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MIS 980 – Sunday 18th February to Saturday 24th February 2018

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Hello, Good Evening and Welcome

Hello, and welcome to this week’s edition of the MIS Online newsletter.

In this issue we bring you an update on the production of the One Man’s Madness DVDs, which have now gone to press. All all being well, should be available in the next few weeks. See further down this issue for full details.

We also have a number of additions to our Showtimes section in the form of several new Specialized gigs which are due to take place over the next couple of months.

There’s also a nice interview of Suggs we’ve found where he discusses he love of the legendary Alex Harvey.

If that’s not enough, we do have a special MIS Feature this week; a review of Nick Woodgate’s debut album “With a Word”.

Enjoy the read,

Jon Young, Rob Hazelby, Simon Roberts, Paul Williams




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.



July 2018

The Stately Madness Tour

Friday 6th July – Englefield House, Reading – More Info

Saturday 7th July – Euston Park, Suffolk – More Info

Friday 13th July – Ragley Hall, Alcester – More Info

Saturday 14th July – Alnwick Castle, Northumberland – More Info


Friday 27th July – Galway International Arts Festival – More Info

July 28th/29th – Car Fest. Announced on Chris Evans’ Radio Show!


November 2018

Friday 30th Nov – Monday 3rd Dec – The House of Fun Weekender
Ticket hotline 08450261274 / http://www.butlins.com/madness



What a King CNUT Tour 2018

A life in the realm of Madness.


Tue February 27 2018 – MERSEYSIDE Floral Theatre

Wed February 28 2018 – DUNFERMLINE Alhambra Theatre


Thu March 01 2018 – GLASGOW Pavilion

Sat March 03 2018 – HULL City Hall

Sun March 04 2018 – YORK Opera House

Tue March 06 2018 – PRESTON Guild Hall

Wed March 07 2018 – NORTHAMPTON Royal and Derngate

Thu March 08 2018 – SOUTHAMPTON O2 Guildhall

Sun March 11 2018 – BIRMINGHAM Alexandra Theatre

Tue March 13 2018 – AYLESBURY Waterside Theatre

Wed March 14 2018 – POOLE Lighthouse

Thu March 15 2018 – CHELTENHAM Town Hall

Fri March 16 2018 – BATH Forum

Sun March 18 2018 – NOTTINGHAM Theatre Royal

Mon March 19 2018 – IPSWICH Corn Exchange

Tue March 20 2018 – CAMBRIDGE Corn Exchange

Thu March 22 2018 – LONDON Palladium



The Silencerz Featuring Lee Thompson

Saturday 24th Feb – Foulds school ** new **

Sunday 1st April – Dublin Castle, Camden

Tuesday 17th March – Chandos Arms *free* ** new**

Sunday 1st April – Dublin Castle ** new**


Lee Thompson

Sunday 25th March, The 100 Club. Part of the Sound Screen Festival. This is a performance plus a screening of One Man’s Madness


Deaf School

Thurs 22nd March 2018, The Islington, London. http://bit.ly/2j7KDFA

Friday 23rd March 2018, The Islington, London. http://bit.ly/2ppz2rM

Wednesday 28th March, The GB Club, Liverpool

Thursday 29th March, The GB Club, Liverpool



Buy It

Suggs “My Life Story”, DVD Pre-Order

Release date 2nd March

Price £12

Director Julien Temple (The Great Rock n Roll Swindle, Absolute Beginners) takes a stage show, adds some drama, archive, animation and music, then shakes it all up for MY LIFE STORY where Suggs, takes a hilarious, yet moving, look back at his life in a musical form.

Is it a drama? Is it a comedy? Or a music hall dream? Whatever it is hold on to your seats as Suggs goes on to stumble and plummet through the trap door of failure; then trampoline back up to catch the passing trapeze of show business success.

Pre order at https://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/suggs-my-life-story-movie?utm_campaign=project18611

Our thanks to Kieron Murphy for the heads-up.


Nick Woodgate, “She’s The One” single 

Available now on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/shes-the-one-single/1337780859



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 719 – Sunday 17th February – Saturday 23rd February 2013

We began by going over to Chris’ Cupboard where Madness fan John Tovey recounted his tale of meeting the band at Butlins.

Accompanied by his guide dog Dez, John was taken back stage to meet the band.

Moving on, and it was over to Paul Rodgers who was here with another one of his Madness Stats, Facts and Figures articles.

Paul commented at the time;

“Refusing to go away without a fight Never Knew Your Name managed another week on the singles chart top 200, falling to number 123 on its third week. This position is still higher than any new Madness single since Dust Devil. 

Although numbers are modest, I would expect Never Knew Your Name to be Madness’ first single for absolutely ages to sell 10,000 copies.

That same week the single also fell to number 12 on the indie singles chart. As expected the album Oui Oui Si Si Ja Ja Da Da fell, although only to number 33, a slight improvement on its midweek showing. To illustrate that the album chart is less competitive at this time of year than it is in the run up to Christmas, the album’s downward trajectory is shallower than it was in its first run in the top 40.”

Further down in the issuer, we featured an interview with Clive Langer courtesy of the Julie Hamill web site. Julie kindly gave us permission to include a massive chunk of her even larger interview with Clive, and what an interview it was.

Next, it was back to Paul Rodgers for his “End of Year Show”. In this article, he took a look back through the wealth of information he’d accumulated over the past year or so, and dug out items he’d missed previously.

We brought this issue to a close with the news that Oui, Our has moved down to number 58 in the main album chart and number 7 on the Indie chart. Complete Madness meanwhile, was a non-mover at 15.

10 years ago…

Issue 459 – Sunday 17th February to Saturday 23rd February 2008

Following last week’s horrifying news of the Camden Town market blaze, it would seem that plans were already afoot to get the famous trading establishment back up and running, and returned to its former glory.

Thankfully, five out of six markets in the area were still trading as normal, and a fund had been set up to help stallholders, and offer advice. Elsewhere, Camden Council were be running radio adverts, and Visit London would be advertising in the regional press, telling people to head to Camden to support local traders.

Whilst we were fully aware that it was going to be a massive uphill struggle for fire affected stallholders to get themselves back on track, it was encouraging to see the local council rallying around so quickly, ensuring that the traders got as much help as they could during this extremely difficult time.

In this week’s articles we featured a transcript of an article written by Stephen Dowling, which originally appeared on the BBC web site. Entitled “Camden – Britain’s Musical Mecca?”, the report covered pubs and clubs, bands and it’s immigrant roots, and it all made for an extremely interesting read.

Naturally, with the Camden Market fire still fresh in the minds of many, we featured two articles reporting on how locals and store holders were coping after the disaster. As mentioned above, people were rallying around to help one another and reduce the impact caused by this terrible event.

Next, we took a look at episode one of Suggs’ latest series, “Survivors”, which this week looked at a London perfumery, Elgood’s Ales brewery, Isokon Building in Hampstead, before rounding off the episode by visiting The Wall of Death at a local funfair.

Moving on, and MIS co-editor Lee Buckley, reported on the latest MIS web site news, explaining that a new set of streaming videos had been added to the site, and we finished off the issue with a few words about BBC TV show Ashes to Ashes, which featured The Prince as part of the soundtrack.

15 years ago…

Issue 197 – Sunday 16th February – Saturday 22nd February 2003

We started off this issue with some massive news, courtesy of subscriber Chris Carter-Pegg. It turns out that out of the 3 Laurence Olivier awards the Our House musical was awarded with the most prestigious of the lot – The Best New Musical.

Competition was fierce, in the form of Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang; Taboo and Bombay Dreams so this really is fantastic news that Our House has beaten them all to it, in what is the UK’s most prestigious theatrical awards of the year.

Whilst virtually the entire cast attended the awards, at the Lyceum Theatre, it was Suggs and writer Tim Firth who went on stage to collect the bronze trophy. Tim on behalf of the cast and Suggs on behalf of the band.

All good things come to an end, and the fanzine “Madness Unsugged” was one such good thing which came to an end last year. To promote the final issue Vince Carden joined the Ska Patrol radio show on Dublin’s Near FM and did the great service of playing an hour and a half of Madness songs on the radio.

In true MIS reporting style, co-editor, Jonathan Young gave readers an in-depth review of the whole show, detailing track listings, as well as a lowdown of what was discussed.

Our irregular Mimics of Madness took a look at some of the better known Madness tribute outfits currently doing the rounds. Gig dates were given for One Step Behind, Complete Madness, and Los Palmas 6.

Following the recent stick fans had been giving Madness merchandise stockists, Bluegrape, it was nice to receive a report from MIS subscriber Chris Wardell, who gave the company a glowing report, following the excellent customer service he received.

Rob Hazelby



MIS Feature – One Man’s Madness Film Update

Manufacturing is Underway

Dearest Pledgers,

Good news! The film is finished and has been delivered to the big DVD factory.

Even better good news! The film is brilliant! Jeff Baynes has been busy making it look and sound beautiful and Lee has added some extra hilarious stories of making the film. It is a joy to behold and we’re sure you’re going to love it.

We must apologies that the film has taken longer to finish than planned, but nothing would have been possible without your help and support. We hugely appreciate your patience and promise it will be worth the wait.

The DVD factory guys expect it will take a few more weeks to press up the copies, and we’re making all the badges, shirts and other items to be ready to send out when the DVD is ready.

Once again, none of this would have been possible without your valuable help. We hope not to keep you waiting much longer.

Lee & Jeff



Sign of the Times

Wild Scots rocker Alex Harvey inspired Suggs’ own brand of on-stage Madness


MADNESS frontman Suggs has revealed how his ‘Nutty Boy’ stage persona was shaped by Alex Harvey — after being blown away by the “insane” shock rocker.

The first gig the Baggy Trousers singer went to, as a 15-year-old, was The Who at Charlton Athletics’ London stadium in 1976.

But it was the swaggering performance of The Sensational Alex Harvey Band’s outrageous Scots frontman as the supergroup’s support act which left a lasting impression.

Suggs, real name Graeme McPherson, says: “I knew nothing about the guy at the time. I was just a kid who was there to see The Who. But Alex came on stage I had never seen anything like him in my life.

“I f***ing fell in love with Harvey straight away. He was insane.”

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band had a string of hits including The Boston Tea Party and Delilah in the mid-70s.

Suggs continues: “I was immediately drawn to him because I loved his wildness and his freedom of spirit. I was really into that sort of theatrical thing too. Harvey and Ian Drury both had this sort of comical malevolence.

“That’s what I liked about Harvey. There was an edge to him but at the same time it was funny.

“Coming out of the end of punk everything was doomy and gloomy, then you had all the New Romantics poncing about.

“So to do something that had a bit of fun and the theatre of the absurd about it really appealed to us.”

‘There is a connection in my blood to Scotland’

In the same year Suggs saw Harvey strut his stuff, Madness ­ — nicknamed the Nutty Boys — were formed with six school pals from North London.

By the age he was 18 Suggs and Co had their first of 27 hit singles, including Our House, One Step Beyond and It Must Be Love.

But hard-living Glasgow-born singer Harvey died at the age of 46 from a massive heart attack while waiting to board a ferry in Zeebrugge, Belgium, in 1982.

Suggs continues: “I was immediately drawn to him because I loved his wildness and his freedom of spirit. I was really into that sort of theatrical thing too. Harvey and Ian Drury both had this sort of comical malevolence.

“That’s what I liked about Harvey. There was an edge to him but at the same time it was funny.

“Coming out of the end of punk everything was doomy and gloomy, then you had all the New Romantics poncing about.

“So to do something that had a bit of fun and the theatre of the absurd about it really appealed to us.”

‘There is a connection in my blood to Scotland’

In the same year Suggs saw Harvey strut his stuff, Madness ­ — nicknamed the Nutty Boys — were formed with six school pals from North London.

By the age he was 18 Suggs and Co had their first of 27 hit singles, including Our House, One Step Beyond and It Must Be Love.

In the early 90s he also launched a solo career along with acting roles and TV presenting.

But behind all the success the singer always hoped for news of his Scottish photographer father William McPherson, who walked out on his jazz singer mum Edith when Suggs was just a baby.

His search was documented in his hit stage play My Life Story, which has been released as a biopic film this month.

However, he later discovered his heroin-addict dad had died in 1975 at the age of 40.

He says: “I never got to meet him again. It was tragic as when I found out about him I discovered he had remarried and there was this hope he was still alive.

“But it turned out he had ended up in an asylum and died.

“Sadly he had followed the old Scots cliché of coming down to London and f***ing his life up.

“If he had only been around just a couple of years longer when I was on Top Of The Pops we might have had a chance to mee

And the dad-of-two reveals he recently visited Glasgow’s Maryhill district to see where his dad grew up.

He explains: “I have taken a drive through Maryhill for old time’s sakes.

“It’s all been gentrified with their coffee shops and what have you.

“I haven’t done a lot of digging into his family tree although I know his parents have passed on.

“I do genuinely feel something when I go to Scotland, although I don’t want to sound like Rod Stewart and all that s**t.

“There is definitely a connection in my blood.

“When I go back to Scotland there is something about that crazy place which stirs me.”

Suggs will return to Glasgow next month when he brings the second part of his life story, Suggs What A King Cnut, to the stage at Glasgow’s Pavilion Theatre.

He says: “The first show was about me getting to 50 years old and starting to think about my life and looking for my dad.

“The second part is what happened to Graeme McPherson after he climbed the ladder of success to become Suggs.

“Without getting too morbid, fame has given me everything I’ve got but it’s also a very dangerous substance.

“You think of people like George Michael and Amy Winehouse who were moths to the flame and got burnt up in this business.

The 57-year-old, who splits his time between his homes in London and Italy, even penned a song called Blackbird for tragic singer Winehouse who died in 2011 aged 27.

He recalls: “I used to see her around Camden all the time.

“I passed her on the street one day and she said, ‘All right, Nutty Boy’. I was 50 at the time.”

But Suggs insists he’s been one of pop’s survivors because of his wife Anne and their two grown-up daughters, Viva, 31, and 34-year-old Scarlett.

He says: “I have been married 35 years and I have two lovely girls.

“I have always had three voices telling me when it’s time to go home — although it used to be kind of embarrassing when your 17-year-old daughter says you’ve had enough to drink.

“But it’s probably saved me from jail or, worse, death



Live Intensified

Suggs Live in Saltford


From trashing the gents toilets at Middlesex Polytechnic to sneaking into the back window of the Groucho Club. From the front row of ‘the wrong end’ at Anfield to the roof of Buckingham Palace. In his second autobiographical show, Madness front-man Suggs, takes us on a jolly journey through his life as a pop star, and does it with a great deal of charm.

What A King Cnut, A Life In The Realm Of Madness is two solid hours of anecdotes, rolled out between

songs and accompanied, interrupted and prompted by keyboardist Deano Mumford. Fame sits somewhat heavy on Suggs’s broad shoulders. There’s clearly many a time when he’d like to sit quietly (or even not so quietly) in the pub and not be recognised, but he knows that fame has also brought the great things in his life, and a strange kind of stability that’s saved him from going completely off the rails. His family obviously play a large part in that too and they feature heavily in his funny, poignant and ever-entertaining stories.

Ever the showman, Suggs opens the show on a throne recalling the story of King Cnut who he feels he has some affinity with, making the point that Cnut wasn’t as daft as history has painted him.  He goes on to replay a long, delightful scene from Glastonbury where having drunk all night, invaded the stage during Primal Scream’s set, got covered in mud and lost a shoe, he sits on an oil drum – ‘the king of all he surveys’ – and thinks that life probably doesn’t get better than this. It’s this positive outlook on life that makes What A King Cnut a hugely entertaining show. Suggs stops short of coming across as a bit of a lush (although he clearly could be), avoids slagging off the music business (and he’d have his reasons) and proves why he’s managed to stay in the industry and hold on to his fans, for forty years.

The show is brilliantly structured with one story running into another, or a song, and some great call-backs to earlier stories, mostly involving Suggs upsetting Brian May. He moves seamlessly from show-biz tales to family stories, from the hilarious to the emotional, not a nostalgic look back at a life lived in the spotlight, but rather just another step in a long and successful career.

You don’t have to be a huge fan of the band to enjoy this entertaining show. It’s such an engaging mix of memories, especially when punctuated with paired down versions of My Girl, House of Fun and Our House. The fans will turn out in their droves though, and there’s plenty of venues in this long tour to catch a bit of everyone’s favourite nutty boy.




MIS Feature – Nick Woodgate With a Word Album

Nick Woodgate’s new album arrived on iTunes on Friday and is shipping on CD from his website now.

On 21 Dec 2017, at 18:37, Nicholas Woodgate wrote:

Hi Jon,

Could you tell me when your CD arrives in case it gets lost in the post. Also, could you do me a favour and pick 3 songs that are your favourite, because I am looking for a single, and have been asking a few people who have heard tracks.

Nick X

In Reply…

Hey Nick, Your Album arrived I think I’ve got a faulty CD, the cover picture is all blurred ;-)

Will send you my three favourites and write a review for the MIS. Thanks.

Jon X

A nice Christmas present came to me from Nick Woodgate, he sent me his first solo album on CD. Wait a minute “First” album? This confused me because I thought I had reviewed or written about at least 4 other Nicholas Woodgate / Nick Woodgate albums and an EP before now over the years in MIS, and I’m not even including The Magic Brothers in that, so the first question has to be quite why is this the Reboot then?

Well let’s call this the “First” because it’s a professionally produced and released album through collaboration with Tonic Music for Mental Health, so you can sort of say this is his first signed to a label album.  It relegates all the previously self published albums through iTunes etc, into a now deleted status, under both names and more fittingly this relaunch of “First album” in concept can sit next to The Magic Brothers and Woody Woodgate solo albums as the third fitting chapter in that trilogy, of which its worthy, as it’s available on CD. Its a brand new recorded set of tunes picking from the best of Nick’s song writing catalogue old and new.

Here are my favourite tracks…

“3 as requested Nick.”

1. She’s The One – You plan to release the album around February the month Valentines day happens.  Your sleeve notes dedicate this album to your lady. The album isn’t pink of course! Nor is it obvious Luvvy duvvy tie in as it looks. But if one track jumps out in sound as ringing most true to your dedication & fitting your chosen release month. There’s one waving at me with a smile of happy, upbeat, love song, joy. ELO like, McCartney jolly sunshine, a toe tapper, jaunty piano, how can you not smile and throw arms around this track, it gets in a lot of hooks and parts of its song structure before 30 seconds of attention have even passed. Packed with simple true affirmations. Gets the job done under 3 minutes like good pop singles, well produced in this new version and the sing along bit is “all i have to do today is make her happy anyway” its a simple focus, how true, February’s a date.

We previously reviewed a version of this song from an earlier EP, back then we said…

“The piano takes over for She’s The one, a song closer to ones he’s collaborated on with his brother on recent albums, and very Beatles like in parts that makes me easliy imagine it to be a McCartney song. Probably my favourite of the 4.” July 2016 MIS review of the Kaleidoscope EP.

And it did indeed become this new first albums lead single.

2. Call Me / I Can Hear The Music.

“I’m a bit split on second choice,  its between two tracks Nick”

“Call Me”, sits equidistant between my brain thinking I’m hearing a good single tune by Squeeze or I’m getting a more gentle track without the tears by Smokey Robinson at first, it isn’t that far off fitting Valentines month as well as it goes but with an “in spite of ups and downs”. Great guitar, great performance over all, very very likeable, slight less instant than “She’s the one”, but then more depth and desire to replay.

That said “I can hear the music” is more upbeat and more beautiful overall, sounds more powerful and single like. I’m just not totally sold on how the title line comes across, needs a second opinion perhaps, but the Camden town reference and the “rainbow gone to soon” bit speaks to me, pushes me along with a great beat, musically it draws me in. Concepts are easy to get and certainly a track thats a good taster for album as a whole, has echoes of the sound people loved on your tunes on Oui, Oui.

3. Louise

I think I’ve reviewed this one to you before, its my favourite. Epic drama and pathos, Like You don’t have to hide your love away had. Captivating, is the only word for this versions piano intro on this its hairs on neck up, or ears pricking up. As a wordy, story song, with different voices on the same event its the deepest song on the album, needs attention to get it so thats the reason for not leading this list with my favourite tune, but its so complete and reflective it is the kind of song i would talk to people and recommend the most, its also 4 minutes so bit long for the job of instantly getting people interested in the album like a first choice should do. I think people who show no interest in the other singles might then give this a listen. If that makes any sense.

That’s my 3 as requested after a couple of listens.”

We also said of the Walk with me album track – You Are Not Alone in 2016…

Nice guitar solo on this one builds around an electronic pop backdrop that’s quite relentless.

And this track has been redone and is available as a track 1 preview on Nick’s website give it a listen now and decide for yourself if this is a sound you like.

Commenting on the album further two more tracks got an honorary mention too…

“Though If is was picking my 5th favourite Nick I  could easily see me knocking up a “Bus” video for the MIS channel as its got a universal theme and fun cartoon sounding world and, I’m liking the funk and fun of “Whole things gonna blow” as well that ones new to me. Thanks for sending the album, good luck with it.”  Jon

Overall all the work on this CD lifts these tracks a fair bit, sounds far less like demos or home produced previous albums did. Nick has clearly put his heart into this album, re-launching with the help of Tonic Music who work with musical artists that like Nick suffer a couple of obstacles with Mental health when seeking to create something a good as this album is. He’s certainly done credit to their belief in his songwriting and ability. It remains refreshing that the topic isn’t entirely focused on this, and it’s more an album about living life that anyone can relate to regardless of any conditions. If you’d like to check it out head over to Nick’s website.  The MIS will be giving some tracks a spin at the Reading Specialized event in May too.

The album is available from  http://www.nickwoodgate.com/    CD shipping now. Signed available.

Jonathan Young





That’s just about it for this week’s edition of the MIS.

Please ‘do’ check out Nick Woodgate’s web site, and have a listen to the track samples of his new album on iTunes: http://www.nickwoodgate.com/

Until next week, take care.

All the very best,

Jon Young, Rob Hazelby, Simon Roberts, Paul Williams

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