We begin this week’s issue of the MIS with the news that tickets have now sold out for Madness’ homecoming gig at Kenwood House, Hampstead. This massive concert, due to take place on 15th June, features a full scale orchestra accompanying the band, and clearly proved to be an exciting event which fans dearly wanted to be part of.
Thankfully, the band have a mass of gigs planned over the coming months, so if you’ve been unable to get tickets for this event you should be able to catch them at another concert before 2019 comes to a close.
On to sad news now, and earlier this week we learned of the passing of The Beat’s Ranking Roger, who died at the young age of 56. Countless Madness fans paid their own tributes across social media, and numerous web sites published obituaries.
If you missed this sad news the BBC featured a nice article covering Roger which you can find at the following address: https://bbc.in/2HN3O6h
Our thoughts go out to Roger’s friends and family at this very sad time.
Friday 29th – Monday 2nd December – House of Fun Weekender 2019 Miscellaneous
Wednesday 27th – Rock ‘n Roll Book Club at The Union – Madness: One Step Beyond, The Union Club, London. Featuring Terry Edwards and Bedders
One Step Beyond 40th Anniversary Single
Special release as part of 2019’s Record Store Day
Format: Shaped picture disc single
Release date: 13th April 2019
More Info: 2019 marks the 40th anniversary of Madness, one of the most successful and best loved British bands of all time. Formed in Camden Town, North London, in 1976 they have gone onto to release dozens of massive hit singles and albums, selling millions of records in a career that spans five decades and is still going strong. To celebrate their “XL” year, the band are reissuing their first Top 10 hit, ‘ One Step Beyond’ .
As well as the original 7″ single and 2009 remastered version of the album track, this release also contains both the Italian and the Spanish version of the song. The single is presented as a very special, limited-edition shaped picture disc with the A side image of the band performing their iconic “Nutty Train” dance.
For more information and to find a participating store go to:
Before We Was We: The Making of Madness by Madness
The band’s first official book.
The story of how they became them. It’s a journey full of luck, skill and charm, as they duck and dive by day and make the name in London’s exploding music scene by night, zipping around the capital in their Morris Minor vans. Their formative years, 1970-79.
This is the riotous coming-of-age tale of seven unique individuals, whose collective graft, energy and talent took them from the sweaty depths of the Hope and Anchor basement to the Top of the Pops studio. In their own words, they each look back on their past and how during those shared adventures, they formed a bond that’s lasted forty years. Before We Was We is irreverent, funny and full of character. Just like them.
You can now buy a range of classic album design T shirts.
Absolutely returns to the official T shirt store since first appearing a decade ago as merchandise. Seven now joins the albums T-shirts range, only previously a promotional shirt. For the first time Rise & Fall (Following last year’s triumphant return of this album’s title track on tour) joins official shirt range.
Best of all, 10 years on from its box set release, The Liberty of Norton Folgate is purchasable. We are having a little bit of that!
Complete Madness. Total Madness hits albums join the range.
This range is also certainly a reaction to the continuing bullshit of bootleggers targeting social media with non licensed product not endorsed by the band and illegal.
Don’t be an idiot and buy from badly photoshopped pictures of Suggs holding a shirt up etc. Those are fake. The Madstore and official band website and gigs merchandise stands are all run by the same company with the band’s legal backing. You will only find a small number of charity shirts or some One Step Beyond shirts outside of buying from the official online store. Don’t give your money to the bootleggers exploiting you.
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: 777 – Sunday 30th March to Saturday 5th April 2014
This week Suggs appeared in The Times newspaper where he discussed writing new lyrics. Two songs were mentioned. The first, a song about a Soho beggar called Pam who used to make £200 a day but spend it all on fruit machines, and a second called “He’s Not a Gangster”, a tune about a wide boy who became respectable and how has a mortgage and pension plan.
We checked back through the MIS archives, and back in 2010 Suggs spoke to the Bristol Evening Post about a song called “Pam The Hawk”.
“She’s about 4ft 3in tall; she’s a beggar really, but she’s great at making money and it all goes in a fruit machine at the end of the night.”
This failed to make it onto the Do Not Adjust Your Nut tour that year or the following album, so it was great to hear that it was now in the pot for the new album supposedly in the works.
On to our “Showtimes” section, and we only had one new addition this week, but it was an impressive one. The Magic Brothers had been revealed as Friday night headliners at The Big One 3, Park Dean, Sandford, Dorset.
Moving on, and in “Buy it” we revealed that new official Crunch! merchandise was now available, with polo shirts at £17.99 and beanie hats at £8.99. Meanwhile, we reported that the Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra’s single “Bangarang” had received a revised release date of April 28th.
Next, it was our “MIS Feature”, which thanks to the hard work of Crunch! web site maintainer, Lee Swandale, covered all the songs no on the band’s “Nutty Boy” debut album or their two single releases. Many of the tracks had been aired at various live gigs from the 90’s through to the late 2000’s.
Over in “Live Intensified” we featured a review of the Lee Thompson gig held on Saturday 1st March at the Durham Suite, Barnet Football Club. The review was lengthy and detailed, and featured contributions from both Daren West and John Hunt.
Following this we featured several articles in our “Sign of the Times” section, with one quote from Suggs who explained to The Times;
“Heroin tempted me, sure. I could have been a junkie easily. There was a lot of it around when Madness became successful but thankfully that’s the one lesson I learnt from my dad: heroin will destroy you.”
We brought this week’s MIS to a close with the news that Merc Clothing were currently running a competition where you could be in the running to twin 2 tickets to the Madness Take it or Leave it screening in London as part of the London International Ska Festival.
Our final few words told you to expect a special mid-week edition of the newsletter in the coming days. Exciting stuff!
10 years ago…
Issue 517 – Sunday 29th March to Saturday 4th April 2009
The day we thought may never come finally arrived this week, when the Madness box set started landing on the door mats of Madness fans up and down the United Kingdom. Unsurprisingly, the reaction from fans was a mixture of relief and excitement.
To celebrate the occasion we selected the best emails posted to the Madness Central mailing list that had cropped up over the past few days, and the response was overwhelmingly positive.
Next, and we received news in from Chris Carter-Pegg, revealing that the forthcoming Madstock 5 concert may be suffering a date change, from Friday 17th July to Monday 20th. For those who had booked accommodation and/or travel, this was rather worrying.
With the band recently performing Down Under, we featured reviews from the performances at Luna Park Sydney, and the V Festival on The Gold Coast. For many Australian based fans, this was the first time they’d ever seen the band live, and it was an extremely memorable occasion for them.
Naturally, though, with the final release of the Norton Folgate box set much of this issue was devoted to that, with MadTube exclusives and an explanation of certain English slang words featured on the tracks that many of our overseas readers may have struggled with.
We brought this issue to a close with the news that Dust Devil had been introduced at the recent Sydney gig as “Our new single”, and it would be appearing on radio playlists from May 11th.
15 years ago…
Issue 255 – Sunday 28th March to Saturday 3rd April 2004
This issue kicked off with the news that another 13,000 copies of The Business booklet had recently been re-printed. Did this point to a possible re-issue, and more importantly, how on earth did we get hold of this information in the first place?
Well, it turned out that a certain Dutch subscriber, who asked to remain nameless, worked at the printers where the re-issue work was taking place. Along with the report we were treated to photos of the original plates used for the re-prints – something you would normally never get the opportunity to see.
So, were we about to see a slightly re-jigged re-issue of the box set, or were store supplies getting low, and merely required a top-up?
Unfortunately it was the latter. Ah well.
Moving on, and recent visitors to the official Madness web site were concerned to find that the message board entries had been removed, leaving a completely empty page. Thankfully Chris was quick to calm our fears, and explained that this temporary removal of the messages was down to a site revamp.
We first ran a BU8 discography back in MIS issue 133 (Dec 2001), with the re-released BU8 album then being reviewed in MIS 193.
With a new Terry Edwards compilation CD now featuring a newly released track we thought it was a good time to bring things up-to-date, with a full Butterfield 8 discography.
We finished off this issue with the news that a high quality rip of Madness’ performance Hammersmith Palais gig on the 19th December 1981 was now up on www.suprnova.org for download. Time to warm up those broadband connections.
Sign of the Times
Review: The Communicators Make Skatastic Return
From The Weston Mercury
The Comms first gig in six years got off to a slow start with the only support on the night, a DJ set from Ska Train which filled a void while the crowd slowly filtered in.
But come 9.30 and The Comms burst onto the stage opening with The Communicator, a Madness track the band have certainly made their own.
Clearly loving every second of their time on stage, The Comms joked their way through an evening of new tunes and classic covers, with frontman Mitch an engaging and often hilarious bandleader, like the love child of Suggs and Eddie Hitler, at one point even pinching a pint kindly donated by a fan near the front.
At the second award ceremony held by Vive Le Rock Magazine last Wednesday Lee Thompson picked up an award for his film. He took the opportunity to plug and praise the forthcoming biography from Ranking Roger having got an advanced copy and hearing the sad news this week.
Check out the footage at https://bit.ly/2WGl809 which was taken by Julian Kirkby and uploaded by Adam Nicholls.