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Madness Information Service Online Newsletter Issue Number: 899 – Sunday 31st July to Saturday 6th August 2016

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MIS ONLINE – The Madness Information Service Online Newsletter
Issue Number: 899 – Sunday 31st July to Saturday 6th August 2016
Web: www.mis-online.net | Twitter: @MIS_Online | iOS: https://goo.gl/7goj5z LinkedIn: Click here



Evening all!

We hope you’ve had a wonderful week in Maddie land, a lot of activity on the Madness front coming your way!

Moving on, and it’s on to a sponsorship request as we report that the One Heart Specialized album is currently seeking sponsorship for its production. How do you come in? Well, you can help with as little as £20. Progress is already a massive way along as all the songs are complete and mastered for the 4CD package.

The mighty Lee Thompson minself has contributed to the album with a recording of Bob Marley’s “Lively up yourself”, live with his Silencerz.

Check it out at; http://www.specializedproject.co.uk/latestnews/specialized-5-one-heart-sponsor-album/

Now, on with the issue!

Enjoy the read,

Jon Young, Rob Hazelby, Simon Roberts, Paul Williams




See below for all forthcoming Madness and Madness related gigs and events. If there’s something we’ve missed off or you feel should be added then please let us know.




Thursday 4th – Edinburgh Corn Exchange * Sold Out *
More info at: http://m.whatsoninedinburgh.co.uk/event/028964-madness/

Friday 5th – Edinburgh Corn Exchange
More info at: http://m.whatsoninedinburgh.co.uk/event/028964-madness/

Saturday 6th –Tartan Heart Festival, Inverness, Scotland (headliners)
More info at www.tartanheartfestival.co.uk

Thursday 11th – Cropredy Festival, Oxfordshire. First day headliner

Saturday 13th – Boom Town Fair – Winchester

Friday 19th – Cyfartha Castle, Merthyr Tydfil

Saturday 20th – Titanic Belfast, Belsonic

Monday 29th – House of Common, Clapham Common
More info at: http://www.madness.co.uk/houseofcommon/


Sunday 3rd – Crammerock Festival, Belgium

Sunday 4th – Jersey Live Festival, Jersey

Sunday 11th – Hyde Park. Radio 2’s Festival in a Day

Friday 30th – Sweden, Grona Lund Amusement Park


Saturday 1st – Norway – Rockefeller Music Hall

Monday 3rd – Germany – Berlin – Tempodrom

Tuesday 4th – Germany – Bochum – Ruhrcongress

Thursday 6th – Dubai, Duty Free Tennis Stadium, UAE


Friday 18th – Monday 21st – Madness Weekender 6, Minehead


Thursday 1st – Bournemouth – Can’t Touch us Now

Friday 2nd – Cardiff – Can’t Touch us Now

Saturday 3rd – Brighton – Matinee – Can’t Touch us Now

Saturday 3rd – Brighton – Can’t Touch us Now ** Sold Out **

Monday 5th – Groningen, The Netherlands ** Sold Out **

Tuesday 6th – Tilburg, The Netherlands

Thursday 8th – Newcastle – Can’t Touch us Now

Friday 9th – Sheffield – Can’t Touch us Now

Saturday 10th – London – Can’t Touch us Now

Monday 12th – Nottingham – Can’t Touch us Now

Tuesday 13th – Bridlington – Can’t Touch us Now

Thursday 15th – Glasgow – Can’t Touch us Now

Friday 16th – Manchester – Can’t Touch us Now

Saturday 17th – Birmingham – Can’t Touch us Now

Can’t Touch us Now tickets from: http://www.gigsandtours.com/tour/madness/



Saturday 27th – Bangor, Northern Ireland – Talking Musical Revolutions. Part of the “Open House Festival”


The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra


Thursday 18th, Newham Free Festival

Thursday 25th – Album Launch Party – Bite The Bullet – 100 Club Oxford Street London

Sunday 28th – DJ set @ Commoners Against Cancer – Dublin Castle.  Noon


House of Fun Weekender

April 2017

20th – 24th –  Skamouth (Great Yarmouth) **New**


Near Jazz Experience


Tuesday 9th, Indo, London  **New**




Madness – New Album – You Can’t Touch Us Now – Pre Order  – October 21st

Pre order now – and get “Untouchable Madhead” Status.


Potential Tracks, Based on last year’s House of Fun set, Glastonbury, and Mojo –  Grandslam, I Believe, Soul Denying, Mumbo Jumbo. Where Did All The Good Times Go, Herbet, Mr Apples, Blackbird On The Wing, Dont Leave The Past Behind You, Whistling In The Dark, Can’t Touch Us Now, Given The Opportunity, Another Version of Me. Kooks. Pam The Hawk


The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra – Bite The Bullet  – August 25th (available Signed from the 100 club launch on the 25th) 

Vinyl £13.55  (Includes free mp3 version)

CD £11.37 (includes free mp3 version)

Mp3 album also available on its own £7.99

Tracks – Based on Amazon – Step It Up Sister, Bite The Bullet, Western Standard Time, Cuss Cuss, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Feel a Little Better, Hongry, The Wickerman, 30,60,90 , I am King, Cry To Me, I’ll be back again.


Dance Crazy – The Best of Specialized Ska Live ** Out Now **

A little nod and appreciation as we at Specialized celebrate the 35th birthday in 2016 of the 2Tone movie & soundtrack “Dance Craze”

This album Features original acts & covers bands paying respects to the Dance Craze phenomenon.

All recorded live.

The same songs as Dance Craze by new bands 35 years on. (Including live covers of Madness) pre order now £10 (£2.50 p&p)



Trembling Earth – A Scottish Ska Collection

(F&J Records SHaG036/SHaG036CD)

Release: July 25, 2016 – 2-disc CD, + iTunes, Amazon, Spotify etc

For the first time, TREMBLING EARTH collects tracks from right across this energetic and independent scene – 33 songs on a double-disc set, from 16 bands representing the past, present and future of Scottish ska – Bombskare, The Amphetameanies, Esperanza, Victorian Trout Conspiracy, Root System, The Cut Throat Razors, Big Hand, Bis, The Newtown Grunts, Big Fat Panda, Sea Bass Kid, The Skarsoles, Urang Matang, Capone and the Bullets, Joe Viterbo and The Cherry Reds.

There are earworms, wit and virtuosity aplenty here, but true to its roots, this collection’s main aim is to make people dance. We hope that it works for you.

F&J Records, Glasgow




SIGN OF THE TIMES                               

Mojo Magazine Review – Bite the Bullet

More ska and R&B by Madness Sax player and pals. Mainly originals flavoured by covers from John Barry, Beatles, and Leiber and stoller

song books. Unbeatable for parties with Red Snapper on the menu.

Three stars 


Uncut Magazine Review – Bite The Bullet

Madness sax man’s second big band album.

The quizzical piano stabs, metallic sax solos and bathetic vocals recall Lee Thompson’s familiar setting in Madness, but on his second album the saxophonist seems like he is usurping Jools Holland as Britain’s premier Swing to ska band leader.

Wille Mitchel’s Memphis soul fave “30-60-90”, Solomune Burke’s “Cry To Me” and The Coasters’ jaunty “Hongry” all get a Jamaican Skank. Conversely Harry J’s classic rhythm on Lloyd Robinson’s “Cuss Cuss” is given the big band treatment.

Best of All is a lavishly arranged version of John Barry’s theme on her Majesty Secret Service all growling baritone saxes, languorous trombones solos and heart aching chord changes.





Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra – Hampton Pool 

‪Declan Power “Was a great day, band were even told to play an extra 15min, Lee jumped off the stage into the crowd”

Check out Neil Kelly’s video of No No No including Thommo’s stage jump!



Clang – Liverpool 02 Academy

“Playing Shipbuilding in Liverpool brought a lump to my throat I must admit. The irony is certainly not lost in these troubling times believe me.” Paul Tadman currently playing Bass with Clang.


The Clang Group is Clive Langer’s latest project and he was joined by Deaf School band-mates Gregg Braden on drums and Dieter Scharft (aka Rev Max Ripple) on keyboard, with Cath Roberts on a baritone sax, which almost dwarfed her, and the extraordinary Paul Tadman on bass.

Oddly, Dieter seems even more eccentric when he steps out of his Deaf School persona, like Alan Bennett’s weirder brother.

Langer was previewing songs from his new album, Practice, due out in September. They are tuneful and literate, as you would expect from the co-composer of Shipbuilding, included here, as chilling and relevant as ever in the wake of the decision to renew Trident. There were welcome outings for older songs such as Splash (A Tear Goes Rolling Down) and The Whole World.




We start a new series of interviews with players and performers in The Ska Orchestra, where they discuss band’s second LP – Bite The Bullet – Out this month.

First up in the hot seat we have Darren Fordham, vocalist and lead singer on Cry To Me on the album.

  1. How was the recording sessions for Bite the Bullet? 
  2. The recording sessions were great fun, as they always are, with this bunch. Everything is done in a relaxed, fun way, with no pressure. This time around we had Andy and Mez, of course, so stick them in with Bedders, Louis and Seamus, and those guys are hearing things that you haven’t even imagined yet! A real pleasure to behold. Not forgetting we had the enigmatic Dave Robinson on board, and that fella….If you don’t do it his way, the whip’s out!!
  3. Which cover version did you choose for the album or which did you have the most hand in colaboration to how it turned out?
  4. I think the songs kind of chose themselves, really. We had a bunch of songs that got emailed about, and we rehearsed most of them. You can kind of sense the ones that are working because you just have to look around the room at peoples faces, their reactions. The originals were a no-brainer.  The fellas demoed their offerings and they were just superb. I’ve kept the demos, and always will, because they’re beautiful.
  5. Which is your favourite track on the album? 
  6. My favourite track is Feel A Little Better. I was sitting in my office, at work, one morning, and i looked up and saw Andy Neal grinning, like a Cheshire Cat, though my office window. He came in, got his ‘phone out and said “‘Ere, listen to this”… He played me the demo he’d made for Feel A Little Better and I looked at him, and he looked at me…..Just fabulous
  7. And which is the best track from the new LP to play live? 
  8. I love Western Standard Time live (as well as on record). It’s just a bit of me. A bit Spaghetti Western, a bit Tarantino, a bit Bob Dowell…What’s not to like? And the title, genius or what!
  9. If you had one bullet who would you shoot? 
  10. Anyone but the messenger.

6 What moment has been the best moment in your time with The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra? 

  1. Difficult question because there have been so many great moments, but if pushed, I’d have to say the best moment, for me, was doing Jools Holland’s Hootenanny. The only downside was it wasn’t the whole band, but on a personal level, that was something I’d always dreamed of doing.
  2. Who is a big inspiration for you? 
  3. I have so many people/ things that inspire me. I couldn’t possibly list everything here, but I guess having Thommo around since I was a little boy must have influenced me to a certain degree. Would I have had the thirst for music that I have without him? Possibly. My family were very much into their music, but going to the gigs, watching the videos….I was inspired, was I not?
  4. What movie moment featuring a bullet is the best? 
  5. When Billy The Kid, in Young Guns, shoots Murphy in the noggin at the end of the film, or when Tuco in The Good, The Bad & The Ugly shoots his gun from under the bath water…”When you have to shoot, shoot, don’t talk!
  6. Beyond ska what is your favourite other music style or genre? 
  7. My 3 brothers were into…Mark, Motown and Soul, Michael, Roxy Music, Sqeeze etc and Leigh, Punk. My dad liked Kenny Rogers and Barbra Streisand and my best mates were into The Beatles and Bon Jovi. I grew up in the 80’s with Madness, The Specials, Dexy’s, Adam and the Ants etc etc…My music taste is eclectic to the extreme!
  8. What song ska or otherwise skad up should be on album 3? 
  9. Help Me Make It Through The Night, the John Holt version. I love that song!

Bonus question: Which track from the first album The Benevolence of Sister Mary Ignatius still wows you after years of hearing it?

Ali Baba. For me, Lee’s best vocal, and Fu Man Chu. Dave Robinson getting Bitty McLean to sing the lead vocal was a masterstroke.

Our thanks to Darren Fordham for these replies.




Now 94% Funded

“Following the critical acclaim of last year’s ’Rhoda Dakar sings The Bodysnatchers’ album (**** Mojo  **** Rolling Stone  **** Daily Mirror) Rhoda Dakar, former lead singer of 2 Tone’s The Bodysnatchers and The Special AKA, And regular Live Guest Singer with Madness. She is set to release a brand new series of recordings, starting with the September 2016 release of The LoTek Four, Vol I.”

Hi guys!

I’ve gone and done it – booked the studio! No turning back now. We’re on our way!

The tracks are decided, though I’m still wrestling with the last verse! Nothing like pressure to get it done, though! Only other thing to think about is wardrobe. The weather’s so unpredictable at the moment and I want to avoid a fashion crisis that very morning. And for those of you who’ve never had one, a fashion crisis is what happens when you’ve nothing left to panic about!

So, by the end of next week, we should have an idea of how it’s all sounding. Trying to get everyone in the same place at the same time involves the logistics of a moon landing – such busy people! But, on the plus side, they’re busy because they’re really good at what they do and I’m very lucky they’re up for working with me!

So, thanks to you guys, the project will be going on to the next stage – wish us luck!

Rhoda x





This week, MIS co-editor Rob Hazelby, goes back in time to report on what was going on in the world of Madness 5 years, 10 and 15 years ago this week.

5 years ago…

Issue Number 638 – Sunday 31st July – Saturday 6th August 2011

The past seven days hadn’t been what you’d news heavy, so this did leave us in a situation of having to scratch around for items to go in the issue.

We began our articles with a short report from Jon Young which covered the Ska Orchestra’s recent visit to Ireland.

Reader Lucy Smyth commented at the time;

“It was a brilliant gig – Valerie got an uproar of approval. I love a good comedy/dance/sing-a-long/talent spot. The boys were fabulous.

Backing singer/ dancer/ percussionist AND harmonica player Darren “Daz Smash” Fordham commented;

“It was AMAZING. Best show so far. The people of Northern Ireland looked after us and the crowd gave us everything they had. I was lucky to get to sing Valerie as my tribute to Amy as our last song and the roof almost came off the place! Very happy times x”

Next, we looked at TV documentaries, and reported that Suggs would be presenting a short series entitled Teen Spirit: Mods and Rockers, a coproduction from Yesterday and Simply Media TV that told the story of the two teenage movements.

Moving on, and we passed on the recent news from Salvo/USM who revealed that beginning in September an online Madness Treasure Hunt would be taking place.

Here were the details

“The Guided Tour box set contains a business card featuring a unique serial number, allowing access to The Madness Treasure Hunt an online game.

The winner will receive a signed and framed copy of the box set sleeve, with a picture of themselves in the back seat of the cab, plus a video message from the band.

The Madness Treasure Hunt, a futuristic divertissement using special Geoaching technology.”

We brought this issue to a close with the news that The Winning Post would be hosting another one of their Ska Mania nights, featuring The Masters of Madness, One Step Behind. Tickets were priced at a mere £10 with the gig taking place on the 28th of August.

10 years ago…

Issue 378 – Sunday 30th July to Saturday 5th August 2006

Following our recent coverage in the MIS of Madness’ appearances in various parts of Europe, and now Japan, we subsequently received a number of emails from Australian based subscribers asking us to give the band a nudge and ask them if they’d consider playing down under once again.

The popularity of the band was still there, as evident by the large crowds Madness had been playing in front of recently, and we were sure that if the lads were to stage an Oz tour it would do extremely well.

We could only hope for our Australian subscribers that the band would seriously consider paying them a visit. It’d been far too long.

Starting off the articles were the French MIS team, who kindly put together an absolutely huge review of the band’s performance on the 22nd of July at Vieilles Charrues Festival, Carhaix, France.

While Fred Boeuf penned the review, it came down to the translating skills of Emily Boeuf to convert the text from French to English.

Next, and interested to know how Madness’ short current tour in Japan was going, we went web searching, and were able to find a review of the band’s appearance headlining the White Stage at the Fuji Rock Festival on Friday evening, written by Taiki a Japanese festival go-er.

Unfortunately, once running the Japanese text through Google’s Bable Fish convertor the resulting English ‘translation’ made very little sense to us. There was no mention of dark glasses or pork pie hats, but we could make out three words – “In the City”.

Thankfully, for our readers, we did stumble upon a short English review from another web site.

Moving on, and as we’d reported a few weeks back in a special celebratory TOTP MIS the show had been axed by the BBC.  Tonight the last show aired.

Chrissy boy used this as an excellent opportunity to put a picture of “Leggs and Co” up on the Madness Websites news page. (though shouldn’t it have been Pan’s People with a little bit of belly!)

There were a few more pictures there including a run sheet for Madness’ first appearance on the show in episode 808, which had all the recording details, and makes and interesting read.

The message board marked the occasion too……

“TOTP RIP” from “Duff” 28/07/06

Nice TOTP pics on the News page CB, brought back that fantastic night when the family gathered to watch TOTP and we all saw Madness for the first time – refreshing sound, great song, the suits, the nuttiness won us all over. Next day at school everyone was going on about it and on the weekend I went to the record shop with my pocket money and bought the 7″ single – got just as excited about every new

Madness release over the years since and I’m hoping the next one isn’t too far off!!


“TOP OF THE POPS”  says Chrissy Boy(28/07/06),

“Dear Duff

Yeah it was great to have been on it so many times but we had a few run ins with them for being late etc. Once Thommo was chewing gum when the camera went to him [in rehearsal] and got a right rollickin from the director. They always made us turn up at about 8am and we were kept in some dingy dressing room for hours on end. Then they still always filmed the bass guitar on a lead guitar solo and so on. In recent years it got moved around too much should have stayed at 7.30 on a Thursday night and also started showing old clips time wasting interviews etc..As for the presenters well I cannot say too much this is a family website..


Further on in this issue, we passed the reigns over to Paul Muscat and Nick Woodgate (Woody’s brother), where we learned a bit more about the possible meaning behind the Madness track “No Money”.

15 years ago…

Issue 116 – Sunday 29th July to Saturday 4th August 2001

With the UK currently in the midst of a once-a-decade heat wave, the Madness news and rumour mill had, as you probably would have expected, been a tad on the quiet side over the past seven days. That wasn’t to to say that things had ceased all together, so you could relax, as we had another packed edition of the MIS for you this week as well.

Something which may have been of interest to all you collectors out there was that Madness were currently at number 9 in the UK promo chart. The chart which appeared in Record Collector magazine was compiled from information provided by key mail order companies in the UK that sell these promotion only releases. The recent My old man single was going for a whopping 15 pounds.

On to the articles, and it was nearly finished and running to 20 pages! What were we on about Iain Mason’ Madness special edition of The News of The World, that’s what. here we had details of how you could get hold of a copy. Next issue we hoped to have a review.

Here’s what Iain had to say at the time:

“The Nutty News of the World is almost finished! That’s right, the full story of Blackpool 2001 will be hitting the streets early next week. Whether you were there and can’t remember what happened, or want to know what you missed out on, you won’t be disappointed.

The pictures are scanned, the words are polished and the corny headlines written and there are some fantastic snaps of nutty punters that really capture the mood of the three days. The paper covers everything (and I do mean EVERYTHING) from Friday night to Sunday morning in full colour across 20 pages”.

Next it was on to a review of episode three of the BBC’s radio comedy “I Think I’ve got a Problem”. Reviewed by co-editor, Jon Young, he felt that this week’s episode was a little weaker in plot to the previous two.

Moving on, and for those Blockhead fans reading the MIS, we had details of the much talked about forthcoming album, plus four more dates in August and November where the band would be playing.

Eastcentralone were planning to release the last album by Ian Dury And The Blockheads in October. Provisionally titled ‘Ten More Turnips From The Tip,’ the record would feature eight brand new songs with Ian singing, one new Blockheads song and the last song Ian wrote that Robbie Williams would be performing with the band.

Ian’s wife Sophy was working on the art. Sophy was interested in including Ian Dury And The Blockheads memorabilia within the packaging.

Further on, and as it had been a little while since we’d given the official Crunch website a plug we thought it was about time we revisited its hallowed grounds to see what new bits and pieces the site had to offer.

New items included a mass of new photos, Spotter Stuff, which Lee Swandale told us was for the more committed Crunch fan, and best of all, the Sound and Vision session where you could listen to samples from the band’s albums and singles.

We brought this issue to a close with a round-up of forthcoming gigs for Complete Madness, Utter Madness, Badness, Los Palmas Six and One Step Behind.

Rob Hazelby




The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra react to the recent spate of album reviews…

Lee Thompson…

“The Bathetic vocal Band Leader? Not good enough.Must try harder.Go stand in the corner,for the remainder of this lesson.Thanks for posting DD. Uncut get it right with OHMSS”




If you can get the Yesterday TV channel in your house you may be interested to learn that a series of music documentaries originally screened in 2011 are being repeated.

Entitled “Teen Spirit”, the show covers the punk explosion and mods and rockers.

Thankfully, those nice people at Yesterday have made the programmes available for streaming, and you can find them at http://uktvplay.uktv.co.uk/shows/teen-spirit/watch-online/?video=2070949591001

And finally, an update on the Clang Album from the one and only Paul Tadman…   “Clive asked me to record some bass for The Clang Group recently and the album is due late Summer early Autumn – there may well be more gigs by the sounds of things including a launch gig so very pleased to be on Clang Bass”

That just about brings us to the end of this week’s issue of the MIS. Have a good week. We’ll be back around the same time next Sunday.

All the best,

Jon Young, Rob Hazelby, Simon Roberts, Paul Williams

(With thanks to Darren Dixon and Darren Fordham)

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