Now I have seen her, today’s hottest rock singer in the world, Toyah (Willcox). Compared to this tiny redheaded whirlwind rest of the female singers- and some men- look like salt statues. Toyah is 145 centimetres of pure sex appeal and energy!

After the concert Suosikki Magazine got an exclusive interview with Toyah, an honour not bestowed on many publications in the world. Markku Fagerlund asked the questions and Toyah answered. At the same time Toyah read the latest issue of Suosikki and liked it so much she sent the readers a special message: “Keep going strong!”

Toyah Willcox is a 23 year old multi-talented artist who has this year finally reached the top. Her latest album “Anthem” has been well received in most European countries (it’s number 2 in the UK at the moment) and her gigs have been massively successful.

As well as being a famous singer Toyah is an actress. We’ve been able to admire her sexy persona in “Quadrophenia”, “Jubilee”, “The Corn Is Green” and various TV series including “Radioetsivä” (Shoestring) which aired also in Finland.

In this December she has been on the road so we got a chance to see the untamed singer which the whole of Europe is talking about.

Despite being tiny Toyah is like a redheaded tornado and a world class act. A proper parcel of speed, she does not let the audience rest for a minute.

To back her up she has four musicians lead by guitarist Joel Bogen, Toyah’s writing partner of many years. On the records Toyah’s music is mystical melodic rock which conveys various different moods, a bit like a mixture of David Bowie and Kate Bush - but live it sounds a lot
harder. Synthesisers and drums build a solid foundation which Toyah manipulates with her sexy voice.

She knows how to entertain. Dressed in a black mini-skirt (which is nothing more than a wide belt really), tights and a little top Toyah dances around the stage with her cordless mike. Sometimes she kneels down at the edge of the stage to strike a pose but is soon up again twirling around.

Most of the songs are from “Anthem”. At first the audience do not know how to react to this “devil” but they start to loosen up and when the concert ends with “I Want To Be Free”, Toyah’s most well known song, they rush right in front of the stage and sing along. Yet another conquest for Toyah.


The Toyah I meet after the concert is a lot calmer (thankfully) and a really sympathetic character. There are no signs of being a diva and even in normal clothes without make-up she still looks damn sexy.

Suosikki: Which is more important to you - singing or acting?

Toyah: Both. I wouldn’t do them both otherwise. I love acting, I’ve been acting since I was a child and it’s a part of me. But I can’t live without music because when I sing I’m really myself. When you’re acting you always play someone else, a role.

Suosikki: What got you interested in an acting career?

Toyah: When I was at school I used to make up all sorts of stories and pretend to be whatever – just to make my life more interesting. I guess that’s how it got started.

Suosikki: What about music? Did you have certain idols?

Toyah: Of course, many. But David Bowie and Marc Bolan were the main ones. I adore Bowie’s ability to change his appearance like a chameleon and his music. He is always one step ahead of everyone.


Suosikki: Judging by your record covers, stage clothes and dramatic make-up, image is very important to you?

Toyah: It’s very important. I spend an enormous amount on the record cover designs – for example we spent 24 hours taking photos for one cover before I was happy with it. Somebody might say there is a danger in creating such strong images but I don’t think so –after all we’re a live band as well. If we spent all of our time in the studio and people could not see me in real life the images might become self-serving which has happened to many bands. The many mystical images are just a part of me.


Suosikki: In your concerts you often go and sit with the audience and talk to them. Isn’t it dangerous for a woman?

Toyah: Only in England where they start grabbing and touching me straight away. But I love being close to the audience.

Suosikki: How do you deal with the people who touch you physically?

Toyah: Feel this (she beckons me to touch her bicep which is really hard) I slam them down.


Suosikki: When are you planning on calming down, maybe get married and have kids?

Toyah: Not for years, I’m still a child myself. At least that’s what I think. My biggest love at the moment are rabbits. When I find somewhere suitable to settle down I’m going to start breeding rabbits. They are so cute, they do the stupidest things, have big old ears and munch grass all day. I’m crazy about them.

Suosikki: You have your own make-up range?

Toyah: Yeah, so that the kids can imitate me. Not really, I’ve designed a cheap range for kids which is named after me. The idea is to give them tips how to use make-up properly - because of my job I know all of the make-up secrets. At the moment it’s being manufactured by three different factories and the sales have gone through the roof.


It hasn’t always been a bed of roses for Toyah. Last spring she fainted in the middle of a concert because of stress and exhaustion. Her whole career was in danger.

Toyah: The doctor said it was touch and go that I didn’t die. I was told to end the tour but I carried on with sheer guts. Since then I’ve made sure it doesn’t happen again. I make sure daily that I look after my health (ballet, jazz dance, gymnastics) and I watch what I eat. One experience like that was enough, it was horrible – I thought my heart was going to explode and I felt incredible pain. I will never forget it.

Suosikki, 1981
Thanks to Lärwi