With June out of the way and the tour racing ever onwards, the band now set off for a three gig stint in Spain. Visiting Madrid, Galicia and Barcelona, these dates should give Spanish Maddies, ex pats and holidaymakers staying in the country a good chance to catch their favourite band perform in their 40th year.
Meanwhile, Suggs has clearly decided that this year isn’t busy enough, as we learned this week that he’ll be DJing at Dreamland Margate on Saturday 3rd August as part of the “Trojan Independence Takeover”. For more information, go to https://www.dreamland.co.uk or check our our Live Intensified section elsewhere in this issue.
If you do managed to get along then please send in a review of the night.
5th – Port America, Galicia, Spain
6th – Vida Festival, Barcelona, Spain
12th- Vivary Park, Taunton (Suppt: The Lightning Seeds and Chris Difford)
19th – Open Air Theatre, Scarborough (Suppt: The Pigeon Detectives)
20th – Doncaster Racecourse, Doncaster
21st – Bitts Park, Carlisle (Suppt: Bootleg Beatles & Chris Difford) Orig date 9/6/19
24th – Sanddown Park Racecourse, Esher
17th – Newbury Racecourse, Berkshire
18th – Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh, Scotland
20th – Custom House Square, Belfast
23rd – Northern Meeting Park, Inverness
24th – East Links, Montrose
26th – Clapham Common, XL South London festival. With “Special” Guests.
30th – Wolverhampton Racecourse, Wolverhampton
31st – Winter Gardens, Margate
1st – The Downs, Bristol, (Suppt: David Rodigan)
Friday 29th – Monday 2nd December – House of Fun Weekender 2019
12th – AFAS Live, Amsterdam
Saturday 3rd August – DJ set at Dreamland, Margate with Max Romeo and Trojan Sound System. More info at: https://www.dreamland.co.uk ** new **
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, 10, 15 and 20 years ago this week.
5 years ago…
Issue Number: 790 – Sunday 29th June to Saturday 5th July 2014
With Lee and his Ska Orchestra having just completed their set at 2014’s Glastonbury music festival we fired off this issue into the ether.
The band were slightly unfortunate to overlap with the legendary Dolly Parton, who was finishing off her performance on the Pyramid Stage as The Ska Orchestra began theirs. This meant that initially the crowd seemed to be no larger than what you’d get at a decent sized beer festival. Thankfully, once Dolly had done her bit festivalgoers began to drift over, and before too long a decent crowd were assembled.
The performance was an hour in length, and featured a guest appearance from Dawn Penn, who came on one song too early. Not that it mattered, as she went down a storm with the crowd.
The BBC screened very few crowd shots during the performance, but despite this a certain Darren Dixon was spotted. He was also still standing, despite having drunk his entire body weight in cider during the course of the weekend. Most impressive!
The Ska Orchestra performance finished on a rather odd note, with the rest of the band leaving the stage without Lee seemingly to notice.
Moving on, and in our regular “Sign of the Times” section we reported that a new Magic Brothers album was in the works. Not only that, but they were putting together a string of gigs for August through to November. One Birmingham appearance at the Custard House on November 1st had been announced already, a little ahead of time, by the venue itself.
Our “Live Intensified” section was a whopper this week with reviews of Clive Langer’s “Clangerati” performance at the Dublin Castle supplied by Mark Adamson and Duff Kelly. Meanwhile, Dinant Dondertman and Jan Jaap Goeman sent in a set list and a review of Madness’ recent performance at “A Night in the Park: in Den Haag, Netherlands.
Elsewhere, in our “Mad Header” article we were down to our final four Madness albums. The winner would be crowned the 2014 Best Madness Album over on the “All Things Madness” Facebook group.
We brought this issue to a close by pointing you in the direction of the Lee Thomson Ska Orchestra gig over on the BBC’s iPlayer. It wasn’t available yet, but would be shortly.
10 years ago…
Issue Number 530 – Sunday 28th June – Saturday 4th July 2009
We got things underway but urged all those people who had bought Madstock tickets through Trinity Street to make a beeline for section two of the issue. Why? Well, we had updated news for UK and oversees ticket holders. Those in the UK would have their tickets sent out to them prior to the gig. Those based oversees would have to bring ID, and the order form and collect theirs on the day.
With Madness due to perform on The Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury the day this issue went out, we featured a transcription from the Telegraph web site where the publication had interviewed Suggs. The article featured a good mix of questions. Sure, some were the usual run of the mill ones, but many were unusual, and the answers would have been of real interest to MIS readers.
The Busking For Cancer drive was ending the weekend the MIS was due to go out, so we decided that it was about time we gave this worthwhile cause one final push. Along with various Youtube links we pointed you in the direction of the Busking for Cancer web site and suggested you donated a quid or two. After all, it was for a good cause.
With Michael Jackon’s passing the music charts were slightly top-heavy with tracks from the recently deceased artist, but that didn’t stop Paul Rodgers putting together another one of his semi-regular chart stats, facts and figures reports.
Paul finished his report by commenting;
“Let’s just be glad Madness didn’t release a single last week. A certain singer appears on at least 20 of the singles in the top 75. I don’t think Madness could have competed with that!”
On to gig reviews, and Owen Collins kindly sent in a detailed write-up of the band’s recent performance at Gatcombe Park. Owen’s review even covered the antics of one drunkard who ran along the top of the portaloos!
Continuing on with the fan gig reviews, and we passed things over to subscriber Andre Claus, who went along to the Berlin gig back June. Not only did we get a review from Andre, but also links to videos and photos he’d taken at the event.
We brought this week’s issue a close with the news, courtesy of Jermaine of Tour Madness, that Chris had been interviewed in the latest issue of the Dutch Metro magazine.
15 years ago…
Issue Number 268 – Sunday 27th June – Saturday 3rd July 2004
Another slow news week meant that instead of the usual intro waffle it was a case of diving straight on in to the articles we’d put together for this issue.
Graham Whitfield had once again been busy at the keyboard, and in his “Celebrity Madness Fans” article revealed that one of the members of teenage pop band ‘Busted’, had been spotted wearing a ‘One Step Beyond’ t-shirt.
Graham apologised for not knowing the singer’s name, and despite having an 8-year-old niece who had seen them live, and knew all there was to know about the band, he declined to investigate further.
Moving on, and we reported on Chris Carter-Pegg’s latest Madness clearout, where he’d listed 100 rare and unusual items on auction site Ebay.
Highlights included the Our House 7″ white label test pressing, the Mistakes 2xLP and the It’s Madness rare LP.
Next-up, we had a report in from Simsey, who revealed that the band had recently performed in front of 12,000, as part of the Vodafone Summer Ball. The group performed a 50-minute greatest hits package before leaving the stage for Sheryl Crow, Blue and Elton John.
With Madness headlining the Move Festival on the 8th of July, the BBC ran a nice article with Suggs, covering some non-standard questions, which provoked a number of interesting answers. When asked what the chances of Jimmy Cliff coming up on stage were he responded with;
“It would be great if he could. We played at Finsbury Park and Prince Buster got up, and then Desmond Dekker and Toots from Toots and the Maytalls turned up, and that was a fantastic evening, so why not? Why not get Jimmy up there?”
20 years ago…
Issue Number 6 – Sunday 27th June – Saturday 3rd July 1999
We started off this issue with the sad news that music legend Ian Dury, who had been battling with cancer, was due to be playing a set with The Blockheads at this year’s Glastonbury Festival, but this appearance had to be pulled at almost the last minute as Ian was unable to perform.
On a slightly happier note, Madness had recently won the `Silver Clef` award at the Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy Charity ceremony in London. Suggs was there to accept the award and he called for prayers for Ian Dury who was unwell.
Moving on, and in recent conversations with a certain Lee Swandale, he revealed that Chris Foreman would soon be contributing to the official Crunch web site at www.crunch.co.uk. At this moment in time we weren’t allowed to pass on any further details, but we did think that readers of the MIS would certainly enjoy it.
And finally, after months of rumours and whispers it looked like the forthcoming Madness album would be entitled `Wonderful`. Lee told Simon Roberts after the recent Camden Lock gig that they had to come up with an album title that morning and so `Wonderful` was chosen.
Following the band’s recent Camden Lock gig Madness newshound Chris Byrne had managed to dig out (and type-up) a great review of the event from London’s Evening Standard newspaper. Here’s a small snippet of the article;
“Hundreds of pop fans enjoyed a free concert at Camden Lock as Madness gave a canalside concert to launch their first new songs in 15 years.
The most successful singles band of the Eighties got back onstage in their home borough last night after a barge trip from Little Venice to mark the release of the single `Lovestruck`”.
Next-up we featured a news article that was surely of interest to all you retro gamers out there. MIS subscriber Alex Ingram had kindly uploaded a collection of Madness tracks in SID format – yes, the format used by the Commodore 64. If you were on the sadistic side and fancied listening to a handful of your favourite Madness tunes in 3-channel glory, a quick visit to Alex’s web site would set you straight.
We finished off this issue with a detailed review of the Camden Lock gig and Madmeet.
One of the UK’s most beloved bands turned in a hit-packed set on Friday (June 21).
Unbelievably, it’s now 40 years since Madness first emphatically and unforgettably burst onto the scene with their debut single, The Prince.
No one has ever sounded quite like Madness, which would explain why so many enthusiastic fez-wearing fans always turn out to see them whenever and wherever they play.
From the ska-influenced early pop classics to the mid-career more reflective tunes and onto the ‘London’ concept album, 2009’s career-defining effort The Liberty of Norton Folgate, and beyond, the six-piece dug into their vast repertoire – including Mr Apples, a song from their most recent album, 2016’s Can’t Touch Us Now – to remind the packed venue that they are so much more than just an 80s nostalgia act.
As ever, the likeable bunch of musicians opened with One Step Beyond, although it acted as a sad reminder that Cathal Smyth (aka Chas Smash), who always did the iconic “Hey you, don’t watch that, watch this…” introduction, is no longer with the group, having departed in 2014.
A sprightly Suggs reminisced on his band’s 40th anniversary, revealing that he and his six mates appeared on Top of the Pops to sing The Prince 40 years ago to the day.
They followed a performance of the song with NW5, off The Liberty of Norton Folgate, which fitted in perfectly alongside early hits, Embarrassment and My Girl.
My Girl 2 and Bullingdon Boys were two other newer songs that stood out (the latter showing clips of the film The Riot Club on the screen behind), but they couldn’t compare to the likes of Driving in My Car, Bed and Breakfast Man and One Better Day, a beautiful tune from 1984 that Suggs said they hadn’t performed in a while.
Showing a great deal of energy for six men in their late 50s and early 60s, the band delivered an irresistible quadruple whammy of House of Fun, Baggy Trousers, Our House and It Must Be Love.
There didn’t appear to be many people standing still and Suggs also got the crowd singing along emotively on the timeless It Must Be Love.
But Madness weren’t done yet. Returning for the encore, they played Madness and the exhilaratingNight Boat to Cairo, before sending the crowd off into the night tired and happy.
The Nutty Boys – fully deserving of the title of ‘national treasure’ – always have that effect.
Oh what fun they’ve had: Madness talk ahead of Wolverhampton Racecourse show
And frontman Suggs thinks there’s one simple reason for that: Madness are fun. Surviving the swings and arrows of outrageous fashion, surfing the waves of two-tone and ska, pop and new wave; Madness remain one of the most enduring and popular British bands of all.
They achieved most of their success in the early to mid-1980s and they spent a staggering 214 weeks on the UK singles charts over the course of the decade, holding the record for most weeks spent there by a group in the 1980s.
They’ve enjoyed 15 top ten hits, including One Step Beyond, Baggy Trousers and It Must Be Love as well as the number one UK single House of Fun. Our House was their biggest US hit and in 2000 the band received the Ivor Novello Award from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors for Outstanding Song Collection.
The full article can be found at the above link.
Madness review: the Nutty Boys are still the best of what Britain has to offer
It’s now 40 years since Madness released their first hit, The Prince, but you wouldn’t be able to tell that it was that long ago, as they sounded just as polished as before.
There really isn’t another band like Madness, with their loyal fan base following them where ever they go this really isn’t a night to be missed.
Fans of all ages turned up on Friday night to see the band, some after a day of racing, and they didn’t disappoint.
Beaming with pride, Suggs wore his well known outfit on stage, which included the iconic black sunglasses.
The full article can be found at the above link.
Trojan Sound System at Dreamland Margate
3rd August 2019 19:00 – 23:00
Celebrate Jamaican Independence at Dreamland this August with an epic night of reggae from Trojan Sound System with Max Romeo, and Suggs.
Trojan Sound System return for their 4th year on the sun-soaked Scenic Stage on Saturday 3rd August, bringing with them an immense line-up of reggae, roots and ska masters.
Reggae stalwart Max Romeo (with live band) will co-headline with TSS with his foot-stomping sounds, while the inimitable Suggs (of Madness fame) will hit the decks with his very own DJ set. TSS will bring the love and bass courtesy of selecta Daddy Ad alongside vocalists Supa4 Creation, Jah Buck and Chucky Bantan.
Tickets are just £10 + booking fee in advance and include entry and access to rides.
Limited members tickets available in advance at £7.50 + booking fee.
This is an all ages event. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult aged 18+.
Trojan Sound System are known for creating music that transcends age, race and political barriers and satisfies the purest of vinyl collectors whilst also introducing new generations to the roots of Jamaican music and bass culture. They are the original crew that broke reggae music and culture back into contemporary clubs and festivals, and having reformed in 2004, they’ve been mixing styles and flavours from the past 50 years in clubs, festivals and headline gigs all over the world.
Max Romeo started his career in the 1960s when his debut song “Wet Dream” made the UK singles top 10 chart but was later banned by the BBC for its explicit lyrics. After taking an oath to Rastafarianism, he embarked on a more conscious route in music resulting in his seminal album “War Inna Babylon” – credited as one of the most successful reggae albums of all time. His track “I Chase The Devil” remains one of the most sampled reggae tracks of all time and features in “Lucifer” by Jay Z and “Out of Space” by The Prodigy.
Suggs needs little introduction to music lovers – Madness’ front man, the man behind those Baggy Trousers, Suggs has been singing and spinning music for 40 years and won’t be slowing down anytime soon. The sultan of ska will be performing a DJ set that is sure to get the crowds skanking.