Hello, it’s Chrissy Boy here. Send me a question and I'll do my best to answer it.

Unless it contains any of the following:

  1. When/where is the next gig? - Please see the gig section above.
  2. Can I get your autographs?- This service is not available via the website, all applications must be made in person.
  3. Can I get backstage passes? - No.
  4. Will there ever be another 2Tone tour? - This is not very likely, is it?
  5. Where does Suggs get his sunglasses? – Persol.
  6. Where do you get your suits/hats/shoes? Gresham Blake, The Saturday Club, Hackett, Christies, Loake, Lock and Co, The British Boot Company.
  7. When is the “The Madness” album being re released? – I have still not got a clue.

[The questions above will be rinsed, filtered, processed and finally deleted by our new “Timewaster (tm)” interface, leaving me more time to answer the really important ones].

Thanks CB x

To see posts from the old version of Chris's Cupboard visit the archive Here

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I’m a teacher in the North East of Scotland and I’m a long-time fan. The school I work in is called “The Gordon Schools” and it’s in a small town called Huntly. Despite how the name sounds, we are a regular comprehensive school.

I’ve seen you guys performing a number of times, the first time back in ’81 in Aberdeen (I was NOT one of the ones booing through the Belle Stars set – something I still find cringingly embarassing, that my home crowd would treat a band like that, don’t know if you remember, wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t) and most recently a few years back at the Aberdeen AECC. Always great, always nutty.

Anyway, the reason I’m contacting you is because, as well as teaching biology and spending most of my time in the pub, passing round the ready-rub and trying not to think of when the lunchtime bell will ring again, I also direct our school show with one of my colleagues. This year we are putting on (you guessed it) “Our House” (Yay!).

We are at the very early stages of drumming up enthusiasm for the show, then we’ll start casting and eventually we will be performing in early December. What would be really cool, and what would make this extra special, is if we could get some words of encouragement from yourself and/or some of the other Nutty Boys. I’d love to be able to read something from you out at assembly.

Any chance?

All I wanted was a word…

Either way, thanks for reading this and giving me years of fun listening to your music.


Dear Nigel
That sounds great I will compose an essay nearer to the great day. I wish everybody the very best in this great adventure.

Hello Chris

First as it is still time Happy new year.
Then, I have not seen any god planned in France in your tour. What’s going on???


Dear Chris,
Anorak question, but I noticed the version of It Must Be Love on the expanded reissue of 7 is a different mix with a definite ending. Do you know where this originates?

Hey! I enjoy the way you set up this blog. I desire to start my
very own blog site with reviews such as Sharron and wonder if you could offer me some good pieces of
advice concerning organization of web site.

I would like to ask a couple of questions;
1. If at 18 you could have seen the future which song would surprise you most and why?
2. Looking back at your career which song a) gives you most pleasure b) surprises you it actually got completed and finally c) you thought didn’t have the Madness factor but were proved wrong?

Dear Nick
I think this could all apply to the same song. “Can’t Catch You Crying”. I would never have written a song like that at 18 [by the way I didn't start writing songs till I was about 21]. It has given me great pleasure now it’s been recorded and it was intended for CRUNCH! [my part time band with Thommo] not Madness..
thanks, CB

Christ Boy. Just seen you in Manchester. I gave up my own 50th birthday party to see this gig and I’m waiting to get my tickets for Prenton Park in May. From my first Crombie at aged 13 , I loved the band. My question is, will Chas Smash come back. He taught me to dance!

Hi Chris….watched you and the boys perform at the Barclay card arena Birmingham….AWESOME…how do you guys still sound so fresh?….you are a credit to us older guys…mind you Chris…need more practice with the hoops mate…..wishing all you guys and your families a very Merry Christmas and a Happy new year.

Hi Chris, Saw you boys twice on the tour at Brighton and the 02 and as usual you were quality.

Any chance of an AAA badge from the tour, I’m based in Hove so not far from you.



Hey Chrissy boy,
The new album is awsum, absolutely love it congratulations to you and the rest of the lads.
You are coming to Aus for the byron bay blues n roots festival, any chance of coming to Perth? Loads of 10 pound poms waiting for your return. Perhaps a side show wound be in order too? Been a fan for 36yrs, you are legends and have had a big impact on my life, thanks.

Hi Chris could you please tell me if you know how many of the limited edition CTUN were released as I find it extremely annoying that the only place you can now find them is on a certain online market place that people are now selling for extortionate prices I would imagine I am not the only person who feels this way my own personal opinion on this is true fans of madness are losing out big style to those who are just out to make money from these items many thanks carl

Hi Chrissy boy.
Just left your gig at Brighton centre and just wanted to say thanks to you and the boys for a fantastic night.
My wife bought tickets for my birthday as we promised ourselves that we would get to see madness one day,that day has arrived and it was brilliant.
Thank you so much,to you and all the band,for the music.
All the best.
Kev @Marie

Dear Kev
What a lovely wife you have. Sorry I’ve been so long replying and thanks for coming.

Hi Chris
Would like to congratulate you and the boys for a fantastic HOF 2016 at Minehead. You certainly gave the fans what they wanted and a good time was had by all. Can’t wait for next year.
Have a wonderful Christmas
Ps. Well done on the new album

Less of a question and more of a thank you.
Look after yourself on your, try and do some stretches and light exercises to help prevent the neck and shoulders irritating over he next month.

And the concert was really good, without offending it was great to see the music I grew up with still sounding so fresh and fun.

Cally (Lilliput Health)

Hope HOF was a success this year. Dont worry about my last question /request. the brilliant team from the enquiries email helped me out. they are legends!

G’day from Brisbane, Chris -
Cannot wait to hear/see the band at Byron Bay. Fingers remain crossed that there may be other Ocker gigs; ‘Tis a long way to swim for 1 show. Obese congrats on Can’t Touch Us Now = absolutely fabu record throughout (grand also to see your name amidst the song writing). Much happiness to you & the band for the imminent tour. Tall smiles,

Dear Geof
yeah we added more, it is a long way to go and only do one show. Sorry for the late reply..

Hi Chris, Tracy from Canada here. How are you? I had such a great time at New Market and Hove last year that I’m flying out this afternoon and will be coming to the House of Fun. If I see you out and about this weekend, I hope you’ll let me buy you a pint or two, to say thanks for arranging the after gig party tickets at New Market last year. Without getting too fan girly, it really was amazing and meant the world to me. Anyhow, take care, and roll on Friday!!!!!


Hi Chris,
Loving the new album, what a gr8 mix of tunes.
You guys are playing at the Byron Bay blues n roots, wandering if you are going to come to Perth Aus. You have a big fan base and wed love to see you again. Good luck with the CTUN tour. Cheers Jason

Hi Chris, just wanted to say how much I’m loving the new album, its fantastic and I’ve got the kids singing it off by heart :) Please could you pass my best wishes onto the rest of the band. Thank you, Cressida x

Hey Chris,
Just wanted to share my crazy dream last night with you ;

Madness became the first band to play on the moon , and it was beamed via sat to earth . Richard Branson had something to do with organising it .

I see this becoming true before 2025.

Or you could all go up on a virgin space shuttle and be the first band to play in space .

Suggs could pay for it all with a show about old London trams.

Seems like something Madness would actually do. See ya in space

Congratualtions on a spectacular new album! It’s great to hear so much of your guitar front and center–great work on “You are my Everything,” and “Soul Denying!” But the whole album has been on constant repeat here. Such strong, triumphant music. I’ve been a fan since ’82, thank you for all of your wonderful work!

Hi Chris,

First off. Congrats on Can’t Touch us Now.
Lovely to hear your guitar work higher in the mix – havent’t heard distortion like that since The Isleys or that final burst at the end of that Carpenters song…you know the one.

Did you enjoy the sessions and which prized axe gave the album its sound?


Dear Tel
Thanks I got the guitar a bit louder this time. That Carpenters solo is fantastic, I’m not worthy. I can’t recall which guitar I used it might’ve been an SG. Sorry for the late reply.

Hi Chris first of all a big thank you the new Album is amazing but you already know that . My question is how many songs did you have before you decided which ones to use on the new album , and what happens to the songs you don’t use. Who chooses which songs and is there any bitterness or disappointment on when certain songs are not selected.

Dear Paul
We just kept coming up with them and I wanted all 16 on the album. I think it works. A few got left by the wayside but we will return and pick them up. Sorry for the late reply.
thanks, CB

Hello Chris. Was reading the sleeve notes for Can’t touch us now, fine album which grows every time it’s played, I saw the final note saying ‘ In loving memory of Gary Dovey’.
I remember seeing Gary in Take it or Leave it ,so know he was an important part of Madness infancy.
Just wanted to say Rest In Peace Gary.

i lived in kiln place but before that i lived in montigue tibbles which be came phenhurst along with steve lynch billy casey my bro peter saunders you came down the marquee cafe and gave me 4 back stage tickets for madstock cheers

Chris…trust you are well? Further to last weeks issue with the CD~less special edition and despite contacting the store and the management (twice) I feel like I’m no further forward..it’s now Tuesday and all I’ve had is an acknowledgment from the store to say they’ll look into it…all I want is this resolved…is this too much to ask? And sorry for going on about it…

Hi Chris,

Sorry to bother you.
I painted a picture for you of your white Gibson Les Paul leaning against a chair with your bowler hat some years ago which was commissioned by Elaine Anderson. (Cramlington).
I wondered if you still have it? I painted it whilst recovering from a hand accident and never got a copy of it. I wondered if it was at all possible to get a photograph of it or a pic of you holding it please?
Didn’t really know how to contact you until I saw this.

No problem if this is not possible. Would just love to see it again.

Big madness fan also ;)

Hope you’re well.

Kind regards


Yeah I’ve still got it of course, it’s great! Sorry for the late reply. I’ll send a pic asap

Hi Chris
My comment is not so much to do with your music although I will say it is awesome and can’t wait to see you in Bournemouth in December. However, I did used to work as a postie in Golders Green with Matt. Matt was a good friend to my brother Colin, also a postie, who tragically was killed in a car crash in East Finchley 17 years ago to the day. Matt was one of the pallbearers at his funeral and just seeing you on Sky Arts and also thinking if my bruv I was hoping you could pass my best onto Matt and I hope he is doing well. I have not seen him for 15 years now as I moved to Bournemouth at this time and lost touch. Be great to hear how he us getting on if he is still with the Royal Mail etc… If he has a Facebook account he can always look me up as I would love to hear from him after all these years.
Thanks for your time in reading this more unusual post.
Keep up the good work and as I said looking forward to Bournemouth in December and the gig.
Best wishes

Dear Kevin
Yeah he’s still a postie and he is on Facebook too look up matty foreman
Sorry for the late reply.
best, CB

to chris, in your last comment that i was in you didn’t answer my question which was can i meet you guys (madness) or just you. i don’t mind. but i love you guys. please

Hi Chris
Just booked VIP tickets for the House of Common date. Taking my 10 year old son for his very first gig!!
What do we get as part of the ticket? Also any chance we can have our photo taken with the band? Would really appreciate it as you’ve been my top band throughout my life so far.

Dear Lee
I think you should check before buying them!….OK I looked it up and it says;
“VIP Ticket
Your VIP ticket will gain you site entry via a bespoke entrance lane via the box office event entrance – the quickest route into HOC! You get a VIP wristband + a HOC programme. The wristband gets you access into the VIP Lounge where you’ll find a large VIP tent bedecked with comfortable furniture, private cash bar, smart clean loo trailers & outdoor wooden garden furniture.”
It does not say you will meet us but we may be wandering around that area.

Hi Chris, in the Guardian its quoted that London has found us a place where for one day every year we can have our very own festival. Is Clapham going to be an annual event then? I hope so!!

Is there any song you’ve recorded that you wish was released as a single, particularly one that you have written or co-written? Suspect there are occasions when it’s difficult for all of the band to agree!

hi chris. this is definitely the last one. i was in camden today and i went to holts, dublin castle and jazz cafe in hope of meeting lee… with no luck. so please can i meet you guys.you’ve sent me stuff you chatted with me on here. but can i please meet you. i was on the tube crying because of not seeing kix. i beg you

Hi Chris. I met with you all backstage at the 02 in 2014 and photos were taken by your own photographer. Would it be possible to get a couple of them as a reminder and to Grace my office wall?

Dear Stephen
Blimey I don’t have a clue who took them – it was two years ago! Any more details would be helpful.

Hi Chris!

The University Of Chichester Graduate Company is a group of 13 Musical Theatre students whom have been studying MT at The University of Chichester for the past three years, where we have developed skills in not only performance, but technical and production values too.

We are a group of already indebted students to who wish to start paying their loans off as soon as possible. To do this we need jobs. To get jobs, we need exposure. Our plan is to take a production of Our House: The Musical to The Edinburgh Fringe Festival this August. Our main outcome from this project would be to network and showcase our abilities in a much coveted setting. We are on a mission to raise nearly £10,000 overall and with lots of other fundraising events we aim to achieve our goal!

This is a completely independent project and is unconnected to our university so are looking for funding and fundraising opportunities at every corner!

We do have a Crowd Funding page for any other fans who are interested in helping kickstart 13 young professionals’ careers.

We appreciate any support you can offer us. Thank you.

Dear Connor
There are usually fees involved in putting on a production of “Our House”. I can’t really avoid you paying that as the fees are for the writers etc. But send me a link to your crowdfunding page I can put it on my page and Tweet it etc.
all the best, CB

Hi Chris
I’m trying to get hold of the album you guys did in 88 The Madness as it’s the only one I don’t have. The problem is that it’s only available for silly money. Do you know if there are any plans to re-issue it?

We have to select the songs and producer and studio etc. All going well, though. Some time this year!
thanks CB

Went to the L.TSO gig at the jazz café in jan, what a great night me and the wife had. Apart from the great music and atmosphere, we were treated to an appearance by Thommo himself at the Dublin Castle. Got a handshake off Bedders as he left the stage, and to top it off, bumped into Monsuier Barzo on the way out who very kindly signed a photo for us.. Anyway I heard thommo on the Johnnie Walker show and he mentioned something bout the ska orchestra supporting Madness at some shows this year. Can you shed anymore light on this?… Looking forward to a nutty 2016!

Hi Chris I’m aware of all the songs you’ve written Madness is all in the Mind is the one which turned out more or less as you envisaged it,but are there any songs which didn’t,for better or worse?

Hi Chris here Joe from Holland I ve got 2 questions why do you never perform Cardiac Arrest at gigs ? and why haven t you kept Listen to your father to yourselves great song ? I saw you lads twice once in The Hague (Madstock eve) and Esher (GREAT) greets Joe

Dear Joe
I have suggested playing “Cardiac Arrest” but we never get round to it. “Listen to Your Father’? Blimey – that was years ago.

Yo Chris! really last one.! i ordered a prop from the drip fed fred video but i’m not sure if it’s genuine…

it’s a manifesto that thommo threw into the air


Hi Chris,

I noticed that Bedders has been using a Jazz quite often, instead of a Precision. I’d be interested to know his thoughts on the Jazz Bass vs Precision Bass and also which strings he uses nowadays.

Many thanks for your valuable time.

Dear Domingo
He’s a good laugh, our Paul. I said nice to see he had a double breasted suit on like me,la.

Hi Chris,
Well, we all hope about a new album next year, so here’s my question : do you think the new album will have its deluxe edtion available in the Madshop (like “The liberty…” and “Oui oui ….”)? I know, I know, you have to finish it before, but I’m so proud of my deluxe editions!!!
Wish you a Merry Christmas.
Big hug from a french fan.

Hi Chris, long time no speak. We met when you played Liverpool Echo Arena a few years ago and you were well shocked that Barso had Guest Listed us? Do you recall?

My question is, are there any plans for Crunch! To play in Liverpool any time soon? Would be great seeing Crunch! Again. Saw you in ’92 at the Planet X in Hannover St.

I was shocked he put any guests on, more like. Ah Planet X great days. I don’t think we’ll be back but you never know..

Alright Chrissy boy! I was born & bred in Highbury N.5….could you tell me if you and the lads ever frequented any of the pubs in the area? ( apart from the Hope & Anchor of course!)

Hello CB,
I have always wondered about the video to Return of the Las Palmas 7. Who put all those short archive clips together? Did someone at Madness HQ create that?

It’s a piece of art! I love how it also bizarrely features in the original video of One Love by Bob Marley. Which I think you know about, right?

All the best. Merry Christmas,

Dear Rich
We didn’t really have many ideas for that single [video wise] and I don’t know who came up with the montage idea. We suggested a few of the images to use and when it was being edited, I suggested “more cuts than Friday the 13th”. So the speed of cutting between the clips gets faster and faster. Great video, quite ground breaking, as that technique was used in a lot of other films and videos.

Hi Chris (really i’ll stop after this!) My stuff arrived the other day. quick question. there was Carl autograph on my signed pic. i thought he’d left

Evening CJ; for the past 2 years the headliner on the Saturday night at The Mouth of the Tyne festival in mid July has been The Specials this year and Paul Weller last year. It’s a gig held amongst the ruins of Tynemouth Priory and has a great vibe about the place. Anyways should the band be touring next summer (yes please) is there any way you could get your management to slot this gig into the tour schedule sir? Here’s hoping….
Respect and Seasons Greetings to you and the family,
Sean Kilminster

Dear Sean
If we get asked by the venue or a promoter, then we do stuff. We can’t ask venues.
all the best, CB

chris iam finding it impossible to get hold of a bottle of gladness but easy to get lovestruck and nightboat is gladness beer still available ?
happy Christmas and new year glenn

I want to be completely sure that I’ve got the lyrics of “One Step Beyond” lyrics right – could you possibly confirm the words of the long intro please? I’ve looked online but am not 100% convinced…

Hey you
Don’t watch that,
Watch this!
This is the heavy heavy monster sound
The nuttiest sound around
So if you’ve come in off the street
And you’re beginning to feel the heat
Well listen buster
You’d better to start to move your feet
To the rockin’est, rock-steady beat
Of Madness
One Step Beyond!

Thanks for such an awesome weekend. And I want to see all the pics you took with my lovely shirt. Next year I’ll have to make one about string guys because I have a dilemma between bass players and guitar players now.


Ok Louis. Try to relax and I’ll get our highly trained team to get in touch with your Mum and send you some Madness stuff as soon as possible, OK?
Chrissy Boy

Hi Chrissy Boy. Great to meet you again at The HOF. Shame to read some of the Friday negativity, and then Saturday negativity cos you didnt play the ‘Hit’ they wanted!! You cant please all the part time fans…!
Crunch was excellent, (barring Burtons antics obviously!)
One idea for next year though, howabout one of those ‘Spin the Wheel’ things up on stage or on screen? B/ sides, album tracks and new songs, spin the wheel and leave it to lady luck? Just a thought…
Thanks for the memories, cant wait for the new album( Mumbo Jumbo?)

Hi Wayner
What “hit” did they want? Blimey, we did the most popular ones we could think of, plus “Tomorrows Just Another Day”. You can please some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time etc. Friday night has traditionally been something different and we’ve been writing all these new songs, so why not play them? As for Burton, I think his Father in law was egging him on, egging him on. I have suggested that the backstage “dancers” should start their own band/dance troupe for next year..
thanks CB

Hi Chris
Well done one and all for another excellent HOF, nice to chat to you a couple of times(on the stairs centre stage whilst you were texting), trouble with the amp on Saturday ?

Dear Dannyboy
I wasn’t texting, I was arranging immediate extraction from the area. I had a lot of trouble on Saturday, the amp started making all sorts of funny noises so Geoff [guitar tech] changed the head and we had the same thing. It turned out to be a plug that had come loose due to the stage vibrating so much. Stuff was bouncing all over the place. Well spotted. See you next time? Same place.
thanks CB

Hi Chris, I think it would be great if the rest of the Madness albums were released again in fully remastered sound quality (like O.S.B. 35)? The 30th anniversary releases are not from the original studio tapes and they have far too much dynamic range compression added. All the best, Ste C.

My son sent a message back in July, however the response does not appear on the ‘Ask Section’.
Both my boys are massive Madness fans and we came to see you in Newmarket on my son’s birthday in July, however he fell off the climbing frame in Newmarket and broke his arm, and he had to be taken to hospital, therefore we had to leave before you came on. My son Louis was extremely upset to have missed Madness and talks about it all the time.
He sent a message to ask if you are likely to be playing again in Newmarket in 2016 as he is desperate to see you live.
He keeps checking to see if there is a response.
Failing that, please could you confirm if the ‘Suggs Tickets’ for ‘My Life’ would be appropriate for an 11 year old and a 8 year old (boys) to attend?
Thanks you in advance for your help.

Dear Johanna
I think it’s ok, there may be quite a lot of swearing. He sings some songs and tells some funny stories. Can anyone confirm as to whether there is any profanities?
PS This is not the “Ask” section. for some reason, my bit is under “News Blog”. It’s been bugging me, as I always had “Chris’s Cupboard” on the page for all to see. However I get a lot less questions now. I don’t do “next gig” ones though. Any new gigs will be on the live bit. However, just to contradict myself, I can tell you we will not be appearing at Newmarket next year

Evening CJ; have been playing the Elvis C version of “Tomorrow’s Just Another Day” a lot recently and was wondering whether it was you who arranged the music or was it a Mike/Lee arrangement ?
Kind regards and respect,
Sean Kilminster

Chris- Hope the Nutty Boys are well & having a great 2015 season.Congrats on your Son’s wedding. Question: Is ‘Blue Skinned Beast’ about a particular person? I have my idea, but I’m from U.S. in Georgia. I always thought maybe Margaret Thatcher. Am I right? Love U’re work– Look fwd to new CD you talked about earlier!!


Hoping you can help, we are throwing a private party. 450 or so people and we need to feed them and water them!

Any ideas on what food and drink fits the theme of a madness party?


Hello CB, hope all is well……well it’s that nearly time of year again the annual Nutty Boys outing to HOFW…….as ever really looking forward to it……very intrigued as to what the set lists is for the Fri and Sat night gigs, however I’m absolutely certain it will be as good as the previous 4 occasions….look forward to seeing you there and having a beer

Hi Chris from all the gigs/venues you have played over the many years which was your favorite and which was your worst many thanks and long may madness remain cheers carl

Hi Chris

Have the band released a cd that includes: “The last rag and bone man”? We heard them perform this fantastic song when we went to see them at the Brighton Center. x

Hi Chris been going to your concerts for years but I have never hered you play cardiac arrest just wondering why as it was one of your hits like driving in my car the last time I heard you play that was back in92 at madstock cheers Tony Harvey from Bristol

Hi Chris.just wondering if there’s any chance of you recording and making available sunshine voice, as I think it’s a great song and deserves to be heard. Cheers. Looking forward to hearing the next album. Crack on.

Hi CB so looking forward to the HOFW but my question is hundreds if not thousands of us have been buying Madness poppy badges which are probably not official but still a class item. if this is the case could you please arrange a proper donation fund for everyone buying these badges included myself and her indoors at the HOFW as we have been using your label. Then it would be all proceeds to the British Legion courtesy of MADNESS. This make take some doing but if anyone can you can, cheers CB.

Dear Paul
This is a bit daft. I/we am not selling them, how can I “arrange” it? . Whoever is selling them should have sent the money to the British Legion. Ask them, not me.

Hi CB,
Hope you are good and have had as good a summer as we have.
You lot were great….but my back has gone now !!
I need your help please – As its my 50th in May, and thinking about hiring a band, and having a theme party.
Can you suggest any rocking good enembles that (a can give us a good hour of rhythm, b) would add to the ska, twotone, and reggae theme, and c) be happy to come to lovely Notts for a Sat night ????
You and LT free in May ? now that would be splendid !
Any advice or ideas are cheers CB,

virgin av sent me a new sim an its wipped half me numbers.can u text me or email yr number r kid?also walked for 5 mins last night with no sticks 4 the 1st tme in 14 months r kid.x

cb thanks for taking the time to get back to me ,,, yes u must have loads on ,,, that night no prop ,,, great gig at Blackheath ,, you guys get better and better ,, maybe some outher gig we could meet up ,,, cb all the best to you and your family ,, thanks lee

Ireland 2016. Yeehaaaa!!! Just been reading a reply to another question and I see you mentioning a return to Ireland next year. Happy days my old mucker, happy days. Maybe get an oppo to say ‘hello’ again. The little girl is missing her favourite guitarist. All the best for the new upcoming album guys.

CB. Now that the grandslam has finished and the butlins coming up , are there any plans for any of the 6 of you to take time out from madness. Regards Fatboi.

Dear Paul
We are writing a new album which is all going very well so I hope we will start work on that asap.

I realy NEED a december date for London,as me and the mrs go every year to see you all ;-)
My mrs has said “she is not missing out on going to londo this year, because your not playing in Decemder” so SHE is thinking of booking us for fooking Hary potter! How shit will be december be with out you all ;-(

Sorry Andy
We have been up and down the country this year can’t do a Christmas tour as well! The Harry Potter thing is quite good. I have never read a book or seen a film but took my daughter there [9] for her birthday and she loved it.

Alright Chrissy Boy? Have the band written any new songs yet? Really liked The Last Rag And Bone Man and thought there would be more new material coming out soon after. All the best to you and the band

Dear Matt
Yeah we’ve written a lot of new stuff and we’ve been previewing it on the Grandlsam tour, went down quite well. Except my solo song had a few er noses out of joint

Hi Chris, just worth a mention that the Bristol gig was a mighty fine affair I must say, the wife and my 2 lads enjoyed themselves, keep up the good work and looking forward to Butlins again……..hic

Just remembered a really weird dream I had about the band last night (don’t worry you all kept your clothes on!) Anyway, in this dream, me and my wife were in London and we were visiting all of the band at their separate homes. Each home we got to had a really weird way of gaining entrance. When we got to yours, we had to crawl down a tunnel, climb a ladder, go down an alleyway and climb another ladder and go up a spiral staircase. When we met you I said ” you wouldn’t believe the trouble we’ve had getting in here” and you replied “yeah…. it’s madness isn’t it?”.
By the way, that wasn’t a joke it was a real dream, must have been brought on by paying off the ‘House of Fun’ weekend yesterday.

Dear Billy
Lay off the cheese before sleeping. That sounds like one of my dreams. We are always late for a gig or something..

hi cb its just about 2 weeks to go till Blackheath gig do I look at my email and keep me fingers crossed u get back to me ,,, I will be a the gig and look forward to another great night of madness , and so say all of as , thanks lee

Dear Ant
I promise we will next year. I came to Dublin this year on a solo tour. OK, my sons stag do. We miss you too. [Not U2]

Always wondered why the track ‘Wonderful’ never appeared on the ‘Wonderful’ LP? I remember seeing it on TV at your concert for EURO 96, and a version cropped up as a B-side on one of the singles… but why not on the LP?

It’s’ a long story. For some reason it became a choice between “Wonderful” and “Round and Round” , another good song. I said put them both on the album..
yours, CB

Hello Chris

Have you had the chance of listening to Woody’s album yet? What do you think of it? Or did you knew all the songs as you knew most of Chas’ songs before his album appeared?

Hi Chris,

I’ve been re-listening to the Rise and Fall recently (brilliant) and was wondering have you ever considered playing the complete album in its entirety – as a once off gig?

Cheers – Dan

Dear Dan
This does get suggested from time to time, the sort of thing we’d do at House of Fun but we always have other ideas..
thanks, CB

Happy birthday old boy ; been playing the “7″ album a lot recently and wonder if there’s any chance of you persuading the guys of dusting off “Day on the Town” at some point in the future. A classic Madness track in my opinion and one of the best you’ve ever composed sir. Respect; as always CJ and see at Durham for the climax of the tour.
Kind regards,
Sean Kilminster

Thanks Sean
I think we might have played it recentley er in the last few years or so..
all the best, CB

Hi Chrissyboy. Finally coming to HOFW, my now wife booked it. Imagine my surprise when before my Speech at my Wedding( July 11th) I was presented with a card signed by you all. Took my breath away! Thank you. I gave Lee some Golden Hand Grandslam badges at our Ska Dogs gig before Fratton Park that he attended. Did you get one, he said you would love it?!

Hello there the mighty Chrissy Boy!!! It’s the nuns here! Great chatting to you in Rhyl and hope you managed to find Thommo and get your train ok?!! We’re coming down to Brighton on Sunday 2nd August until Thursday and as it’s your home town…..we thought If anybody would know where to get a good pint, a better atmosphere and a convent then it would be a local…. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! I know it’s not madness business but have inspected the ” do not ask ” list and think I am fine. :-D

Thanks in advance (as long as you check your mails before the weekend.) :-D

mother superior! ;-)

Hi Chrissy. two questions here. Why did you grow your hair long after mike left, annd who did a flip in the uncle sam video? ps I’ll be at the bristol grandslam gig.

Dear Louis
Thommo and I had a bet to see who could grow their hair the longest. No particular wager, just a bet. Just after we did the photo shoot for “Mad Not Mad”, Thommo went to a fancy dress party dressed as a Hari Krishna, which necessitated a cropped head. He appeared in the “Yesterdays Men” video as a Hari Krishna and he also took advantage of the free food they gave out in Camden Town. So I won the bet and I had long hair for quite a while, as my girlfriend liked it. That’s all quite ironic, as I don’t have any hair now! Thommo did the flip on a small trampoline. yours, CB

Listening to The Beat live in London as I am writing this, a truly great under estimated ska band! Just out of curiousity who was your favourite ska, twotone, rudeboy band of the eighties apart from your great selfs obviously… Will see u at Wolverhampton for the Grandslam, daughters coming aswell with me and the wife because she loved the Madhead London so much!! Much respect, see you at wolves. p.s Would be great if you could give my daughter a shout out during showtime her name is Abi. Cheers have great summer.

Dear Mad Mags
I really liked the Beat myself. All the bands had something but they were quite differant.

brilliant gig/tour yet again amazing time meeting you and watching Cai dance the finale once again, last time you said he would be great for t-shirt sales was just wondering if he could be upgraded and on stand by for band members holidays/weddings etc or just if you fancy a night off, cheap to keep non smoker and drinker and no vat on clothes :) check him out in womble the movie next year :) xx

Dear Sheena
He is going places that lad, a true pro. He kept his pose, even when I tickled him. Or is he not ticklish?

Dear Chris. I was looking to buy a signed autographs photo of you and the group. It’s is on a site for madness fans. But I’m a little bit dubious at buying it because of a person who put a question to you on his signed guitar which had the certificate of authenticity but found out it was fake. How would I stand on this to find out if it’s real or fake. Please help. I need this for my wall of fame . thanks tony. P’s my wife said thanks for the weight loss.

Dear Tony
It’s hard to say without seeing them. There are a lot of of forgeries online and even the real ones are annoying, as some people hang around venues with the express idea of getting stuff signed to sell, which is not fair on the real fans.

Dear Ant
Sorry but I got asked that so much [when's the next gig] that I decided to not answer and Timewaster® steps in. We will not be playing in Ireland this year.

Dear Chris. It has come to my attention that when we was at your gig in rhyl my wife jacqui was dancing and jumping around like her life depended on it. It is her first time at a madness gig and ahead loved it. But…….I did notice a better glow in her and her figure. She lost weight…thank. so I think forgot weight watchers and keep fit dvds. Just go a see madness. Thanks Chris your a god send.

Dear Chris. I’ve just got back to Manchester from your rhyl tour. It was fantastic. Can’t wait for next year when your back in manchester at phones 4 u. Once again thanks for the sun and fun. Let’s hope next year I can get all your signatures. I’ll keep trying. Take care you lot of mad heads. Tony

Dear Tony
Thanks for coming all that way. We were nearer you earlier on in the tour, you know.

Hi Chris, just to say a massive thanks for the Haydock tickets, at least something good came out of me having my appendix ripped out haha. Would loved to have seen you personally to thank you but being an hot day me and my brother went in shorts so wasn’t allowed up in the County Stand where I think you was.But didn’t take away what a fantastic night it was. The fan base is still as massive as ever, one of my Daughters went as well and she loved it, I have brought them up listening to your songs so theyre very familiar with them !.. Cant wait for my next gig , watched you many times and always as good as ever, Think Leeds in September will be my next. Thanks again CB and as always keep up the good work, Madness Forever !

Dear Malc
I’m glad you got in but next time, dress in the appropriate manner.
all the best, CB

Congratulations on the Grandslam tour, it’s going great guns! Great to see new material being showcased , can’t wait for the album. Is Chas likely to feature on the album or is the current 6 piece?

Hi Chris,

I just wanted to say that New Market was brilliant. It was a dream come true. Back in Canada now safe and sound, with some fantastic memories.

All the best!!!!

Hi Chris, when you come to Bristol in September do you fancy a few pints after down Gloucester Rd, quite a famous drinking route through Bristol ? Good curry houses on route also ! Give us a text 0797******* Dan

Dear Dan
Thats most kind but I er..never eat too close to a gig and don’t drink either..

Hi Chris,

Thanks for a fantastic gig at Hove on Sunday. I thought the set list was particulary good with a nice blend of old and new tunes. Assuming I’ve got the name of the song right can you tell me who wrote Mumbo Jumbo?

Dear Chrissy Boy, saw you at Doncaster races on Saturday 27th. (You were awesome by the way ) My question to you sir is this; who are you influences musically ? I seem to remember you doing a little Beatles thing on ” Our House “, were you influenced at all by the Fab Four ?
Much love ! ( I know Suggs did a cover of “I’m only sleeping ” )

Dear Kenny
I loved the Beatles as a kid, it was compulsory really. I did write a very Beatles B side once called but ” PLease Don’t Go”
Otherwise the Fab Four were not a major inspiration songwriting wise. In the “Our House” video I was acting out various eras in music 50s, 60s, and 70s
thanks CB

Hi my husband, son and friends are all members of a well known local scooter club The A92′s from Dundee and Angus, we will all be at your Montrose gig on the 5th July but a fellow member and keen Madness and scooter fan’s is getting married the day before and I was wondering if you could dedicate a song maybe” It must be love “to them? as we will all be at your gig at Montrose on the day after their wedding they are Keith and Tracey Simpson. Please and Thank you Scooter and Madness Fans The A92′s Scooter Club.

Dear Gillian
I will endeavour to do this but Suggs is reluctant to let me have the mike.

Loved your newmarket gig on Friday 3rd time me and the missus have seen you took some friends for their first time they couldnt believe how great you were live 2 new fans

Hi Chris, Haydock’s a week away, getting excited now! Any chance of a shout out for our daughter Tilly? She won’t entirely understand it yet but it’ll be something to tell her in the future! Thanks, as ever!

Dear Ian
Not you again!Er..I have to “save my voice” Ian. Perhaps you can tell her I did it, eh?

hi cb sent you a message on 14th of march 2015 it still says awaiting moderation , I no u must have a lot on at moe with the tour , which hope is going well , will I get a reply thanks lee

Dear Lee
I am slow in replying but thats a bit much! I didn’t get the message. Unless it’s sent directly to me I don’t get them. I just searched the system for any messages from you and there weren’t any. What was the message?

Hi chris

phenomenal gig at fratton park on saturday, its taken me 30 plus years but ive finally seen you, would love to see you all back here again soon, portsmouth has a very big ska following and you sold out so quickly, good luck for the rest of the tour :)

Hi CB,
Saw you guys last night in Chelmsford. Great as always.
Thought it was fantastic when you played “you said” – how great to hear you do an early album track.
Love the Real Ale too !
Have a great tour.

Hi Chris, the new tour sounds very exciting – haydock is just a mile down the road from us but we fancied a bit of variety, so are hoping to get to Headingley in September. However, we’d like to take our daughter Tilly to her first Madness gig (she’ll be just under 3 at the time) A festival style atmos seems just right but I cannot get any confirmation anywhere regarding having to pay for a ticket for, in effect, a 2 year old. I’ve phoned Headingley and they don’t know, I’ve tried to contact the Liz Hobbs Group…can’t get through and get no email response. Any ideas? I know you’re busy (obviously) but thought you might catch this before mid-September! I don’t mind paying but don’t want to shell out an extra £35 if I don’t need to!
Cheers, CB. Hope the tour continues as well as it’s started. Regards, Big E

Dear Ian
I have also emailed you on this subject but I do think 2 is a bit young for this type of show. A seated arena would be better.
all the best, CB

hi Chrissy boy, we will be at Chelmsford race course Wednesday, my daughters first time at a madness concert shes only 8 yrs old can you get her a shout out at some point in the evening her name Sydnie jewell all the best martin and kellie

I’m sorry if I missed the info on this. How come you weren’t performing at Gloucester? I saw you were on the posters so thought you were doing the tour.

Sorry Gary, my son was getting married, I thought Suggs would mention it. He booked the wedding long before the first two shows, so I missed Lincoln too. I’m glad you noticed though! I’ll catch you next time.
thanks, CB

Hello Chris,
In your early travelling days with the band- who was your room-mate? And did it alternate?
Also, as there were seven in the band, who got the room to themselves?
(Do you get your own room now?)

Good luck with your Son’s wedding!
I’ll see you On Blackheath!
Best wishes,

Dear Rich
Oh blimey I started off sharing with Mike Barson, what an experience. Then Suggs ditto and eventually Thommo – oh we had some right old times, I can tell you. Once Thommo and I had this all night battle with Suggs and Chas. Fire extinguisher fights, ha ha puting massive piles of bricks in their doorway. Chas called Thommo and I “Victor and Valiant” – what great nicknames! Other sharers were Woody/Bedders Chas/Suggs, Suggs/Barso and various other combos but usually stuck with those. I don’t know who the odd one out was, we must’ve taken it in turns. Of course we all have our own rooms now. I have a suite with a view. [a Polo mint]. That was quite nice answering that took me right back.
Thanks CB

I watched Ian Dury live at pinkpop in 1981 and he asked you (madness) on stage for “sex & drugs & rock & roll” and I only saw Mike Barson come up . what happened, why didn’t you lot come on stage?

Dear Curtis
I remember it well. We were all watching Ian from the front. I was miles away by the mixing desk, when he asked us up on stage. So none of us could get to the stage in time, except Mike. It wasn’t anything personal!

Dear Paulie
Please contact our agent, the address is on this very site at the bottom ‘booking agents”. I just sung two songs at my sons wedding and it went down ok.I’d like to wish you the very best.

My partner recently purchased a black and red guitar signed by the members of Madness for me as a present. I was talking with another Madness fan friend the other day, and he advised me that these are fake despite a certificate of authenticity and that you had stated that on facebook. Can you advise me whether this is true, I am really pleased with it and don’t want to disappoint her, however, if it is fake we will take it back.
Signed July 2010
Please advise

Dear Craig
I saw the picture you’ve sent and the guitar is not signed by us, it is a fake. According to the “certificate” you are entitled to a full refund, please make sure you get one!
Let me know what happens please, CB

Seen you guys many times over the years and got my tickets for Rhyl and House of Fun, but I’ve never managed to catch you doing ‘Land of Hope and Glory’, so what’s the chance of catching it this year? Also . . . . . . . . . any chance of having a vote on hear as to the karaoke song you perform at the House of Fun?

Dear Billy
“Land of Hope and Glory” I’d love to do that. As for the Showtime song I’ve done about everything now, any ideas? Such as “Knock it on the Head” or something, haha

Love your music and it brings back the best times of my life…school…. thanks for the music and keep it coming lads. My question is. The song your a embarrassment. Is that about one of your band members sister bringing home a black lad. Thanks long term fan.

Hi Chrissy, please can you tell me if chas is coming back for this years gigs, I’ve seen you many times in the last few years, O2, brighton where I live 3 times, I saw you just before Christmas and was kind of disappointed that knight boat was opening song, I realise and respect your decision to take out one step but please please please close the show with knight boat, it’s the icing on the cake for many many fans, please pass on my regards to woody, we know each other from a different kind of club in Bromley , best wishes and regards to you all.

Dear Phil
Chas is doing very well but not back for these gigs. “Knight Boat?” er..do you mean “Night Boat to Cairo?”. We may start with something else altogether, so you better get used to it baby. “One Step” has not been taken out it got moved, as without Chas it’s not the same. Keep up the work in the club much respect.
yours, CB

Hi Chris, Hope you are all well and getting ready for the Grandslam gigs. I was wondering out of all the songs that Madness wrote and recorded, is there one that you wished had never seen the light of day, and is there a particular song that you wished you never had to play live again.
Cheers Chris

Chrissy boy hope all good in your world, looking forward greatly to Grandslam and in particular the gig at Fratton Park, Portsmouth, my hometown, also got tickets for Bristol……if ya up for a beer beforehand then let me know. ..

Dear Ste
I think we’ve done them all but someone will correct me, I’m sure.
yours CB

Hi Chrissy Boy,
I hope you can help…..
I bought my partner (Hubbie to be in May this year) tickets to the gig at the Gloucester rugby ground on May 30th for his birthday.

My partner has been playing in a Madness Tribute band for the last 10 years…. Check out their web site: http://www.nuttyness.co.uk and see the video.

Anyway, as we are coming to see you guys and I was really hoping that there might be a chance for my partner to meet you, as my partner is the lead guitarist in the tribute band (he’s called Chris too) and it would make the most wonderful Birthday prezzie (or even wedding prezzie)
It would be amazing if you could do anything.
Fi (Vennbrook)

Dear Fi
What a shame! My son is getting married on the 30th of May and I have to miss the first two gigs, otherwise I’d have done something.
next time.
yours CB

hi chris just seen the early line up for the house of fun weekender, so looking forward to it. hoping to see superskas again but they are not on the line up yet .is there any bands you are interested in seeing this year apart from your good selves hope to hear from you soon paul from cov

Dear Paul
Um Gorgeous George? They did it two years ago but they aren’t doing it this time ha ha..Um lets have a look..Geno Washington will be great!

Hello Mr Chrissyboy i am one of your madness fans in my country (Mexico) I want to ask you this : Madness band was sometime “friends” the other band of your generation as U2,The Cure,Depeche Mode,inxs….?I imagine all of you maybe play in some music festival in the 80′s or maybe I am wrong well that’s all and by the way I wish you all the best in “the grand slam” (I hope one day “madness” return to Mexico well dream its free don’t you think )

Hi Chris, greetings again from Australia. Looking forward (actually I’m excited as a kid at Xmas) to be able to catch another Madness gig in the U.K. It’s becoming a tradition with my middle daughter, who moved over to Manchester last year. I hooked her on Madness at Luna Park Sydney then were lucky enough to get to the gig at Chepstow in 2013 and now Blackheath. I had to change my flight but what a way to finish off my holiday. See you all in September, cheers.

hi cb well my 30th time of seeing madness at the 02 last year , what a great night , as always . but got the shock of my life , that u r playing black heath common on the 13th of September on my door step all the years I have travelled all over the uk and now you are here , cant wait will take my wife with me , as she is never up 4 it , but now your on our door step she wants to come , I know she will have a great time , ive loved it for over 30th years , got me tickets , cb is there a hope u can do a meet up , thanks lee

Dear Lee
HA! I found it! The lost message. Good job you told me the date.

“hi cb well my 30th time of seeing madness at the 02 last year , what a great night , as always . but got the shock of my life , that u r playing black heath common on the 13th of September on my door step all the years I have travelled all over the uk and now you are here , cant wait will take my wife with me , as she is never up 4 it , but now your on our door step she wants to come , I know she will have a great time , ive loved it for over 30th years , got me tickets , cb is there a hope u can do a meet up , thanks lee”

Sorry for the late reply, we will be glad to be on your doorstep Lee. I used to hang about Blackheath and Greenwich about 23 years ago, blimey, it’s like my old manor. Meet up? mmmm maybe. It’s the least I can do.
yours, CB

hi Chris great news about the Grandslam just booked Doncaster, Carlisle, Durham, and Montrose gonna be a great summer just wondered about the VIP package at Montrose and if any of the band would be making an appearance in the Gladness beer garden like Thommo and Woody did in the VIP enclosure in Victoria Park cos If they did I could take my sons fez to get the missing autographs on it (Suggs and Bedders ) hope they do but cant wait either way any chance of a shout out for the church of Maradona during showtime as most of us will be their cheers Terry B

Dear Terry
I cannot guarantee this but if you see me, I’ll sign stuff. For a small fee..
Church of who!

Hi Chris
I have just booked my ticket for Chester-le-Street later in the year and all of a sudden the nostalgic mist comes down again. I have had the pleasure of following you guys since the very beginning and seen you play at an awful lot of venues. What are your stand out memories from your time in the band Chris? By the way thank you all for the continued pleasure that you provide year after year

Blimey John
Hard to say really.The first time I heard “The Prince” on the radio was one.I was walking down Holmes Road in Kentish Town and a builder had a transistor radio on. Then the first “Top of The Pops”.

Hello Chris,

Been a little while now. I see things are busy as usual over there and probably hectic now and then.

I finally decided to go on SoundCloud, as making a YouTube video of my screen of Audacity is kind of old-fashioned and horrible quality. I put down a tune that’s been in my head for a while that uses a derivative progression but has my take on it. What do you think?
I must mention that the guitar at the beginning was recorded in four tracks – one for each triplet. I can’t actually fully play that well yet. Does it sound like anything/one to you? There’s also an acoustic in it plus an organ.
Thanks for your feedback and good luck on all the touring.

I’m not sure which song you’re referring to as there’s quite a few there, you’ve been busy!they sound good though.Keep it up dude.

Hi Chrissy Boy. Great to see you are playing Hove as I live in Pompey- then Fratton Park was mentioned and I nearly fainted!!! I wait in anticipation…!Anyway, have you ever been to Gibraltar and if not do you think the band would ever play The Rock?

CJ; well played to the band for bringing out a family ticket for the summer gigs. Bringing the family to the Durham gig in September. And very impressed with the price I paid for us all today. If the band are staying at Lumley Castle watch out for the ghost sir!
Respect, as ever
Sean Kilminster

hi chris can you tell me if you wore a little silver madness m pin badge on the shoot for absolutely as I have one and wondered if it’s the same cheers dave

Dear DannyBoy
We aim to please and I’m glad you approve. It’s a long way from my house, though..

Dear David
No, her Mum lives there. She [her Mum] re married a lovely Geordie man. Originally from Oxford [wife and Mother in lur]

Hey Chris do you know if the Morris minor maddie car still exists?i won a competition over 30 years ago and met yourself and bedder we went for a ride to stiff records in the car and you gave me the mad 7 number plate. For. My 50th b’day this year I wanted to have the car to go with it!any ideas??Many thanks.Alisa

Dear Alisa
It’s probably still around. I hear these tales of someone knows someone who won it etc.Anybody seen it?

Yoo sorry about when I tweeted you after the dec Dub gig I was a little but “Happy” , Great gig all the same I made some new friends well sort of I made 1 don’t know if you spotted there was (and yes I counted) 3 miserable people down the front who I don’t think actually got what being at the front of a madness gig means (It’s not all glamour!)…..Anyway, What I messaged you about is the track “The last rag and bone man”
Dude I love it seriously but, Please Please do it justice and play acoustic guitar pretty please?

thanks Cj

Dear Deborah
It’s supposed to be a musical note but it has mutated over the years.

Me again, just thought I’d let you know I did a lamp in technology in the shape of the “M” logo with a chequered base. I would show you a picture of it if you wanted to see it. Can’t wait until you next come down to Plymouth. December was phenomenal. I had the best time being stood at the front in front of you and bedders.

Dear MadYank [Jack?]
I answered more or less the same question below, so forgive me for cutting and pasting. Have a great trip buddy.

There’s Camden Lock and the Electric Ballroom where we played in 1979. However, like any other large city – it’s all getting knocked down and “modernised”. Oh, do go in the “British Boot Company”
[AKA or used to be called Holts] shoe shop, next to the Camden Tube we used to buy our boots there and in 1979 the Specials had an office above the shop. I have lived in Brighton for 8 years so I’m a bit out of touch. You could also go the Hawley Arms we used to go in there years ago and it is now famous for being Amy Winehouses local [RIP]

hi i hope you are well and enjoying the new year,it`s my 50th birthday on the 1st of feb and my partners on the 5th.so we have booked a couple of days in london to do abit of sightseeing etc.well ive always wanted to visit camden town and go to the dublin castle and see where madness did some of their first gigs.we dont know london well ive not been for many years,we are going to be there on the 4th/5th of feb,my question is what other places would you reccomend we visit while in camden and london itself,both of us love markets and having alook round the local area and meeting people.Thanks for your time chris,all the best dj danny.

Dear DJ Danny
There’s Camden Lock and the Electric Ballroom where we played in 1979. However, like any other large city – it’s all getting knocked down and “modernised”. Oh, do go in the “British Boot Company”
[AKA or used to be called Holts] shoe shop, next to the Camden Tube we used to buy our boots there and in 1979 the Specials had an office above the shop. I have lived in Brighton for 8 years so I’m a bit out of touch. You could also go the Hawley Arms we used to go in there years ago and it is now famous for being Amy Winehouses local [RIP] Have a great time, CB

i just like to say hi and i do hope all is ok ???? we have a baby who is one and half his name is called william when the wife is not in the car i take the frozen c.d out and play madness and he love it his feet starts going in the baby seat up and down . who know he could be your youngest fan lol he does say alot of words and yes one of them is madness lol . anyways thank for coming back to plymouth last dec you lot was grrrrrrrreat again well have a good hope to see you lot soon again roll on the new album the last rag and bone man song is 10/10 t.c my friend all the way from sunny torquay :-D

Dear John
Ha ha you are a card..I usually put AC/DC on in the car, or some rockabilly, David Bowie etc. I want my kids to absorb lots of differant music. My daughter [8] loves “Frozen” but she has an open mind to all sorts of music and she is quite keen on the Beach Boys, for example. My son [12] is a bit more “turn that c*ap off”

Hi Chris,
Will there be more re-released albums that have been remastered from the original master tapes, and if so, when? Also, all the demos/alternate versions on youtube – how do does one buy them and will they ever be cleaned up and released officially? There’s some fantastic stuff out there, it’s a shame not to be able to hear it in better quality. Many thanks.

I was at the Newcastle gig just before Christmas and loved the Madness version of It mek, are their any plans to release it as a single or as a track on an album, many thanks, Neil

Dear Neil
It was recorded [I think] for the “Dangermen Sessions” but we went with “The Israelites” instead. No plans to release it but maybe a B side at some point?

Hi Chris

Very much enjoyed seeing Madness in Birmingham in December and your spot singing with the Violin Monkeys is always a highlight.

I’m interested to know how the set listing and working round of songs happens for you now that Chas Smash isn’t currently a member of the band? It caught me a little bit when One Step Beyond wasn’t the first song of the show.

Hope to see Madness again in the next year and beyond

Dear James
You’re too kind! “One Step” was moved because Chas isn’t around and it’s sort of his song, so we decided to try something different and swopped it with “Nightboat”. We may try something else next time.

Happy New Year Chrissy Boy! Planning to make our way from our Manchester (Maryland, USA) to yours this Spring. Hoping that the fates will smile upon us and you lot will be playing somewhere first week of April. If not, we’ll treat you to a pint at the pub of your choosing. Promises promises.

Hi Chris – are there any plans for releasing/recording some older Madness songs from 1985/86 that never saw the light of day? I always thought Perfect Place would have sounded ace on an album. Lovely tune that!

Dear Dan
That was one that got away. We did a demo of it but it was never finished at the time. Most of the songs we write get recorded. There are not any left from that period, to tell the truth.

Happy New Year, CB:

Hope you and the lads have another great year ahead. We sure do miss you in the States.

A long overdue thanks for the interview for my feature in the now defunct Buzzbin Magazine of Canton, Ohio.
I enjoyed writing about you and the boys when you came to San Diego a few years back. I now do some work for the Phoenix (AZ)New Times, and and would love to catch up some time.

Let me know if you have any designs on returning to the US in 2015 or 2016. We would love to see some of the new tunes performed live.

All the Best and Cheers,


Dear Mark
That is partly a touring question but it’s put so nicely I can’t Timewaster® it. There are no designs to come to the USA, sadly.
all the best, CB

Hi Chrissy, First of all, let me congratulate you and the boys on a brilliant show in Manchester the other week. It being the first time in all these years that I have watched you live and seeing you live, to me it was like you putting a perfect head on a glass of perfect Gladness. Furthermore, in December 2011 you sent me via email, your autographs, so I could get them tattooed on to my chest, in reply to your mail, I mailed you back to inform you that, if you did a gig in Manny I would be stood at the front pointing to my chest and you would then know who it was saying big thank you’s for them!. Well, do you remember me? a bleeding ugly guy with a black Harrington on, stood at the front, and just to your right, standing there pointing at his chest? You did let on, but it would surprise me after all this time, that you remembered why some guy was pointing at his chest, but it would show how much you hold your fans in high esteem. Now, being as you filmed the gig in Manchester, is there going to be a DVD out of the gig? If so I may be on it as the camera caught us a few times and that would be another perfect head on another pint of Gladness, Ha, I also managed to get a playlist, which made up for forgetting my ticket on the way out after your show. well that’s all ,
thanks for being madness and I hope to see you live again next year. Bye, Mark…. P.S. point 2 on your rules, mentions do not ask for autographs! , would that be because after you did mine, everyone was after them via email???, ha, ha….cheers. Mark.

Dear Mark
That’s very funny..Yes I saw you and I thought my luck was in and I hung around after but it was to no avail. The gig was not actually filmed, the cameras were just for the screens. The no autographs is because A. I can’t be assed to get them and B.Postage is quite a lot
thanks, CB

hi, just like to say,hope you and the guys had a great christmas tour,merry christmas and have a very happy new year.looking forward to operation grandslam,still dont know what that is yet? will have to get my partner to check her email,take care,all the best,dj danny.

Happy Christmas Mr. Foreman and all the very best for 2015 !! Thanks for a great gig the other night in Manchester , even without the legend that is Mr. Chas Smash you and the boys stood up and made it yet another concert to remember ( the original line up aswell – fantastic ) So , as the group get towards 40 – yes 40 years together , give or take a few weeks off along the way ! what venue outside and inside in the nutty world would you personally like to play and which country would this be ? Many thanks Chris – Steve.

Hello Young Chris
Great seeing you again in Dublin
Hope you all have a relaxing break
Merry Christmas and a fantastic new year to you all

Best Wishes

Hi Declan
Sorry to you [and everyone else] for the slackness in replying. Long bout of man flu then other stuff.
thanks, CB

just back fae Glasgow bud you were ace as usual loved hearing believe me and los palmas and dont quote me again made my night to hear some old tunes again cant wait for the grandslam now (whatever it is lol) thanks again you guys always smash it made my xmas and my son loved it too hope you have a nice xmas break you deserve it merry christmas Terry B

Hi Chris,
Just wanted to say how much my son and I enjoyed the show in Belfast on Monday. It was his first big gig (age 12) and my first one seated (seasoned madness veteran). He was totally star struck seeing you all. The set list was great and the new format worked well. The support was also superb, and I’ll have to try and see them again. Happy Christmas

Hi Chris, great show at the Glasgow Hydro last night! Even that bloke who sang Big Spender wasnt too bad. He might have a future in showbiz. Pity the piper, we couldnt hear him until you came back on and held the microphone for him! He was playing outside at the end, good lad.
I thought Leon, It Mek and OSB were brilliant. Is your version of It Mek available anywhere? And the rest of the show wasnt too shabby either! Great intro a the very begining of the show for Night Boat! Thought the atmosphere was brilliant with everyone injected with a huge doze of happiness. I’ve already set aside the money for your next visit to Glasgow.
Like Bond, I know you cant talk, but will you be recording an album in 2015? The Last Rag and Bone Man download sounds very good.
All the best

Dear Micheal
Thanks very much. I finally realised that the noisy bit of the pipes is the bottom bit, not the “drones”. The Caledonian Cowboy http://www.caledoniancowboy.com/
aka Johnny “Rashers” Gauld often gets up with us, he is top class, New songs hopefully this year and maybe an album.

Hi Chris,
Finally got to see you all at the LG arena on the 13th December,after years of following the band I finally have been to a gig and you were all fantastic! I am very much hoping for the chance to see you again next year as often as i can :-) Drinks are on me,much to the merchandisers amusement i spent over £100… I was obviously the big spender that night haha.Wishing you and the band a Happy xmas and a rocking new year.

Hi Chris, I Had been looking forward all year to seeing you again this month. It was my birthday on the 13th and my Daughter got me a ticket for my birthday for the Leeds gig. (Manchester is a closer venue for me as I live in Wigan, but I told her to get me one for Leeds) But the week before the gig I got rushed into hospital for my appendix out, so had to miss it and let someone else have my ticket,Absolutely gutted !!, , Hope you have more gigs planned for the New Year Chris, always love watching you and being at your gigs. All the best to you all and keep up the brilliant work..Madness for ever !

Dear Malc
What bad luck! Please remind me and I’ll guest list you next time we are playing the UK for a gig of your choice, plus one. OK?

Hi Chris,
Great gig Saturday in Birmingham. Just wanted to say thanks to the band for the entertainment you have given over the last 35 years and hope that you continue to tour and record for many years to come. From that first single (purchased at age 14) to the recent Rag and Bone man download( as I approach my 50th) it has been a pleasure to be a fan, Sirs I salute you.
from Andy

Looking forward to Madhead o2 London. Gonna be extra special as my eldest daughter who is 10 is boarding the nutty train with me and the wife, for her first ever Madness concert, in fact her first ever anyone concert.Traveling on the Friday for London xmas shoping, lights and all. On the main event of the day we will be taking in the delights of Camden Town, when ever im in Camden the Dublin Castle is a must, just wondering if any of the band will be having any refreshments there before the gig. have a great tour CB and save the best till last!

Dear Mad Mags
Thanks for coming, I hope we lived up to your expectations and that your daughter liked it..

Chrissy Boy, hope you are well.
HoF was as good as ever and 2 x fantastic sets was enjoyed by all who attended. Shame didn’t catch up for a beer. I write this just a couple days before two of us board a plane and fly up to see you in Glasgow in what will be the 3rd country we’ve seen you play this year.!! If the opportunity arises then will def have a Xmas beer with you, Merry Xmas and a happy new year to you all.

NEC GIG 13/12/14
20 times I’ve seen Madness and 20 times I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. You are undoubtedly in my view the best live act around. There was a great atmosphere and great energy from the band, and as usual something new. There were loads of youngster’s who’d come with their parents, including my mate’s son aged 9. Can we take it that Rag and Bone Man is off the new album entitled ‘Grand Slam’?
Any word on the return of Mr Smash?
Merry Christmas, from Coventry’s Cheekiest Charmer.

Dear CCC
Glad you enjoyed it. We are making plnas foe this year already, perhaps some new songs too.
all the best, CB

CJ, cracking news – I’ve got my MIS stuff back and it’s all intact. Superb gig last Friday mate. The Last Rag and Bone Man is vintage Madness. Sounds like Suggs’ lyrics but is this your music ? All the very best to you and the family for Christmas and roll on 2015 for Operation Grandslam. On behalf of the Madness fan base may I thank you for continuing to do the “fan” stuff. I know that you don’t have to do it but it means a lot to us. Respect sir, always. Sean Kilminster

Dear Sean
I’m glad you got it all back. I suppose the removal company guys found out it wasn’t worth much! Mr. B wrote the tune for “Rag and Bone Man”, not me. I take my time answering but I enjoy doing this and it’s much easier now with the new “interface”
all the best, CB

had an aftershow pass for tonight,but despite there being only a few ppl and I appreciate you guys are tired you popped out,and didnt return.sadly maybe i shud have forced myself forward but was givin other ppl a chance and thought u would return.Would have liked to have got just a few things signed…:(

Dear mark
Dear Mark
I’m sorry to hear you were disappointed but it all depends where you got it from [the pass]. Was it from a band member? If I have put anyone on the guest list, I make an effort to come back and say hello to them. I cannot be held responsible for other band members guests. I saw my guests and “popped out” as it was time to get the bus to the hotel, probably. The band do need some “quiet time” after the show, too. It’s very difficult for Suggs to come backstage after he gets mobbed.

What an amazing Belfast gig. I can honestly say it was one of the bands finest moments from the many Madness concerts I’ve attended down the years. It was one of those nights you wish could last forever. Well done one and all.

Just back from the Belfast gig – superb. Loved the new opening, and also really enjoyed the slow intro to My Girl. Also got to hear You Said live for the first time. Lee was also really funny. My question is have you ever considered doing a live show (even a one off) playing all the singles in order (I know it would go on for about 2 hours, but it would make a great live 2cd/dvd triple pack).

Dear Jim
That is a good idea. It’s quite funny really – just before we split, I suggested that! I wonder how long it would take?

As an eighteen year old I was at college in Sheffield in 1979 and 1980 and one night went along to athe Limit club to see a new band with a great new single – The Prince.
What a night, A conga, a fez and a few beers and lots of dancing. Fast forward 35 years to last night, and I’m at the NEC, and once again a few beers and a few fezs seem to be involved. Thanks guys, what a gig, i haven’t had so much fun for years. I think next year we’ll have three generations going along to see you. Steve

Dear Steve
Nice story, great memories. I remember those early gigs in Sheffield Leeds ect quite scary for me to go outside of London. Mind you, West London and Aklam Hall was far enough from our area, but there was nothing to be scared of really. If that makes sense. Thanks for your continued support, it means a lot to me – to have you all along on the ride.

Hi Chris
Just want to let you know that once again, Madness did it. You can add”The last rag and bone man”to the list of “The Madness best songs”. Seriously, it’s simply brillant (once again). Can’t wait for the album (which will be available in a deluxe edition, right? Err maybe a “too soon” question…!!)
Oh man, I love your band so much !!!
Have a nice day!
Steve (from France)

hi we came to see the gig at nottingham on the 4th,me and my partner were at the front not far from you.i had my madness sca rfe draped over the barrier,i shouted hello and you gave me a big smile and said hello,that made my night,cheers chris, keep on rockin,danny.

Hi CB,
I attended my first H of F weekender with a couple of mates, 9 hour drive from Bonnie Scotland anyhoo I couldn’t believe the fantastic atmosphere the whole weekend had and how friendly everyone was towards each other, the band were ace, can’t wait till next year I’ll be the one in the kilt look out for me.
Vambo Rules! Norrie

Vambo eh? I was thinking of doing a verse or two of the “Next” version of “Vambo” as it happens..

Hi Chris not sure if my last message sent but just wondering if u could ever record sunshine voice? it’s a great song and such a shame it was never released. Weekender was the best year ever this year too!

cheers Chris I would have loved to be at the HOF for the Invaders /Dangermen gig and hoped it would be released but a nice Madness fan put it on youtube so I saw most of it anyway I didnt mean to be rude by saying the albums are continually being re-released I only meant it would be great to get the dads stuff as it has a lot of the rarer live stuff on it which was such a great idea to play at the HOF so there is def a big market for it anyway I will stop grovelling now I wondered if you wanted a volunteer to take Chas”s place at Glasgow (I have always dreamed about being on stage with you , I even wrote to J Saville”s show many moons ago and also Chris Evans when he hosted TFI to try to blag my way onto stage with you) I work really cheap so you can get a temporary replacement for a few bottles of Night Boat lol thought I would ask as shy bairns get nowt nowadays looking forward to Glasgow and hopefully a few invader tunes too cant wait cheers Terry B

Dear Terry
You wrote to Jimmy Savile? In retrospect, you had a close escape..The albums do get re re released but we try to add something extra though, for the fans..

Thanks for my first Madness/Invaders gig at HoFW, and for the advice about taking care while in London!!

Hope to see you very soon and specially hope to making it again to the next HoFW.

Am i a madhead, Way back in 1984 i had the pleasure of seeing my first madness concert at the demontfort hall in leicester and 26years later you came back and i got to meet you backstage and interview you this year on the 4th dec i saw you for the 19th time and i brought a mate with me who had never seen you before and loved it as did i. As madness have been like a family 2 me and when chas smash wasnt there it was dissapointing but having read recently what hes been through i wish him well. Ive seen you twice on my birthday in 1999 at the nec arena in birmingham and 2008 at the 02 arena london my bday is the 19th dec. Here is my madness timeline. 1984 Demont Hall leicester,1992 Madstock 1,1993 nec birmingham,1994Madsock2, 1996 Madstock3,1999,2002,2003 Nec birmingham,2004 Old trafford Manchester,2005 Rock city nottingham,2006 Nec birmingham 2007 Nia birmingham,2008,2009, 02 london and Madstock 5 2010 Demont Hall leicester 2012/2014 Capital Fm arena nottingham. Also seen our house musical twice in london with and without suggs and 2013 suggs life story in leicester. Hope to come to my first house of fun weekender next year Am i a madhead? . Ps merry christmas and a happy new year to you and all of the band loving the MADNESS!!!

Dear Clifford,
Thank you for you fantastic support over the years, if not for you and many others, what would we do?

thanks for the brilliant night in plymouth. I think you noticed me and suggs did too. I was in a fez and a checked shirt at the front near to you. It was a close call with that lamp falling near the end. shame chas wasn’t there though.

Hi Chris,
Thanks for the brilliant show at the Brighton Centre last night. I’ve seen Madness live 35+ times now and each time gets better and better. It was great to hear some different songs in the set and I really enjoyed Scouting for Girls.

Happy Christmas to you and the rest of the band.


Evening CJ: recently moved house and the removal jokers managed to lose my precious MIS stuff. So, assuming that you still retain the rights to the fan club merchandise is there any way you could bring any pressure to bear so that the MIS comics could be re-issued under some sort of hardback cover? RIP Ian McClagan. See you in Newcastle nest week on what will be my 47th birthday Chris. Respect, as ever Sean Kilminster

Hi Chris, after loving the band since I was 14 in 1979 I have just experienced my first madness gig in nottingham last night aged 49!! I was like a hysterical teenager. Love you all so much xxxxxxxxx. My question is why the mad symbol M is now topped by a crown? What happened to the trilby? I used to doodle the madness M in all my schoolbooks! Respect to you all and a kiss for barso he’s soooo cute!

Hi Chris,
Looking forward to seeing you on the 18th in Glasgow!
Myself and couple of mates are making the yearly 4 hour pilgrimage……..canna wait!


dear chris I met u in ’83 outside malvern winter gardens you signed the back of my mates red harrington do you remember? lol saw you last weekend you seem to be like a fine wine or cheese getting better with age how do you do it? love you xxxx

Hi Chris
Just wondering if you know how Suggs feels about other members of the band “taking a break”? Bearing in mind, if he took a break, there would be no band?

Is this the beginning of the end?

With you since the beginning!

Mike Barson had a break from 1983 -1992. I had one for a couple of years, Bedders too. Yeah maybe Suggs is due one? [He did have one actually from 1989 -1992]. I was doing the Nutty Boys with Kix.Great days indeed.

Hello Chris

Just to say Butlins was a blast, late on Friday early Saturday whilst chatting to Mr Barson and Thommo the one and only John Hasler showed and had a long chat with him, then everywhere we went over the weekend bumped into him again and again, nice chap.

Hi Chris,
I’d just like to let you know that I aced the first unit of my studies with a distinction :D You’ll never guess what? My Ska/pop section was the best! I should let you know a large majority of it was about the developing sounds of Madness; meaning my C.d collection is a bit worn out!(it took a lot of research!) We’re on to composing now; but I thought that I’d let you know how I did.
Thank you for your support,
once again, take care
Jess ;P

Evening CJ; caught The Specials recently and Steve Cradock had replaced Roddy in their line up which begs the question – if you could moonlight in another band who would you like to play with ?
Respect, sir
Sean Kilminster

Hi Chris
Of all the concerts I have been to in Dublin and Belfast. …..i have always noticed that madness start of with one step beyond and finish with night boat to Cairo. …..Is this done at all concerts and if so…..Why? (Just curious).
P.S (don’t change it either).
Thx Chris
See you and the boys in Dublin at Christmas.
Sorry Chris…Madness ever think about doing a Christmas song (cover version or so).

Hi Chris, like many others I became a fan of Madness due to my mum playing your music a lot. She was so much of a fan that she had at least 2 copies of the first 3 madness albums (that i know of), all the singles and MIS issues. she has since lost a majority of her “collection”. I wanted to know if you recollect a cover of “little boxes” that my mum told me she had on flexi-disc from an MIS issue? oh, and see you December 8th I’m really looking forward to it. I’ll be one of the few young skinheads in the crowd.

Dear Curtis
That’s nice to hear, that’s a very good Mum you’ve got there. She could’ve been a Howard Jones fan and um..er..he doesnt tour anymore – does he? Yes we did a cover of that on an old fan club cassette, I think.

dear chris i was wondering is there any the madness merch like an i pronounce you t shirt or a what’s that poster also did you ever write songs for a second the madness album but forget about them

Dear Mr. Sidney mod king (erm I think that title might have worn out..just ever so slightly) , Anyway,

I wanted to know is,
Do you think we will ever see the use of either a telecaster or strat by yourself again ..I know you like your epiphone’s and the S.G is your pride and joy , but have you ever thought it would be interesting just to see how things would fair up .

Cheers Dude,

Your faithful , loyal *Cough* No.1 Servant (hahaha)

Dear Shann
Well what do you know – I just bought a Telecaster! I don’t have any Epiphones though, only Gibsons..

You have to play it in dub. i seen the photos from hof the tele looks sweet..pleassseeeeee dublin *Puppy dog face*…….and as for no epis….well excuse me mr.pish-posh….lol

Sir Chris,
having listened avidly to the fan toons session,I have reinforced my view that sunshine voice lying officially unrecorded is a scandalous oversight on your part.now in light of the soundclash at butlins and the news that you’re in konk studios at present leads me to a hope that the above grievance may be rectified?along with shop around?whilst we’re at it are any of the invaders songs going to make it on the main tour? Keep the skanking up
Rudy coudy

Dear Rudy
I think we will put a few in the set. After all the time we took learning them, it would be a shame not to.

Hi Chris,

Just wondered what your thoughts are on the USM/Salvo remasters. To my ears, everything seems to have too much Dynamic Range Compression. When listening through very high quality headphones the music sounds a little mushy and distorted. I understand the arguments going on around the so called ‘loudness war’ with cd mastering in general, but I really want to hear the music as it originally sounded. Which cd versions/compilations do you think best represent the original recordings? Incidentally I think the OSB 35 is the best version I have ever heard. Thanks, Stephen

Dear Stephen
I am not that technical but listening to some of the more recent re issues, I have noticed that they have a lot more boll*x, that’s for sure..
thanks, CB

Dear dear Chris,
Just wonder if we’ll have the luck to get some professionnal footage of “The Invaders Vs The Dangermen”. Because some people (for example a french fan like me!) would love to be present but it’s simply impossible. I think this event deserve a DVD on a Gogglebox 2…….
All the best

hi chris been a big madness fan for over 30 years seen the band all over the uk ,, 29 times now still lol it ,, from dublin castle to lyceum in the strand , margate winter gardens , what has been your best gig ever with madness and your fav madness video , i wish u and all the have fun on your uk tour ,

hi cb iam a big fan of madness for over 30 years seen the band from dublin castle to lyceum , and margate winter gardens , if u could pick your fav gig of all time . were would it have been , and your fav madness video ,, good luck on your uk tour this year , and see you at the 02 in december ,, ps dont hang up the guitar just yet cb , you have more to give loads more

Dear Lee
I’ve seen you name on here [or there] a few times, I’m glad to see you are still following the band. The Lyceum gigs were great. It’s too hard to pick one over all the others, though as a favourite.

Hi Chris just wondered if there were any plans to record the first night of the hof weekender and sell it as it still is only for over 18s so many fans cannot go (you did say a few years ago that may change but it still hasnt) it would be a real gem for all the old fans to hear the rarer songs again and a great addition to our collections also are there any plans to rerecord sunshine voice again as it sounds great and would be even better recorded properly and is there any way you couid release a collection of cds of dads mixtapes that were on the M section for a while as I never worked out how to download them but would love to own them, they would also be a nice change from the continuing re-release albums that come out cheers Terry B

Dear Terry
That’s a good idea, to release some of the Dads desk stuff. The next re release, maybe we could include a CD with a selection of all the live stuff over the years. We didn’t record the HOF first night as far as I know.

cant wait to see you on the 19 of December at Manchester my son is going to his first concert and he does not no xmas present have a good tour see you soon

hi chris , house of fun weekender are you selling your gladness beer, hope to here from you soon even better looking forward to seeing you all soon, many thanks paul

Bonjour Monsieur Chrissy Garçon (you know your nickname sounds ridiculous in french ?)

So ! I’m here to let you know that I am French and therefore I am aware that you English people are aliens from another galaxy invading our planet to turn mad all humanity. I already had my suspicions when you and your friends used to call yourself “the invaders” in the 70′s. Indeed it was too obvious and “flashy” then you changed your squad name to “Madness” …. um …. Ordo Ab Chaos huh ? It’s all about freemason protestantist conspiracy, I got it ? Masks off ! You no longer fool the perspicuous people !
Anyway ! I’m right now listening to a youtube live in Paris, zenith 2009, I was there but I can’t see me on the video. Another conspiracy… tsss !
Anyway again ! I have no question. I’d just be glad to know you’r on the mend from your english being if you’r able to answer what does “Bateau pour le Caire”, “Grandeur et décadence” and “Je n’ai jamais su ton nom” means. (don’t help with web translator you perfidous Albion kid)
(please don’t ask if I’m drunk, I told u I’m french)

Dear Arnaud
OK….”Bateau” is boat.. “pour le Caire”. Nightboat to Cairo? “Grandeur et décadence” is a bit harder – Rise and Fall? and of course “Je n’ai jamais su ton nom” is I Never Knew Your Name. I didn’t use translate, how did I I do?

If you could own any guitar of considerable provenance or historical interest, which one would you choose?… Would you use it for live work or squirell it away somewhere?!..

Dear David
Don’t panic!The Dangermen Vs.The Invaders is on Friday night. Saturday night is Madness night.

Hi Chris
Taken from wikipedia :
On 22 March 2014 Suggs confirmed to music-news.com that Madness were writing a new album which he stated ” the band plan to record in the summer and release by the end of 2014

Err … any news about it?
All the best

Dear Steve
Wikipedia is a good source of information but not always right. Suggs may have got a bit “over excited”.


Thanks for the encouragement on the music and guitar. That is nice to get from someone established and entrenched in past pop culture.
I’ve recently gotten into trying this:
This isn’t anything I created but rather a breakdown of the musical processions of a well-known song of yours. I figured it out myself (thanks to those piano lessons). I’m sure Mr. Barson would recognize it immediately.
I also worked out that nice introduction of yours on the song ‘Memories.’ It sounds like a C# minor chord played 1-5-3 from the root note on the A string to the fifth on the high E string to give it its brightness, then a B minor chord played the same way, 1-5-3, A-E-B-A strings. It is quite nice.

I have quickly picked up ‘Johnny The Horse’ on the instrument and as such is the first Madness song I’ve learned completely on guitar (G-D-C-G-D, Am-C-D). This follows ‘I’ll Complete’ as the first song I learned on bass, ‘Sunday Morning’ I first learned on drums, and ‘Not Home Today’ I picked out by ear on piano for the first time on my own.
All that’s left is sax, backing vocals and lead vocals I guess…but I doubt it.
Again, thanks for the inspiration. I wonder what chords you played in ‘In the City.’ I asked that once, but about the guitar and amp (Mesa Boogie amp, whammy arm). I’m sure it’s just Emin, Am, Gm and a few others, but I’m not the professional.
Red Cloud/JC

Dear JC
You seem to be progressing at an impressive speed. “In The City”? I can’t remember the chords at all!
Keep it up..

Hello Mister Foreman.

Are you gonna do some solo-career-work, after Suggs, Lee, Woody and Chas, it would be Nice!
And can you tell me? What is all that “Specialized Mad not Cancer”stuff? I didn’t quit got it….


Dear John
I’m working on stuff in my loft but really Madness is the main thing.“Specialized Mad not Cancer” is a great and worthy effort, I will have to buy a copy.

Hi Chris, Someone asked you on the old Chris’ Cupboard about a classical cover you played at a gig. It’s not Swan Lake, and I’m beggared if I can remember what it was. You posted a YouTube link to a video clip of it and it had old dance footage on it. I can not for the life of me find it. So my question is, can you repost the link. Thank you in advance. Cheers from Australia, Barb Reid. p.s. heading across to Mother England again next year and hope to catch another Madness gig so no retiring between now and then.

Hi Chris,
My dad bought a Divine Madness cassette when i was 2 or 3 just after its release,and always remember him saying “you will like these” ,little did he know what he started! Been a huge fan ever since,now im 26 ive finally done something that i had wished i had done before,im coming to see you all in December for the first time! Always thought of gigs as something that other people did,not anymore! Have also been greatly enjoying teaching myself to play piano, Mr B is a huge idol of mine,i dont think i could have learnt to play a note had it not been for the huge enjoyment i get listening to your work.Also increasing my collection of original Madness vinyl as well. Looking forward to the OSB 35th release,nice to see the band celebrating. Anyways thanks for being there through my childhood and now adult years and ill see you in Birmingham :-)

Dear Dan
What a nice Dad. I hear this quite a lot, how fans parents passed down their Madness collection and it’s very nice indeed. Give him my heartfelt thanks

Hi Chrissy, just wanted to say i never realised how complete and brilliant the Wonderful album is…lots of credit is given to TLONF but to me Wonderful is better, more vibrant and brilliant lyrics and tunes..

any news on the new album, when can we expect it ?

Dear Steve
“Wonderful” had one of my favourite tracks on it “Lovestruck” New album? Its all up in the air we just have to get it down to Planet Earth.

If the band do play a Dangermen set at the Friday night at Butlins this year could or will you walk off stage at one point during the set & say in the Mike that you don’t have time for ‘this petty time consuming bollocks’ please

Hi Chris,
I was watching the video for Lovestruck this morning before I went to sixth form, I just wondered why you all don’t appear in the video’s any more? Would you also be interested in helping out with my music A level in a specialised topic? I thought I’d base it around Ska/pop music. Any facts you know , I would appreciate very much. If not I understand.
Thank you.
Take care, Jess :D

Dear Jess
Do you mean why don’t we make videos anymore? I keep coming up with ideas, they never want to do them.

I don’t ask nothig just only tell you this i admire all of you since the year 1990 and you are amazing and thanks for all the years of your music forgive me but i want to writte in my language ( spanish i al from México city ) “Mr Chrissy boy” you are ¡genial y un tipazo! I am fan of your vídeos who you make with your camera and ” cuide se mucho y Dios lo bendiga

Hi Chris,

Have you read “Gone Girl” by Gillian Flynn? I was surprised to find one of the characters discussing the lyrics to “That’s The Way To Do It” in Chapter 31. Very cool!

Thanks for answering all these questions over the years! I remember your very first Cupboard back in the 90′s!


Hi Chris:

I hope all is well with you, mate. Still interested in seeing you and the band come back stateside again. Let me know if you can accept my Linked-In Invite to stay in touch. all the best with the European Tour and the nexty Weekender! Hoped you liked the article I wrote in 2012 based on our talk and then hung out with you after the San Diego gig.

Well Take care and hope to hear from you again!

Mark in Chandler AZ

With all the excitement around the 35th Anniversary of the OSB album, is there a chance you might play a few more tracks off the album during your Xmas tour this year.
I know you played ‘In The Middle Of The Night’ but would be great to hear some of the other tracks like ‘Believe Me’ and ‘Mummys Boy’ again

CF- Hi again, Chirs. This will follow-up on my 7/15 note to you, and your 7/30 response re: use of ‘Hall of the Mtn King’ . FYI- I rec’ d an e-mail from Pete G. & responded back by e-mail today; hope it helps; good luck!! Hope all’s well w/ you, your’s, & the nutty boys. Mike C in Georgia

Hiya Chris, Look sorry I’m Late by a few hours but I just wanted to say.. Happy 20th birthday to original Madstock (Haha)
No on a serious Note happy birthday , hope you have a good one pal



This may be a Timewaster ™ interface question, but what do you think the chances of ever doing a few gigs in North America are?

I just want to know if i should start saving for a trip to HOF next year…


Thanks Kerry
It was nice. I went to Hampton Court with the wife n’ kids then to Days, a cheapo restaurant in Brighton [the kids love it!] and the wife and my mate Nutsos wife both got dodgy stomachs.

Hi Chris, I just noticed the upcoming 35th Anniversary edition of O.S.B. What exactly is the “Fab Toones” tape and is it decent sound quality? Thanks.

Dear Stephen
It is a copy of an old rehearsal cassette. Practically the whole “One Step Album”. I really loved listening to it quite charming. It was found in Bedders loft..

Ah, C.J. ‘fine wine’ Foreman
I was having a few beers in me music room lookin 4ward to seein ya’s again @ Newcastile Dec 12th & a couple of ideas came into my head -
The 1st is a request from me:
Is there any chance the boys could fit Tarzans’ Nuts back into the set even just 4 that night (COMPLETE WITH YOU & LEE’S CHUCKLE BROTHERS INTO – “To Me, To You”) – CLASSIC
2. I want this gig 2 be as great 4 you lads asit will be 4 us so . .
The majority of the crowd will be Newcastle Utd. fans so if you’s play their teams’ walk out theme -
Local Hero by Mark Knofler.
It’ll blow the crowd appreciation volume to 11 . . . . . . Guaranteed man!
Maybe stick it in your showtime slot & save that beautiful angelic voice of yours! Ha Ha.
Something 4 you 2 think about mate,
Chachi from Chester-le-Street.

Hi Chris.
Folllowed the band since 1980….i play your music all the time.
When not recording/promoting etc. do any of the band ever hang out…pub, family parties etc.. Or is it just business these days?
all the very best…i hope you go on forever..

I have been in the loft doing some tunes lately. Thommo came down and sung on a couple of them. I live in Brighton so don’t see the “guys” much.

Hello Chris
As it looks like’ The Madness, ‘ album re-release wont happen, would it be possible for the track “Patience” from the single version of I pronounce you, be made available as a free download on this site? as it is the only track of yours that I aint got on my I-pod as I only have a vinyl copy of it .

Hi, I am a huge fan of Madness (and I mean huge) and ska, two tone and mod music in general. I wanted to ask, can you give me some tips on how to dress like a ska man? Cheers!

Hi Chris,

Was the band surprised or disappointed that Geffen released the patched together “Madness” album instead of “Rise and Fall?” Do you think that your career in the US would have then been different if “Rise” had a US release?

I never thought Geffen did much for the band: editing Lee’s sax solos out of “It Must Be Love,” and “Yesterday’s Men,” no promotion or airplay for anything from “Keep Moving,” or “Mad Not Mad,” etc. What are your thoughts?


Dear Chuck
After many trips to the USA we suddenly had a big hit with “Our House” and it all seemed to work at the time. We just let Geffen get on with it. In retrospect, it would have been better to just release the “Rise and Fall” album as it was. I don’t know about our career, though. The edits were not good either.
thanks, CB

Chris :D …hello , how you ?
Just quick one this time , did you play on Vietnam track from danger men (I know you left somewhat through the recording …but you could have still been) it sounds like your style of playing (oh yeah get me ..big fancy talk)

Thanks dude,
Shann xxx

Dear Bill
It never got really finished. I wrote the music Suggs and Chas the lyrics [ I think]

Have you guys considered another Madstock ? I love the butlins weekenders and normal gigs but Madstock at Finsbury Park has to be the ultimate Mad experience for me

Hi Mr Foreman. Haven’t put fingers to keyboard for a while. Not since we got our tickets for the Madness show coming up in December in little ol’ Belfast. Wouldn’t be Christmas without a top night “dancing” and “singing” to the old and new Nutty music. Have a wonderful “European” summer and save some of that sunshine for the winter M.A.D.H.E.A.D. extravaganza back home in the UK. All the best, with thanks for all the personal memories, from the Nutty Duo!!!!

It’s gone down in Madness folklore that you supported a band called Sore Throat back in the day. Obviously we know what happened to you guys but do you know what became of Sore Throat CJ?
Kind regards sir,
Sean Kilminster


As promo videos for singles are such a chore for you lads these days, here is a possible idea. See the attached Irish Times article and the service that the company Fan Footage provide. The second link is the actual Linkin Park video referred to in the video.

If you were playing some of your new material at the Christmas tour it would be a good opportunity and an excuse to get some media space in the run up to the event. They might even use some of your axecam footage but only if it was up to scratch :)




Vince Carden

PS Gotta love the Chief Exec’s name, Cathal Furey….

Hi Chris,hope you are keeping well?Would you guys be able to get Reel Big Fish on the House Of Fun weekender this year.I know they would be a great addition to play fun packed SKA in centre stage,Thanks,Colin.

Dear Colin
OK which one are you? The drummer or the bass player? They look very sort of USA huge, probably bigger than us, I reckon..

Chris – Hello again from the Heart of Dixie. I was watching one of the sports networks here, & sounds to me like they are using Madness’ version of ‘Hall of the Mountain King’ in a promo. Just thought you’d want to know if you don’t already.

Dear john
the M section is no longer here, it is in cyberspace. It is not on this website..is it?

Dear Fernando
Sorry for the late reply..ahh that was a tough one. Next time maybe England will get a bit further!

It is back on the site Chris, if you hover over the Music link at the top of page it can be found in the drop down menu :-)

Just recently got the album Mad not Mad and despite hearing not too positive things about it absolutely love it! Have you ever thought of performing some tracks from it again with all 7 members?

Dear Natalie
We have played “Yesterdays Men” once or twice. I would like to play maybe “Time” live.
thanks CB

Cheers Chrissy Boy, just back from my birthday weekend in Holland to see you boys. Had a great time at Night in the Park in Den Haag then we travelled across to Utrecht for the Sunday gig…… loved the intimacy of the Utrecht gig, got to say the Dutch were well up for it and clearly enjoyed themselves and had a great time as they also won their world cup game that day. Shame thommo and bedders were not there cos of Glastonbury but John O’Neill is a good stand in. Nice of Chas to give me a birthday shout out as well. Looking at driving down to Bordeaux in August so may see Yahoo there. Already got Minehead booked as well as Flying up to Glasgow.!!!! Keep up the good work

Ok Pete.
Thanks for the support..er..the drinks are on me this time at Minehead I think..

CB, thank you for the great night in Utrecht. Had a short conversation and handshake with Suggs and Barso at the bar during the footbal match.. Great moment… Hope you will come back to the Netherlands sometime…

Dear Rob
Sorry I missed you.Yeah I am so glad Holland won that match! We were watching it in the dressing room..Great night.


Since I last wrote and mentioned guitar-playing, I’ve spent the time with my old acoustic over the months; I found a chord site that actually shows things left-handed, which really made it easier for me, and up to this week I’ve been able to play virtually any chord that isn’t a bar chord (B major, C# major, etc.). Still lagging on switching between chords (particularly complicated ones) but the simple open ones are fine.
I say ‘up to this week’ (June 23-27) because I bought myself an electric one for my birthday, brand new. Almost magically, those impossible bar chords were almost easy.
I’ve been building a basement studio, with dynamic and condenser mics, and this guitar is like a new addition of instruments I always have – bass, keyboard, acoustic, drums… so I did a Ska-based demo as an experiment with playing and recording the guitar:
Sound quality isn’t great (Mac internal microphone of the loudspeakers) but it examines how I multi-tracked it myself. Everything I played on my own. I even wrote lyrics because though it’s an over-used tune used by everyone it still sounds catchy and dancy.
What do you think? The guitar on there is only five months of infrequent practicing on an acoustic. All it’s missing now is organ and sax. And voice.

One other thing: Tiny parts or mere seconds of music can really create scenes for me via my synesthesia. I wrote one down that you might find interesting, based on one note in a Madness song:

I’m sitting on a wood bench, wearing a semi-formal suit. The wall behind me has some sort of pattern, using dark colours. I’m sitting with my legs relaxed and spread out, my elbows bent on my legs, hands slightly inwards.
Next to me, wearing a dress that suits her and the environment, sits a woman that’s my wife, or significant other of sorts. She’s got her legs crossed and her arms folded on top of them. A blouse over the top of the dress. We could be sitting in the lobby of a library or a city court, a building of civil or professional means. White daylight falls across us from the left; we’re facing west. Both of us have natural expressions on our faces, semi-serious, not smiling. What is easily apparent is how natural we both look, in the scene, and together.
-All that is based on the lone, low B Mike hits kind of randomly in ‘Not Home Today’ in the second pre-chorus verse. I’ve fallen in love with that note/major/minor chord.

Anyway, sorry if I’m a bit wordy and long, but just passing that I did get a Stratocaster and am still putting together demos and music. Taking piano lessons as well. Might be the next Karl Wallinger or Green Gartside, one-man-band (but can’t sing). Oh well.

Hi Justin
I like it, you are doing far better than i was after 3 months. Left handed too! I am left handed but play the guitar right handed. I use a Podfarm interface for guitar, it’s quite fun you get loads of amps. Keep on doin’ what yer doin! That Synesthesia thing is so strange, I can’t imagine how it must feel..

Hi Chris how are you?
I’m a 17 years old italian fan, i live in Florence,Tuscany, and i just want know why Madness doesn’t play same gigs here, just why…
I hope that soon Italy will be able to listen Madness again, I will be there.
Meanwhile, greetings from Florence :)

Dear Paul
You can’t. We had them made. I have a couple in my loft but they are not for sale.
thanks, CB

Hi CB,

One of my best friends since childhood Nicholas Palmer collapsed at the finish line and sadly passed away after running the Southend Half Marathon last Sunday. It was such a shock to us all as he was such a kind and wonderful person and especially as he leaves behind a wonderful 6 year old boy – George.
We still don’t know the exact cause as yet but his family have asked to play a Madness track at the end of his funeral once it goes ahead as he was a massive fan of you guys and we saw you everytime you played London since you got back together in 1992….at the moment its a toss up between One Step Beyond or Night Boat To Cairo (his favorite track) as they want something upbeat.
The reason I am messaging you is for 2 reasons/favours if possible?
1. If you could publish the following link http://www.justgiving.com/NickPalmerMemorialFund on your message board. His favorite charity was Great Ormond Street Hospital as his son was looked after there when he was very young. Already over £5,000 has been raised in just a few days with some touching tributes…if any fellow Madness fans out there would be kind enough to contribute it would be great as we push towards the target of £10,000.

2. Also I know it would be a long shot but I don’t suppose there is anyway you could dedicate your famous ‘Showtime’ performance at the London O2 this year to Nick? I know that both him and especially his family would be so touched. At the moment his family are getting through this tragedy by all the wonderful messages of support they are recieving and this would be such a nice show of support from his favorite band.

I know its a long shot and we certainly understand if you can’t but theres no harm in asking at this difficult time.

Thanks CB and we’ll be raising a glass or 10 to Nick when myself and Nicks other good friends see you in December.

Thanks Again

Ashley Moore

Dear Ashley
As you can see, I have roused myself from my lazy ways, answered a lot of questions and it was all because I read this. It makes me feel incredibly sad that Nick was doing something so worthwhile and it cost him his life. If I do a “Showtime” at the O2 I will dedicate it to Nick, it would be my pleasure. I really hope you raise a lot of money for Great Ormond Street.
One last thing is perhaps you should play “It Must Be Love” at his funeral, the opening lines seem so fitting. Anyone reading this please donate some money, lets get to that £10,000 target – and beyond!
yours, CB

I’ve been a fan of Madness since i was 10 years old. I’m 25 now, from Macedonia and i once made a promise to myself that if i work hard i’ll be able to meet you, to interview you since im a journalist/radio host in a small radio station. You made me the happiest person yesterday when they announced that you are coming to this year’s Sziget Festival in Budapest, it would be the first time that i’ll be able to see you perform live.
It would be a great honour if you explain to me how does your interview policy work and who decides who gets a chance to do interview with someone from the band? Sorry if i’m bothering you, but i do hope you have time to answer me this. :)

Dear Nikolaj
Please contact our management via this site. I am sadly not playing at that festival due to family commitments. We played a few years ago, it was great.

Hello Chris

Going to be there at The Hague (Night at the Park), but can you tell me….what time are you on? We’re travelling from Spain so we’d like to know the actual Show TIME

Thanks for last night mister Foreman, great as ever. Onze questionnaires, is Bedders finale back. To stay?


I was watching Madstock 92 and over the credits at the end is Bedders saying how he had fun and now he can retire.
What was the feeling amongst the band after Finsbury Park in 1992? Did you think that was the end? If so, what changed?

Kerry Morrison

Dear Kerry
Well me being ever the cynic, I didn’t even want to do Finsbury Park. Next thing was after the “farewell come back” Finsbury Park shows the band announced a UK tour, which I didn;t want to do. So they said “Ok – we’ll just say you broke your arm”. Because of course the show had to go on, they had to announce the tour. So of course I did the tour and enjoyed it and then off we jolly well went. I realise I am a very lucky person to be part of a band that still enjoys this level of popularity.
thanks, CB

I’ve been watching some of you axecam video’s. You should get yourself a GoPro. So many clamps and mounts you could use, and also in HD quality.

Firstly it’s great to have Mark back in the fold. Secondly CJ, you’ve written more than a few stonking songs over the years mate, but which Madness song gave you the most pleasure in composing? Respect, as ever sir,
Sean Kilminster

Dear Sean
Hard to say. “Madness Is All in The Mind” was fun as I wrote the lyrics as well and it came out more or less exactly as I wanted it to.

Dear Domingo
“One Step Beyond” was quite easy a song title, “Absolutely” was a saying one of our tour managers had, “7″ was Chas’s concept based on the lucky number 7, “Rise and Fall”, a song title er..”Keep Moving” ditto, “Mad not Mad” song title, er..”Wonderful” a song title [of a song that wasn't on the album] “Norton Folgate” a song title and “Oui Oui” a quote from a song..
yours CB

Can you elaborate on or do you know anything about that glorious lil’ bit of dub-techno pop that accompanies the ‘All For The MADHEAD” minute long video as ya’ll enter the stage….?
I mean, it’s AWESOME… and whose crotchety ole’ man ramble is that? I’ve heard the same voice in many a Madness song-thx!

Hi Chris,
I attended the last Madness concert in Glasgow and during a short intermission there on the big screens was the late great Alex Harvey, just wondering who in the band is a fan and what a touching moment. I can’t wait to see you all in Glasgow in December.
See you further on up the road

Dear Norrie
Basically Lee, Mike and I used to go and see him a lot. I have just put up an “Impossible Dream” giant poster that I nicked of a wall in 1974 or something. It was till wet and had just been pasted up and one of my old mates had it in his house. Suggs said he saw him support someone and was also a fan. Chas also liked Alex Harvey, as well.
Vambo Rules! CB

Foreman :D , well hello there sir,

Can’t believe I aint asked you this yet but , What brand strings you use , Personally for me on acoustic it’d have to be martin lights or extra lights (mediums hurt the side of my baby finger when muting strings) and on electrics (dont change mine that often) but ernie ball mediums

oh yeah , how often you change your strings now i think of it ? (they say your meant to do it every 2-3 weeks for best results) Mine how and ever only get changed 23 times a year (and yes i can write my name in my fingers with the strings afterwords hahahahahahaha)

Shann Xxxxxxx

Dear Shann
I don’t use an acoustic but maybe try nylon strings? I use er dammit Ernie Ball I think – or is it Rotosound? I only change them when they get rusty ha ha. I tell my guy not to change them too often..

nylons are a pain to tune……they go out of tune when your tuning them until you stretch em far enough as doing so – takes up to 20-30 tunes , annndddd you have to tune em just a little bit flat ( i used to wrk in a musical instrument/small household electrics shop)

Well what a treat u boys are serving up this summer…. Seen you loads at home but never abroad so am lookin into a little mini tour, especially fancy the holland trip as it coincides with my birthday, I might even get that drink of you that’s still outstanding.!! Keep up the good work
Pompey Pete

Hello Chris just re-watching Take It Or Leave It on dvd again, and there’s something that’s always puzzled me. Why would that bouncer (bloke in porno from American Werewolf In London!) not let the band leave the club until the Specials were on stage? Did this happen in reality and was the band actually double booked that night? All the best.

Dear Matt
That was so funny, I really took the pi** out of him when we were filming the scene, which was risky, as he was a right hard nut. Well spotted. I think in the film we said it was fire regulations or something. It didn’t actually happen but it was hard to get out of the Nashville, as it was packed. We were double booked as we had already confirmed the Dublin Castle gig but we didn’t want to miss the chance of playing with the Specials.

Dear Tom
Well, he is the most cool geezer I know, he’s got a good view of life really.

Hey Chris, hope you’re well…I’ve not been back to the Cupboard much since fatherhood beckoned but now Tilly Rose is the ripe old age of 10 months I’ve got time on my hands again. I’ve been listening to all the albums in order over the last week and what happy, happy memories. ‘Mad Not Mad’ surprised me with how nostalgic it made me feel…I was getting into horror films (old and new) at the time, and one got shown on BBC2 – ‘Wicked Wicked’ – a really obscure 70s one from America, set in a faded old beach hotel. There was some fat woman playing a bog old organ in it and some of it reminded me of bits of the song ‘Time’. Whenever I hear it now, I get a tingle down the neck from associating with that film! That was the first year I saw you live too – Manchester Apollo, at the ripe old age of 15. Can’t describe the excitement, too much…and I felt very proud. I loved the maturing sound of the band and stood up loyally when some (too many) fell by the wayside cos they were stuck ina rut. ‘Yesterday’s Men’, I first heard in HMV in Manc…soulful and cool but sad cos a few were telling me that you WERE yesterday’s men. And now here we are…so many more glorious albums come and gone! It’s been a proper journey and, since first hearing you when I was nine, I’ve never wanted to get off the train. Your music and the band itself are indelibly linked with my life, and it’s richer for it. Tilly’s already dancing to you ( well nodding head and moving shoulders). Guess someone else is gonna have a lifetime’s musical memories to cherish.

No question to ask, Chris. Just wanted to say thanks.

Cheers, dude….Big E

Dear Brian
It’s been more than that! What a lazy man I am…I have er produced a band painted that bit in the shower that was flaking er..got a jetwash and washed the outside walls. I don’t really go on here much when the band is not working, I apologise to all for my slackness..CB

Chris it’s always great when then the band bring out new material and tour . But has there ever been a discussion about doing a seminal album gig eg. One step beyond , probably not something the band would be keen on but I think the hardcore fan base would lap it up

Dear Caigsey
If you look at our usual set list, most of “One Step Beyond” is in it. One Step, The Prince, Madness, Night Boat to Cairo, My Girl..etc We have performed “Norton Folgate”, which is a far more interesting option.
thanks CB

Glasgow? This Christmas or next? Don’t say you don’t know, coz you must. Even Chas & Dave can play Glasgow 2 years in a row and they’re 70!!

Haste Ye Back Boys….Haste Ye Back

Hi cheers from Mexico almost 2 years since you came ! hey Chrissy do you like as well Queens of The Stone Age band?
I know you like rock and some bunch as the beastie boys so i was just wondering.

Yo yo yo Foreman , Hows you been lately ??

Couple of questions (Well 3..I have had a lot of time on me hands lately!)

1. can damaging a nerve in a finger affect guitar playing ? ( I stabbed myself in left hand and it shot through and done me nerve in 3rd finger…thought it was an artery so i suppose i should be grateful)

2. I rad you are let handed and but learned to play guitar right handed , any tips for learning with the other hand …was your dad a leftie guitarist?

3. can you play like Wilco Johnston and if so how do you not cut your fingers ?

Thanks Dude ,
Love Shann

Hi Shann
1. As long as you can move your finger, you should be OK.
2. I am left handed but I do most things right handed, so it never felt awkward holding a guitar like that.
3. Ah me dear old Wilko I have tried that no pick thing and it’s very hard, didn’t cut my fingers though.

Hi Chris,

It’s to early to expect new material this year and you are in the middle of a writing process.
Are there any other releases planned for this year to celebrate 35 years of Madness?
There are still some very interesting unreleased tracks like My Mums Roses And Perfect Place.
Looking forward to see you in Tivoli, Utrecht


Hi Chris forgot a couple of things meant to ask about the rumours of a new Madness beer coming out called Lovestruck do you know anything about it (Gladness is ace) and can you tell me how to get permission to cover Madness as a charity single for children in need (my band is hoping to use the tune but change the lyrics) cheers Terry B

Dear Terry
The beer thing went a bit off the rails, the company went bust sadly but we are looking at a new brewery to organise a pi*s up in. We will be back! Charity you need to contact EMI publishing, should be OK.

Hi Chris.

Could you tell us a bit about your current project working with Gorgeous George. How it started and which tunes particularly of theirs do you like the most? Thanks.

I was put in touch with the band via an old mate [Noel Watson]. I met them last summer, then eventually we went into a rehearsal studio and I re arranged a few of the songs then we recorded them earlier this year and I think the new single “Girls Night Out” is Now available. This is a previous single which I really like. I like a lot of their songs, really.

Evening CJ; I’ve been playing “Wonderful” constantly at the moment. Any chance you could persuade the fellas to revisit some of the gems on this almost “forgotten” album sir?

Dear Sean
I try, I really do. “Lovestruck” seems to get on the setlist, then vanishes. Great song and our last proper big hit.

There is a section in the middle of “Shut Up” a solo bit, which is a bit twangy. Clive Langer [ our producer] said “why don’t you write a whole song like that?” So I did. I wrote some of it on the piano. [The intro bit]
thanks CB

hello chris, ive been meaning to write to you for ages, well since minehead, but i cant wait any longer, i gave 7 copies of my book, a dog called dez to a man whos name escapes me sorry, who is part of your managment team to give one to each member of the band, well im dying to know if you have read it? one of the reasons i agreed to do it was because it was a rare chance to tell the world how much you all helped me through bad times and of course how great you are! it was great to meet you again at butlins 2013 , if a little unexpected, the woman i was with has more front than buck house and the next thing i knew i was saying hello to you and lee, butlins 2012 was just the best being backstage was very special moment for me so i ended the book with it, i do a lot of speaking for guide dogs and promoting the book and it nearly always decends into madness! i demand that everybody there goes out and buys your entire back cataloge, with love and respect chris, from john tovey & dez, [unoffical ambassador to madness]

Dear John
I got the book but I have not read it yet sorry. Very slack at reading books. Thanks for giving it to me and I promise I will put it on my bucket list!


What were your favorite bands growing up? And what artists would you say influenced the band as a whole other than Prince Buster?

Thanks for taking the time to answer questions!

Kerry Morrison

Dear Kerry
Well Motown stuff then Glam, Reggae, Disco Heavy Metal, about everything really. I suppose Beatles, Kinks , Stones Chuck Berry Duanne Eddy oh I could go on all day. Roxy Music, Alex Harvey, Ian Dury Kilburns and Blockheads I feel very lucky to have grown up in the 60′s /70′s as the music that I heard was so good really. Of course plenty of mush as well..

Hi Chris just a few thoughts as its been a while since I emailed you cos I didnt really have anything important to ask you lately but after going to see Suggs show I wondered if you had thought about getting older as I have since the show and I finally started my bucket list here it is 1 – finish my failed bungee jump 2 – get a full collection of coloured Harrington jackets (almost done) 3 – have a threesome (wife will feckin kill me lol) 4- go to every date on one of madness”s future tours 5 – revisit Gumbet in turkey where we had our honeymoon 6 – renew my wedding vows that is as far as I have got have you ever thought of your list and whats on it and I was also having a trip down memory lane looking at my old Madness stuff and the things I missed out on ( cant believe the grey day pacamacs were only £3,00) did you keep any valuable things for your old age also can you tell me if there are any plans to make the house of fun weekender open to under 16s as I did ask two years ago and you replied that if it was a success it may be allowed in future but it never changed (pleeaasse dont delete this through timewasters as its not about a tour honest) also as I hate the thought of you getting ripped of can you check ebay as there is a seller selling lots of DVDs of you most are old tours which are probably ok but he does list some newer stuff thats not he is selling copies of the new Take it or leave it dvd his ebay name is anyalbumyouwant18paul finaly after seeing the Dublin gig on youtube I thought a great showtime song would be My Way (a la Sid Vicious) if you havent done it before it would sound great cos hopefully the whole band could join in sorry to go on but had a lot so ask hope you are in good health and cant wait till see you all on stage again cheers Terry B

Dear Terry
Sorry about the delay in replying. Bucket list? I have something like that and I am working my way through it but I need to keep it quiet till I’ve done it all. I have achieved most of my dreams really. The ebay stuff yeah what a rip off and hopefully people will not but any of it. I have “sung” “My Way” but in the proper style not like dear old Sid’s version.
thanks CB

Good day to you CB.
Will Madness be doing anything extra special this year at HOF weekender being that it is your 35th year? Thanks to you all for 35 years of indulgent entertainment and many more to come.
See you in Minehead.

By-the-way… I waited outside of Burger King with your pint but I didn’t have the pink hat on you told me to wear. Maybe that’s how you missed me :-)

Dear George
Sorry I missed you. I was bit early this year about 2am. This year I don’t have a clue but it will be fun either way.
thanks, CB

Yo ChipChip , I was on ultimate guitar website and was looking up Never Knew your name, it gave me a 4 chord loop with Amin, Gmaj,Dmaj and Eminor, for a cappo on 3rd fret,, which you don’t use ..do you just play it with out a cappo and use them chords (due to the higher tone off electric guitars) or have you actually fully transposed it (in other words: haven’t a notion of what I’m talking about ?

Shann xxxxxxxx

Dear Shann
It sounds far too complicated for me. I usually play Gm and Dm I think. It’s been a while…

Hello C.B.,
Here are some suggestions for your showtime performances on future gigs : Jailhouse rock , Blueberry hill , Wonderful world , I’m too sexy for my shirt , Waterloo , …

I’m sorry that I’m boring and constantly write about this video, but unfortunately I had to remove the video from You Tube- 4 companies accused me that I wanted to take advantage of Madness and your song to make money on it. I am very sad because I spent few months of drawing to do something nice for Madness not to rob my lovely band. I wish I could have possibility to send this animation by e-mail, but I can understand but if no one will be interested in. I promise that I will not bore you with this. xxx Kasia

Hi Chris

I wonder of you could talk about how the song writing process works. When someone writes a song…does everyone develop their own part of it?


Dear Kerry
More or less, yes. Some songs arrive fully formed, others take a lot of work.Everybody puts stuff and ideas in

Dear Kasia
Sorry about this. There seems to be loads of other Madness songs on Youtube, I don’t know why they are blocking your video.

Oi up young Chip, couple of questions
firstly, (this is something that I cannot take credit for as it was something that came up as a joke on the Chrissy-Boy fan page that yours truly set up on facebook but personally I fully agree) what about doing showtime album…just you??? (even though you don’t like the band doing covers you could a fairly decent job just you on acoustic as a’pose to electric)
following that you can finally change your showtime tracks (seriously the dust on them has to be effecting them!)
Secondly have you ever thought of like youtube teaching ..where like you video how to play madness songs and other songs you like (personally i think it wouldn’t do the band any harm….and it would keep you out of trouble which is a godsend 57 years to late hahaha!

Its abit long so I shall leave it there
Shann xxxxxxxxx

Dear Shann
What a great idea. I was going to do it at Butlins but I don’t want to hog the limelight from the band. yres the ol Showtime is creaking at the seams but some people come to loads of gigs so see the same songs. I don’t think I’ve done “New York, New York” in Dublin before?

no you hadn’t done it before NYE but in honeslty it was about the only place you hadn’t done it until nye hahahahahaaha

Hello again Chris,

I am thinking about the idea of a guitar, I have an acoustic but never got into it because it was awkward to play and I get a sense that an electric might be easier on my short fingers.

I think it’s neat when someone manages to put together a band, get a record deal, get exposure, even record a few hits and work together and go down somewhat in history at least for something or other, but I think it’s one step further when, at least in Madness’ case, I see the band mentioned in novels or books. It’s probably a lot rarer in North America, but I have seen the band’s name mentioned in a few novels I’ve read. There’s a mention in Nick Hornby’s High Fidelity (1995) early on in the book, as well as the Inspector Banks novel The Summer That Never Was.
Both books take place in the U.K. which makes sense for the mentions but either way I think it’s a pretty neat honour to have the band a part of works of fiction and I’m always happy to see it name-checked. Thankfully none of you are fictional. You’re not just part of the airwaves at any given moment, you’re also a part of literature. And I think that’s wonderful.

Dear JC
We get a mention in Andy McNabbs “Bravo Two Zero”, too. All the best with the guitar try and get a chord book with pictures of the fingers, as opposed to one with just the dots. It helped me.
yours, CB

Hey CJ; just for a bit of fun – if you were casting the band into roles in “The Godfather” who would play who ? Include yourself as Michael Corleone obviously !!
Kind regards,
Sean Kilminster

hi Chris, have you heard of the specialized project raising funds for teenage cancer trust…..this year its Madness turn to have they’re songs covered and Dave Wakeling has got a specialized collective including members of the specials, the beat, selecter , etc to do a version of our house, would any of the Madness boys be interested and making it the full complement of two tone artists, a la starvation project?

Dear Wayne
I haven’t heard anything about this myself. I wish them all the best with it, a great cause.

Not a lot. I’m quite surprised that we played all the album, more or less. Thanks for putting it online.

Hey kerry, absolutely well done for posting this. I remember the “7″ tour as a 13 year old back in 1981 and it’s brought back a lot of happy memories. The picture and sound quality is superb and it’s great to hear songs like “mrs hutchinson” and “tomorrow’s dream” played live again. Now if only CJ could convince the boys to revisit these songs again ……
Just goes to prove that Madness were so much more than a classic singles band – well done again
Sean Kilminster

Hi Chris:

Hope all is well with you and the lads. I am not going to ask if you are coming back to the States, but if you and the boys are interested in that? Would love to write a follow-up piece about the band returning to the US West Coast.

Now that Bedders is back, do you reckon someone should give him a kick up the bum to get his writing head on. He don’t write much but what he has is always class.

Dear Kasia
I don’t think you need the large Madness logo and the song title being displayed throughout but otherwise it’s really good. Post it up and I’ll link it to the Madness site favourites
thanks, CB

Dear Beatlesmadness
Quite sad really. I took the time to send that CD and ha ha – they sold it! Well it is years later I suppose and maybe they are on hard times. Still – it goes to show why sometimes we don’t sign stuff. I wouldn’t do that again, anyway.

Dear Cressida
Facebook? I have a Facebook account but only my real friends are friends, if you know what I mean.

lol you did i remember it well you said “you and me down the front doing rabbit rabbit and demonstrated a dance :) i knew you didnt mean it anyway :)

Forgot to ask the last Time….Who does replace Lee now and again when he is busy with LTSO
I mean, the man realy dresses up like him but I can see he is much younger (hahaha)…

Hi Chris! How are you?
I’m Kevin. I’m from Barcelona and I wrote to you 2 or 3 years ago. I love Madness, but now I don’t wanna talk about this.
I found in Facebook a page of a “apparel company” with a similar name and image like Madness. I think this is a copy of the “Madness” letters and design of your tshirts.
What do you think? It’s a shame. This is the link of the Facebook page:

PD: I love “Oui, oui…” but I miss your guitar at the end of “Misery” and in the song “Circus Freaks”.

Dear Kevin
Thanks for the merch tip, the team are on to it. Guitar at the end? Is it not loud enough? It never is really..

Dear Chris,
there’s no question here…. but on returning from LA on an 11 hour flight in economy (my employers are so tight!) and faced with no working in flight films (get it sorted, BA!) I successfully managed to get through the ordeal thanks to listening to Madness for 11 hours, and even then I had not exhausted the full canon of work! Listening to some songs I haven’t heard for a while, plus noting how good the NF and Oui Oui songs stand in comparison to the older ones, bloody marvellous! So thanks for getting me home!
Any plans for starting work on another album? so there is a question after all…
Best wishes for Christmas and 2014!

Hi Chris,

I just wondered if you and the guys were aware that NBC here in america uses “Our House” from time to time as a segway to commercials on their Sunday Night Football broadcasts? Good to hear the band getting airtime in the US….

Compliments of the season to you and yours CJ; a question sir, have you kept all of the guitars you’ve used throughout your career or are you not sentimental about your instruments in that respect ? Respect, as ever, Sean Kilminster

Dear Sean
Ha! The ones I am sentimental about seem to be gone. The first one I ever had, I lent to an old school friend in the 80′s. He doesn’t know what happened to it. The second really good guitar I had seems to be missing somewhere. It may be in my loft..

Dear mr. Foreman,

Something to keep you warm and get you through the winter: Dutch firma Gamma (sort of hardware store chain in the Netherlands) uses “Our House” for their TV ads. Did you know this?

BTW: Does Mike still live in the Netherlands?

Dear Twanno
Yes I knew thanks, they had to ask me but I appreciate that. Mike has a house here and I think a flat in Holland.

Dear Chris,

I would appreciate your opinion on this as it will help with the dissertation I’m writing on Madness.

If you can imagine for a moment, that madness never formed as a band in the 80s, and only today decided to form a band called Madness, and go on X-Factor with their brand new song called ‘House of Fun’. how do you think they would be received?

Madness are very popular today, but if you were a new band on the block today, do you think you could be just as successful as you was in the 80s?

Dave Allen

Dear David
That was a big hit and quite catchy so we would probably do quite well, losing out to a dancing dog in the finals. However, if it was “The Prince” we might not have done so well. We don’t sell records anymore in the quantities we used to but neither do most people.

Dear Chrissy Boy

Ive now completed my dissertation on Madness, {For the purpose of university anyway} however I intend to continue witting it in my own time, I was talking with radio presenter Robert Elms about it yesterday, and he made some very interesting points. I really appreciate all the feedback you have given me too.

I wonder if you and the boys would be interested in reading my dissertation, I spoke with Suggs when I met him at a book signing last year, and he said he would be interested in seeing it when it’s done, but I’ve not been able to get hold of him on twitter as of yet. Is there a way I can send it on here? Is a pretty big file.

Dave Allen

Hi Chris,

What is NW5 about ?

I was listening to it and thought it was about a father who is denied access to his child and will never see them grow up. Am I right ?

Dear Malc
It’s whatever you want it to be. That’s the good thing about Thommos lyrics, which I am not worthy to comment on really.

Happy seasons greetings Mr. Foreman , once the festive period is out of the way do you see a new album appearing in 2014 to keep the nutty millions worldwide happy ? All the best – Steve.

Hi Chris I know obviously you guys as a seven piece had your musical influences as a group. But what were your own musical influences when growing up and what got you interested in playing the guitar?

As the new trend for bands is doing a classic album front to back out live on the road, would it be feasible and would you like to take Norton Colgate on the road I think it’s the best thing yous have ever done it would be the dogs in small places ie newcastle academy hint hint ktf

Fair point ,, just bung a few on at the end, the who did at the end of the quadrophenia gig Take care paul hope to see yous this year

Hello Chris,

Finally heard the song ‘Memories’ properly (full song) and wanted to pass on that the guitar introduction is beautiful. It’s the best part of the song along with the piano. Almost makes me want to learn guitar after all these years of self-teaching myself bass and piano.

Dear Chris,

Hello. Hope you are well.

Just a suggestion for the site. It would be really handy if the news blog RSS feed also contained updates posted in your cupboard (always the most interesting bit of the site!) Or even better, a dedicated RSS feed for each band members updates. I’d love to be able to see you responding to questions about Suggs’ sunglasses in real time :-)