To Rock Cheltenham Church
punk star Toyah Willcox has chosen a Bishops
Cleeve church to kick off her new tour.
St Michaels and All Angels Church will be
filled with fans of the singer, who shot to fame
30 years ago with hits such as Its a
Her new band The Humans will play a free,
intimate gig at the church, which has a capacity
of 200 people, on Saturday.
Joining the one-time princess of punk on stage
will be REM drummer Bill Rieflin.
Toyah, who has had 13 top 40 singles, recorded 20
albums and toured the world, said: We have
a strong association with Bishops Cleeve
artist PJ Crook.
And a long-standing relationship with
Toyah and her husband, guitarist Robert Fripp,
are patrons of Cheltenham Art Gallery &
Museum and she said her mother, who was a touring
dancer, worked in a theatre in Cheltenham before
she was born.
This will be her first gig in Cleeve, but Robert
has already played at the church twice.
I am so excited about it, said Toyah.
gig will be a public rehearsal. Rather than do a
rehearsal privately we thought it would be really
good to do it in front of an audience.
Rev Mike Holloway, team vicar at Bishops
Cleeve, said: Its a great opportunity
to see them before the tour.
is a collection for the church, but the audience
is being given the chance to see a great band for
Humans, which was started by Toyah in 2007, is
made up of Bill Rieflin, who turns his hand to
the bass guitar, bassist Chris Wong and
occasional special guest Robert.
describes the experimental music as deconstructed
pop songs where the rhythm and vocals take
is like story telling. I wanted it to sound like
European film noir, she said.
is emotional and dark.
bands debut album, We Are The Humans,
includes a 21st Century version of Nancy Sinatras
These Boots Are Made for Walkin.
said: We also have Purple Haze on the set
list, but these songs will sound very different
to their originals.
said she would rather perform in unusual venues
such as churches, instead of traditional gig
have naturally powerful acoustics so you dont
need very much PA. Any Norman Foster building
would be my ideal venue, she added.
19th February 2010