My life in travel: Limahl, musician

'I love London. I've lived in Paris, Germany, Los Angeles and New York but I love the parks'


Your first holiday memory?

Newquay in Cornwall in the early '70s when the package holiday hadn't really taken off - it was an annual jaunt for our family. We lived on a council estate in Wigan and Mum and Dad worked incredibly hard to save the money because they had four hungry mouths to feed. So we'd do this mammoth drive down there - it was about eight hours from Wigan to Cornwall. The first few years it was in a caravan which was so exciting. We used to go at night and everyone would fall asleep, but I would stay awake the whole journey and drive my dad crazy, pointing out the names of the cities; he used to say, "Shut up! I can read." Those first holiday memories are very special. More importantly I remember the records we listened to; one year Neil Sedaka was number one with Laughter in the Rain and another year it was Barry White. Great memories, great music.

Best holiday ever?

Skiing. Because I live in London I'm always at busy places like airports and gigs. When you're up in the mountains the air's so clean and there's nature and the awesomeness of the slopes. It makes me reflective and think about the bigger picture. The thrill of coming down the slope is so invigorating and satisfying.

What's your favourite place in the British Isles?

I love London, even though the weather's not great. I've travelled the world and I've lived in Paris, Germany, Los Angeles and New York but I love the parks, the theatre and the Britishness and the way that all these communities have integrated.

What have you learned from your travels?

To be patient - especially at airports and to be wary. In Australia, when I arrived I sat on Bondi beach, I went to the loo for a leak, and when I came back my bag was gone, with all my credit cards. I've learnt to be patient and try to enjoy it. You can look up so much information on the internet that you don't have to wander off to the tourist information centre. Travelling is so much easier these days.

Who's your ideal travel companion?

My partner Steve, because we like the same things - architecture, restaurants and the theatre.

Culture vulture/adrenalin junkie/beach bum?

I'm less of a beach bum now. I used to be a bit of a sun worshipper but now we know it damages your skin. I love to get out and see real life and to walk, which is why I love Venice so much - it's such a great walking city. Often I'll avoid the obvious attractions and try to find shops or restaurants off the beaten track. I once had a gig in Gothenburg and went on the most unbelievable theme park ride, which was a rollercoaster built into a mountain that went through plants and tunnels. It was huge and a thrill to go on.

Your greatest travel luxury?

My laptop. Everything is on there; I can work, watch TV, read the news and write on it.

Holiday reading?

I've still got about 20 books in my bookcase at home that I still haven't got round to reading, like the autobiography of Berry Gordy - Motown was my big love growing up and it still is - which has been there about eight years and I still haven't read it

Where has seduced you?

Las Vegas. I went there in the '80s and had such a great time. I was there 10 minutes and I won $10,000 playing $500 on Black Jack. It was amazing.

Worst travel experience?

I went to do a gig in Norway in October two years ago in a nightclub on the western coast, so I flew into Oslo the night before. The next morning I was going to take this internal flight but I looked out of the window and it started to snow. On the way to the airport it just got worse. The plane was delayed with a technical problem and meanwhile the storm got even worse. When we finally took off, hours late, the flight hit turbulence - it was pretty nerve-racking. The captain came on and said something in Norwegian and there was this audible gasp and I was looking round thinking 'what's going on?' Three nice Norwegian ladies who spoke good English told me we were diverting to another airport. From there we had to take a four hour coach drive along the edge of cliffs that would also include a ferry. It was about 7pm by this point and I had to be on stage at midnight and I couldn't get any signal on my mobile.

The ferry was so choppy that my tour manager went white and people were vomiting. We arrived at the hotel at five to midnight; the expression 'the show must go on' was never more true.

Worst hotel?

The Grand Hotel in Prestatyn, in North Wales. When we arrived looking for the hotel we saw a rickety old building towards the edge of the water. As we got closer I noticed that it was the Grand, but the letter 'r' and 'n' were missing from the sign, so it said 'The GAD,' which I thought was not a very good sign. When we got in it had the worst décor and creaking floorboards and it was everything I expected.

Best hotel?

Kajagoogoo were huge in Poland because we were the 'guilty pleasure' of many Polish people so I've been to Warsaw a lot and the Warsaw Hilton is awesome. When we stayed the management came out and they all wanted pictures with the band and they'd upgraded us to suites. But the design, the finishes and the attention to detail are wonderful with these huge chandeliers and the blend of the contemporary with the slightly traditional. I just love it.

Best meal abroad?

Meals are always tricky for me because I'm vegetarian. Obviously travelling now is a lot easier, even the airlines now have a standard veggie option. I've got this thing about eating low fat, because I'm on stage and I've got to fit into my stage clothes and be scrutinised. But I'm a humble soul. I'm very happy with cheese on bread.

Where next?

I've had an offer to go to Slovenia for a gig in a casino, so that will be something new.

"Too Shy - The Very Best Of Kajagoogoo & Limahl" is out now. Kajagoogoo will be playing The Stables in Wavendon on Wednesday 16 December ( stables.org)

News
The Banksy image in Folkestone before it was vandalised
people
Life and Style
tech

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts

Sport
football West Brom vs Man Utd match report: Blind grabs point, but away form a problem for Van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
Gotham is coming to UK shores this autumn
tvGotham, episode 2, review
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Bloom Time: Mira Sorvino
tvMira Sorvino on leaving movie roles for 'The Intruders'
News
Brian Harvey turned up at Downing Street today demanding to speak to the Prime Minister
news

Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and that no-one was arrested

Arts and Entertainment
George Lucas poses with a group of Star Wars-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2010
films

George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios

Voices
Chris Grayling, Justice Secretary: 'There are pressures which we are facing but there is not a crisis'
voices

Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?

Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Life and Style
The charity Sands reports that 11 babies are stillborn everyday in the UK
lifeEleven babies are stillborn every day in the UK, yet no one speaks about this silent tragedy
News
Blackpool is expected to become one of the first places to introduce the Government’s controversial new Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs)
news

Parties threaten resort's image as a family destination

Life and Style
Northern soul mecca the Wigan Casino
fashionGone are the punks, casuals, new romantics, ravers, skaters, crusties. Now all kids look the same
Life and Style
gaming

I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title

News
Nigel Farage has backed DJ Mike Read's new Ukip song
i100
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    SCRUM Master

    £30 - 50k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a SCRUM Master to joi...

    Franchise Support Assistant

    £13,520: Recruitment Genius: As this role can be customer facing at times, the...

    Financial Controller

    £50000 - £60000 per annum: Sauce Recruitment: A successful entertainment, even...

    Direct Marketing Executive - Offline - SW London

    £25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A fantastic opportunity h...

    Day In a Page

    Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

    'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

    If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
    James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
    Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

    Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

    Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
    Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

    Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

    Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
    How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

    How to dress with authority

    Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
    New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

    New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

    'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
    Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

    Tim Minchin interview

    For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
    Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
    Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

    Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

    Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
    Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

    How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

    'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

    Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

    Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
    Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

    Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

    After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
    Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

    Terry Venables column

    Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
    The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

    Michael Calvin's Inside Word

    Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past