Home»Latest Newsletters»Madness Information Service Online Newsletter Issue Number: 735 – Sunday 9th June to Saturday 15th June 2013

Madness Information Service Online Newsletter Issue Number: 735 – Sunday 9th June to Saturday 15th June 2013

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Evening all!

This week we start with news of a few changes to the MIS web site.

First of all the domain name has changed to madness-mis.com. Don’t worry, the old mis-online.net site will point to the new site. The news on the front page will now just shows excerpts to make it easier on the eye, with the option of course to read more.

The reasoning behind this is that our site name and domain name (which search engines pick up on) are not very friendly to madness fans searching the net, plus we are going to archive all the newsletters on the website for people to search and read.

Our name is not changing. It’s still MIS Online (Madness Information Service Online). Our website is massively popular, we are just trying to make it more friendly to the average Maddie on the ‘net.

Archiving of the old bulletins will start soon, starting off with the original monthly ‘Madposts’ that ran from 1996 to 1999 (which are already online), which were a forerunner to the MIS online newsletters as we know them now, and good reading they are too!

As always, we welcome all feedback, so if there’s something you like or dislike, please let us know!

Enjoy the read,

Simon RobertsJon YoungLiz HazelbyRob Hazelby




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.



June 12th Armada Festival, France
June 14th Chepstow Race course, UK
June 15th Newark Festival, UK
June 28th Newcastle Race course, UK
June 29th Daytripper, Waterford, Ireland

July 6th Carlise Racecourse, Carlisle, UK
July 7th Nuits De Fourviere Festival, Lyon, France
July 8th Les Deferlantes, d’Argeles Sur Mer, France
July 10th Jazz Montauban Festival, France
July 11th Festival De Poupet, France
July 12th Henley Festival, Henley On Thames, UK
July 17th Sandown Park Racecourse, UK
July 19th Newmarket Racecourse, UK
July 20th Haydock Park Racecourse, UK

August 10th Fete Du Bruit, Landerneau, France
August 11th Brussels Summer Fest, Belgium

September 16th L’Olympia, Paris, France
September 22nd Northants CCC, UK
September 28th Alexandra Palace, London, UK

October 12th Esprit Arena, Duesseldorf, Germany

November 22nd-25th House Of Fun Weekender, Minehead, UK

For tickets see links via: www.madness.co.uk


Suggs Live 

No dates at present.


The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra 

*** New Info *** July 20th Lambeth Country Show, Brockwell Park, 4pm, Free entry!
July 6th, Godiva Festival, Coventry

August 11th  United Colours Festival, Sheffield
August 16th Belgium (Brussels Summer Fest)

See ticket links via: www.ltso.mis-online.net


The Near Jazz Experience

The “Dear Thief” album launch takes place at the Indo on July 2nd.  Check the NJE Facebook page to see if they are part of the evening.




Watch this space… space… space…



Deaf School

August 23rd  – Hoxton Bar & Kitchen

August 24th –  St Helens – The Citadel

August 25th – Aspatria, Cumbria – Solfest

August 26th – Liverpool, Sefton Park – Intl Music Festival







If you’re stuck for something to spend your money on, perhaps we can help…


Limited Edition Colour Vinyl Reissue Albums.

1000 pressings of One Step Beyond (White) Absolutely, Complete Madness, Presents Rise and Fall (Transparent Red) 7 (Yellow) Keep Moving (Blue) 180 GRAM heavy Vinyl. Out June 10th.



Fu Man Chu Single

Priced at a mere 69p!


Oui Oui Si Si Ja Ja Da Da Special Ed: 70 Track CD/DVD 4 Disc



Benevolence Of Sister Mary Ignatius – The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra. 

http://amzn.to/12z3nyH (CD link)

Also, newly available MP3 download http://tinyurl.com/buxnxuy

Preview the full album on Spotify https://play.spotify.com/album/3B82H8BDOZu07kpxxRtmku


Pre Order: Suggs That Close My Story Book.  

Out October 24th



As mentioned in the last issue of the MIS, Tony Stratton has been in touch to say that Misery will be the next Madness single, and that radio schedules have mentioned the track for “sometime in July”. Watch this space for any further info on this forthcoming summer release.

Meanwhile, The Magic Brothers’ single “You Don’t Have To Hide Your Love Away”, is due out in August. The Magic Line Album will follow in September.



Below is a selection of interviews, articles and other items of recent news that have caught our eye over the course of the past week. Click on the links to be taken to the relevant page.


SUNDAY TIMES CULTURE REVIEW – The Benevolence of Sister Mary Ignatius Review

Summer CD of the year?  The Madnes saxophonist indulges his love of all things Jamaican on a effervescent ska and reggae set that bears comparison with the trombonist Rico Rodriguez’s classic LP That Man is Forward. A weighty band cast their net as far afield as the Allman Brothers’ Midnight Rider, and round off with a sensual treatment of King Curtis’s Soul Serenade. The disc’s title is a tribute to the Jamaican nun who nurtured many a budding musician at the famous Alpha Boys School. She would surely have loved this album.




Pubs and Bars:

The Southampton Arms on Highate Rd NW5( directly opposite Denyer Hs, my place of birth (& the video location for The Kinks ‘Dead End Street)

My granddad introduced me to the pub at the tender age of 5. The organic selection of beers, in proper jugs, linger around one’s palate with extraordinary repercussions but taste as good today as back in early 60′s. This pub has a distinct Dickensian theme and plays wax on an HMV Coned gramophone (or did do!). BEWARE: The ale is deceiving, Pat MCarne, who frequents this establishment, ended up bumping his head on a lampost & collecting several stitches on the opening night. Please drink responsibly, all. (To see more recommended establishments follow the link)


Gladness – Madness Beer Launched

From The Morning Advertiser – http://bit.ly/194OzNC

Growler Brewery and Madness have launched a pale ale. A launch has taken place and a national advertising campaign will follow.

“After many many years spent in a pub discussing and debating what would be our ideal beer we are very proud of our first attempt and we’ve got a great excuse to spend a bit more time in great British Pubs.” Suggs.


From The Express – http://bit.ly/11oOPOB

The musicians headed to The Walrus & The Carpenter venue in the capital to pour the first few pints of Gladness, a lager-style ale which features floral aromas with a hint of spice.


From EADT.co.uk – http://bit.ly/12vHpR1


A lager that’s an ale – that’s totally mad.”

Frontman Suggs, who visited the company’s Growler Brewery at Pentlow, near Sudbury, ahead of yesterday’s official launch in London, said the idea was to capture the best of both styles of beer.

Keyboard player Mike “Monsieur Barso” Barson, who was also on the visit, suggested, however, that it came down to the fact that “half the band like lager and half like bitter”.


Magic Brothers Radio interview

Tony Stratton interviewed Woody this week on BHR1287 radio about his forthcoming album with his Brother Nick. The interview is available here…


They talk about Woody picking the Live releases from the last tour, how he picks the Madness set list.  How he began playing with Nick and bashing furniture, before buying a drum kit with money from selling his coin collection.  Woody talks about growing up, and forming his first band Steel Erection. The band covered Bad Company and Rolling Stones.

Talking about writing songs with Madness as the brothers, and how sweet his wife’s voice is, on the forthcoming Magic Line album.  Woody Explains the train line known as the magic line, and it’s featuring in his growing up, explaining the classical music piece is about journeys the brothers took as kids, and the photography from their dad of them as kids and the track Magic Brothers part two all capture the theme of their childhood. Woody talks about his love of Rock and his band FAT being an example. Woody heavily hints that the Magic Brothers cautionary will play live, and The house of fun weekender is on the cards. Woody says Madness men doing Solo projects is healthy and the main band are on a roll after two great albums and will continue.  He praised Lee, and Suggs current projects and said Carl has a beautiful album he should release.


Suggs My Life Story.  The Gazette Review.



Ian Dury: Lord Upminster


This re-release of Ian Dury’s solo album has been remastered with five

bonus tracks and contains some of his classic songs





Snippets from social networking site Facebook that have caught our eye…


Woody Joins Facebook


This week Woody signed-up to facebook, joining Madness pages and adding fans, ahead of the rise of interest in his solo album.

“ Thanks one and all for welcoming me to this funny old world of Facebook. I’ll do my best to keep up with you. If you want to know what I’m up to check out www.magicbrothers.com “

“Great to see you on facebook”. Posted Stuart Ellis.  To which the reply came. “Better than Crime watch!”.

Woody also answered the question “what’s your most prized possession?”, answering “My hands”.

He then added to a post of the song “Sunday Morning”  – “Wow I’ve not heard that for a while. Complicated.”


CRUNCH! Official Facebook


From Lee, and The official Crunch! Website runner Swanny, and Looby from MIS/ex-Madness Central comes an official face book page for the band Crunch!  This comes with a launch message toast video from Lee Thompson himself, and 2 tracks of footage from a new gig from a line up of Crunch! putting a toe back into the water of playing live last weekend in London.


A private gig took place at The Premises Studios in Hackney. (This is the studios where Madness recorded some of the current album and the ska orchestra were born in rehearsals) A private invite party event at the studios. A 30 minute set was played in a line up, featuring Lee, Louis, Tadman and Spider, with Kev on guitar duties.  Described as “early days” or “cautionary toe in the water” by various band members, the event follows 3 songs being aired by the ska orchestra at Butlins last year, and a rehearsal set list showed most of the original Crunch! Album being run through, along with Saints and Sinners, Going Solo and Birthday Girl, and Midnight Rider. While still an event for a private recording studios, it’s the most complete so far, crunch! .return since the Brighton 2008 show. Join the new page to see any further future developments.




This week, MIS co-editor Rob Hazelby, goes back 5 years to issue 475, and the week of Sunday 8th June to Saturday 14th June 2008, and then back 10 years to issue 213 and the week of Sunday 8th June Saturday 14th June 2003.

5 years ago…

Issue 475 – Sunday 8th June to Saturday 14th June 2008

We began this week with the news that due to popular demand the band would now be playing at The Hackney Empire on the 24th AND the 25th of June.

On to this issue, and the articles got underway with news in from Darren Balsdon, who reported that Suggs was working on a new TV documentary, which would see the great man traveling around Italy. This production would once again be put together by Wavelength Films.

Moving on, and Jonathan reported that three other London locations were mentioned in the new tune, Sugar and Spice. These were Golders Green, Golders Green Hippodrome and M&S Finchley Road. Accompanied by each entry were small sidbits of info and trivia.

Elsewhere, we reported that a “Suggs in the City” YouTube channel had now sprung up, featuring clips from the TV series. For those outside the London area this may have been the only opportunity you’d have to see any of the programme.

Next it was over to reporter Terry Grimley, who went to see the Our House musical at The Birmingham Repertory Theatre. Although stating the show was “complete dross”, he admitted that the packed house clearly loved the show.

Towards the end of this issue we detailed the latest updates to the “In Print” section of the Madness Trading Ring web site, and finished off with a transcription of an interview Stuart Maconie held with Carl on the 3rd of June.

10 years ago…

Issue 213 – Sunday 8th June to Saturday 14th June 2003.

For this week’s issue at least we were back up to full-power as Jonathan was currently back in the UK and able to contribute to the MIS once again. How long this would last for before his jetting off on some work or leisure related pursuit was anyone’s guess!

Our lead article this week came courtesy of Clive Bulmer. After getting this year’s Madness Injection Weekend off the ground he got back in touch to tell us that the event had been cancelled due to lack of demand.

The event was due to be staged over the August bank holiday weekend spanning 3 days – August 22nd, 23rd and 24th with a cost of £120 per person (this included bed and breakfast for the 3 days).

The weekend promised to be a fantastic event with:

– Disco / Karaoke with Buffet and Madness fancy dress optional

– Charity auction in aid of Ian Dury Cancer Bacup

– Appearances by Badness and One Step Behind


As the event was only announced a month or so back, perhaps the lack of notice was the reason why the event received such a poor response from the fans. Maybe the cost of the weekend was the reason?

Unfortunately I don’t think we’ll ever know why the fans didn’t take to the event like they did with the original weekend back in 2001.

Moving on, and on Thursday 5th June a number of the band appeared at Tower Records, Piccadilly Circus for a brief signing session. As this was a mid week appearance it did make it rather difficult for many to get along to. Thankfully, a number of those who did get along were kind enough to knock-up reviews of the event, so the rest of us could at least find out what we’d missed out on.

Another Madness related event was an evening with Chas Smash. This took place on Friday 30th May at the Newbury Manor Hotel, Berkshire. Andy Bishop was able to get himself along, and being the nice chap that he is, he’d got back home, put together a detailed lowdown of the evening, and sent it in for us to print.

The issue continued, but on a slightly sad note, when we published a message from Bex, announcing that the members of Like Father, Like Son had all decided to go their separate ways. However, it wasn’t all bad news, as there rumours that Lee would once again be returning to the Crunch! fold.

Rob Hazelby






“Shameless plug for the new album by The Simmertones, the band that bought us the ska version of the Doctor Who theme (http://bit.ly/bJY66J), titled “Something For The Weekend” the album came out at the same time as LTSO’s “The Benevolence….” and indeed The Simmertones provided support for the Ska Orchestra at the recent Bristol gig.

A mix of both covers and self-penned tracks over 12 songs, “Something For The Weekend” brings another dose of bright, brassy, summery ska to follow on from The Simmertones previous releases, and is the perfect accompaniment to the Ska Orchestra’s “Sister Mary Ignatius”.

Stand out tracks for me are the lilting “I Love You Madly”, the upbeat “Sunday Morning Calling” and a wonderfully haunting ska’d up cover of “Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” (yes the old Doris Day number!!) They also cover the old classic “Softly As In A Morning Sunrise” on this album which is almost as good, if not better than the aforementioned Doris Day number. “Mother’s Choice” is (I think) a self-penned number that says what we all think….Mum comes first!! The album opens with another self-written track “Soulful (The Sound)” which has an element of the old Booker T & The MG’s keyboards running right through it’s middle. “Antigua” almost transports you direct to the eponymous Caribbean island and has you dipping your toe in the water as you feel the heat of the sun on your skin. “Fire Corner” is an organ driven skankathon, and the album closes with another classic ska cover in “Simmer Down” that shows no disrespect to the Wailer’s original.

The brass section is without fault – the vocals are spot on – and the whole is held together by a tight backline. In fact for me, and given the fact that they’re from that part of the world, The Simmertones would make a perfect addition to the House Of Fun Weekender bill for this year.

The album can be downloaded (and samples listened to) from all the usual places (Amazon, iTunes etc) but if you buy it at the following link, not only do the band benefit 100% from the sale, but it’s also cheaper:


I can’t recommend the album, or indeed it’s pre-decessors, enough if you like your ska bright, breezy and brassy.”

Graham Yates




The solo side-project or the “stuff this I’m leaving the band” solo album is a strange old beast. It seems that no matter how famous the parent band is or how famous the member making the solo album is (it’s usually the singer) there is little chance of that solo project being a success. Careers often disappear in ever decreasing circles. Hands up who can name me all of Hugh Cornwell’s hits since he left The Stranglers? How about Mick Jagger’s solo career? Nope me neither. Hell even Suggs could only muster one week at number 82 with his second solo album in 1998, despite a top 40 hit single two weeks before the album was released and loads of promotion for it around The Avengers film and an appearance on The BBC Children In Need annual appeal.

So it gives me much pleasure to announce that The Benevolence Of Sister Mary Ignatius by The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra debuts on the album chart this week at an impressive number 78. The previous week the single Fu Man Chu did absolutely nothing, except garner a few more pre-orders for the album. According to last week’s Music Week number 63 sold 2027 copies, whilst the album at number 134 sold 895. I don’t think it would be too much of a stretch of the imagination to estimate that the LTSO sold somewhere between the two, probably around 1800-1900 copies. A very respectable return. I’d be interested to know if any band’s saxophonist had ever had a higher charting solo album.

Lee is only the second member of Madness to chart with a solo album, although Bedders is a member of Lee’s orchestra, so he will be feeling quite happy tonight too.

Suggs of course had much more success with his first solo album, The Lone Ranger, which was a number 14 hit in 1995 and then repackaged and revamped to hit number 66 in 1996. His lust for a solo career has seemingly been ended by Madness’ return to the studio to release new material on and off since 1999.

That band’s own material is clinging on to the charts by its fingernails, with Complete Madness down to number 166 last week. It slips down the indie chart this week to number 35 from 29. Oui Oui Si Si Ja Ja Da Da is now only bothering one chart. Last week it was down to number 97 in the year to date album chart for 2013. That’s still not bad for an album which was released in 2012…

Special mention must be given at this stage to Never Knew Your Name. Despite not being a massive sales hit, it was a hit here in the UK on the radio and you probably know it was a radio hit in France too. What you may not know is that it is still doing fairly good trade on French radio stations. The French publish a top 300 of radio hits. Thirty three weeks into its career out there it is still on the radio chart at number 213. It is in the top 15 longest serving songs on the current top 300.

It would be remiss of me to close this week’s chart bulletin without returning to the hot album of the week. As well as the positions named so far The Benevolence Of Sister Mary Ignatius is also doing well in several other charts. Jon Young asked me to remind you that it is the number one album in Amazon’s Ska chart. In turn I would like to point out to him that it is also number one in their parent Reggae chart. Jon also wanted me to tell you that there’s a poll of the most popular act on Later this series. The LTSO lead that poll with 241 votes. Their nearest rivals OMD have a measly 201.

There’s also another official indie chart called the breakers chart. This is for acts on the indie chart who have not had a top 20 mainstream album. The LTSO qualify for that and are number 20 on the indie chart. Of the acts above them there are 4 or 5 that I do not know if they’ve been in the top 20, but some have. I think the album will be number 5 or 6 in that chart, which is not published until Wednesday or Thursday.

Finally the album is of course number one in the chart that really counts and that is the chart of our hearts.

I’ll leave you with one last snippet of news: Kevin Eldon has announced that he is prepared to be the new Doctor Who. Everyone has their favourite and he is mine. He asked what the hours were, before answering his own question: “Immaterial I suppose.”

Until next time if you’ve not yet bought Lee’s fine album please do yourself a favour and do so.

Paul Rodgers




We’re almost at the end of this week’s edition of the MIS, but before we go there’s one or two last minute bits and pieces to pass in your direction.

First-up, and Suggs & The blockheads feature in the playlist of this show for Fathers Day, which for those of you who need to pop out and get cards and gifts, is this coming weekend! http://bbc.in/14MDfi8

Moving on, and if you’ve purchased your Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra CD or download you can now join in the competition at www.mis-online.net or via the Ska Orchestra Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/138362986238425.

All you need to do is take a photo of the album in the most unusual or amusing place. There’s a prize for the best picture so get snapping!

Next, and if you wanted to see what went on at the recent launch of Madness’ beer, “Gladness”, then point your browser over to http://youtu.be/t4Y-Qgc2m98 where you’ll see a certain Suggs who’s clearly been enjoying the tipple.

And finally…

This week Suggs’ Solo tour came to the end of its current run. From its start in Milton Keynes 2 years ago, through, a London Run and an Edinburgh festival triumph, it’s achieved a nationwide criss-cross of some two months. Suggs nailed the show first night as our review then stated, and since then it’s grown in it’s comedic performances to include impersonations, and Lee Evans like clowning, and some audience heckler handling of which any great stand up would be proud. (we’ve a story to run on that sometime.)

It has to be remarked upon that from press to punter reports we’ve not read one wholly bad review. (we don’t count people complaining they didn’t meet him, when so many fans did on this tour) It’s a testament to the truth and exaggerated performance, the comedy and the warmth of his story and not least his own character that this should be the case. This is the closest full comment we could find to someone not liking the show overall….

Steven Holt.  “Suggs should interact with his audience a bit more instead of sticking to a script, & a bit of improvisation wouldn’t go a miss either. And when someone shouts out from the audience you could have had a bit of fun with them instead of blanking their comments. The stage also looked a bit empty I felt with only him & his pianist. I enjoyed the songs & parts of it, It was just too scripted for my liking. Sorry, Suggs!”

Even this thumbs down, says they enjoyed the singing and some of the show, along with a person who left due to the terrible unwarned of swearing, (but still said “Good show” 3 stars!), and complaints of not being able to hear in bad seats, or show disruption from other audience members, this stands as only the criticism.  96% of ticket master recommended the show to others at a top 5 stars score mostly. And Facebook is awash with gushing praise of fans who heard the man tell his tale and just purely loved it.

Amanda Hodges  “Saw you last night in Worthing and can’t tell you how much we enjoyed it. You told your story so well, loved the humour and the singing of the fab Madness songs. You deserved the standing ovation three-fold”. Genius is a word often used by the staggering array of pleased fans. Many of who explain the show was a present for a partner, or something incredibly meaningful to them personally.

In summary, My Life Story is that increasingly rare thing; life Affirming.

” I just want to say thank you for meeting me tonight and thanks for the autograph, since losing my brother just before xmas I have been very down and tonight was the happiest I have been since then, you’re a wonderful man with a heart of gold. I wish you and your family all the best for the future… cheers for making me smile once again Suggs” Anon.

Any news of future dates, the book, and hopefully in the long run a DVD from the filmed London run, will be reported here by MIS.


Until next week, take care,


Simon RobertsJon YoungLiz HazelbyRob Hazelby

(With thanks to Graham Yates and Paul Rodgers)

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Madness Information Service Online Newsletter Issue Number: 736 – Sunday 16th June to Saturday 22nd June 2013