockdown, each of the ten tracks have videos to promote them, filmed mainly in her Worcestershire home as well as Pershore Abbey.

It went to the very top of the independent charts and got to number 22 in the mainstream charts, making it her highest charting album since 1982.

All the tracks were written by Toyah and long-standing collaborator Simon Darlow.

It also features Bobby Willcox on guitar –her husband using a pseudonym – and deals lyrically with letting go of the past (Levitate), teleconferencing (Zoom Zoom) and the need for leadership (Monkeys).

Already, a few of the songs from Posh Pop have become fan favourites, sitting comfortably alongside her greatest hits.

Toyah’s Posh Pop tour dates ...

February 3 – The Beggar’s Theatre, Millom

February 7 – Courthouse, Otley

February 5 – The Met, Bury

February 6 – Corporation, Sheffield

February 10 – Haslemere Hall

February 11 – Clarence Hall, Crickhowell

February 14 – Quay Theatre, Sudbury

February 15 – Quay Theatre, Sudbury

February 18 – Tunbridge Wells Forum

February 24 – Plough Arts Centre, Great Torrington

February 25 – The Exchange, Sturminster Newton

February 26 – The Flying Fish, Ilminster

March 3 – Pocklington Arts Centre

March 4 – The Ropewalk, Barton upon Humber

March 5 – Old School House, Barnsley

March 11 – Esher Theatre

March 12 – St Mary in the Castle Arts Centre, Hastings

March 17 – Old Fire Station, Carlisle

March 18 – Rosehill Theatre, Whitehaven

March 24 – Glassbox Theatre, Gillingham

March 25 – Trading Boundaries, Fletching.