By the time this issue of the MIS lands in your mailbox, the Bitts Park gig, supported by the Bootleg Beatles and Chris Difford, should have come to a foot-stomping conclusion leaving the Sundown Park Racecourse gig on Wednesday to bring July’s stream of gigs to a close.
Following this performance the band get a two week break from performing before nine closely-packed gigs rocket through to the 1st of September, where the Summer leg of the tour finishes up at The Downs in Bristol.
The 40th anniversary celebrations have been a treat for those who’ve attended this year’s gigs so far, and we’re certain the remaining gigs will be just as memorable for attendees as those that have been and gone.
If you’re unable to get along to any of the remaining gigs or fancy something a little different, don’t forget that on the 3rd August Suggs will be manning a DJ set at Dreamland, Margate. This week we learned that the Near Jazz Experience are booked in at Chats Palace, E9, London on 13th August. For information on these gigs please check out our “Showtimes” section.
As always, we ask that if you attend any of the forthcoming gigs, please do email in with a review. Make it as long or as short as you like. We’d love to include it in a future issue.
August 13th, Chat’s Palace, 42-44 Brooksbys Walk, E9 6DF, London ** 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: 793 – Sunday 13th July to Saturday 19th July 2014
With us firmly into the summer months it would come as little surprise to many things were rather quiet on the old Madness front this week. Thankfully, this issue was far from slim.
The main section in this issue was the regular “Live and Intensified”. Main because it was so detailed thanks to the efforts of subscriber Daren West. Daren had attended The Silencerz (formerly the Lee Thompson Band) gig at the Woodside Park Club N12 on the 31st May and saw them again at The Builders Arms, Barnet on the 7th July. If you’d never been to a Silencerz gig before this article would give you an excellent idea as to what you were missing.
Further on in the issue, and with the Specialized Mad Not Cancer compilation now ready for review, Graham Yates gave us an initial lowdown on three of the tracks on the release. Tracks reviewed by Graham were covers of Embarrassment by The Big Head, Shut Up by The Crooners and Tiptoes by French Boutik.
The full four disc compilation was available to order for £15.99.
Moving on, and we were here; the Mad Header Final! All the other albums had been defeated with Absolutely taking the playoff in third place.
It’s was time for the final – One Step Beyond Vs The Liberty Of Norton Folgate!
The original One Step Beyond; naïve, but Nutty brilliance that has endured the years. The bookend of Live Madness shows, with it’s 2tone roots in Ska covers and it’s Stiff emergence of music hall pub rock and roll meets a new youth culture.
This would face off against..
The epic mature masterpiece; The Liberty Of Norton Folgate. A double album, a box set, a film. A Musical canvas of east London spreading back to the past. Lyrically rich and culturally deep. Everything for just a song to sing.
One Step Beyond Vs The Liberty Of Norton Folgate. The winning album would take the title of BEST MADNESS ALBUM.
Would would win? Only time would tell.
10 years ago…
Issue 533 – Sunday 19th July – Saturday 25th July 2009
As this issue went out the day after the Madstock 5 concert reviews had yet to surface, and the MIS team themselves had only just got back to their respective homes.
Until something more detailed popped up we made do with brief summaries of the day from the Madness Central’s Stav, followed by a set list courtesy of the Skanews team.
Things weren’t all good however, as Paul Rodgers posted up his thoughts on what he dubbed a darker side of Madstock 2009.
Here’s what Paul had to say;
“What I heard of it, the gig was brilliant, the band were on top form and it was a brilliant set list with great guests…
However the venue was disgusting. Numerous people down the front were pick pocketed. Security refused to do anything about it. They knew it was going on and knew it was organized.
If you’re wondering why Suggs had a wallet thrown at him, it is simple: it was one of the many that were stolen, stripped of cash and then thrown towards the front. I found two. Loads of people were complaining of wallets gone, phones gone and down the front security and the band were collecting them.
Then there’s the violence, which I’ll say no more about, because someone I know is hurt and angry.
Madstock was meant to be a celebration. For so many people tonight it was anything but.”
On to jollier news, and in an interview with News of The World, the band stated that they were chuffed that their new album had been a success as it had saved them from becoming has-beens.
“This record was f***ing hard work to make. We had to re-energise the band, otherwise we’d have carried on in decreasing circles until we were playing Pontin’s.”
We also had exciting news for Australian Madness fans this week as tickets had now gone on sale for the Folgate movie at that year’s Melbourne Film Festival. Our reporter from Down Under, Sarah Clarke, pointed out that it seemed that only one screening was planned, so you were urged to book tickets as early as possible to avoid disappointment.
15 years ago…
Issue 271 – Sunday 18th July – Saturday 24th July 2004
Our big news item this week was the story detailing the merging of Madness4Sale (run by Chris Carter-Pegg) and PLR MadMail (run by Paul Rodgers) had merged.
Here’s part of the original press release;
“The two biggest Madness retail specialists “PLRMadmail” (est.1991) and “Madness4sale” (est.1997) have joined forces. The merged company will still be mail-order based and will commence trading from this weekend under the new name of “The Madness Shop”.
For sales on Ebay the User ID of “Madness4sale” will be retained.
After 13 years of selling Madness records Paul Rodgers of PLR has decided to branch out into general CD and DVD sales based on Ebay under the User ID of “Medodgers”. We wish him the very best of luck with his new venture.
As part of the launch of The Madness Shop, 100 different Madness items have been listed on Ebay all with starting prices of just 99p each”.
After all that excitement we moved on to Mad Not Mad fanzine editor Ian Taylor, who gave us his views of the recent Move Festival, which the band performed at.
With a clear thumbs-up, Ian commented that;
“…one of the better performances of recent times. It was a shorter set and lacking much in the way of surprise – but you can’t expect anything different at a festival gig. ‘Israelites’ sounded good – bodes well for the new album.
Suggs’ links between songs were funny ‘ha ha’ rather than funny surreal and everyone had a good day. It was really nice to see yet more generations of kids checking out the nutty sound. Should be plenty of miles left on the clock if this gig was anything to go by”
Moving on, and we had a request from non other than Mike Barson himself. It turned out that a certain light-fingered person (who, I don’t think we ever found out was) had gone off with Mike’s black suit which he’d left in the changing room/broom cupboard following a gig at the DC. Some people will steal anything!
With the 25th anniversary of the Two Tone Record label came Record Collector, with a 2-Tone cover, and page upon page of space dedicated to the world famous record label.
Although co-editor Jon Young didn’t type any of the articles up, he gave a lengthy lowdown as to what the issue contained, and even now, the issue is well worth tracking down and adding to the collection.
We finished off this week’s issue with links to Move Festival snaps taken by Emma Spate (now Emma Thomas), and Kevin Crowther.
20 years ago…
Issue 9 – Sunday 18th July – Saturday 24th July 1999
With the Lovestruck single due to be released the day after this issue was blasted out across the net, chaos had already ensued online, with a group of Statesiders attempting to bulk buy and import a box of the new release, with fans in other parts of the globe literally putting relatives up for sale just to get hold of a copy!
The `Lovestruck` plugging bandwagon seemed set to continue. Not happy with almost every radio station in the country playing the song, the forthcoming Madness single also saw its way onto `Now That’s What I Call Music 43`. The last time they were on a `Now` album was October 1986 with `Waiting for the Ghost Train` (unless you count the re-release of `It Must be Love` back in 1992). The commercial radio stations had just started airing adverts for this latest `Now` compilation and `Lovestruck` was listed and also playing in the background.
Although not due to his the shelves until the following day, subscribers Vince Foley had somehow managed to bag himself parts 1 and 2 of the new single, and was here to give the rest of us a detailed lowdown of what we had to look forward to.
Elsewhere, and Chris Byrne had once again been busy transcribing yet another article. This time it was taken from Melody Maker, where celebrity Gail Porter revealed that her first concert was Madness at The Playhouse, Edinburgh, in 1982.
Next-up, we had news of the forthcoming Madness box set, due out in October from Virgin Records. This release would contain all six albums (One Step Beyond, Absolutely, Seven, The Rise and Fall, Keep Moving and Mad Not Mad) Each of the CD’s would also contain approx 4 of Madness’ videos taken from the Divine Madness video collection, thus 24 of the Videos would be enhanced.
At the time of typing the package design was being done by Mark Bedford and his design partner.
A rather excited Andrew Langmead got in touch this week to report that Madness were at number 2 in the ‘Most Played Pre-Releases Nationwide’ Chart (supplied by Music Control UK).
We finished this issue reminding readers that with the release of Lovestruck the following day, to expect major coverage of the single’s progress, and press reviews in the following bulletin.
The ‘Big Gig’ takes place on Monday 22 July at Sheffield FLY DSA Arena at 7.30pm and promises to give a big welcome to all 470 plus competitors and their families, who have been invited to attend.
Sheffield is hosting the first ever Invictus UK Trials, 22 – 26 July 2019, for British wounded, injured and sick veterans and personnel. Suggs is appearing (with Deano) at this gig.
Lead singer of Madness, Suggs said: “We have a busy schedule with the Madness UK Tour but for these incredible athletes and their families it’s an easy decision to head for the Sheffield Arena on July 22 and join Alfie Boe, Heather Small, and Charles Dance for this great night.”
Our thanks go to Sharon Staite for this news.
That’s just about it for this week’s issue of the MIS.
As always, we ask that if you manage to get along to any of the gigs on the 40th anniversary your, please send in a review on your return. We’d love to include it in a future issue.