March 2012

Yo! So, here we are in March already!

Started the first full rehearsals a couple of weeks back, what a killer! Even after the daily training I do I was still like a zombie after the first practice! The 2nd rehearsal was a bit easier, kinda braced meself for it! Took Ibuprofen and taped me fingers up n’ stuff. I will be happy once we have the set learnt and we are just perfecting it.

Anyway, before The Toy Doll shows in May, Tommy is doing dates in Germany with his band Goober Patrol, and The Amazing Mr. Duncan is off on a UK tour with his band Snuff!

We were hoping for a couple of gigs on 20/21st April in Poland, unfortunately the promoter there pulled out... the same happened in Portugal, bah! So, the years shows will start in Barcelona on 4th May.

I really can’t believe it’s all about to start again!

I remember when I was 3 years old in South Shields watching me older brother, Ernie, leave for gigs in the band's van! Never thought I would be doing it all these years later! Thanks to him for showing me how to tune up and me first few chords and for teaching me Apache by The Shadows! Ha!

Just for you lot, (I am sure he will kill me for putting this up!) here is his band, I'll let you guess which one's me older bro! :0)

Before it does all start again, I will say a huge thank you to YOU LOT for making it all possible yet again!

Cheers! And let me know what you think of the new album, even if you think its crap! No worries!

Take Care

January 2012

Yo You Lo!, Here is the back and front of the album, you can enlarge them if ya need glasses, like me!

Inside the CD will be a booklet with some nice pics and all the lyrics to the album songs.

New year resolution, to make all new songs that I write, at least as nice as Credit Crunch Christmas.

Its not the best album to be honest, but songs like Credit Crunch Christmas, Gordon Brown Gets Me Down, and Decca’s Drinkin’ Dilemma are gonna be the kind of standard I am always gonna aim for from now on. I am gonna write some songs without guitar solos too! I am a bit guitared out after recording this latest one! The 3 acoustic bonus tracks really show the songs in their naked format! Enjoy!

So, what’s happening now?

Well, our management are busy planning the years shows, there are mentions of lots of places, but until they get confirmed I am keeping schtum!

We start rehearsals this month, I am looking forward to getting stuck into them!

I am practicing at home everyday too, and training, which isn’t much fun! But I am feeling the benefit now for sure!
My daily breakfast from Monday – Friday is a pint of water and 2 pints of smoothie yoghurts with grapes, strawberries, bananas, nuts, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds, would kill for a beer now though!

The first shows confirmed are in Spain, but its highly likely there will be a couple of gigs before that, on 20th and 21st April.

Hey, I bought a lovely nice new Lambrusco stage bottle! About 25% bigger than the other one! I have got 2 in fact - one is a spare!!!

Between The Toy Dolls rehearsals Tommy will be doing German dates with his band ‘GOOBER PATROL’, and Duncan is heading off on a UK tour with his band ‘SNUFF’, so they should both be fit & well ready for the Toy Dolls shows!

Catch me on Facebook for more up to the minute news n’ stuff!

See ya at the gigs! Yipeee!


October 2011

Greetings from the recording studio, recording the new album!

Hoping you lot are well and happy! I certainly am! Its been hard work but its all coming together now! Finally!

Following Duncan’s great drum session, I laid down all the guitar bits, then Tommy Goober flew in from his new home in Stuttgart Germany, to record all the bass tracks, with a rockin’ growlin’ bass sound!

A few weeks back we started the backing vocals, with a little help from my mate Knox (Vibrators).

All the above was done in Unit 2 Studios on West London, with the magnificent help from our wizard sound engineer Adie.

Then I was off up north to Trinity heights studio to start the lead vocals, unfortunately me voice was wrecked after the two Spanish festivals! So I only got 50% of the singing done, I will continue with the rest next week!

The singing is sounding fantastic, well, if ya like that kinda thing I mean, Ha! Very dry and in ya face lead vocal sound, with the great help of our brilliant north sound engineer ‘Fred’.

My favourite part of recording is having the backing singers come in, this is when things really start to take shape, and this time was no exception, in fact probably the best bunch we have had, singing from morning till night ALL WEEK, and giving 100% from day one till the end, thanks loads to them! Not only did they do a totally wicked job, they were all gentlemen, Thank you!

Here's a few pics:

Ronan & Steve
Steve, Ronan, Ian & Billy
Decca & Lee
Billy & Dave
Some voice saving remedies the lads found!
Billy, Olga & Dave down the pub at the end of the week

So, a trifle sad having to leave everyone to head back to London, but its not over yet!

Yesterday I was back in the London studio laying down the acoustic bonus tracks, I've Got Asthma, Cloughy Is A Bootboy, Fiery Jack & The Sphinx stinks. We also added some bells and tambourine to Credit Crunch Christmas.

Now its back up north to finish the lead vocals and of course the mixing, cant wait to start that!

Its all sounding fresh and I am very happy, cant really tell which is the best track just yet, maybe Gordon Brown gets Me Down or Deccas Drinkin’ Dilemma, but it s far too early to tell!

Anyway, loads to do, me voice is just about back, so hopefully there will be no lead vocal problems!

I will keep you updated!

To all of ya, THANK YOU!!!!!!!!

Take Care

July 2011

Yo! Just talking a few minutes out to update you on the recording!

We started recording in June at Unit 2 studios in West London, which takes me about 70 minutes on the 187 bus (a tough journey) but that gives me time to map out each day's recording schedule!

I was a bit more anxious this time around as it has been 5 years since the last studio album, and this being the first album with our drummer, the Amazing Mr Duncan!

I need not have worried, following a week or so of intense rehearsals with Duncan, he had it nailed and rockin’! Probably the best time I have had doing the drum tracks, with the help of our wizardly fast engineer, Adie, made it all the more of a pleasure.

Here's a crap pic taken by meself on me mobile phone of me at the mixing desk...

This is actually the first time we have recorded digitally, as opposed to using a 2” tape machine, something else I was wary of, but it's turning out wicked!

After a few hours of getting a drum sound, we were off! This time it was just me & Duncan in the session, and Adie the engineer. Tommy Goober will come in to do his bass bits next month and I'm looking forward to seeing him, its been a while! What's he look like again!?

Anyway, it took the week to get all the drum tracks completed, with a rough guide guitar also. I was knackered at the end of it, so I can imagine how Duncan must o’ felt! Still, we found the energy to celebrate with a pint or 2 down the pub at the end of it!

I then had a coupla days off before returning to the studio for a week to do all the basic rhythm guitar parts. Telecaster outta the left, Les Paul outta the right, which wasn’t the way we recorded “Our Last Album?”. I used the Telecaster in stereo, but I think this is one of the reasons the album sounded a bit thin.

The guitar sound essentially is a Telecaster, backed up by the Les Paul, overall sounding like a really nice Telecaster! The same way we recorded Anniversary Anthems and a few others. Luckily the studio has a Marshall JCM 800 100 watt amp, dunno how I could o’ managed carrying mine on the 187 bus!

For the past 10 days I have been practicing all the guitar solos, and I will probably be back in studio recording em’ by the time you are reading this!

So, once the solos are done Tommy will be flying in from Stuttgart, Germany, where he now lives (international band or what!?) to record all the bass guitar parts.

Ever since recording “One More Megabyte” in 1996/7 (where we recorded the drums and bass first only to find huge tuning problems when the rhythm guitars were added, and had to re record 90% of the bass again!) we have always recorded the bass after the rhythm guitars. Its always possible to tweak the tuning on certain bass notes, but not so easy to do it on whole chords!

Anyway, solos at the moment, bass next, then rehearsing for the Spanish shows, then its back to the studio for vocals! And I am enjoying every minute of it, of course thanks to you lot for making it all possible, THANK YOU!!

I will keep you posted and get some more pics n’ stuff.

Difficult to tell which songs are sounding the best at the moment, probably Deccas Drinkin’ Dilemma and Credit Crunch Christmas, but its early days, and anything can happen once we start adding more guitars n’ singin’!

Oh, before I shoot off, there’s been a whole load of messages sent to my MySpace page, asking me to start an official Toy Dolls “FACEBOOK” account. Well, I have considered this and decided it's a good idea! I know there are a few unofficial Toy Dolls ones out there, but I am on to it. Please give me a few weeks to get one set up! Will keep you updated on this too!

Talk again very soon! And cheers for all your support and patience!

Take Care


April 2011


Greetings from a sunny hot London!

So, what’s been happening with you?

Well, you may have heard that our new studio album is finally written! Yayhay! The title will be announced soon…
Though the Japanese version will include a bonus Japanese cover version, this time, like the Idle Gossip album of 1986/7, we have decided there will be NO cover versions! Just Toy Dolls originals for a change!

This is the final track list:

Olgamental Intro
Dirty Doreen
Molly Was Immoral
Sciatica Sucks
Kevin's Cotton Wool Kids
Don't Drive Yer Car Up Draycott Avenue
Sunderland Celebrity
Down At The Old 29
Marty's Mam
Gordon Brown Gets Me Down
Decca's Drinkin’ Dilemma
Credit Crunch Christmas
Olgamental Outro

The album will also include four Toy Dolls oldies played and sung by me acoustically as bonus tracks, more details soon!

Tommy Goober wrote B.E.E.R and The Amazing Mr Duncan wrote Don't Drive Yer Car Up Draycott Avenue. Duncan will be singing lead vocals on this also!

Hey, and my mate Christophe is gonna be playing Classical harp on Marty's Mam! He is a genius!

I will be putting the latest bedroom demo “Molly Was Immoral” up on my MySpace page on May 9th, just for a few hours, check it out!

The actual recording will take place around July. It looks like first off will be the drums and guitars in a London studio, and I think the vocals and other stuff will be done up in Newcastle. More news on this soon, and we will get some pics for ya this time too!

Once the drums and guitars are done we will concentrate on a release date and our management can finally start booking shows, Yipee! I will keep you updated!

So, what else has been happening? Well I saw my northern mates “Crashed Out” play a rockin’ set in Kings Cross the other week, you really should check out their guitar player Lee... amazing! They were supporting “Deadline”, brilliant stuff and really nice people. Here's a pic of me n’ Liz (Deadline singer) after the show.

Talking of after the show, I met up with the lads from Cock Sparrer for the first time! What a lovely bunch o’ gentlemen they are, great to meet them finally!

Anyway, regarding this one off show in Spain on 9th September 2011 you may have heard about! The reason we decided to do it is because its been so long since our last show (Argentina) and we don’t wanna get too rusty! We are itching to get out there again, though we cant afford to be away too long because of recording/mixing the new studio album, so when we got offered this one off festival we jumped at the chance! We are just waiting for the festival website details and onstage times and we will let you know the full info any day now. I do know it's a biggy! In the Madrid area.

At the moment we are just learning all our studio recording parts individually, doing about 6 hours a day at the moment, then when Duncan returns from his “Snuff” tour, we will get into full rehearsals.

Ok, must get back to it!

Talk soon!

Cheers to all of ya.



Well, how are you lot? All hunky dory here in London!

I am really not keen on this time between shows to be honest, missing being on the road more than you can imagine… I know theres been a pile o’ mail asking when the next live shows are, and Tommy & Mr Duncan are eagerly awaiting news of gigs and recording too! Along with our road crew! Gigs will be arranged and announced after the album recording is underway, so bear with me!

It will definitely be a matter of months (not years!) now before we start recording! REALLY lookin ‘ forward to it!

Meantime I have been getting’ prepared! Apart from daily training and eating healthily, me Telecaster was in for repair last week, the input socket had collapsed over the decades of gigs, and also I replaced the original bridge, I had put on a new one a year ago as the original was cutting me palm to shreds, but it changed the sound a bit, strange eh? So I have decided to grin and bear the pain of the old bridge! I also replaced the scratchplate with a shiny new red one! Not as nice as the original black one, but I think it makes a nice change after 30 odd years!

Me Gibson Les Paul has been overhauled too, this guitar is used in the studio in stereo with the Telecaster for thickness. So, all ready to rock! Theres a guy I know up in the north east of UK who is a wicked guitar builder/repairer, Les Tones is his name, been going to him for years, anyway, he has done a great job on the LP and Telecaster, bit of a drive up to Hebburn (Tyne & Wear) from London, but well worth it, I wouldn't trust anyone else with me guitars! Oh, apart from Matzi, our backline tech, she would kill me if I didn’t say that!

Ok, I think I have spent enough time yappin’ on here! I should get back to the final bit o’ album writing! I say “final bit” but ya probably talking about a coupla months or so! But, I am getting’ there!

Performing and being back in the van on the road and seeing you lot seems a life time away at the moment! And I miss it like hell, But we will be back again soon enough, and I cant wait, for now its back to strummin’ and facing that blank piece o’ paper …..!

Talk soon
Cheers for yer patience with the album.

Take care

October 2010

Good day to you lot!

So, after the first half of the year with brilliant festivals, we found ourselves in Russia! All armed with hats n’ scarves, crazy, as it was quite mild actually! About the same as the UK! Brazil was the cold one! Freaky eh!

The venue in Moscow was great, stage a bit small though! Especially with half of you lot on it also!
Ha! a wild night! We had a lovely time, fantastic to see you lot again!

Straight after the gig we headed to the train station with soaking wet stage clothes! For an overnight journey to St Petersburg, what a beautiful city! And a great night we had there too! Thank you so much for your loyalty!

The Russian trip also had us flying from London Heathrow Terminal 5 for the first time, wicked! What an airport, like a little city!

Anyway, on our return from Russia, Tommy Goober, Matzi (backline technician) and Bernie (Soundman) all headed off to Rio for a week in the sun! alright for some eh!?

After a few days off I met up with me mate Ken, (from the Royal Ballet, believe it or not!) We decided on just a swift half down the pub as he had shows to do in Covent Garden at the Royal Opera house, and I had the South American punk gigs looming!

A swift half indeed, after numerous bottles of all sorts, we found ourselves in a cocktail bar in Piccadilly, then staggered out at midnight, and as if by magic we were in a Soho bar with me mate Chris (Gary Numan/3 Colours Red etc) and Nathan (Snow Patrol guitar player), I dunno who got the rounds in, or what they were? And I cant remember how I got home to bed in the small hours!

Anyway, I was still hungover on the flight 2 days later to Sao Paulo! Not the best state to be in for rehearsals!
After a good nights sleep in SP we woke refreshed and ready to rock! And off to the airport again!
Unfortunately I have developed a new found fear of flying, so taking Jet journeys to every gig in South America put me on edge a trifle!

The first show, in Porto Alegre was the venue we had played 15 years earlier! A great venue, though we didn't have the perfect guitar and bass amplification, or drum kit, we had a wicked night thanks to you lot! I cant believe loads of you were there 15 years earlier, you are as crazy as me! THANK YOU!

Next morning was an early rise to fly to Curitiba, I have never seen so much rain since.. er, being in London!
It certainly didn't put you lot off! A packed house at a great venue, we are not usually keen on corner stages, but this one worked somehow!

A wild, wild night, and a hot one, our stage clothes were still dripping the next morning when we flew to Sao Paulo!
We did try to meet as many of you as possible after the Curitiba show, time permitting!

Also we were quickly shuffted out by the security on leaving the building, we managed to meet some of you, unfortunately not all of you, I am so sorry if we didn't get to see you all, especially with you waiting outside in the dreadful rainy weather, we do appreciate your loyalty, and will catch up with you next time for sure.

After 4 hours sleep it was yet another flight, back to Sao Paulo.

I will point out that the original gig at a (MUCH BIGGER) venue, had to be changed, for reasons beyond our control, so we had to do the gig at The Clash Club, sorry to say it was sold out weeks in advance, next time hopefully a larger venue.

Unfortunately the support band cancelled, so there was only us! We like to have a support, but it was too late to arrange anything sadly.

The Place was as hot as HELL! No aircon, guitar tuning suffering from the heat, confetti and exploding Lambrusco bottles suffering also! Not to mention us and you lot, wow, hard to breath or what! Not the worlds largest stage either! And a number of electric shocks! Still, we had a great time! Sao Paulo people rock! Thank you.

Next up, another bleedin’ flight! To Argentina, Beunos Aires! What can I say? A great venue, packed, loved every minute! Unfortunately the power for the sound system broke down! So we couldn't come back on stage after the 2 encores! Cheers to the guys for giving me the ARGENTINA football shirt! Though it did cover up my manly physique somewhat!

Everyone stayed in Buenos Aires for another day, down the pub I am sure! Me ‘n Duncan headed straight back to the UK , down the pub also!

So, here we are, back home after another great year, thanks to you lot.
Looks like that's it for the 2010 shows, album to concentrate on now, back in to training too, though still the odd night down the pub!

Off to record the guitars lessons up at Ciarons house soon, about time eh!?

Anyway, enjoy the new lessons, I will be updating page this before too long.
For 2010 - THANK YOU!

September 2010

Hey you lot!

Long time no speak eh!?

Ok, Regarding the new album! Its almost complete and ready to record, a few final touches to complete, tweaks here and there.

In the past The Toy Dolls albums have been written and recorded when there have been no gigs happening, this made it a lot easier and quicker to complete.

Anyway, you know the shows end on 26th September, after then I will be getting the new batch of guitar lessons recorded at Ciarons place, and we will start the album recording over the next few months too, honestly!

The time between festivals has been filled up by arranging visas, rehearsals etc, and new travel arrangements over the volcanic ash cloud period!

However I did find 3 days to record Little Lees guitar solos for the new Crashed Out album “ Crash & Burn” full details can be found here. Lee is one of the best new punk guitar players of this decade, you should check him out!

Anyway, back to the summer festivals... yeah, what a great time we had, though not all plain sailing I can tell ya…

Apart from the Volcanic ash cloud forcing us to take mega car, train and ship journeys, our beloved backdrop went missing in transit for a few weeks, ya might have noticed it missing at quite a few of the festivals! However it has now turned up! Safe and sound in Hamburg, at Bernies house (our sound engineer) all packed and ready to be reunited with us in Moscow!

Also on another sad note Tommy Goober's much loved Music Man bass guitar arrived in pieces at the airport, after a great couple of shows in France at the Foreztival and The Teenage Lobotomy fest in Villasor, Sardinia. Unfortunately Tommys bass is beyond repair Fortunately we have a spare Music Man which Tommy will be using at the forthcoming shows, Tom meantime will be searching for a replacement for that great bass guitar which has been with us over the past 6 years.

More sad news too, our mate Colm “Pyscho” took his own life last week. Colm was actively involved in all things Punk, and we are in disbelief that he is no longer with us. RIP.

Ok, enough of this somber update… We met some great lads at the festivals, The Hives and Gwar, Aggrolites were gentlemen, lovely to meet them for the first time, of course its always a party with our mates Ska P! Great to meet up again with Bad Religion! (even older than us!) All the festivals were fab! The highlight, for me, was maybe Pukkelpop, where we probably played our best, we had great night the night before in Czech Republic too, then drove overnight to Austria, for a flight to Germany, then in the van to Belgium! I am still wiped out!

Last weekend saw us in Sardinia for the first time! Wicked! And what food you lot have, and coffee, love it! Across the road from our hotel was a Pug , my favourite animal! Heres a couple of pics, nothing to do with the Toy Dolls I know, but, what a face!

Its been a tiring, eventful and highly enjoyable summer! Now I am ready for club shows, where we can rock and play our full set! Then its getting stuck into the album, after 26th September, and after a few nights down the pub!

Thanks for your continued loyalty and support, and for your patience waiting for the album!

Take care

February 2010

HEEELLLLOOO you lot! Long time no speak eh!

I won’t start talking about the album, tours etc, I will leave that to our webmaster, Ciaron.

So, whats been happening?

Well, I must say, the France /Switzerland tour was amazing, great to see you all again, and also lovely to see a loadsa new faces too! I was dying with the flu by the time we reached Paris mind ya, so I will apologize for the croaky old voice!

One of me favourite actresses “Maggie Jones” who played “Blanche” in Coronation Street sadly passed away while we were on the tour, that dampened me spirits somewhat…but, what can ya do…

Hey, on a brighter note, what a great night I had at Ginger Wildheart’s birthday bash at the Garage in Highbury. London on 17th December, Although I was a nervous wreck!

There were rehearsals the day before in a Shepherds Bush practice studio, all very professional n’stuff.

The amplifier I used was some new Marshall thing though, horrible! Thin tinny thing, but at least I had me own Telecaster!

Met some lovely people at the show, me mate Chris McCormack (3 Colours Red/Gary Numan) was up doing a tune too, along with Nathan (Snow Patrol) & Tom (Loyalties) and host of other great guests, Ginger was brilliant by the way, a true professional, great performer and songwriter, and most importantly a gentleman.

Of course songwriting for the album didn't stop over this period, don’t worry!

Hey, I met up with ex-Peter and the Test Tube Babies drummer “Christophe” in France, hes the one who plays the classical harp on this…

Amazing isn’t he! So I have asked him to play the harp on the intro of one of the new songs on the album “MARTYS MAM”. Hope ya will like it!

So, now, apart from taking a few hours to write this section and answer all Ciaron's interview questions!, its on with the rest of the album, and training, yuk!

Talk soon
And take care

October 2009

Well Hellllooooo you lot!

Taking half an hour out from writing here! Really enjoying it all to be honest, would rather be on the road though, but still, having a good time, songs are coming together finally!

I met up with our ex drummer “DICKY” a few nights back, 'aint seen him since 1984!

A great lad, and a really talented musician, he is playing with Ritchie Blackmore's (DEEP PURPLE!) band “BLACKMORES NIGHT” now! Dicky is the drummer on those early 1983 Toy Dolls videos with Baz, they both had hair back then!

Here's a pic of me n’ Dicky down the pub!

So, apart from being down the pub with Dicky! Wheels have been put in motion for 2010 plans, our 30th ANNIVERSARY SHOWS!! Unbelievable eh!? When we began In 1979 I though it would only last a year or two, here we are 30 years later!!

This is a real rough outline, but …

The album should be recorded around March next year, its well on schedule now, I am really excited about it, gonna feature a song or two from The Amazing Mr Duncan also! Just to give it a bit contrast.

The songs written so far are:

Kevin's Cotton Wool Kids
Down At The Old 29
Deccas Drinkin’ Dilemma
Sciatica Sucks
Dirty Doreen
Olgamental Intro
Olgamental Outro
Credit Crunch Christmas
You and Me song (cover)
Marty's Mam
Gordon Brown Gets Me Down
Sunderland Celebrity

There's gonna be a bonus track on the Japanese release, featuring a Japanese cover, sung in Japanese! More news on this soon! Just busy trying out a few covers! Aint easy when Nihongo isn’t ya mother tongue!

Gonna try to get some special guests on the album also! More news on this later!

As I mentioned, 2010 is gonna be our 30th anniversary shows! So we are gonna be out there celebratin’ as much as poss, I cant be precise just yet, but we are gonna do as many festivals as possible! And we intend doing tours in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Russia, Brazil/Argentina, after April, then from the Autumn onwards, Germany, Switzerland/Austria/Holland/Belgium.

There will be a separate tour of Spain also, and Japan.

We are also gonna try to include dates in Macedonia/Bulgaria/Serbia etc etc… and a number of other countries…..!

Anyway, we are in meetings with our management, and are eagerly trying to get this confirmed asap! All confirmed shows will be on the tour dates ASAP.

Shows will probably continue in to early 2011, then? Well, who knows, I will be back down the pub that's for certain!

As for The Toy Dolls…

Back to now! Still working on the album everyday, and training and rehearsing for the French shows, really itching to get going there! Back In the van/soundcheck/gig/hotel/bed/back in the van/soundcheck/gig/hotel/bed/back in the van………

Ha, I know I will grow tired of the on the road routine, but at this moment in time I am desperately hungry for it! Am I mad?

Its an absolute pleasure to be playing with Tommy Goober and the Amazing Mr Duncan! Cant wait just to plug me guitar in the amp and get goin, kerrang!

Life is good! Thanks to YOU LOT! xx

See ya all in France sooooooooooon!

June 2009

I know, I know! I can hear ya sayin, where have you been!?!

Well I can tell ya its been non stop here!

We had a load of rehearsals for the 2009 festivals, new stage moves/songs/clothes etc to sort.

Anyway, now the festivals are underway, we can kinda sit back n’ play! Makes it sound easy eh!? I wish!

Looks like more festivals are gonna come in for 2009, great to see ya all again, though I do prefer playing our own Toy Doll club shows, with a full length set and more songs n’ stuff! However, the festivals have been rockin! Thanks to you lot! Great to see you all again, and as I keep saying, and will continue to do so, THANK YOU for your loyalty, its coming up to 30 years now, can you believe it!?

I can tell you that there are serious talks of a 2009 tour of one European country, that's all I can say or our manger will kill me!

The past few weeks I have been hard at work writing, I am on to the 11th song, but once I get to 12, I am going back to the start to perfect them all. Far too early to say when it will all be done and dusted, but it's getting there! I have just finished a song about the Old 29, a pub in Sunderland, sadly missed, and Sciatica Sucks, taken from first hand experience I can tell ya!

Meantime, I think we might embark on some mini club show tours before the release. I love writing, but being on the road is what its all about!

When the album is finally released, it will coincide with our 30th Anniversary shows! My God!!

So, the festivals... Great to see Fat Mike and the Gimme Gimmes the other week in Germany, true gentlemen, real sad that we missed Cock Sparrer though, I heard they were rockin. Alice Cooper rocked in Spain! Sadly we never met the legend himself, though we had a great time with Molly Hatchet and the Fun Lovin Criminals! All really good guys indeed.

Hey, we are playin with the mighty Buzzcocks in France in a few weeks, hero worship for sure, wow! Cant wait!

Tommy's been busy recording with Goober Patrol and Vanilla Pod, in fact Vanilla Pod even persuaded me to do a guitar solo on one o’ their new album songs, sounds rather good, If I may say so myself! And you may have read, Tommy has produced Napalm deaths new vid! A man of many talents indeed!

Duncan, well, ya know Duncan, he is not one to sit around for long, he is in Japan as we speak, playing shows with his band brilliant Duncans Divas, Duncan has also been doing a string of his own acoustic solo gigs. And, ya may have noticed he gets to play fiddle on Ashbrooke Launderette at The Toy Dolls live shows now!

My old band mates the Dickies will be touring Europe next month, I will get to a gig or two for sure. You really oughta get to at least one! It may be their last tour, ha! Leonard is the best singer the world, really!!

Training everyday here, trying to keep in some kinda shape for the shows, I hate it though to be honest with ya! Running, push ups, sit ups, yuk! But the gigs are sooooo much more enjoyable when you are kinda fit! No six pack yet though,!

Anyway, better shut up, and get back to songwriting!

Talk very soon. And, BIG cheers to all of you for sticking around.

Hey it's nearly the weekend, I may have a beer before writing...

February 2009

Good Morning from NW London.

Surely it cant be February already!? In fact surely it can be 2009!

Well, here we are again, I am taking 20 minutes out to keep ya up to date!

Working on the album everyday here, as well as rehearsals and training for the 2009 festivals.

All coming along nicely, I am up around 6.30am each day training, first off is a boring pint o’ water, then training, then two pints of smoothies with fresh fruit, and 2 slices of wholemeal bread, after this I am ready to go back to bed! but no…its into me writing room…

I did have a spell of writers block for a while, now suddenly I am on a roll! I guess that's the way it is when yer creating stuff, at least that's the way it has been for me for past 30 years or so!

No alcohol for me either, trying to get fit for the shows, will be ready for a beer after the Passpop festival in April though I can tell ya!

I can see a light at the end of the album writing tunnel now, been really enjoying it to be honest, but I am desperate to get back out on the road, more than ever!

Our management have said there should be plenty of festivals in 2009, so that's keeping me spirits up!

I know Duncan is working on his side projects and Tommy also, but we are all really in need of a Toy Doll fix ASAP! Gonna be great to play some old stuff that we ain't played in decades! Cant wait!

It's a bit early to tell, but roughly, 2009 will consist of festivals, and hopefully by the end of the year the recording of the next album! If all goes to plan then this will be released in 2010, along with ..TA DA…Toy Doll shows, and more festivals.

Isn’t this a great life!?…Thanks to you lot! CHEERS

November 2008

Well, how are ya!?

I know, I know, I haven’t been on here for a while, my apologies, but I have been so busy trying to get this album written!

Everything's going fine here, in the middle of the 7th song, though I have also got bits n’ pieces done for songs 8 and 9 also, so that's good! I did get stuck for a few weeks, but the wheels are back in motion now!

Though I love writing and recording, nothing compares to live shows, I am missing being on the road like mad to be honest, read about 2009 on the main updates.

Ya probably read on the main updates about me part in Eastenders?! Fame at last eh!? Ha, don't blink or ya’ll miss me!

Was up at Ciaron's house recently recording another string of guitar lessons for ya, these will start to be introduced from the next updates, enjoy em! Sorry it's took so long to get around to recording them!

Anyway, been workin’ on lyrics all day, gonna visit the fridge for a beer!

Will try to keep this section updated more often!

Cheers for ya continued support x

May 2008

Happy spring time for NW London!

Hope you lot are all well.

Its full steam ahead here, working everyday on the next album, got 3 songs completed so far, hope to start the 4th this week, just fishing around for inspiration now.

Meeting up with Tommy Goober and The Amazing Mr.Duncan in the next couple o’ weeks, for rehearsals in Norwich, before the Spanish show on 7th June, really lookin’ forward to that one, loadsa bands on, and been ages since our last show, September last year infact! In London.

Been training like crazy and no alcohol for while, so will definitely have a few San Miguels after that night's show for sure!

For now, its back to the grind, its 6.30am, so have to go training! a daunting thought, but will keep the Spanish beers in mind!

Will keep you updated on the song writing, and when a few more are done I will let you have some titles.

Ok…back to strumming….

See ya in Castellon, Spain, June 7th.

Take care

March 2008

Well, good day to you all! Long time no speak eh!?

If I spend too much time yapping on here, you will be wondering what's happening with the writing of the new album, right!?

So I will keep it short n’ sweet…

I spent a month or so writing in Tokyo, here's a pic of me on me lunch break!

Now I am back in London, and writing 5 days a week, I will let ya know when I have a few songs complete.

There will be a few one off gig/festivals throughout the year, but I cant take too much time away from writing, otherwise it will never get done!

Anyway, this is just to let ya know that I am alive and hard at work on the album!

Just incase ya interested, I am working on song number 1 now! And the way I am writing is with an acoustic guitar and cassette recorder, once I have a chorus written, and lyrics, then I move to the computer, and work on the format and demo in Pro Tools.. anyway, strumming to do! Speak soon.

Take care

Ps. I have to say, I caught a snippet of The Cockney Rejects new DVD, at the Mean Fiddler, superb sound and looks faaaantastic, I wish I coulda been there, and hope one day to make a DVD as good as theirs!. Wicked.
Dec 1st 2007

Good day to you all from a rainy North West London. The weather may be gloomy, but perfect for being stuck in me flat song writing! Everything goin’ fine here, I was in Tokyo for a few days until yesterday, for a bit o’ er..inspiration! Jet lagged as hell now, but ready to rock! The food n’ beer in Japan is the best!

So, apart from song writing and goin’ down the pub, I did manage to get to see the mighty Penetration at the 100 club 2 weeks back, wow! A great set, lots of dynamics, well structured and a fantastic voice from Pauline, some classic songs also, very enjoyable.

Also, the highlight of the year, was when me mate Chris (3 Colours Red) landed a couple o’ guest tickets for The Sex Pistols gig in Brixton, I took little persuading! What can I say, I have read good reviews, bad reviews, but the British press are so cynical, can’t believe any of em! I can only say, the introduction was fantastic, the sound and lights were fab, the set started with the guitar riff playin’ Pretty Vacant, which went on about 20 bars longer than the record, making everyone gasping with excitement (including meself) for the drums n’ stuff to join in, MEGA stuff, Johnnys voice was great, layered on top o’ the band, could hear every word, great set, great guitar sound, I will say that Jonesy is a guitar god, I was totally inspired! Great to meet up with Glen again afterwards, and Paul Cook for the first time, I am honoured!

So, after Chris dragged me into Soho, drinkin’ till the small hours, I left him in some deafeningly noisy bar at 4am! Am I too old for this!? I needed sleep! I was up again song writing at 8am, But that was no problem, thanks to the Sex Pistols, I had a loada energy!

Anyway, I am gonna try to get to see Sham 69 next Saturday in London, all good stuff!

Meantime…back to the pen, blank piece o’ paper n’ guitar!

Talk soon!

Love ya

9th October 2007

Good Day y’all

Heres a pic o’ me Tom n’ Duncan, after a few beers in Tokyo the other week!

So, The UK tour is done! What can I say!? A HUGE HUGE thank you for being so loyal and waiting so long. We had an absolutely wicked time, fantastic to see so many old faces, and so many new!! Wow! Thank you!. Hope you enjoy reading the tour report on the updates.

So, now we disappear off the face o’ the earth! Or so it may seem! But don't worry, I am taking a few weeks off, then it full steam ahead with writing the next album. It may appear like we are just putting our feet up, but believe me, we will be hard at work! Not sure how long it will take to write, a year maybe? Then it all has to be rehearsed, then recorded!

The updates will be a bit less frequent for a while, but like I said, don't worry, work is being done!

Thank you to everyone who came to the shows this year, its been fantastic, a personal thank you from me to Tommy and Duncan, its been a pleasure touring with you both, and thank you to our great crew Bernie, Merten, Matzi and Koen.

And also a special thank you to TV Smith, it was an absolute joy touring with you. Thank you.

Most of all, thank you to you lot, CHEEEEEERS!

Speak soon. Keep yer Ask Olga questions comin in!


July 29th 2007

Well, long time no speak!

Hope ya all doin well, and not suffering from frost bite in northern Europe, or sun stroke in southern Europe, a somewhat wild climate! I just shoved this picture up coz I like it so much, though it's a crap one o’ me, it's a great shot of Tommy!

First off, unfortunately I was too late in getting a ticket for The Ruts gig in Islington last week, I was gutted. By all reports it was a great night, and our forthcoming UK Tour special guest, TV Smith put on a great show too.

For those of ya who are not aware, it was benefit gig for Paul Fox (Ruts guitar player) who was diagnosed with terminal cancer recently. The Ruts are one o the greatest ever Punk bands, with one of the greatest ever guitar players, Paul. Because I have been so busy, I left it till 2 days beforehand to get a ticket, by then the gig was sold out. Something I regret.

I have never met Paul, but I have admired him from afar for many years, love to him, and thank you for being such an inspiration.

So, what's been happening?

The Amazing Mr Duncan has been in the studio for the past 3 weeks, working on yet another bleedin’ side project! Check him out with one if his many bands, Billy No Mates, in August 22nd, Leeds Joseph's Well, and Newcastle Trillians 23rd, oh and also at a selection of Toy Dolls gigs!

Tommy Goober also has a gig with the irrepressible Goober Patrol. at Leeds “Out of Spite Festival” on August 12th.

Next up for the Toy Dolls is The Dicky Woodstock festival in Holland this week, really lookin forward to getting back to the Netherlands for sure! Been 2 weeks since we all met, and I am missin em already!

We all meet up in Amsterdam on Wednesday, drive to the hotel near the festival site, then it's a long hot soak in the bath, before the next days gig, then the following day its The Nirwana Tuinfeesten festival, also in Holland, looks to be another good one!

After that gig we drive straight to Amsterdam airport hotel (I haven’t told the lads this yet... sorry lads!) as we have a dead early flight the next day to Sweden, for the Augustibuller festival, we will have a few beers after that show for sure! Really lookin forward to the 3 festivals, and seein you lot again in Holland and Sweden.

Once again, thanks loads to all of ya for purchasing UK tour tickets, its looking greeeeat! Thank you!

Talk soon,

Take care

June 13th 2007

Hey! Hope you are all happy!

We are having a ball at the festivals, great to play some old numbers again, and especially nice to meet up with ya all after the shows.

In between the festivals, there’s quite a bit of arranging to do, and rehearsing, Tommy Goober is also playing shows with the wonderfully unique Goober Patrol and Vanilla Pod, whilst Mr Duncan is constantly doing shows with Billy No Mates, keeps em’ both outta mischief!

I have been doing little tiny parts in BBC TVs Holby City, hardly worthy of an Oscar, but a bit extra dosh towards some new stage props!

I am really pleased the way the UK tour advance tickets are going THANKS LOADS to you lot, I am truly flattered! And I really can believe that ya can still remember us!

The Durham show is not far off selling out already, so if ya want a ticket, ya better be quick! And the London show aint that far behind! THANK YOU!!!

So, Friday this week sees us in Toulouse, well lookin’ forward to that one! We have a rehearsal actually in Toulouse on Thursday night, then the show in Albi on Saturday night, around 8 or 9pm.

See you lot in France!

Take care

April 22nd 2007

Evening All!

Hope everyone is in high spirits, and all is hunky dory. It all is here for sure, spring is here finally, and some wicked festivals are seeing us throughout the summer!

Then the biggy! The UK tour!

I will take this opportunity to say THANKS LOADS to all of who have already purchased tickets for the shows! They are selling well fast, and looks likely to be a rockin tour! Its gonna be great to see you lot again!

Hey, and what about TV Smith as support!? Wow! A hero of mine! Took a lot of courage to ask him! He took no persuading, and seems a real sound geezer! And its gonna make a very nice contrast. Tommy Goober saw his show in Germany last year, he says he is wicked! So if you don’t wanna see us, get yerself along to see TV Smith at least!

Anyway, please let me know if you have any problems getting the UK tickets, and cheers loads again to those of you who already have them!

Talk soon!
Stay cool!

Take care

February 18th 2007

Well, hello to you lot! Its been a few months! But if you think we have been snoozing, ya couldn't be more wrong! There’s been non-stop meetings, arranging, planning etc.

First of all, you probably will have noticed the festivals starting to get confirmed for 2007, we are really excited about this, and there’s quite a few more on the horizon!

Anyway, there will be a new set list, including some real Toy Doll oldies! The new set list will begin around May/June 2007. Shows before then will feature the Our Last tour? set, shows after then will feature our “Never Ending Tour” set!

Things will go very quiet from around October onwards, this is because we will be taking time out from live shows to concentrate on writing another new studio album.

Don't worry if you think we have disappeared off the face of the earth, we will be hard at work! I can assure ya!

Which brings me to the next bit!

Over the years people have been constantly writing and asking that question, “When are you gonna play the UK!??”

The decision to not play the UK, since the departure of K’Cee & Marty, is because I believed that that line up worked fantastically, I was so proud of it, and, the UK is our home, its where we began, and I want the show to be at least as good as it was then, you lot deserve the best.

Having toured South America recently, I was forced to realise that the present line up had surpassed the musicianship, professionalism and showmanship of the 1990 line up.

I never thought any drummer could have the speed and accuracy of Marty, but having Duncan in the band has changed those thoughts completely! Duncan has the same speed and accuracy as Marty, but with added power and individuality! And he is a wicked singer also!

And Tommy Goober, well, what can I say? If it wasn't for a great friend of mine, Ian, (The Dickies merchandiser) Tommy wouldn't be a Toy Doll! So you know who to blame Tommy!

In a pub in North West London, Ian suggested giving Tommy a trail, just as kind of a stand by, incase things didn't work out with Reb! Over the past few years Tommys playing ability has improved beyond belief, and his stage performance has done likewise! I remember my brother, Ernie, saying to me in Porto, Portugal, “Tommys even better than K’Cee” and that was over 2 years ago!

The clarity in Tommys playing is far more positive than K’Cees was, and his stage performance has become so much better, and, most importantly, more natural than any other member has ever been.

Having said all that, I haven’t got any better since 1979!

So, why am I saying all this?

As I said earlier, we will be taking time out from October, to write another album, and, who knows what will happen from then!? We aint getting any younger for sure! But, I really believe that now is the time to tour the UK!

The Toy Dolls UK tour, the first one in over 20 years, will take place in September 2007!!

There wont be so many shows this time around, maybe around 10 just to test the water, so don't worry if your town is missing off the tour list!! If all goes to plan, we will be back to do more! I will say that I have decided to do very small venues, its what we prefer, and what is best for this band for sure.

The actual gigs will start getting confirmed shortly, I am as nervous as hell, but. I can’t wait to see you lot again! If ya still out there!!

I will take this opportunity to say that another reason why I believe this time feels right to play again, is because of having such a fantastic crew, Bernie (soundman), Matzi (backline tech), and Koen (merchandiser).

Unfortunately, Ernie (lighting tech) resigned 2 years ago, but I am gonna try to persuade him to join us on this very SPECIAL tour!

More news soon!

Itchin’ to get to Bulgaria and Macedonia, gonna be wicked! See you lot soooooon!

Take care