Foxy Lady – An interview with Nicole Fox

Nicole Fox, possibly the sexiest woman in South African radio, is waiting for me at a coffee shop in Melville. She’s smoking a cigarette and has managed to seat herself at a table that is so awkwardly placed I can barely squeeze into my chair. I wonder if this might be a sign that Nicole is a tad on the impenetrable side, but, thankfully, quite the opposite is true.

Nicole’s role as a high-profile female DJ at one of the country’s foremost radio stations had its origins at university. While intending to embark on a career in television, she found herself roped in at the campus radio station and that was pretty much that.

She’s part of a bold new wave of female DJs that are very sexy and very visible. The old chestnut of “having a face for radio” is no longer applicable in these tabloid-driven times. Nicole’s public romance with DJ colleague Gareth Cliff also got tongues wagging, further highlighting the celebrity-based nature of contemporary South African radio.

She starts by talking excitedly about attending a Madonna concert in Europe a few months earlier, and admits to having an almost obsessive adoration for the diva: “It was the best night of my life. She came onto the stage and I started crying”.

She’d been warned that I intended going a little “below the belt” with my questions, but, just like her idol Madonna, that didn’t seem to phase her in the least. Before getting down-and-dirty she tells me about her “new direction” in life: “To try and spread some positivity, to encourage people to not look at the labels, to break down the stereotypes”. She did just that when she committed a whole week of her show to promoting Gay Pride in September, resulting in extreme responses from some listeners.

Well, what kind of reactions did you expect?

Obviously in our society there are still people that are so far behind, it’s fucking frightening. There are people that complain. But that’s okay.

Do you feel that you can express your opinions on air, or do you feel the need be somehow “objective”?

On one hand, yes, I do need to be the gatekeeper, striking the fine balance, but luckily 5FM is a personality based radio station, so you are encouraged to have an opinion and to express it. So, I’m not scared to do that. And If I can make a difference and change one or two people’s minds, then all the better.

Let’s get a little more… personal.

Okay! (Laughs)

What kind of man are you attracted to?

Well… (Nicole lights up a another cigarette) You know, in my youth I so went for bad guys! I find them wholly appealing. They’re much more of a challenge. And then I went through a stage where I went for really hot and stupid guys, because they’re really unchallenging. Which suited me just fine at the time. But perhaps it’s getting older, (laughs), but the kind of guy that I’m attracted to now is the guy that’s going to be there. Reliability, loyalty… I sound like I’m talking about a dog! (Laughs raucously) Come boy, down! And obviously, somebody to have fun with. I’m a little bit mad, so I need someone who’s prepared to come along for the ride.

Single or involved at the moment?

Single. Gareth and I broke up recently… A few months ago.

And no immediate replacement?

I’m loving the single life! It was difficult. It was tough - also because of the whole pseudo celebrity thing. It was difficult, like any breakup is. But I’m so happy at the moment. It’s nice to be able to focus on myself. Sometimes you lose track of that in a relationship. Sometimes you have to compromise. And it’s really nice to be a bit selfish.

Most attractive body part on a guy?

I have always been a sucker for forearms. I love men – every part of them. I’m not a body hair fan, period. Slightly muscular. I’m not talking about big butch gym guys; I find them intimidating and quite strange frankly…

And, having dated Gareth, what are your thoughts on dating other celebs?

My advice is stay away! (Laughs) Nothing I say here is to be taken as from my personal situation at all. It’s a generalization! Look at Robbie Williams; he’s my personal fantasy. Yes, please! Take me now! Having said that, how many issues does the guy have? Very often people in the limelight are there because they have insecurity problems. Stars often want to spend time in the mirror and quite frankly, there’s only enough space for me!

Do you prefer cut or uncut?

(Nicole appears confused) Are you talking about men or women?

Do you know what the question means?

I’m thinking body hair here…?

No, circumcised or un-circumcised!

I can’t believe you asked me that! (Looks mortified) Okay, let’s put it this way…I’m not a messy girl. I prefer things neat and tidy. Let’s leave it at that!

Okay, moving on from the sordid to the more sordid. Men and their obsession with anal sex with their women. Why the fascination?

Are you trying to get me to say whether I’ve had anal sex? (Laughs) Men watch porn from a young age and that plays a big role. It’s a forbidden fruit. I have yet to meet a woman who has admitted to me that they’ve had anal sex. Whether they’ve done it or not, I don’t know… Possibly there’s a power element to it. And that freaks me out a little bit. I wouldn’t want a man to have a certain kind of sex with me just to be in power.

Is anyone straight anymore?

The boundaries have really blurred haven’t they? Everyone seems to be into bi-curiosity these days. It’s in the porn, it’s everywhere! I have heard more and more stories of straight men and women experimenting with the same sex. It’s a mess. (Laughs) But it’s encouraging that more people are open about it.

And, speaking of bi-curiosity… What about yourself? Have you been intimate with a girl?

(There is a long pause) On the record…Umm… Let’s just say that I’ve had a very wild time. I’ve been very eager. I’ve been curious and I’ve always approached life with an open mind. (Laughs) I’ve never been scared to try things and I’ve had a great time…

But… a lady never kisses and tells!

The Nicole Fox Show is broadcast nationally on 5FM between 6pm and 10pm every weekday.

By Luiz DeBarros © 2004