Available only for the next couple of weeks. These official Madness T-shirt’s feature lyrics from the Magnum Opus song The Liberty of Norton Folgate. They will be shipped on July 20th, available only for this limited time period.
Available in 3 sizes, the profit is going to the Music Venture Trust.
Lee Thompson’s One Man’s Madness DVD & CD Soundtrack
Lee ‘Kix’ Thompson is a most unlikely character. Early career choices had him spend a year in Borstal. He still hasn’t found the receipt for his first saxophone. Luckily, he met two other unlikely characters: Mike ‘Barso’ Barson and ‘Chrissy Boy’ Foreman, who shared his interests of graffiti, train hopping and music.
One Man’s Madness, a feature length rocku-docu-mockumentary directed by Jeff Baynes, tells the story of Madness saxophonist Lee Thompson, told by Lee and his fellow Madness band mates, his family, friends and musicologists, who strangely all look a little like him! From meeting Barso and Chrissy Boy, and later Suggs, Chas, Woody and Bedders, to becoming one of Britain’s most iconic and successful bands, this joyous and light-hearted film follows the path of Lee’s life through his lyrics and songs, including such Madness classics as The Prince, Embarrassment, House Of Fun, Lovestruck and NW5.
Two CD set. Original soundtrack to the 2018 documentary about Madness saxophonist Lee Thompson. Includes tracks from Madness, Crunch, ‘Thommosina Leigh’, Ian Dury, and the Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra. Including Hidden Tracks.
New Mad store T-shirts
New T-shirts are now in stock for the summer gigs. They including a fetching Morris Minor car picture harking back to Driving in My Car video and the Mad 7 number plate, with the paraphrase lyrics From Muswell Hill to Selsey Bill!
Danceable and delightful, this debut album of the band’s much loved original songs pushes on through, breaking the mould of standard ska cover band. Catchy tunes and powerful brass and rhythm section make this a must-listen. Featuring Lee Thompson.
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: 738 – Sunday 30th June to Saturday 6th July 2013
It was always nice to see a new Madness video, and especially so when it’d clearly had much time and effort put into it. A few days ago the video for Misery was uploaded to the MadtubeMTV YouTube channel, and in that short time it’d already notched-up almost 12,000 views.
Looking like an episode of 70’s children’s TV programme, Mr Benn, the video had a real charm to it, and we were certain it’d raise a smile from even the coldest of hearts.
In our Live Intensified section we had new gigs listed for the Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra. The band would be appearing in Wapping on the 7th September and Sandford, Dorset on the 8th November.
This week, and instead of buying it, we were encouraging you to “get it free “as we brought you news of where you could add a free tracks of Madness offshoot bands to your music collections. With the Madness coloured vinyl reissues delayed for a few weeks, we suggested you amused yourself instead with downloads of Heatwave by The Ska Orchestra and Do What You Wanna do by The Magic Brothers.
On to Live and Intensified, and this week Mark Robinson was kind enough to review the Madness gig at Newark, while Shannan McBride reviewed the Waterford, Ireland performance.
With the band going through an active phase, it would come as little surprise to learn that our Sign of our Times section was packed with numerous articles which had cropped up in the press over the past seven days.
In That Facebook, Woody and Nick Woodgate spoke of their recent recording of a film for the ReThink mental health charity. They promised to post a link to the video once it had been edited.
Our MIS Feature was a biggie this week. Thanks to subscriber Darren West, he reported on Lee Thompson’s recent performance on the top of Barnet Church.
10 years ago…
Issue 478 – Sunday 30th June to Saturday 6th July 2008
With the dust settling following the recent Hackney gigs, we were certain that people would look back at what had taken place over the past week and realise what a fantastic time it was to be a fan.
For those unable to attend the gigs all was not lost, as this issue was packed with extensive Hackney coverage. Not only that, but we also had details of how you could order MP3 wristbands containing audio from each of the gigs. OK, so it wouldn’t be as good as actually being there, but it was surely better than nothing, right?
In other news, Jonathan had been busy working on a special podcast to commemorate the fantastic events, and at the time of typing we were promised that a download link would surface very shortly.
If you were unable to make it along to the gigs then issue was surely a must read. Featuring gig reviews and write-ups of the accompanying Madmeets, this MIS contained an extensive lowdown of all that went on during the past week.
15 years ago…
Issue 216 – Sunday 30th June to Saturday 6th July 2003
News in from subscriber Suggsylia was that on Saturday 28th, the one and only Suggs made an appearance at the world famous Glastonbury concert. Apparently our Graham was onstage with the legendary Jools Holland, and performed a live rendition of the brilliant `Oranges and Lemons Again.
Having been contacted by Southern Counties Radio, who were after a Madness fan to appear in one of their slots, we pushed Chris Carter-Pegg forward for the role, and thankfully he agreed to take part. Here’s Chris;
“The BBC Southern Counties Radio interview with Ian Reddington (Joe’s Dad in Our House) and myself, took place at midday yesterday. Owing to a technical hitch, they were unable to have both Ian and myself on air at the same time which meant they were unable to do the head to head quiz as planned.
Ian was on first and was caught out a bit on the first question when asked are you a Madness fan, answers “No, not really!”..nice one Ian! Rather embarrassingly, I got the impression that the interviewers hadn’t been told that Ian had previously had quite big part in Eastenders and this seemed more apparent when they asked him what work he had done before Our House …he replied “22 years of acting!”.
Ian had some interesting news to announce on Our House, that in addition to the national tour, the show will now also be going to Canada. Ian and no doubt many others of the original cast, are planning to stay with the show as it tours the country. In addition, he confirmed that Miramax are still considering making it into a film, can’t quite imagine how this would turn out.
I then followed after Ian, and managed to get a plug in for Madness’ appearance at the Guildford Festival in 2 weeks time, as well as the possibility of another Christmas Tour in December. Was then asked a number of Madness quiz questions which came courtesy of Colin Galbraith’s www.themagnificent7.co.uk website. I was tripped up on one question though; “Which video had Super Yob in it?”, answering ‘Shut Up’, I was told the correct answer was ‘It Must Be Love’…Colin, are you sure this is right, or was it in both?
Many thanks (I think???!!!) to Rob for volunteering me for this slot, was certainly an interesting experience.”
Now recovered from the event, subscriber Adrian Bell sent us his review of the recent Like Father, Like Son gig he attended on the 20th of June. Finishing up with “Lee, stick to Madness!”, we got the distinct impression that he didn’t think too much of this most recent Madness off shoot.
Moving on, and news reached us revealing that Alton Towers had been closed for Saturday and Sunday 28th/29th of JUne, owing to a private party taking place at the park.
Madness Trading Ring subscriber, Emma Spate explained that the party was held for British Telecom, who not only had enough money to book the park for two whole days, but they also had enough cash to get Madness there for an outdoor performance!
Would they, or wouldn’t they be appearing at the Party in The Park concert. Well, it turned out they wouldn’t, as Bedders kindly explained;
“Just a quick note to say that we won’t be appearing at P.I.T.P on July 6th. This is because we were going to do it in conjunction with the cast from the musical!
As you know, the musical is closing so it seemed a bit silly to do it. (As much as I love: Atomic Kitten, Beyonce, Big Brovaz, Blazin Squad, Blue, Busted, Craig David, Daniel Bedingfield, Danni Minogue, David Gray, Gareth Gates, Girls Aloud, Kym Marsh, Liberty X, Meatloaf, Mel C, Mis-Teeq, Shania Twain, Simply Red, Sugababes, Wheatus, Will Young! They are all close personal friends of mine!)”.
We finished this issue with a brief review from Steve Saunders, who gave us the lowdown of what went on during the Tower Records signing, and how when he got there he couldn’t find a queue, so formed one!
With Madness due to play Bonn on Friday 4th of July, and Guildfest the day after, we were all looking forward to next week’s MIS being full of gig reviews.
It’s OK, I’m a Police Man
The current Madness album of One Man’s Madness by Lee Thompson is now hitting the charts, and this record includes some solo tunes from Lee too. So issue 999 of the MIS seems a fitting time to look back at a Crunch Single.
This week a radio bleep version of It’s Ok I’m a Policeman aired on BBC6 music. Hilariously Lee in the studio Live still managed a couple of minor rude words in the afternoon slot, so nearly arrested by the swear police!
Here’s Paul Tadman of the band, now to tell us about the songs Video.
“Policeman video eh?
Well, we filmed the band performance in a small studio with a curved wall which
Paul Nutso had painted bright yellow that morning…
I had never been in a video before but as we couldn’t get the Elvis white Vegas
jump suit for me to wear so glam rock one had to do from the fancy dress shop on Camden high street.”
The song features an Elvis quote you see, from an early sun recordings track called Milk Cow Blues.
“Hold it Fella’s That dont move me, lets get real real gone for a change”
” The video shoot was the first time I’d worked under the directorship of Jeff Baynes – what an Eye he has.
No wonder he’s a BAFTA award winning cameraman (not a lot of people know that).
The main memory of the video was everyone leaving yellow footprints up the road as the
paint hadn’t quite dried…. but the show must go on! What a bunch of pros…. what larks! X
Originally the song was Titled The OK Cop, with a subtile of (Put the weapon down)
As can be seen here with a look at the handwritten lyrics on the Crunch website.
“Dave Robinson, I did as a mad, bully-ish Irish navvy type. He wasn’t keen on how I perceived him. But he watched it a few times then calmed down. Once he got into it, I thought, ‘This has got legs. If he likes it, anyone will.’ He’s very hard to please.”
We started nearly three and a half years ago. But it keeps getting put back. I don’t know why. Jeff and myself are in control. He pointed the camera, I put the costume on. The difficult part was the tongue-twisting mouthings. Some of them were really easy, in particular those with Neil Brand, the musicologist, as was the woman who talks about split-personality (billed as Dr Noyes Maybe). That was quite enjoyable to do. But there was only us two to answer to. If something went wrong, it was down to us, and nothing went wrong at all other than putting dates off because of other duties with the Ska Orchestra and Madness.”
On learning the Clarinet at school…
“ I played along with ‘Stranger on the Shore’, but there’s only so many times you can play that without getting bored shitless. I used the schools’ music section of different instruments. There was flugelhorns, trumpets and trombones, but no saxophone, and the clarinet was much more difficult, fingering-wise. So I stopped that and went on to oboe, but I didn’t last long on that. It was literally months. The embouchure around the lips, the muscles around there, was like I was being given a dead leg. So I landed up swapping that at Dingwall’s for an old clapped-out thing, but one that got past the first audition with Mike (Barson) and Chris (Foreman). And not long after taking up saxophone some friends heard I was starting this little group, around 1976, and approached me with a very hot Selmer Mk.6, fresh out of the shop window.”
On early influences…
I’d never really heard of Prince Buster until about ’71, so he’d been going long before that. You’d have to travel to get your reggae records – from Kentish Town you’d have to travel several miles to Brixton or Willesden. They never had it in the shops. It was that early. But once Desmond Dekker and the like started charting, they held up their arms to it to various distributors. But I found an Aladdin’s Cave of singles, a treasure trove down in Upper Street, when it was a proper old pre-gentrified area, finding a load of records on Firefly, Punch, Fab, Blue Beat, Blue Ska, Melodisc.
“I picked a bunch up, and what stuck out that I noticed was this comical fella that sang comical lyrics to a ska beat, like ‘Ten Commandments of Man’, and of course ‘Madness’. I was very much drawn to him, along with ‘50s inspired stuff that was all the go in the mid-‘70s, like American Graffiti, The Lords of Flatbush, and there was a real resurgence of doo-wop like The Coasters. So there was all that and of course the pub-rock scene – Dr Feelgood and Kilburn & the High Roads.”
On future projects…
“And I won’t retire. I’m enjoying it so much with Madness. It’s all red-carpet treatment and we’ve even got carers on board now, to give us our medication when we need it! We’re wearing neck braces and leg braces, but while the other 22 and a half hours is a fucking pain, for that one and a half hours it’s sheer joy. I’m seriously enjoying it more now than ever before.”
Lee Thompson One Man’s Madness Review – Classic Pop Magazine
Four out of Five
From the opening credits, which are a faithful homage to the classic era of British comedy, referencing everything from the Ealing comedies of the 40s and 50: to variety shows of the 60s and 70s, it is fairy obvious that One Mans Madness is not your typical music film . Adopting a mockumentary approach in which Lee ‘Kix” Thompson not only talks at length on this DVD with unflinching honesty about his Iife and career, but also “plays’ various characters from his life in a genus twist on the talking heads style rockumentary.
During a misspent youth, Thompson served a 14 month stint in Chafford Approved School for petty crimes. On his release, Thompson become a recognisable face about town, renowned for his inherent sense of style. He threw himself into London’s live music scene where characters such as Don Letts and Ian Dury inspired him to pick up the saxophone and create ‘that nutty sound, which would become the trademark of his future band.
Featuring footage and interviews with his bond-motes, this delightful documentary is a charming document of not only Lee, but Madness, too, telling their story in a raft of hilarious anecdotes about some of the most recognisable songs and videos of the 80s
It is truly entertaining and original – just like its subject.
Finland Set List – Friday 29th June
One step beyond
Los Palmas 7
Sun & The rain
House of Fun
It must be love
Denmark Set List – Saturday 30th June
One step beyond
Sun & The rain
Take it or leave it
Los Palmas 7
Bed and breakfast man
House of Fun
It must be love
This Wednesday Terry Edwards and Mark Bedford will be appearing as part of the Rock and Roll Book Club at the Dublin castle talking about One Step Beyond. Tickets are just £7 and still available.