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MIS 953 – Sunday 13th August to Saturday 19th August 2017

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Hello, Good Evening and Welcome

We begin this week’s issue with news of a very generous offer from Madness.

“For the love of the common people, we’re inviting emergency services workers and teachers in London to come to our House of Common Festival… on us!

Get access to your free ticket here: http://loveofthecommonpeople.co.uk

Free tickets are first come, first served. You will need a valid ID showing your profession.) This offer is open to all nurses, doctors, emergency service workers and teachers in London.

Moving on, and here’s something to keep and eye out for. At 16:00, on Wednesday 16th August, Suggs joins Steve Lamacq on BBC Radio 6 to talk classic albums. This week it’s the legendary “One Step Beyond:.

You can catch the show after it’s broadcast by going to the following link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b090g3zh

(Our thanks go to Geo Adam for news on the above)

Now, on with the issue!

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.


August 2017

Friday 18th – Hardwick Hall

Saturday 19th – V Festival, Hylands Park

Sunday 20th – V Festival, Weston Park – Two for One Offer running from Friday 4th August to Monday 7th August https://www.ents24.com/offer/vfest/2590

Friday 25th – Portsmouth – Victorious Festival Opening Party

Sunday 27th – The Big Feastival, Alex James’ Farm – Headliners. More info at:

Monday 28th – House of Common, Clapham ** Tickets now on sale! ** More info here: http://www.madness.co.uk/houseofcommon/


September 2017

1st-3rd Electric Picnic, Ireland  ** Sold out Festival**


October 2017

Saturday 28th – Milan, Italy

Sunday 29th – Padova, Italy


November 2017

Wednesday 1st – Düsseldorf, Germany

Thursday 2nd – Berlin, Germany

Saturday 4th – Wangles, Germany

Sunday 5th – Copenhagen, Denmark

Tuesday 7th – Stockholm, Sweden

Wednesday 8th – Oslo, Norway

Friday 10th – Antwerp, Belgium

Saturday 11th – Paris, France

Monday 13th – Muziekcentrum Enschede – Netherlands

Tuesday 14th – Ronda | TivoliVredenburg –  Netherlands

    See https://www.topticketshop.nl/madness for details on the above 2 x gigs

17th – 20th November – The House of Fun Weekender – Minehead



October 19th – An Evening With Suggs, in aid of Pancreatic Cancer UK


The Nutty Bar Pop-up in London

August Bank Holiday Saturday (26th)

Lee Thompson DJ Set – Door 12 noon Afternoon event.  – The Social. 5 little Portland street London, W1W 7JD


Lee Thompson – One Man’s Madness Film

October 1st – Matinee – Camden Dingwalls

October 1st – Evening – Camden Dingwalls

An advanced test screening version of the new Mockumentary comedy and life story film, hosted by Lee with A Q&A after the film and a special performance.

For more information regarding the project, go to: http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/lee-thompson-one-mans-madness



Our House Tour 2017


14th – 19th August –  Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield

22nd – 26th August – Venue Cymru, Llandudno

29th August – 2nd September – The Playhouse, Weston-Super-Mare

5th – 9th September – Embassy Theatre, Skegness

11th – 16th September – Festival Theatre, Malvern

19th – 23rd September – White Rock Theatre, Hastings

26th – 30th September – King’s Theatre, Glasgow ** New **

3rd – 7th October – Swansea Grand Theatre, Swansea

9th – 14th October – Winter Gardens, Blackpool

16th – 21st October – The Spa, Bridlington

24th – 28th October – Churchill Theatre, Bromley

30th October – 4th November – Kings Theatre, Portsmouth

8th – 11th November – Belgrade Theatre, Coventry

14th – 18th November – Weymouth Pavillion, Weymouth

20th – 25th November – Wycombe Swan, High Wycombe


Voice of the Beehive

Wednesday October 4th, The Lexington, Islington *** Sold Out ***

Saturday October 7th, Indie Daze. All Dayer from 1pm.  Kentish Town Forum. NW5 London

Deaf School

Thursday 7th December – The Prince Albert, Brighton

Friday 8th December – The O2 Academy, Islington

Saturday 9th December – Invisible Wind Factory, Liverpool

Full details at https://www.facebook.com/deafschoolontour/



Buy It

Lee Thompson Needs you to Pledge and Share Now 

As we recently mentioned, Thommo’s film project “One Man’s Madness, A RockuMockuDocumentary”, is now live on Pledge Music

Lee Thompson’s comedy life story film, featuring multiple mad Lee performances, and starring all of Madness and many more well known voices, is nearly complete and coming out this year. All that remains to make this possible if for your to pledge and help complete the project as planned.


Exclusive Baggy Trousers video prints available now

Unearthed from the archives are four never before seen prints from the video shoot for the iconic Madness Baggy Trousers video, featuring Lee Thompson flying above the fields of Islip Street School.

Numbered and signed by Lee, these hand printed photographs are limited to a run of only 2…

For more information, and to back the project, go to: http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/lee-thompson-one-mans-madness


Solo in Soho: Mike Sebbage 


Featuring Lee Thompson on sax


The Very Best of Suggs

Out now!

A new compilation, the very best of Suggs


1. Cecilia (feat. Louchie Lou & Michie One)

2. Jack O The Green – Jools Holland & Suggs

3. Off On Holiday

4. I’m Only Sleeping

5. Alcohol

6. I Am

7. Camden Town

8. Same Again

9. The Tune

10. So Tired

11. Oranges And Lemons Again – Jools Holland & Suggs

12. No More Alcohol

13. Blue Day (feat. The Chelsea Team) [Stamford Bridge Mix] – Suggs And Co

14. I Feel Good

15. Alright

It collects all 8 of his top 40 singles, adding to that the original “Alcohol” and what was arguably the most like second single, if three pyramids had reached that stage, in “So Tired”

Adding 3 b-sides, the obscure “Same again” to two covers, “I feel good” (James Brown) and “Alright” by Supergrass, to no doubt try and encourage the casual music fan to buy this budget priced release.

Finally, it pulls the two tracks from Jools Holland and Friends albums. The near single “Oranges and Lemon’s Again” and the more forgotten bouncy “Jack of the Green.”

This new CD is out now and has started shipping to fans. The sleeve features a new cover design, based on a photo taken recently for Suggs Live show.

Fans have reported that “The Tune” is the instrumental version from the Cecillia CD Single, rather than the vocal album mix.

Jonathan Young


Cant Touch Us Now – Limited Double Vinyl Edition. 


All 16 tracks. A new half speed master in gatefold.

180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl

Limited & Numbered of 2,000

The inner sleeves inside the gatefold outer cover features “Hong Kong” and “Australian” versions of the albums cover art, no doubt used in some function on the recent tour. So, we’re treated to Hong Kong’s Tian Tan Buddha statue and Sydney Opera House replacing St. Paul’s, for example. There are also a number of other country references mixed in. We noticed Dame Edna! on the front of the Australian one.



Mad Summer Sale @ The Madness Store

Sales don’t get much nuttier than this!

20% OFF ALL clothing for a limited time only.

Enter Code MADSUMMER @ Checkout!





MIS Feature – Talking Revolutions is Coming to House of Fun

Poetic words, music talk, and more! Gavin Martin’s Talking Revolutions is coming to House of Fun this year. Previously, Gavin has penned sleeve notes for Madness and has compiled at least three of the recent tour programmes to great effect. He goes back longer with the band to the music press days of the 80s.

Here is his first part poem on reacting to being announced as on the bill poster for House of Fun this November.

Good lord I’m on the bill

In 1980 going to meet em in Liverpool 

I thought I’d had my fill

British intelligence barred me at the door

Wanted to hear more 
bout what I had to say
just off the flight from BA
Not like today, with Ryan air?
Have a care

It was the spring of 1980, matey 

you can get the datey 

With files of Hot Press

I don’t digress 

Cause under my arm I did hold,

In Back, round front, cover rolled,

That weeks edition with an advertising 


for an album by iggy pop



Sold, sir.

Rat a tat tat

‘What’s that?’

Said the intelligence man, indicating what was in my hand.

Music mag, I explain

Wondering if he had a brain

But the pain was plain to see

As he says , aye, says he to me

This is what he did say,

“It’s the official organ of THE PROVISIONAL IRA.’

Like I’d just gone and made his day.

when all was explained

Patience drained 

20 minutes later

it was see you later, alligator.

I went on my way to meet the lads insane 

And this November I will do so,again

Not alas in Spain were we went in 81

And after becoming one 

with them carousers

I was sick all over my trousers 

But you can’t go wrong, son

With a strides loaned from Lee Thompson



Gavin Martin (Talking Revolutions)



I Remember Way Back When

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 692 – Sunday 12th August – Saturday 18th August 2012

We declared this issue an “Olympic Closing Ceremony Edition” of the MIS, and held of sending it out until Madness had performed their slot at London 2012.

It was with news of that performance that we kicked off this week’s collection of articles.

Madness were the first band up, and appeared on the back of a moving lorry, with those around them on the improvised ‘street’ enjoying a British style street party.

Bedders was back on bass, and Lee was sporting a bright white kilt with Union Jack sporran.

Part way through the band’s set a roadie could be seen rushing past the band, but the camera cut away before we could see what the issue was.

The street party seemed to be in full swing during the set, as at one point a number of the partygoers could be seen doing their very own “Nutty Walk”.

Towards the end of the set Lee was winched off the stage by a crane, in true “Baggy Trousers” style.

Moving on, and as this week we celebrated 20 years since Madness reunited at the legendary Madstock gigs of 1992. Here, to mark two decades on were two gig reviews. The first came from subscriber “Chigs”, and the second from our very own Mr. Young.

Next, and following last week’s Total Madness album competition we were running in the MIS, we were pleased to announce that the winner was non other than subscriber Mark Nolan.

Elsewhere, the Retro Madness team were celebrating the British Summer with a buy three T-shirts and get a fourth free offer. With over 85 different designs in stock spanning the last 30 years, you were sure to find a number of tops you’d want to add to your wardrobe.

Following this, we were pleased to reveal that the band had made a free download of a track from their forthcoming album. The track in question was “Death of a Rudeboy”, and we featured a full transcript of the lyrics, courtesy of Paul Rodgers and Jonathan Young.

It was on to BBC Radio next as we reported that the BBC had made a vast archive of their Desert Island Discs episodes available for download. The that interested us was for May 2002, where Suggs appeared and spoke about his eight favourite tracks.

We brought this issue to a close with the news that Union Square Music were currently running a competition for you to win a copy of the new Total Madness album. All you had to do was pop along to their web site and fill in your details. Simple!

10 years ago…

Issue Number 432 – Sunday 12th to Saturday 18th August 2007

This issue began with the news that Jon Young was unable to produce any material for this issue? Why? Well, it seemed that his partying at Ascot Racecourse (where Madness were playing), and at Camden’s Dublin Castle, with a certain Dan Fossard, had meant that he wasn’t quite up to the task of putting a review of the gig together for this issue.

We were promised, however, that it would be ready in time for the next issue.

In the previous issue we ran an article entitled “Real Style or Expensive Copies”, detailing a company who were selling some rather expensive limited edition t-shirts. As a number of these were Madness related, we contacted Mark Bedford to ascertain if these were legitimate products, or some unlicensed bootlegs.

Mark kindly responded, and confirmed that the products had received the full backing of EMI music, and followed up with the comment

“It’s a good cause, and it seems it’s a nice way to basically make a donation to an AIDS charity”. 

On to the articles, and we began with an interview the band gave before their Hungary Festival appearance. It was clear that things weren’t being taken seriously at all, and what started out as a small round table session evolved into a press conference loaded with jokes.

We moved on to film news next, as it was revealed that Suggs would be starring as Albert ‘Al’ Bowlly in “The Edge of Love”.

The romantic based period drama is set around the life of Welsh poet Dylan Thomas (Rhys), and a love triangle in his life surrounding the two women he loves. Based on real life events the film focussed on the time that Dylan Thomas was shot at because of his love life.

This was it. Your last chance. What were we on about? Your last chance to put your name down for the Blackpool House of Fun Weekender 2007, if you’d not already done so.

We brought this issue to a close with the news that a nice clip of Suggs and Carl talking about their involvement with the 2000AD comic had been uploaded to YouTube. (We’re unable to re-link to it now as the user who uploaded it has terminated their account).

15 years ago…

Issue Number 170 – Sunday 11th to Saturday 17th August 2002

We started off this issue with news that this week was the 10th anniversary of the legendary Madstock concert. Not only did this event give thousands of fans a chance to see their much loved band for the first time since 1986, but it also brought the band back into the public eye, and since then they’ve never really gone away.

News from a certain Chas Smash revealed that the band had returned to the studio where they worked on two new tracks for the forthcoming Madness musical. Rumours also hinted that these would form the basis of a future single which may coincide with the launch of the show.

Elsewhere, and Madness gig archivist, Jermaine asked the readers to send in reviews of a number of ‘Like Father, Like Son’ gigs, so they could be added to the already bursting ‘Tour Madness’ publication.

The most earth-shattering news items this week however, was the announcement that although it was mid August, tickets for the Christmas gigs at The Birmingham NEC and London Arena (Saturday) had already sold out!

Chris Carter-Pegg reported that the second London date (to be held on the Sunday) had yet to be announced, and was suggesting that fellow fans to let the organisers know that standing tickets for the Sunday were required, so that the date could be officially announced.

Further on, and we ran a report detailing that North London based band, MOT were keen to share the musical love, by making four of their tracks available from their site for download. The tracks available were:

My english garden

Uptown Mizer


Underage Drinker

Back to more Madness related news, and we received exciting news via ChasSmash.Com, revealing that Carl and Chris had been in the recording studio, providing voice overs for a forthcoming DVD. The nature of the voice overs were memories about the videos.

Also this issue we reviewed issue 11 of Ian Taylor’s excellent fanzine, ‘Mad Not Mad’. Spanning a monster 60 pages, this issue had enough to interest those of you who were ‘only’ into Madness, whilst those of you with an interest in the ska scene as a whole would have found themselves grinning from ear to ear with the excellent contents on offer.

Since the previous issue of the MIS went out, the Madness episode of the ‘Smash’ TV series, which looked at a number of 80’s bands, was broadcast. Whilst it was great that the band received a decent length slot on UK television, the main complaint from the fans was that the programme covered the same subjects that had already appeared in countless interviews before.

Rob Hazelby



Lee Thompson DJ Set – MIS Special Discount Offer

Half Priced Tickets to MIS Readers for Lee Thompson DJ Set

Come along and have a double header afternoon of Fun with Thommo and Looney Toonz Frontman Rev Toon as the pop up Nutty Bar hits town on the Saturday before House of Common.

The Social in the West End is the venue for an afternoon of fun as Harry Wandsworth brings his Nutty Bar to London for a one off event on the bank holiday weekend from 2pm.

And anyone who wants to be in with a chance to win a Nutty Bar Polo signed by all seven members of the band can also purchase raffle tickets at 2 pounds each with the winner being drawn by Thommo himself!

All proceeds go to help out the brilliant museum at the 2Tone Village in Coventry!

State either 5 pound Thommo tickets or 2 pound Raffle tickets plus number required through PayPal to wandsworth.harry@icloud.com

Jonathan Young



Sign of the Times

The NJE **** Afloat (Sartorial) 

‘Cross Can’s rhythm section with Roland Kirk, Motown and the Third Stream,’ enthuses the press release, ‘and you’ll get somewhere near where The NJE are coming from…’ That pithy description may be amusing but its also as good a way as any of describing the adventurous, inventive and genre-straddling music on Afloat.

The band comprises Terry Edwards, formerly of The Higsons, an Earl Bostic-influenced saxophonist who also plays trumpet and keyboards, Madness bassist Mark Bedford and ex-Higsons drummer Simon Charterton.

The trio’s name is an abbreviation of The Near Jazz Experience but the word ‘Near’ could reasonably be omitted because in their commitment to improvisation and in their interactivity the three musicians clearly have a jazz sensibility. Both live and studio recordings are used, the various musical elements are ingeniously woven in and out of different tracks, found sounds are mixed with the instruments, and there is some dramatic editing.

‘St. Leonard’s Suite’ is engrossing, the music tense, atmospheric and ominous-sounding while the interpretation of ‘Voodoo Child’ opens with the familiar riff, played on sax, thus providing a Near Jimi Hendrix Experience Experience, before the tune is taken to places it has never been before.

Trevor Hodgett


Suggs Talks Success of Our House


Ahead of Laurence Olivier Award-winning musical Our House featuring the songs of Madness opening in Hastings, frontman and singer Suggs has talked about the production coming to his former hometown.

Suggs said: “I couldn’t imagine it’d still be playing, not really, but anything is incremental. I remember when we did a gig with Madness way back when and 40 people turned up and I remember thinking we’d made it then. But it’s a real privilege in the same way it is for Madness to still be playing. It’s a real privilege that people still love the Our House musical. 

We weren’t unaware of the fact our songs are quite narrative and we’d even sort of dabbled ourselves with the obvious – you know, we wrote songs about going to school, we wrote songs about your first girlfriend, we wrote songs about living in the house in the street you were brought up in. But we found it much more difficult than we realised and that’s when Tim got the phone call… I always remember Tim saying right at the beginning ‘I don’t want it to feel like we’ve dropped the songs into scenes just because we need a bit of music, I want the songs to drive the story and we shall make the story fit around those songs’. 

It was a really incredible process to watch unfold.” 

Of the production in Hastings he commented; “It’s a lovely theatre, a very nice old seaside theatre. I was born in Hastings so I’m held in some esteem down there and it’s just one of those beautiful theatres, overlooking the sea, perfect for a good night out.”


Festival Madness Makes for Absolute Gladness


Almost 15,000 music lovers made for a capacity crowd on the Green, as the Nutty Boys brought their fantastic ska sounds to town. From NW5 to the North West’s biggest music festival, Madness’s Saturday night “legends” slot was outstanding.

Warming up, under a balmy early evening sun, were local acts The Soul Convicts, hailing from East Lancashire, and The Tailormade, who had also been on the bill for the festival’s opening night. The Soul Convicts took no prisoners to get the night underway with their blues sounds crammed into a 30-minute set, before St Annes’ Jack Frimston and his band mates once more made a great impression with their fun cover versions of hits such as Kanye West’s Gold Digger and their party-inspired own tracks.

Once Madness took to the stage, you couldn’t help but ‘Keep Moving’ your feet as they combined infectious rhythms with exceptional musician- and showmanship. For a good hour, Suggs and Co held the audience in the palm of their hand, building up the anticipation and teasing the crowd with hits and tracks the casual listener might not have known, before unleashing the big guns.

Then for the final half hour they had the entire arena of fez- and trilby-clad fans bouncing in full-on skank style, as the show went One Step Beyond once the hits started to roll.




That’s almost it for this week, but before we go there are one to two last minute bits to pass in your general direction.

First-up, and if you’d like some further reading, you may be interested to learn that Voice of the Beehive have been interviewed for the current edition of Louder Than War magazine.

Next, and The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra have a studio rehearsal of  “Tunnel One”, an instrumental they have been playing live, but didn’t make the Bite The Bullet album, going up soon on the band’s official website as a free download.

Also, check out the updates to Lee Thompson’s “One Man’s Madness” film, as now there’s an amusing video of Suggs stealing Lee’s pledge money!

Finally, we at MIS Online would like to wish Cathal Smyth well on his successful recovery from a recent health issue.

We are gladdened to hear that he is a comfortable man once again, having overcome a number of medical procedures earlier in the year. Thankfully, he is now celebrating confirmed good news from the doctors.

We wish you continued good health, sir!

Until next week, take care,

Jon Young, Rob Hazelby, Simon Roberts, Paul Williams
(With thanks to Geo Adam)

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