Archive for the ‘Smash Hits’ Category

Smash Hits: March 17-30 1983: Trafford Tanzi

March 17th, 2013

The March 17-30 1983 issue of ‘Smash Hits’ has been uploaded to the Smash Hits Archive, exactly 30 years ago to the day it was originally published.

The magazine, with Tracie Young and Paul Weller on the cover, includes a “Bitz” news clipping with the first mention of Toyah appearing in Trafford Tanzi.

Poll-winning warbler and sometime actress, your very own Ms Toyah Willcox, is due to begin treading the boards of the Mermaid Theatre, London from some time in late March. She’ll be taking over the title role in Trafford Tanzi, a very successful feminist musical that takes the form of a wrestling match. Rehearsals for the new cast have just been started, and they sound somewhat strenuous! The reason that there’s no precise opening date is because the show can’t go on until they’re all “in shape”.

Meanwhile, over in New York, Debie Harry is getting in shape to take the same role in a Broadway production of the same play! All this theatrical activity means, of course, that meantime there won’t be many records from either of this pair.

• Continue reading at the Smash Hits Archive.

Smash Hits: March 3-16 1983: Personal File

March 3rd, 2013

The March 3-16 1983 issue of ‘Smash Hits’ has been uploaded to the Smash Hits Archive, exactly 30 years ago to the day it was originally published.

The magazine, with Eurythmics on the cover, includes their first “Personal File” on Toyah (they printed another one in 1985 around the time of ‘Dont Fall in Love’ & ‘Minx’).

NAME: Toyah Ann Willcox
BORN: May 18, 1958, in Kings Heath, Birmingham, at home. I can’t remember much about it.
FIRST MEMORY: Sometimes I feel I can be aware of when I was inside my Mum. Otherwise, my first memory is of my first day at school. I was never told what school was; I was told about the day before that I was going to school. It was the first time I was ever parted from my mother and I never forgave her for it. I was petrified and cried and fought all day. I remember holding on to my Mum’s clothes and having to be ripped apart from her.

• Continue reading at the Smash Hits Archive.

Smash Hits Yearbook 1983

January 15th, 2013

The Smash Hits Archive uploaded the full ‘Smash Hits Yearbook 1983’ over Christmas. The annual includes two pages on Toyah, with a great late 1981 photo and quotes from three previous interviews, plus a BNW photo at the start of the book. Visit the Smash Hits Archive here and click below to go directly to the scans at flickr.

Smash Hits: All-Star Request Issue

January 6th, 2013

The All-Star Request issue (January 6 – 19 1983) of Smash Hits magazine was published 30 years ago today. This included ‘Ieya’ by Toyah and many other songword favourites. The complete issue has just been uploaded to the Smash Hits Archive.

Neil Tennant’s Smash Hits Christmas

January 5th, 2013

Neil Tennant’s Smash Hits Christmas aired on ‘BBC Radio 2’ on the 20th December. An interesting look back at the golden years of the magazine, including contributions from Toyah, talking about ‘Smash Hits’ in general as well as her iconic “Brave New World” cover from 1982. The programme has now been deleted from iPlayer and isn’t being repeated any time soon. Click below to listen to a recording of the programme that’s recently been added to You Tube.

Toyah on the Radio: Neil Tennant’s Smash Hits Christmas

December 9th, 2012

Toyah is guesting in a BBC Radio 4 special on Smash Hits this Christmas, hosted by Neil Tennant.

Neil Tennant’s Smash Hits Christmas: BBC Radio 4: Thursday 20th December: 11.30am
Neil Tennant was a journalist on music’s most poptastic magazine before he was a Pet Shop Boy. Here, with colleagues and stars, he recalls the early 80s golden age of Smash Hits.

We hear from founder and legendary magazine-maker Nick Logan, from editors David Hepworth and Mark Ellen, writers Miranda Sawyer and Sylvia Patterson and from regular Smash Hits cover girl, Toyah.

We also sample a rare recording from the 1982 Christmas Flexidisc (a message from the stars) and what’s probably Neil Tennant’s first ever recording.

Smash Hits: 30 Years Ago Today

May 27th, 2012

Exactly 30 years ago today, 27th May 1982, Toyah’s ‘Brave New World’ visage graced the cover of the biggest music magazine of the 80s, ‘Smash Hits’. If it’s not the it’s certainly one of the greatest magazine covers, and 30 years later it still looks fantastic. Visit the Like Punk Never Happened: Smash Hits Archive to read the full issue online.

Smash Hits: Toyah 1980/81

May 26th, 2012

‘Smash Hits’ magazine gave Toyah memorable cover issues in November 1980 and September 1981, but little did we realise what May 1982 would bring…

Smash Hits Archive: April 15-28 1982

April 16th, 2012

The 15-28 April, 1982 issue of ‘Smash Hits’ has just been added to the ‘Like Punk Never Happened – Smash Hits Archive’.

Toyah is included again this fortnight in a ‘Bitz!’ text article, by grumpy Rosalyn Chissick, on the newly published book ‘Toyah’ by Mike West.

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Simply Eighties: Thunder In The Mountains/Brave New World

April 10th, 2012

‘Simply Eighties’ featured ‘Thunder In The Mountains’ in their “Songs of The 80s” yesterday, and Toyah on the cover of ‘Smash Hits’, May/June 1982 issue, on their “80s Heaven’ page at tumblr.

Wow! You can really feel the energy coming from this new wave track by Toyah. Very original, alternative music and having not heard it for such a long time it sounds so fresh, even though this is from the early 80s! Plus, you get meaningful lyrics. This puts much of today’s music to shame.

Thunder In The Mountains reached #4 in the UK singles chart during October 1981, making this the third consecutive Top Ten hit for the band fronted by Toyah Willcox. It was the band’s eighth single release overall.

• Continue reading, at ‘Simply Eighties’, here.

• View the Toyah/Brave New World/Smash Hits page at ’80s Heaven’ here.

Smash Hits Archive: April 1-14 1982

April 2nd, 2012

The 1-14 April, 1982 issue of ‘Smash Hits’ has just been added to the ‘Like Punk Never Happened – Smash Hits Archive’.

Just a small news article (in Bitz!) on Toyah this fortnight, accompanied by this great photo from the 1982 Rock & Pop Awards: If you haven’t managed to secure tickets for Toyah’s forthcoming tour, here’s a flicker of light on the horizon. The 32 year old has just added an extra show at Sheffield City Hall on June 18th and two extras at London’s Hammersmith Odeon on July 17 and 18. Tickets cost £5, £4.50 and £4.

In addition to the tour she’s recording a new album for release in June. On April 25 she appears on telly in a play called “Blue Marigolds” which kicks off the new teeth-chattering series of Tales Of The Unexpected. This girl deserves a holiday.

View scans of the full issue, and every previous issue of ‘Smash Hits’, here.

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R.I.P. Eric Watson: 1955 – 2012

March 28th, 2012

The photographer Eric Watson, who took great photographs of numerous pop stars in the 80s, including Toyah, for ‘Smash Hits’ magazine, died on 18th March.

Born in Newcastle, Eric moved to London in 1974 and studied fine art at Hornsey College of Art from 1977 to 1980. His fellow students included Stuart Goddard (who became Adam Ant) and Mike Barson from Madness. On leaving college, he worked as an assistant to the photographers Red Saunders and Gered Mankowitz (known collectively as the Rembrandt Brothers), then photographing covers for Madness and Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark.

In 1981 he was invited to work for Smash Hits, after the editor, David Hepworth, saw photographs Watson had shot for Madness. He became the magazine’s main photographer and at around the same time Neil Tennant, whom he knew through a mutual friend from Newcastle, was made assistant editor.

Read a tribute to Eric, from former ‘Smash Hits’ editor, David Hepworth and his obituary from ‘The Guardian’. (Thanks to Gill)

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Smash Hits Archive: March 18-31 1982

March 18th, 2012

The 18-31 March 1982 issue of ‘Smash Hits’ has just been added to the excellent ‘Like Punk Never Happened – Smash Hits Archive‘.

This issue features a plethora of various Toyah content, including:

Free huge poster (Toyah on one side, The Human League on the other), photo from the ‘Rock & Pop Awards 1982’, a full-page advert for the VHS release of Urgh! A Music War, and Toyah as a toddler on a donkey in the ‘From The Cots’ photo feature.

View scans of the full issue, and every previous issue of ‘Smash Hits’, here.

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