Home»Latest Newsletters»Madness Information Service Online Newsletter Issue Number: 762 – Sunday 15th December to Saturday 21st December 2013

Madness Information Service Online Newsletter Issue Number: 762 – Sunday 15th December to Saturday 21st December 2013

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Hello, good evening and welcome to this week’s edition of the MIS Online Newsletter.

In this issue we bring you news of various Specialized releases, details of an updated release date for Bangarang, a review of the recent Ska Orchestra gig at the Black Horse Pub and Brewery, and even a few snippets revealing what the Ska Orchestra and Madness have planned for next year. Alongside that there’s recent Madness related highlights from the Twitterverse, a roundup of Madness and Madness related goodies for you to spend your pennies on and a detailed lowdown of all forthcoming gigs.

As always, we hope you enjoy the read, and don’t forget – if you have any Madness news you think may interest other subscribers please do send it in.

Enjoy the read,

Jon Young, Liz Hazelby, Rob Hazelby, Simon Roberts


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.


December 31st – Dublin – www.nyedublin.ie

November 21st – 24th 2014 – Minehead – Earlybird tickets can be ordered here: http://www.bigweekends.com/splash-pages/madness2014.aspx

For tickets also see links via: www.madness.co.uk

Suggs Live

Suggs My Life Story, the West End of London December Run.

December 15th  – Garrick Theatre, London’s West End.
December 22nd  – Garrick Theatre, London’s West End.

April 2014

2nd – Newbury Corn Exchange
3rd – Loughborough Town Hall
4th – Wakefield Theatre Royal
5th – Southport The Atkinson Theatre
6th – Runcorn The Brindley
8th – Mansfield Palace Theatre
9th – Stamford Corn Exchange
11th – Isle of Wight Shaklin Theatre
12th – Aldershot Princes Hall
13th – Wimborne Tivoli Theatre
15th – Bury St Edmonds The Apex
16th – Tunbridge Wells, Assembly Hall
17th – Stroud Subscription Rooms
22nd – Chelmsford Civic Theatre
23rd – Stevenage Gordon Craig Theatre
24th – Redditch Palace Theatre
25th – Malvern Forum Theatre
26th – Margate Winter Gardens
27th – Northampton Derngate
29th – Bolton Albert Halls
30th – Darlington Civic Theatre

May 2014

1st – Newark Palace Theatre
2nd – Redhill Harlequin Theatre
3rd – Watford Colosseum
4th – Yeovil Octagon Theatre
10th – DUBLIN Olympia Theatre
13th – Harlow Playhouse
14th – Lowestoft Marina Theatre
16th – Leamington Royal Spa Centre
17th – Jersey Opera House

Suggs and Friends

The charity fund raising evening “Suggs and Friends” makes a welcome return this coming March.  The 2014 fundraiser takes place on March 20th at 6.30pm, with champagne reception and auction.

The £150 donation tickets for pancreatic cancer gain entry to the Porchester Hall event in London W2. There’s no announcement yet as to who is joining Suggs at the exclusive event.

The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra

No further gigs at present. Keep an eye on: www.ltso.mis-online.net

Deaf School

No further gigs or events at present. Keep an eye on http://deafschoolmusic.com for more information.


If money’s currently burning a hole in your pocket then perhaps we can help with your dilemma.

***NEW*** The Specialized EP  Featuring Lee Thompson

A 4 track vinyl EP featuring Lee’s track from the first specialized album and tracks by the Valves, Rhoda Dakar and Nick Welsh.

Should be in stock this coming week.

Thanks go to Chuck Wren and Jump Up Records, Stan from A&R Texas (pressing plant), and Mike Schneider of Indigo Iguana (design).

LOOK SO GOOD YA COULD LICK EM…. Will be available via


***NEW*** The Specialized Big One 2. Live DVD.

For those wanting a copy of the DVD of the Big One 2 event we can reveal that you can now pre-order your copy. This will be limited edition and available into the new year. Also, Specialized are having a merchandise end of project sale for Christmas from the 9th- 20th December. This is a perfect opportunity to buy those little bits for you, loved ones and friends. At the same time you’ll also be doing some good because as is the normal spec with Specialized, all proceeds go to the Teenage Cancer Trust.

Welcome to Specialized Project official website

LTSO, Bangarang, Featuring Dawn Penn

*** UPDATE *** Single release date mid February.

The Magic Line Album * Out Now! *

Signed T-shirt packages and a deluxe edition.


A range of Magic Brothers T-shirts, Polo Shirts are now available to buy.

The CD album is available via Amazon and the download via iTunes contains an interview with Phil Jupitus talking to Woody about the album.  But if you buy the album via the official band site you can choose a signed option or bundle.

If you’ve a spare £75 and are really into the magic, then there are 25 packs going fast that include all of this….

The Magic Line Collectors Pack – Limited Edition of 25 includes; The Magic Line Signed CD Album. The Magic Line Digital Download. The Magic Line T Shirt. Woodys Drumsticks Signed. Nicks Guitar Paick Signed. Copy of Album Lyrics. “Thank You” Phone Call From Woody & Nick.

Our thanks go to Paul Smart for the above

Suggs “The Close” Signed Book

Suggs is one of pop music’s most enduring and likeable figures. Written with the assured style and wit of a natural raconteur, this hugely entertaining and insightful autobiography takes you from his colourful early life on a North London council estate, through the heady early days of Punk and 2-Tone, to the eighties, where Madness became the biggest selling singles band of the decade. Along the way he tells you what it’s like to grow up in sixties Soho, go globetrotting with your best mates, to make a dead pigeon fly and cause an earthquake in Finsbury Park.

Suggs is a singer, songwriter, DJ, actor and TV presenter. He is perhaps best known as lead singer with Madness, who have had 24 top-twenty hits and continue to tour. Suggs lives in Camden, London.

– Features unseen and exclusive lyrics.
- 352 pages.
- Hardback.


Louis Vause – Midnight in Havana

“Oh dear. I’m alive..!” Pianist Louis Vause has always said that his albums are “Gouged out of him by circumstance” but his third album ‘Midnight In Havana’really is a case in point.

Recorded as a valedictory set, a swansong if you like, after he was told that the onset of cancer meant that he had mere months to live, the completion of the work coincided with his liver transplant and the all clear. He was in the pink. The same could not be said for his credit cards which had covered Louis’ uncharacteristically cavalier spending on recording costs.


Mark Adamson of the Deaf School Website gives us an exclusive quote or two from Suggs, on the forthcoming Deaf School Book.

Deaf School – the story is told at last!

“For me, the gigs Deaf School have done recently have been some of the best I’ve seen by any band.”

So writes Suggs in his foreword to a book, published this month amid a flurry of Deaf School gigs and other Book Launch events, charting the creation and career of a band that influenced so many artists that followed – and that still fills venues 40 years after their debut at the Liverpool School of Art Christmas Dance.

Deaf School had a huge impact on Madness (Suggs: “Back in my youth I met some characters who were a right bunch, but what we had in common was that we loved Deaf School.”) – not least, of course, because guitarist Clive Langer’s became Madness producer and because Suggs married Deaf School singer Bette Bright!

Written by leading rock music writer, author and broadcaster Paul du Noyer, a lifetime Deaf School fan, Deaf School: The Non-Stop Pop Art Punk Rock Party, is published later this month by the Liverpool University Press, priced at £14.99. Accompanying the publication of the book is a Deaf School exhibition, featuring original art works by band members, posters, photos, rare films of live performances, band stage costumes and much more.

The book is available from Deaf School’s website at www.deafschoolmusic.com


Lee Thompson Band @ Black Horse pub, Barnet Saturday 16 November

So, after an enjoyable pub crawl round Camden Town, then watching the evening game between Barnet and Cambridge – a decent 2-2 draw – we are off to watch Thommo on local territory again.

We arrive only with about 30 minutes to spare, the pub is packed out and the stage is set. The pub has its own micro-brewery so we are spoilt for choice of beers although we’ve already had a few!

Again Thommo enlists local musicians and is similar to the line up 4 weeks earlier for the Queens Arms gig. Amongst the ranks we have LTSO’s very own Kevin Burdett on guitar, joined by a bass guitarist, keyboard player, drummer and brass section of sax and slide trombone. Vocal duty is shared by Lee and his son Daley.

Initially there was an issue with Daleys mic which was soon rectified. Sadly the mic for the brass section seemed to not pick up their playing which was a great shame – I was standing right next to them at the front and majority of the audience. I’m sure could only hear them when they played directly into the mic.

The set was very similar to that played at the Queens Arms, starting tonight with Bangarang. Daley had mentioned to me they’d been working on some new covers to play, considering maybe a track each by The Small Faces & The Kinks. So included tonight we do indeed get The Kinks Sunny Afternoon and also The Beatles Hey Bulldog, both good choices and worked well. We are again treated to Ian Dury tunes More Than Fair and Clever Trevor plus a sprinkling of Madness songs and of course some LTSO numbers, all brilliantly played.

It’s a 15 strong set and it got the whole pub rocking. I make my way back to the bar, have a chat with mates and probably a good 20 minutes after the set finished, they’re back on stage again! The ‘encore’ is probably 8-10 more songs going through some of the earlier set again! Amazing! I guess even our star saxophonist and his guitarist need a little bit of practice ahead of the biggest weekend of the year!?!!

Naturally, it goes down a storm and is the perfect build up to the House Of Fun Weekender which is now only a matter of days away…

Set List (acquired from where Thommo stood so it’s probably his sax keys featured here)

– Bangarang – Eb

– Stuck In The Middle With You – D

– Mother & Child Reunion – A

– Midnight Rider – B

– Hey Bulldog – B7/F#m

– More Than Fair – C

– Sunny Afternoon – Dm

– Clevor Trevor – Em

– My Girl – C#m

– One Step Beyond – Cm

– Fun Man Chu – Am/Dm/Em

– Soon You’ll Be Gone – F>G – C/F/G

– No Lights – E – G/E7/A7D

– Hello Josephine – Bb/Eb/F

– The Prince – G

Daren West


Chas Smash on Ibiza Radio

Source: Essential Ibiza.com


The main guest of the night was a man much loved for 35 years by the British public and co-front man of one of the UK’s biggest ever bands, Chas Smash aka Karl Smyth from Madness. He dropped by the studios to talk about his new album, ‘A Comfortable Man’ (working title), which will mark his debut solo record. He has long since been in co-control of the bands writing duties, penning some of their biggest hits, so it was no surprise that he has decided to strike out on his own and carve out his own musical niche with this body of work and trademark gravelly vocals, which he partly road tested at the UK’s No. 6 Festival in September under the name Cathal Mo Chroi.

Carl admitted that it was easier working alone on the material with less ‘cooks’ involved, “You don’t have to compromise,” he said. “With six band members there is a lot of compromise involved, and that is ok. It is healthy, but all of that involves conflict. I don’t mind a bit of cut and thrust, but working on your own material means that you get the final say, but at the same time, it is a more organic process.” On working with Madness on their new quirkily named record, ‘Oui Oui Si Si Ja Ja Da Da’, he agreed choosing an album title name was tricky amongst band members. “Our managers were exhausted over the in-fighting of the band,” admits Karl. “I thought after ten albums it should have been called The Ten Commandments Of Madness’, but our record company boss got involved and encouraged our key board players idea of ‘Oui Oui Si Si Ja Ja Da Da’, it is just a load of old compromise!”

Chas Smash interview. 15mins and 2nd part 30mins 30

(Thanks to Cresida Marshall for the info)

Journalist James Brown Reviews  That Close

Source: Sabotagetimes.com

His autobiography is, like Madness, funny, lively, at times moving and very difficult to shake off. It also gets funnier as it goes on. The last few chapters when he described how he spends his summer holidays in Italy will have you laughing in a way people will ask you what you’re reading.

Full review here:



This week, MIS co-editor Rob Hazelby, goes back 5 years to issue 502, and the week of Sunday 14th December to Saturday 20th December 2008, and then back 10 years to issue 240 and the week of Sunday 14th December to Saturday 16th December 2003.

5 years ago…

Issue 502 – Sunday 14th December to Saturday 20th December 2008

We began this issue with some exciting news for all of you who are still on the lookout for standing tickets for this coming Friday’s gig at the O2 Arena.

Here’s Chris Carter-Pegg with the details;

“For anyone without tickets yet Ticketmaster have released a load more Standing Tickets for next Friday’s gig at the o2.

…don’t ever be fooled when Ticketmaster declare Standing Tickets ‘Sold Out’ within hours of them going on sale. These days they usually hold large numbers back for sale at a later date (even though they strongly deny that they do this!)”

Moving on, and those of you who were as puzzled as to the significance of the countdown over on the official Madness web site as we were could now sleep easy, as we had the answer. Unfortunately it wasn’t as exciting as you were no doubt hoping. (That’s if you were expecting it to be a countdown to the release of the new album!)

Chrissy Boy confirmed earlier in the week that the countdown was purely to signify the launch of the re-vamped web site, and also to tie-in with the date of the Manchester gig.

Still, it was exciting news, and made a pleasant change from the dancing M animation we’d had to sit through over the past gawd knows how many years.

On to the articles, and while the sheet music for Divine Madness had been re-printed a number of times since its initial publication back in 1992, it had always been an enormous shame that there hadn’t been a new book of sheet music released since then, with Wonderful being sadly overlooked.

It therefore came as an enormous surprise to find that a new Madness songbook had recently been published, printed as a glossy deluxe souvenir item as part of the merchandise for the Our House Musical.

This perfectly presented 112 page score provided us for the first time with the piano parts and guitar chords for NW5 and Simple Equation.

Next, and as band rehearsals continued we published a number of tidbits detailing what was currently being practiced. Would these see the light of day at a gig? We’d have to wait and see.

We brought this issue to a close with the news that Jonathan Young would be taking a voice recorder along to the forthcoming O2 gig, and that you shouldn’t be too surprised to find it shoved under your nose either before or after the performance.

10 years ago…

Issue 240 – Sunday 14th December to Saturday 20th December 2003

In our haste to get this issue of the MIS out on time we accidentally sent the bulletin to the list server rather than the distribution address where it should have gone.

What it meant for the reader base is that they got their MIS late as the issue had to be sent back out once the problem had been spotted.

What it meant for the MIS staff is a mountain of emails from the list server, each containing an error message, as it tried to process each line of the bulletin as a list server command. Whoops!

Thanks to a number of kind Maddies, this issue contained reviews of the Wembley gig held on the 8th December and the Sheffield gig held on the 11th. For those still waiting to see the band during their last remaining gigs, we recommended that they skipped past certain sections of the issue so as not to ruin their live experience.

Following on from our heads-up in last week’s MIS revealing that a `Johnny The Horse` bootleg was doing the rounds on Ebay, Simsey and Jonathan reported on a few more things we needed to keep away from.

Simsey had spotted two ebayers (one in America, one in Belfast) selling the Dance Craze DVD. He reported the auctions to Ebay, and they were swiftly removed. Simsey also warned us of another seller who basically spray painted CDs and then put them in with the sleeves into presentation cases.

Even more worrying/amusing (depending on which way you looked at it), was one seller on Ebay who was flogging Madness novelty bank notes.

Here’s what Jon had to say at the time;

“no one is claiming that this is legal tender or worth £20 or anything like that, but they might have at least used pictures of Madness to produce it not a madness Tribute band! Fools”.

It was worth looking at the auction photos, as it looked as if someone had simply glued the cut-outs on to the notes!

We finished off this week’s issue with news on the new Ian Dury and The Blockheads Book – “Song By Song”, which contained a foreward by comedian Phil Jupitus. The Blockheads site would be taking advance orders for the book around mid December.

Rob Hazelby


That’s almost it for this week, but before we go we’ve got a few videos to pass in

Graham McPherson

Yes, thanks, writing a book for me was like getting a fried egg out of a ping pong ball.

Highest regards for lesley and all at @thefrenchhouse for spending day raising money and awareness for @crossroad womens refuge Kentish town.


Potential xmas single?

I’m going to cleverly re-work ‘My Favourite Things’ into, ‘Ma Fave ‘n’ Ting’ for N-Dubz.

Tuba exam taken…

Well, that was nerve-wracking and over in a flash. Tuba Grade One exam done. I think I did ok

Two to Three weeks for results.  A pass of any kind will do.

Chrissy Boy

Courtesy of Chris’ latest axe cam channel, a couple of videos he took at House of Fun. Here’s footage of the Northern soul acts and being in the dressing room with his band Gorgeous George.


The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra

Must sort out my mince pies…



A Bangarang Update

In a radio interview due to air tomorrow on Radio Skandalo in Mexico, Lee Thompson talked about this last year of projects and his forthcoming plans for 2014.  Domingo Munoz of the Mexican MIS conducted the chat, which we’ll bring you a podcast version of next week.

He spoke about appearing at the recording for Hootenanny this week, alongside Ray Davies and Mel C amongst other guests. You can see a number of photos and video from this courtesy of Swanny on the Lee Thompson Ska orchestra facebook group page. One of these is one of Thommo in his check suit pretending the shower is a telephone booth!

Thommo says that Bangarang is now due out in February to avoid the Christmas deluge of tracks, and that a video in a fur lined taxi cab was shot with Dawn penn when at the Hootenanny, with help from an old camera hand from the Madness video days.

Lee also expressed plans to hibernate in the first couple of months of 2014, then possibly head into the studio to work on original songs, with Dave Robinson happy to help this next project.  Thommo expressed the wish for a producer to help in this next stage of the band’s phase.

For Madness he explained there are no gigs at the moment, except for two more at Butlins, as the band are heading into a writing period.


Get out – http://youtu.be/-dIYZiXzf_k

Lee Meets Ray Davies – http://youtu.be/1LLnciJGv0c

Domingo Munoz / Videos Lee Swandale / Jonathan Young


We’re almost done for this week, but before we go…

The news in from subscriber Darren Fordham is that you can catch a slimmed down Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra this Monday (16th) on Robert Elms’ London Radio Show 94.9. The band should be on at around 2.30pm (ish).

And finally, here’s something a little special – footage of an early live gig by The Nutty Boys (Crunch!) at The Fleece and Firkin. The footage includes songs from the band’s 1990 album, plus unreleased tracks and a cover of Take it or Leave it.

Our thanks go to Swanny for making this available as it’s taken from his own personal library. Point your browsers at: http://youtu.be/wKWmc5riA78

Happy viewing!

All the best,

Jon Young, Liz Hazelby, Rob Hazelby, Simon Roberts

(with thanks to Daren West, Cresida Marshall, Domingo Munoz,
Lee Swandale and Darren Fordham)

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