April 12, 2019 Interview – Samantha Fox
Some would say dreams only happen when you are sleeping, but in the case of Samantha Fox, they are a vivid reality. Discovering her calling to entertain at a very young age, Fox would go on to become an international star by the time she was 18; adored as a model, and then a popstar. Attaining a slew of chart-topping singles, she would eventually sell over 30 million records worldwide, solidifying herself in the music world. Yet, while some may think it was an easy ride to the top for a young lady with a pretty face, the truth is, Fox came from a working class background and applied that ethic to building her career.
Amassing a great deal of life experience at a young age, Fox finally decided to put everything into words, sharing all with the world in her 2018 autobiography, Forever. Still full of fire, and after sustaining a good deal of heartache in recent years, she is ready to put out new music, and dare we say…fulfill yet another dream. Excited for the next chapter in her life, Fox recently sat down to talk about the craziness of fame, her plans for new music, her desire to rock and roll, plus much more.
Cryptic Rock – You have been involved in entertainment as a musician, actress, and model for over three decades. Attaining a great deal of success during the ’80s, you continue to tour around the world all these years later. First, briefly tell us, how would you describe your journey in entertainment?
Samantha Fox – It’s been a very long journey, a long roller coaster of a journey. (Laughs) It’s been fantastic though, what can I say? I just released the book Forever last year, sat down, and went through my press cuttings from 1983; which I’m so glad I collected, just seeing what I’ve achieved, where I’ve been in the world, and what I had done at such a young age.
Basically living that dream, which I dreamed about as a little child – to travel the world, be successful, be an entertainer – it all came true! It’s a wonderful feeling and it’s been a wonderful journey. Like all journeys, like a roller coaster, there has been ups and downs, but you take those downs and pull yourself straight back up; it makes you such a stronger person. You learn from all those experiences.
Cryptic Rock – Right, we are always growing and learning in life. Speaking of your autobiography, Forever, what was it like putting everything into words?
Samantha Fox – It was a long time coming, and there never seemed to be a right time. Lots of people asked me to do one after the first big initial success in the first couple of years, when it all just went crazy and I went onto the scene, becoming international over night. People said, “Let’s do a book now,” but to me, it only had just begun. Yes, it was interesting how I grew up and the rest of it, and it wasn’t all handed to me on a plate, but I hadn’t experienced life yet. When I got offered my first book, I was only around 18. What do you know at 18?
Later on in my life, in my twenties, I was going through my music career. I wanted to just have a lot more experiences before I shared them with everyone. I wanted to make that one and only book, a book that is interesting and one you didn’t want to put down because it was exciting. I’ve had a very exciting life, so exciting that I have Netflix ringing me and production companies saying they want to make a series of the book; they think each chapter is like an episode. People are finding it fascinating and exciting, which is great!
Cryptic Rock – It will be interesting to see if a film or series gets off the ground based off the book.
Samantha Fox – Yea! When the book first came out, I’m not sure about in America, but it was a best seller on Amazon. I didn’t get to do much promotion for it in America, which is a shame. It just didn’t get the push I believe it deserved in America. You know what it’s like? If you don’t have the right distribution, promotion, or marketing team, that brilliant album dies a death.
Cryptic Rock – That is very true. Well, hopefully people will become aware about the book in the USA as time goes on. Speaking of music, as mentioned, you did in fact model for some time, but music has really always been your strongest passion. At what age did you realize music was something you wanted to pursue seriously?
Samantha Fox – I was very young when I decided to go into music. I was the sort of kid at school who did Drama, I always did school plays. If there was anything in the local paper, anything from a bubble gum-blowing competition to a limbo competition, I would say, “Mum, I want to go!”
When I was about 5, I went to drama school, not one of these posh ones, but one for working class kids. Then I went to another acting school called Judi Dench Mountview Theatre School, which was a little bit more strict; not for the working class kid, you had to audition to get into this school. You could not just be able to act like an East End kid, but you had to be posh, different, and totally opposite of what you were. That was another great journey and I learned so much there.
It was always in my blood. When I was at Judi Dench, if there was any singing to be done, I would do a lot of singing in the shows. I learned to project my voice, I learned to work with older people who were actors; I learned the business quite young. I then went into modeling, did that for 3 to 3 1/2 years. Then, when I was around 19, I was ready to get out there and do my music, which was always really the top of my list. That’s the way life goes, you just have to wait for the right song, and that song was called “Touch Me (I Want Your Body).” That is when it all went crazy. When I left the modeling business, I was given that song and it cracked it around the world for me. That was my dream come true.
Cryptic Rock – Wow, and you mentioned “Touch Me (I Want Your Body),” which was on your majorly successful 1986 debut album. The album was followed by your self-titled record a year later, and two more records within the next four years. Extremely busy recording and performing, what was that period of time like for you?
Samantha Fox – Oh my god, it was the busiest 4 years of my life. I made the first 2 albums in England, and the second 2 albums in New York when I lived there. Back then, you would make the album – and this was a different age, it was not the digital age, this was times of rooms of huge desks of splicing tapes – it would take a long time to make the album.
Then, after making the album, we spent a lot of time traveling the world, maybe 3-4 countries a week. We would do all the major chat shows, TV shows performing that new song, interviews with newspapers/magazine, and then, get a tour in there somewhere. It was very busy. I was young. It was good, I don’t know if I could do it now though. (Laughs)
Cryptic Rock – It sounds like it was an extremely crazy time. You have continued to tour around the world and have performed in places many artists traditionally have not. What have your worldly travels taught you about others?
Samantha Fox – I love performing all over the world. Unusual places, places that not many westerners will go. These days, we have to rely a lot more on our live performances and our fans, because of the amount of streaming, it’s just not like it used to be. Back in the day, you would have to sell 500,000 records to get a gold disc. People are just not buying records like they used to, so we have work very hard and do a lot of traveling.
That is the best part about it all anyway, actually performing these songs live and seeing fans’ reactions. That is especially if you go to an obscure place like Siberia, where they never think they are ever going to see Samantha Fox, they appreciate you so much. Sometimes it’s 2 planes, but you get there. (Laughs)
One day I can be working in Paris, the next day Kazakhstan. I never really choose to go there, because it’s so far, but being able to get the opportunity to go to these countries, see what there cultures are like, and how they live, you see some pretty exciting stuff.
These days I can kind of pick and choose the gigs I really want to do. If it’s a country I have never really been to, I say, “Let me spend a couple more days while I’m there so I can look around and take it in.” Back in the day, you never took anything in because there was no time. Sometimes, you couldn’t even come out of your hotel room. You couldn’t go out with a mob or a hassle from the paparazzi; you would just want to go down around the corner to get yourself an orange juice and it all becomes a big drama.
Cryptic Rock – That has to be a bit overwhelming to deal with, especially at a young age.
Samantha Fox – It’s scary when you’re taking your driving test at 21 and you have 20 cars following you and all taking pictures while your taking a driving test. No wonder I failed 4 times! (Laughs)
Cryptic Rock – (Laughs) Yes, that has to be nerve-wracking. You have released some new music in recent years, but can we expect a new Samantha Fox album soon? What direction are you going musically?
Samantha Fox – I did a Pop album 2 years ago, but unfortunately before that, my partner was suffering with cancer for 2 years and died. The album was near half done during that time, but it was very difficult for me to write or record at that time, so there’s been a big delay on that album. There are 2 more tracks to finish, I would say it has an ’80s influence, but there are also some live musicians, so it’s pretty powerful. It has the hooks that the ’80s had. It’s sounding really good and very uplifting.
Then, about a year ago, a very rich Russian came to see me and my band at a festival; Bonnie Tyler and Hanoi Rocks were also playing at it. He came to see me, then wrote me an email and said, “I can see a lot of Rock in you.” I have a mix of stuff with my early stuff which all have guitar solos, for a Pop Rock edge, and for live shows I make it really much more Rock. He said, “I’d love to make a Rock album with you.” I said I would love it! I have always wanted to do it, I have always been a frustrated Rockstar. (Laughs)
Then I had an idea of making it a celebrity Rock album, because over the years I’ve met a lot of rockstars and become friends. Some of which have died unfortunately, but we’ve got Motörhead’s Phil Campbell, and then there is Mikkey Dee, who currently drums for Scorpions. I’m also hoping to get Slash on one of the songs, as well as looking to get Glenn Tipton of Judas Priest; he is a great mate for many years ago, he played on one of my albums years ago. I’m trying to make it this really cred, cool Rock album and see what happens. If it sells it sells, if it doesn’t, it doesn’t. Either way, my wish has come true; I’ve made a Rock album!
I am making the 2 albums at the same time, which is really weird, because one minute I’m singing like a popstar, the next singing with a gravely voice, trying to sound like Janis Joplin. It’s going to be very interesting. I’ve got all that to look forward to this year.
Cryptic Rock – It will be fantastic to hear both the Pop and Rock albums. You can tell you have a Rock-n-Roll soul.
Samantha Fox – (Laughs) I have indeed. I remember when I went out with Paul Stanley when I was 21 or 22. He was my boyfriend when I lived in New York and traveling around with him meeting all the the rockstars, it was such a great time. It was a real good learning curve for me to travel around with such a great musician and meeting other great musicians. They are all so down to earth, they don’t have the egos a lot of popstars. They are happy to just get on stage with their jeans, t-shirts, and guitar.
Cryptic Rock – Yes, in many ways, in Pop, it’s more about the appearance than in Rock.
Samantha Fox – Yes, it’s much easier being a rockstar. Put on your jeans and a leather jacket, I love it!
Cryptic Rock – It is very cool and the new music is something to look out for! You will actually be attending the Chiller Theater convention in New Jersey later in April. Is this perhaps an entrance to doing some live performances in America sometime in the future?
Samantha Fox – I can’t wait, it’s going to be great. I haven’t been to The States in a while, and I’m hoping to tour there later this year. The last time I came, it was really emotional, it felt like, they haven’t forgotten me. Then I went through this whole thing with my partner having cancer, so I’m now just getting on with my life now. I am getting on with the album and I want to tour The States. I think this is a good way to see if people still remember who I am and come to see me. I’m looking forward to meeting all my fans again, it will be wonderful.
Cryptic Rock – The prospect of your return to touring the USA again is exciting; it’s been a while.
Samantha Fox – Exactly. Everyone says, “Sam, you go everywhere, come to America!” Of course I would, but I can’t just turn up with my suitcases and my band; we have to be invited. Let’s hope on this next album there will be a big track that will bring me back.
Cryptic Rock – That would be fantastic. Last question. If you are a fan of Horror and Sci-Fi films, do you have any favorites?
Samantha Fox – Oh yea! I’m a Horror fan, always have been since I was a kid. I met Freddy (Robert Englund) on the set of
(1989), because I had a track on the album. That was really amazing for me! I love Thrillers, but I don’t like to watch them on my own. I will watch them on planes, because I know there is a lot of people on there with me. (Laughs)
I’m not into the films that are really gory, chopping people into bits like Hostel (2005). Those are a little bit too gory for me. I just watched the new Halloween (2018) the other night and it still didn’t scare me like the first one. Then again, I was a lot younger then.
I remember watching The Exorcist (1973) as a kid, and I didn’t sleep for weeks. I was sharing a room with my sister, and when I went into the bedroom, I would look at her bed first to see if she was sitting up. That film freaked me out for months. I looked under the bed to see if there was anything there, I think I might have watched it a bit too young. (Laughs) Even if I watched it now, I could not watch it on my own, it’s still one of the scariest films!