"The 80s taught me to keep my eyes open and my ears to the ground, because I think we became incredibly blinkered. We all hated Thatcherism, how the miners were being ripped off, the terrible privatisations, but there was still this attitude of 'I'm alright Jack'. I was a culprit myself and I'll never live by that again."
That is good to know. Toyah, a middle class Punk, starred in a lousy and highly pretentious film called Jubilee in the late 70s, and purveyed middle class Punk to the masses in the early 80s.
But she now has her "ear to the ground". She uses her fame to highlight various injustices: the way NHS Trusts have caused our health service to crumble; the way government-backed health apartheid is levelled against the people of England; the continuation of the Barnett Formula; and the breakdown of democratic rule for England.
Personally, in the 80s, I was one of millions who marched for the miners, to free Nelson Mandela, to stop Clause 28, to stop Cruise. I even once threw an egg at Thatcher. I backed Billy and Red Wedge.
What happens nowadays?
Toyah, dear, in the 80s you sang a load of crap, so please don't bore us by talking a load of crap now. There is a lot less social and political concern in the 21st Century, society is far more fragmented.
And if you haven't got any dosh in England things are worse than they've ever been. Kids leaving school can't even claim benefits. An adult minimum wage is not payable until you turn 21 or 22! You have to be almost halfway to fifty to get a decent wage!
And if you're a pensioner...
If you really care about issues, Toyah, (or may I call you "Toilet" for old times sake?) - the way somebody in England can die prematurely from bone cancer for instance, whilst in Scotland that life would be prolonged, put your money where your mouth is and HIGHLIGHT IT, or please SHUT UP about how nice you are now and what an expert you are on the way things were in the 1980s!
Strangely enough, not everybody back then was a pampered pop star, getting up people's noses. We don't all share your experiences or point of view, and the vast majority of us certainly don't share the high opinion you currently have of yourself.
Sue Campbell whizzes in...
This 80s stuff is crap. I'm sorry, but it is. The 80s weren't all about money. The first few years were all about things getting worse than they had in the 70s - and that was saying something.
A couple of years in the middle - say 84-87 were a bit money mad and swanky, but we'd been up the financial creek since the early 70s, so it wasn't surprising that a bit of money suddenly in circulation turned people's heads.
Then, in 88 and 89, we suddenly went eco-friendly potty after the stock market busted in 87, and Acid House and Rave knocked out the shoulder pads.
Throughout all that, the spirit of protest was strong and people cared a lot more than they do today. It pisses me off that people scapegoat the 80s to feel all nice and warm and smug now.
Toyah - you were voted "Most Very Useless Thing" in "Smash Hits" in 1982 (and if you weren't, you should have been), you still fit that title pefectly, so please shut your silly trap or show us you mean what you say.
Slyv from Salford...
Was Toyah an "80s star"? I went out to buy a copy of "The Word" after reading your post, must say was most interested - "The Eighties - The Decade That Changed Everything"...
It certainly wreaked havoc - I remember the spirit of protest, the flamin' yuppies, the twonky new technology and the shoulder pads...
I always saw Toyah as a 70s/cusp 80s star. After all, she featured in Derek Jarman's "Jubilee" film in 1977 (or was it 78? It was cobblers, anyway), had a couple of hits in 1981 and 1982 and then vanished. "They wanted me to look like Pat Benatar," she wails. Well Toyah, honey, that was better than looking like David Bowie, c. 1973 - as you often did!
We had original brilliance like New Order, Grandmaster Flash, Propaganda, Billy Bragg, The Smiths, U2, Madness, Pet Shop Boys, Cocteau Twins... who needed thoroughly silly Toyah?
Not sure it was appropriate for "The Word" to ask Toyah for her story - she barely dabbled a toe in the 80s, but I reckon her opinion's hilarious. "I was selfish then, but I'm really caring and spiritual now". When, Toyah? Once a year? On your birthday? Can we come and watch?
At least Billy Bragg speaks up for the good of England at times. Toyah's just a useless old windbag.
This blog is supportive of the aims of the Campaign for an English Parliament, but is in no way connected.