Dave Wakeling

Ian and I (Mike) are off to see Dave Wakeling’s English Beat next month in Islington. He has not toured the UK for about 7 years, and should be a great night.

But when I was in the shower this morning, a picture of Dave with his left-handed guitar in hand came into my mind. “That’s quite unusual, isn’t it?”, I thought. I’m not suggesting that there are no other left-handed guitarists out there. An obvious one that springs to mind is Paul McCartney and, of course, Jimi Hendrix.

But when you look at left-handers in other activities like writing, cricket, tennis, etc, there is a much higher percentage than there are left-handed guitarists.  So, that got me thinking … Read More

2-Tone 35 Year Anniversary

This weekend sees the 35 year anniversary of when Jerry Dammers of The Specials created 2-Tone. Is this relevant in any way to us today?

Some people think of 2-Tone as a record label. Others think of it as a music genre. And more still think of it as a culture. In reality it is all of those.

It was important to Jerry that his record label meant something to people. He engaged John Sims (Teflon) to create the iconic images that we associate with 2-Tone, like the black and white check and the dancing man (nicknamed Walt Jabsco). Read More

Dublin Castle, Camden

Ask any Madness fan what pub you think of when you think of Madness and they will say the Dublin Castle.

The Dublin Castle in Camden is the birthplace of Madness. Members of the band used to hang out in there in their youth and some of them still visit to this day. Only a couple of weeks ago Woody Woodgate chose the pub to launch his and his brother Nick’s new album, The Magic Line. Several band members still live in the area.

The walls are bedecked with photos of the band and other famous artists that have either played there or hung out there. The list of these is impressive – Amy Winehouse, Blur, Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay, Supergrass and The Killers. Read More

Scott Jordon - Special Kinda Madness

Special Kinda Madness are delighted to have been selected to be represented by the Scott Jordan Entertainments Agency.

Scott Jordon are the country’s fastest growing provider of live entertainment: tribute bands, function bands, magicians, comedians and much more. Each band are individually selected to ensure a high-quality live experience. Read More

Special Kinda Madness Live at The Horns EP

Special Kinda Madness have launched their first EP on CD. It is a live recording from their gig at The Horns in Watford in June 2013.

Tracks include Madness and One Step Beyond from Madness, and Monkey Man and Skinhead Moonstomp by The Specials. This latter track is their medley of Longshot Kick de Bucket, Liquidator and Skinhead Moonstomp.

The EP gives a sense of the atmosphere at a typical Special Kinda Madness gig. The recording tells it like it is. You can hear the audience singing along and the occasional crash of bottles being thrown in the bin by the bar staff. But most of all, you get a true reflection of the energy that comes from the stage and then bounces straight back from the audience. Read More