Hello, good evening and welcome to the latest issue of the MIS.
This week the band added yet another date to their ever growing list of gigs planned for 2020. On July 8th Madness will be appearing at the Henley Festival, Henley on Thames. Check out our “Showtimes” section for the full list of currently announced 2020 tour dates for Madness and Suggs.
Moving on, and a couple of days ago we were contacted by the one and only Nick Woodgate who kindly sent over the latest news surrounding his new JoJo Man Band project. Nick has promised to keep us updated on band developments during the course of the year. Check out our “Buy it” section for details on the new single (released on 7th February) and more!
Also this week, our “MIS Feature” looks at the latest updates to the Seven Ragged Men web site. See what we have to say regarding these most recent additions and then get yourself over to see what else you’ve missed.
16th – The Courtyard, Herefordshire’s Centre for the Arts
17th – Bristol, Royal Redgrave Theatre
19th – Exeter, Corn Exchange
20th – Westlands, Yeovil
21st – Aldershot, Princes Hall
22nd – Hertford Theatre
23rd – Forum Theatre (Malvern Theatres)
24th – Warrington, Pyramind and Parr Hall
25th – Lythan St. Annes, Lowther Pavilion
27th – Hexham, Queens Hall Arts Centre
28th – Dundee Rep Theatrre
29th – Aberdeen Music Hall
30th – Edinburgh, The Queen’s Hall
New Single by the JoJo Man Band
Here’s Nick Woodgate with the details…
Hi MIS readers,
I have a new band that will be gigging at the end of the year. It’s called the JoJo Man Band.
This Friday the 7th is the release of the band’s single ‘plastic’ and I would dearly love as many people as possible to follow and stream the band on Spotify. If you’re not on Spotify I’m on every other digital platform.
Tim Maple, Accy Yeats and myself appear on the recording.
The JoJo Man Band has had a great response on social media and we are on Twitter, FB page, Instagram. You can find the links on the JoJo Man Band website. Please follow.
This week, MIS co-editor Rob Hazelby goes back in time to report on what was going on in the world of Madness 5, 10, 15 and 20 years ago this week.
5 years ago…
Issue Number 821 – Sunday 1st February to Saturday 7th February 2015
This issue began with the addition of two new Silencerz (ft Lee Thompson) gigs on the 14th and 21st February. Both planned gigs were due to be held in the Barnet area.
Over in “Sign of the Times: we learned that Suggs wast o reprise a role he played in the West End show Our House… alongside hardened criminals in one of Her Majesty’s prisons.
He was to play Joe’s Father in Pimlico Opera’s revival of the 2002 musical, when it was due to be revived at Isis Prison, Woolwich, from 27 February to 7 March.
Further on, and in “Live and Intensified” regular gig reviewer / contributor Daren West sent in a fantastic write up of the Silencerz gig on the 24th January at The Spotted Bull Pun in Hemel Hempstead.
We continued with The Silencerz in our next article entitled “MIS Mad Meet” as we revealed that there would be a Madmeet that day which would take in The Dublin Castle, with a DJ set from Swanny, the return of John Hasler’s band; The Skiff Skats and then the Silencerz from 8pm at the Chandos Arms.
This issue was brought to a close with the news that Lee’s recent signed T-shirts auction had closed at a very respectable £325. This was now added to the Specialized Combat Cancer fundraising pot which now totalled around £35,000!
10 years ago…
Issue Number 561 – Sunday 31st January – Saturday 6th February 2010
With little promotion the majority of us weren’t expecting the new single release ‘Forever Young’, to make much of an impact on the UK singles charts, so when Madness Central announced the following in their blog, it came as no surprise;
“For those who were crestfallen Madness’ new single “Forever Young” didn’t crack the UK Top 75 its first week of release, take heart: “Forever Young” came in at a respectable Number 24 in the Indie Charts for the week”.
With many high street outlets only stocking top twenty singles, or not stocking singles at all, the single had little chance at making a name for itself.
Elsewhere in this issue Paul Rodgers gave us his stats, facts and figures on the release. Here’s a small snippet from his original article;
“Just in case you’ve not heard from any other source, Forever Young saw Madness return to the charts last week after the disappointment of Sugar And Spice.
Sadly it was still a glorious failure, reaching number 199 on the main singles chart and 24 on the indie singles chart. It also managed to fall to 89 from its new entry peak of 64 on the national airplay charts.
Hopefully any future single releases will take advantage of chart rules and any remaining Madness completists and be released on 3 physical formats (7″, 7″ pic disc and CD) PLUS the downloads. If Cliff Richards can get to number 40 in the singles chart with 6,000 sales (nearly all on 7″) then Madness ought to be able to too.
That said, Forever Young still became Madness’s 38th single to chart in the UK (39 if you count the 2Tone EP from 1993). That’s quite some record (and that’s quite some pun!). It is, of course, their lowest by some way with What’s That being the next lowest at 92.
By my reckoning 4 have failed to chart completely. In chronological order they were: Our House first Virgin reissue, It Must Be Love (Tall Guy reissue), Girl (Why Don’t You?) and Sugar And Spice”.
Further in, and Retro Madness were back with another one of their offers. This time they were reducing the price of their 1 track promo CDs for the 5 most recent Madness singles to just £7.50 each or £25 for all 5!
Next, we took a look at Nutty Radio, which had shut up shop over a year ago. Why? Well earlier in the week station founder Adam Nichols emailed a group of Madness fans via Facebook asking if anyone would be interested in Nutty Radio returning.
Responses came in thick and fast, and all were extremely supportive. Would the long defunct station make a comeback? Only time would tell.
We brought this issue to a close with the news that the Specials had recently announced a New York show at Terminal 5 on 21st April, shortly after their appearance at the Coachella Festival on 16th of the month. These would be their first US shows since 1980.
15 years ago…
Issue number 299 – Sunday 30th January to Saturday 5th February 2005
It was the end of January, the days were getting slowly getting longer, and it seemed as if things were starting to pick up in the world of Madness (and its various offshoots).
The main item of news (although details were still scare) is that the legendary Crunch! would be taking to the stage in the not too distant future for a one off gig.
We received news earlier in the week, courtesy of both Lee `Swanny` Swandale and Becky `Bex` Lane that the legendary Crunch! had been booked to play the 100 Club on London’s Oxford Street on Friday 1st April.
Lee and Bex told us that this was not an April fool, and the booking had been confirmed by non other than Chris Foreman, who spoke to Swanny on the phone once the booking had been made.
Our esteemed Mr. Swandale promised to be back in touch with times, and support band details once he knew more.
We also had a couple of other interesting news snippets – the first being that Chas would be appearing with The Blockheads on the 8th of February at the Hackney Empire Tsunami Benefit Gig. Chas would be on stage to sing “What a Waste”. Later in the month (on the 13th), Chas would be taking part at Cargo, with others including Jerry Dammers and Terry Hall.
On another newsworthy note, a number of subscribers had been in touch to tell us that Virgin Radio were currently plugging the return of Suggs to their station. Here’s the original blurb;
“Suggs’ Party Classics
The nutty boy is back! Tune into Suggs every Saturday & Sunday night from 6.00pm for a huge great helping of Party Classics! It’s an eclectic mix of old and new tracks to get you into the mood for the weekend, with artists like B52’s, Prince, Madness and Jackson 5”.
Elsewhere in this issue we looked at an extremely overpriced Ska album currently being sold on iTunes, a heads-up that the Warrior Clothing web site were about to end their January sale, (so if you wanted to get hold of a bargain you needed to get your skates on) a selection of news items from the Official Madness Messageboard, and news that the MIS Online web site was now being tested with both IE and Firefox browsers, to ensure maximum compatibility.
20 years ago…
Issue number 37 – Sunday 30th January to Saturday 5th February 2000
This past week started off quietly with nothing likely to happen over the next seven days, but by the end of the week, we’d had some or all of the new Madness video filmed, and a guest appearance on the BBC’s `National Lottery Show` on Saturday!
Towards the end of the day on Thursday 27th, the message was blasted out across the internet in the form of an e-mail from Total Madness Mailing List maintainer, Jenny Payne, informing all that Madness were all ready to shoot the video for `Drip Fed Fred`. They wanted as many people as possible to go along to the shoot. The only rules were that you had to be there for noon and you must wear black as it was meant to be for a funeral.
Simple, so where was the catch? The catch was that the video was going to be shot the next day!! If more notice was given, we’re sure a large chunk of the online Madness fanbase would have made their way to Hampstead (where the video was going to be shot) to take part, but with such short notice, obviously this was not possible. Still, one or two Maddies did manage to get along to the filming, and hopefully the next issue someone would have kindly disseminated the events that went on that day.
Onto Saturday, and the Magnificent Seven were spotted doing their first piece of television plugging for `Drip Fed Fred` in the form of an appearance on the BBC’s `National Lottery Live` program.
It’d been a busy few days!
Slowly but surely, the `Drip Fed Fred` poster campaign finally seemed to be creeping across the country. Vince Carden reported that on Zoe Ball’s television programme the other evening the TV crew went out onto the street to show footage of `Freddie` posters on lamp posts and other places. As well as this, a certain TMML subscriber who would remain nameless just in case he’s wanted by his local police force, told us that a number of police cars in his area were now displaying `Freddie` related products in their windows!!
On to this week’s articles, and we started off with a request from the Madness Unsugged Fanzine team. The publication would shortly be hosting an interview with the almighty Jerry Dammers, and they wanted you to send in your questions. The best questions would be put to the great man, so what were you waiting for?
Moving on, and we featured a transcript of an article from issue 13 of the Nut Inc fanzine. Entitled ‘No Return for the Lone Ranger’, this covered the highs and lows of Suggs’ solo career, and even today is an excellent read.
Next-up was a review of ‘Uncoolohol’, a site which claimed to be the world’s first Ian Dury fan site. Designed and maintained by Wozza, Simsey and Eddie, this corner of the internet already featured some impressive content, meaning that is was one to keep an eye on.
Following on from the Nut Inc transcription elsewhere in this issue we then cast our eyes over to the Madness Unsugged fanzine, where we reproduced an article looking at how the NME had treated and covered Madness / Suggs since the early 90’s. Like the Nut Inc article, this was one that is still worth reading today.
We finished off this issue with details (courtesy of Emma Southerby) of the stock listing Winterland currently held of the merchandise from the last Madness tour.
Updates For The Seven Ragged Men
The next instalment in the Madness story is now live at the Seven Ragged Men website.
The new chapter gives a blow-by-blow account of the band’s activities in 2019 – and what an XL-ent year it was too! Kenwood House… House of Common… Electric Ballroom… House of Fun Weekender… The Roundhouse… Before We Was We…
Each event is duly covered here in the usual in-depth detail, and brought to life with quotes from the band themselves.
Here’s a quick excerpt, in which Suggs and Chris discuss the story behind their long-awaited first book:
SUGGS: We’d been talking about a book for a while, but everyone already knows all the what, when and where about us and our records. So instead we decided to make a book about before all of that, when we were a bunch of young rapscallions. It’s a kind of prequel if you like.
CHRIS: I didn’t really want to do a book, cos I didn’t want to start saying, ‘Well he got on my nerves’ and all that kind if thing. In fact, I don’t think anyone really wanted to do a book, so we were arguing about it. Then Bedders said, ‘Well, why don’t we do it from when we were kids up until Madness started?’ And everyone went, ‘Yeah!’
As well as all the live events that marked the band’s 40th celebrations, the chapter also includes plenty of spin-off nuggets, including the Madness exhibition at the V&A, Lee discussing his own upcoming autobiography, and how a special cheese was created from Suggs’s ear wax.