We’re just waiting for official confirmation, but it looks like Suggs’ rescheduled King Cnut has been cancelled yet again and is moving to 2022.
Those who had booked tickets to see him at the Pavilion Theatre in Worthing on the 8th May were informed this week;
“Due to the ongoing situation, we have had to postpone the performance of Suggs: What a King Cnut – A Life in the Realm of Madness on the 8th May 2020. The promotor has moved the whole tour”. (Our thanks to Lynn Lawlor for the heads-up on this).
Although we’ve been unable to find official confirmation the tour has been moved yet again, the ents24 web site shows the majority of the 2021 dates as either Rescheduled or Unavailable. As soon as we hear anything further we’ll let you know. In the meantime we’ve removed the 2021 Suggs dates from our “Showtimes” section, replacing them with the 2022 dates.
On to some jollier news, and the next Madness vinyl re-issue has been announced and is available for pre-order. The classic “7” album will be released on 26th March and comes with new liner notes from Lee, Mike and Chris. See our “Buy it” section for the pre-order link and further details.
We believe all dates have now moved to 2022 and are just waiting for an official announcement confirming this. In the meantime, the below dates are all those confirmed by the ents24 web site as taking place in 2022.
Heavyweight 180gm vinyl. Includes new liner notes from Lee Thompson, Mike Barson and Chris Foreman.
Lee Thompson’s Autobiography
Title: Growing out of it
Release date: 22nd April 2021
Description (from Lee!): It starts with my humble beginnings in NW5, on to petty criminality in N6, then onto the wide open spaces of 681, Hitchin Road, Stopsley, Luton and all the Shenanigans in between.
And Parking up on that mental bus – The 2Tone Tour in October of 1979, the first 22 Years.
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 875 – Sunday 14th February to Saturday 20th February 2016
Last year played host to the successful Grandslam Tour, and following the teaser photo posted on the band’s Facebook page on Friday, it was looking like 2016 may be the year of “Operation M.A.D”.
The black and white teaser photo showed the six band members sat around a well lit circular table, in a dimly lit room set deep within a Dr. Strange style bunker.
“Coming soon”, announced the image. How soon was soon? We’d all have to wait and see. Madness fan Adam Nicholls suggested that “Operation M.A.D” would be the name that all of this year’s festival dates would be going under, while fellow Maddie, Steve Farthing wondered if this was the title of a pre-Christmas arena tour.
Naturally, we’d have more news regarding “Operation M.A.D” just as soon as they surface.
In the meantime, the band had been busy adding further dates to their 2016 line up, as this week saw the addition of Kendal Calling on Saturday 30th July, and the Y Not Festival the day after.
The year was really shaping up to be another busy one for the band and us fans.
The highlight of this weeks’ issue was our “MIS Feature”. Here we reported on the return of Crunch! and the recording of the latest Lee Thompson ska Orchestra LP, all from the man himself at the keys… Louis Vause. It was a fantastic read.
10 years ago…
Issue Number 614 – Sunday 13th February – Saturday 19th February 2011
Following a few news-starved weeks we were pleased to bring the MIS readership a packed edition of the weekly newsletter.
Our articles got underway with a re-print of an story which original appeared in the Camden New Journal. The paper reported that DJ, music collector and mayor of Camden, Jonathan Simpson, had drawn up a playlist of songs that had helped mark Camden as the capital on the country’s rock and roll map.
The mayor was asking you to submit your favourite tracks, but in the meantime, he’d kicked things off with his own ten tracks. Madness and Suggs were both in the list, which featured a real mix of music styles.
Next, it was over to Daryl Smith of Size 12 records, who announced that for a limited time, the vinyl re-issues of One Step Beyond, Absolutely and Seven were all available for the discount price of £16.95 each, or all three for £45. Each album was the deluxe 10” edition.
Following this, we took a look at top Madness tribute outfit, One Step Behind, who revealed a veritable mass of gigs, running from February until December. Considering the band did this in-between their day jobs, it was an impressive list.
Moving on, and we took a look at the comments section of the Official Madness web site. We featured a separate section for general question and answers, but for one article we gave it its very own section.
The article related to a 6-year-old boy called Benjamin Luck. Ben had been diagnosed with a brain tumour, and it was his dream to meet Madness…
“Make a dream” foundation contacted Madness’ management about Benjamin Luck. He is 6 years old and was diagnosed with a brain tumour in May.
It was his dream to meet Madness.
During Ben’s high dose chemotherapy treatment, just before Christmas, he became ill with a serious respiratory illness which nearly killed him. Thankfully he is on the mend, though he is still struggling to walk and the tumour has left him partially sighted.
His parents asked make a dream if he could meet Madness because he loves the music…
“We’ve played it during painful physio, endless nebulisers and he enjoys talking about what your songs are all about. Though we’ve not gone in to detail on the house of fun yet!”
We are coming tonight, which is very exciting, because Ben is actually still in hospital, but they’ve said he’s well enough to go.”
A meet then Happened at the Sheffield concert on Sunday…
“All we can say is a big thank you. Ben has had an amazing evening! You are such kind and generous people. As a family we felt very special and welcome. The behind the scenes guys were just fabulous and Madness themselves too, obviously!!
Thank you once again,”
God Bless, Louise Luck
It was over to Paul Rodgers next. Paul was back with an update on his Madness Chart Lowdown, and this week he reported that Tesco were selling Ultimate Madness for a mere £4.00. Hopefully this amazingly low price would help sales.
We brought this issue to a close with the news that the latest single from MOT, entitled “Between the Lines”, was now available to download from iTunes. Meanwhile ex-MOT drummer, Dan Fossard, reported that the next Big 10 gig would be at Camden’s Dublin Castle on Saturday 19th March.
15 years ago…
Issue 354 – Sunday 12th February to Saturday 18th February 2006
We started this week’s edition of the MIS with something a little different. Rather than concentrate on the latest Madness news we decided to take a look at other bands we felt that you, the regular MIS reader may find of interest.
The albums chosen were Too Hot’s ‘Time Flies’ and ‘Wise Up’, reviewed by Walthamstow Pete, and ‘Brasshound’, by The Ordinary Boys, reviewed by ‘Hulasprout’.
If there were other bands you felt fellow MIS readers should know about we asked you to get in touch and help spread the word.
Next, it was on to a more Madness related note, as we revealed that after twenty years the legendary Stiff Records were going to be signing new acts and releasing new material. The news landed in our email boxes courtesy of Birchy, who also announced that a brand new Stiff Records web site was also up and running. Exciting times indeed!
We went across the English Channel for our next article, as we announced that the French MIS web site was now online. Designed and maintained by Jean-Pierre Boutellier, and his illustrious Madteam, we declared it a site that any native French speaking Madness fan MUST visit.
It was back to The Ordinary Boys for our next article, where we featured an article from ContactMusic.com, revealing that Madness were flattered that their sound was being emulated in The Ordinary Boys’ latest album ‘Brasshound’. Woody commented at the time “Bloody hell, that was blatant. What a compliment.”
On to more general Camden news, and we reported on Sir Bob Geldof’s involvement with the Camden Roundhouse and its £30 million restoration. Kids off the block were already making videos and music tracks in 11 state-of-art studios and practice rooms. And not just a handful. Some 12,000 teenagers in school were involved in 650 projects and the running of their own centre.
Upstairs, with 1,800 seats or 3,300 standees, we were promised world-class theatre and music, kicking off high in June with the Argentine dance spectacle, FuerzaBruta.
We finished off this week’s edition of the MIS with a full lowdown of the new audio and video files that were now available for download from the new MIS Online web site. There was something for everyone, ranging from the die-hard fan who had to have everything Madness related in their collection, to the casual listener/viewer who wanted to check our performances and appearances from the band from years gone by.
20 years ago…
Issue 92 – Sunday 11th February to Saturday 17th February 2001
With the Third Annual MadChart now just a distant memory, we got this issue off the starting blocks by reporting that Andrew Langmead and Mark Adamson had kindly made the top 50 entries available for online viewing.
The list had been available on Mark’s recently set-up Mad Not Mad web site, and was ideal for those people who had deleted their copies of the MIS which featured the track by track lowdowns.
Next, it was on to the subject of Madness tour bible ‘Tour Madness’, courtesy of Mike Hearne. Mik was one of the recent winners of the Tour Madness giveaway, and so, decided to say in his own words, what he thought about this fantastic publication.
After a detailed write-up, Mike finished off by saying;
“Altogether this is a very impressive production. It`s obviously a labour of love and due to the amount of work that has gone into it you can tell the author is obviously a big fan.
Unlike many things written by fans this is suitable for both the beginners and the anoraks. I would definitely recommend that you get in touch with the author and get yourself a copy……myself, I`m looking forward to the update due this summer”.
We moved on to subscriber Alan Cahill. Alan emailed us to explain that he’d phoned Talksport with the intention of asking Suggs a question or two. Unfortunately he’d phoned the programme too late, and as such, they didn’t have time to call him back and put him on with Suggs. Still, it wasn’t all lost, they promised to keep Alan’s details on record, as Suggs would be back at the station in the not too distant future.
It was on to unreleased demos next, as Phil Pugh returned to the MIS with the original lyrics to the Madness classic ‘Uncle Sam’. The demo version was originally made available on the 12″ single, along with the ‘Uncle Sam Remix’.
Moving on, and we next took a look at the BBC Top of The Pops web site, and the powerful search function they’d made available to site visitors. Typing in ‘Madness’ brought back 46 appearances for our favourite band – the earliest being on the 6th of September 1979 with ‘The Prince’, and the most recent was on the 30th of July 1999 with ‘Lovestruck’. Unfortunately the list didn’t detail if the performances were videos or live performances. One slight bit of confusion lay with the December 1989 entry for ‘House of Fun’, as the band had split by this point.
Over to karaoke show ‘Night Fever’ now, as subscriber Phil Pugh explained that yesterday Channel 5 had screened a special Valentine edition of the show. The singing culminated in all of the celebs getting up and singing ‘it Must be Love’, with the words changed to;
“It must be Suggs, Suggs, Suggs, nothing more nothing less Suggs is the best.”
We finished off this issue with a few words from Swanny, who was organising the forthcoming Crunch met on the 16th of Feb. Those who went would be in for a fantastic night.
Sign of the Times
Suggs: More Love Letters to London
Originally broadcast on Friday 12th Feb, 11:30am, Radio 4
Suggs takes you on a trip through a familiar part of London, Europe’s busiest shopping street, also known as Oxford Street. There’s a few stories, a couple of songs and even a well crafted joke or two.
The ‘Mad Mess’ van is used by rail construction employees and key workers for breaks while out on the tracks.
A Scottish firm has gone ‘one step beyond’ by creating a Madness themed welfare van for rail workers.
Plant hire company AB2K from Cambuslang created the ‘Mad Mess’ vehicle which paid tribute to the classic pop band with a wrapped design of the Madness ‘One Step Beyond’ cover with the slogan ‘Our house in the middle of our track’ emblazoned on the side.
The pop legends even got in touch to say they loved the van which is used by rail construction employees and key workers for breaks while out on the tracks.
Mark Bedford aka Bedders, the bass player from Madness, published a video on Youtube praising the “brilliant” van. He said: “I’ve just seen some fantastic pictures of a rather unusual vehicle. It’s a big lorry that goes along railway tracks.
“What made me most pleased and proud about it is that it was covered in Madness imagery. I found out it was called the Mad Mess and it looks absolutely brilliant. You’ve really gone one step beyond.
“I loved it so much I actually showed the rest of the band and they’ve asked me to pass on my very best wishes to you all there and also to thank you for all the essential work you’re doing on keeping the railways going.
“I hope you are really going to enjoy your very own Mad mobile. We actually like it so much we quite fancy building one ourselves.”
Our thanks go to Mark Doherty for giving us the heads-up on this one.
That’s almost it from us.
If you do get chance, then you really should give Suggs’ “More Love Letters to London” Radio 4 show a listen. It really is a great production; amusing and educational in equal measures with some nice scaled-back versions of classic Madness tracks peppered throughout.
Finally, if you spot an official press release announcing that the Suggs 2021 tour has been cancelled and moved to next year then please send the details over to us. We’ll be sure to post the details out in a subsequent issue of the MIS for all to read.