If get this right, there will be many cover versions by future bands. I shall try and link live versions if they exist from the tellybox or a film, the sound quality may not be the best, but there is nothing like watching a real talent live.
This week it is Madness. I do like happy songs and this band always makes me smile.
Courtesy of Wiki: Madness
Madness are an English ska band from Camden Town, North London, who formed in 1976. One of the most prominent bands of the late 1970s and early 1980s two-tone ska revival, they continue to perform with six of the seven members of their original line-up. Madness’s most successful period was from 1980 to 1986, when the band’s songs spent a total of 214 weeks on the UK Singles Chart. (UB40 shared the same number of weeks, the largest for any British group in the decade, but over a longer period.
Madness have had 15 singles reach the UK top ten, including “One Step Beyond“, “Baggy Trousers” and “It Must Be Love“, one UK number-one single “House of Fun” and two number ones in Ireland, “House of Fun” and “Wings of a Dove“. “Our House” was their biggest US hit, reaching number 7 on the Billboard Hot 100. In 2000, the band received the Ivor Novello Award from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors for Outstanding Song Collection.
The core of the band formed as the North London Invaders in 1976, and included Mike Barson (Monsieur Barso) on keyboards and vocals, Chris Foreman (Chrissy Boy) on guitar and Lee Thompson (Kix) on saxophone and vocals. They later recruited John Hasler on drums and Cathal Smyth (better known as Chas Smash) on bass guitar. Later in the year, they were joined by lead vocalist Dikron Tulane
This six-piece line-up lasted until part-way through 1977, when Graham McPherson (better known as Suggs) took over the lead vocals after seeing the band perform in a friend’s garden. Tulane went on to be an actor under the name Dikran Tulaine. Smyth, who left after an argument with Barson, was replaced by Gavin Rodgers, Barson’s girlfriend’s brother. McPherson was kicked out of the band for too often choosing to watch Chelsea instead of rehearsing. Thompson left the band after Barson criticised his saxophone playing.
By 1978, the band had allowed McPherson to return as a vocalist after he had filled in temporarily for Hasler (who had taken over vocals when McPherson was removed). Thompson returned after patching things up with Barson. Drummer Dan Woodgate (Woody) and bass player Mark Bedford (Bedders) also joined the band, replacing Garry Dovey and Rodgers, respectively. After briefly changing their name to Morris and the Minors, the band renamed itself as Madness in 1979, paying homage to one of their favourite songs by ska/reggae artist Prince Buster. The band remained a sextet until late 1979 when Chas Smash re-joined and officially became the seventh member of Madness as a backing vocalist and dancer.
The Prince – 1979, possibly ToTP. I remember me and my mates dancing to this. Happy days indeed!
One Step Beyond Live at Madstock 1998. Makes me want to run round dancing this.
My Girl 1980 Top of The Pops Jan 1980. The boys all in white suit and bow tie.
Night Boat to Cairo – Live 1980.
Embarrassment – Later with Jools Holland Live. Great tune, great musicians.
The Return of The Los Palmas 7 (Official HD Video), 1981 instrumental, but shows how good they are, plus some iconic images of the time.
Grey Day (Madstock, Finsbury Park) 1992, I think.
Shut Up (Official Video), there are live versions, but I do like this official video/.
It Must Be Love Glastonbury 2009. Great cover of this Labi Siffre tune which he did in 1971. Madness version is much better in my view though.
Driving in My Car – Top of the Pops 1982
Our House – Reading Festival 2011. I suspect many of the audience were not even born when this was a hit in 1982, yet they singalong and enjoying themselves.
Wings of a Dove – Live at Manchester Apollo 2010
The Sun & The Rain Live at the iTunes Festival 2012
My other most favourite Madness tune is this: House of Fun This is from a BBC show in the early 80’s.
Thank you for the fun and happy memories Madness.
Singalong, enjoy and be happy!
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© Phil the ex test manager 2022