ARCHIVE INTERVIEWS

This Section of the website contains old interviews from various newspapers and magazines from the last 25 years, the interviews will be replaced on a regular basis

THIS INTERVIEW IS FROM TV-TIMES 15 - 21 APRIL 1989

Cheryl's on top of the world

- and it's no secret

She's taken some bad knocks but has come through smiling. With Bucks Fizz on a British tour and her new TV series starting this week, there's no stopping Cheryl Baker as TV-Times found out.

"I'm not in a hurry... life has gone at just the right pace"

 

Cheryl Baker sits in the corner of the Rose & Crown, sipping white wine and trying to look inconspicuous. She has just spent the morning microphone in hand asking passers-by in her cheery cockney accent; "If I was to give you a choice what would be your secret desire ?"

She stretches her elegant legs, takes a sip and announces ruefully "I've had some really rude answers today. I'm going to pick my victims more carefully." After a day spent listening to predictable fantasies - men who want to have dinner with a page three girl, middle age women who yearn to go on a cruise and young girls who are dying to meet Bros - she was still confident of extracting some absolute gems.

Cheryl presents My Secret Desire on Saturday night, With Ross King. Three celebrities try to guess each contestants secret desire after questioning then in "The Grill Room." It is the Cheryl's job to the make that desire a reality on screen. "Obviously anything like swimming the channel is out," she says "But should they want to bathe in Champagne , be a swashbuckling hero or act as a knife throwers assistant, it may be possible. As she talks, autograph requests come from across the bar. A few fans want to know what her group Bucks Fizz, is up to next (they started a UK Tour on 10th April) but most are concerned about Cheryl's own plans. It seems she has made the cross-over from singer to TV Personality with ease. "singing is my first love" She says Television work makes me nervous. But i have to be realistic and face up to the fact that Bucks Fizz won't go on for ever." She is 33 but looks younger. And for once here is someone who is as natural off screen as she is on it. Cheryl's life has had it's dramas. The most traumatic was ,however, 4 years ago when the groups coach crashed near Newcastle-Upon- Tyne and Singer Mike Nolan was in a coma for several weeks. They still carry the scars - in Cheryl's case it is lines of grit embedded  in her left thigh.

There has been personal  problems too, Cheryl lives modestly in a chalet style bungalow in South London. She should be far better off considering how busy she has been with her singing and her television appearances, but Cheryl admits without a trace of regret that the money has been wasted: New cars. lavish holidays, a purchase of a cruiser when it would have been cheaper to book a suite on the QE2. There was also an expensive break up with her long term boyfriend . "When you fall in love you don't think it will ever go wrong" She says. But it hasn't made her in the least hard. She is still far from wary or worldly. It is rather refreshing to meet someone like her. "I'd always been very old-fashioned about morals! she admits "in fact I've only had four boyfriends in my life." When i go out with someone, I go out with them for years,"  But I would not have dared to live with anybody in those days. and as for having a baby outside of marriage... Blimey! I have changed now of course. I'm a lot older now too.

There is obviously a clear-eyed satisfaction when Cheryl talks about her life today, and she freely admits "I do tend to look at thing through rose coloured spectacles,. There's enough gloom and pessimism around without me adding to it" Her personality always contrasted sharply with that of singing partner Jay Aston, who quit Bucks Fizz three years ago amid some acrimony. "I never had a cross word with her but i never had a lot of laughs either" Cheryl recalls "She was on her own little island. We would do a gig and after she would go to her room alone. On stage she was a great extrovert, but away from the spotlight she was just a wallflower. Jay always felt she had to prove something but i think in the end she became a very unhappy person. The Relationship with replacement Shelley Preston is totally different, "she fitted in right from the start." Says Cheryl " I took her under my wing because she reminded me a lot of how I was at her age. She was 21 Going on 15. Shelley has changed dramatically and is now full of confidence and has a nice boyfriend.

How important is it for Cheryl, with all the success she has had, to have someone she can trust? "It is vital" She says. When my FiancÚ is away on tour  I decorate or have friends round to dinner. if someone told me he had another woman, I would just say to him look...What happened? " But there is a difference in attitudes  of men and women. I would not even think of going with someone else while on tour, in fact i like to appear untouchable in that respect. She doesn't appear untouchable at all. There is a genuine warmth from the people she meets and, rude answers apart instant recognition mixed with politeness. She feels four years as a secretary after leaving school have given her a good grounding for winning such support. "I know a lot of people in show business  who say they hated their first jobs", she says "But I loved mine i always worked for small companies, so i was not just another name on the payroll. I did shorthand, typing, filing and answered the phone. I used to sing over the typewriter too, which many bosses loved.

She finishes her drink and prepared to return to the task of asking strangers their innermost fantasies, "Most of the participants on My Secret Desire will have nine-to-five jobs and be looking for a bit of excitement "Says Cheryl Baker with a smile. 2Iknow just how they feel..."

 

Archive Interview 1