Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 2 October 2014

Suggs doesn't regret Madness split

Suggs says that Madness are planning a new album

Madness frontman Suggs says it was a good thing that the band split up when they did.

Frightened about what the future held, Suggs went to see a therapist when the ska pop band, who enjoyed 20 hit singles in eight years, broke up when he was just 25.

But the 52-year-old, who forged a new career as a DJ, actor and TV presenter, said he came to realise it was a good thing that they'd called it a day.

"It felt like my career was over. I didn't even feel like a singer. I was just the frontman of Madness with my mates. It was a scary time. I went to see a psychotherapist," he said.

"I was really freaked out. I'd been in the band since I was 16 and we'd been together all the time."

But Suggs added: "We never saw ourselves as pop stars, and it was good for all of us to get back to our roots and do something outside pop music."

Madness, known for hits like Baggy Trousers and It Must Be Love, reformed in 1992 and performed on the roof of Buckingham Palace and in the closing ceremony of the London Olympics last year.

"We're more excited about what we're doing now than we were in the Eighties. We're back in the frame," Suggs, who has released an autobiography, That Close, said.

"The plan is to make another album next year and do a really big Christmas tour.

"There's still a chance for us to do pop music without being seen as old fools."

:: That Close by Suggs is published by Quercus, priced £20. Available now. Suggs' one-man shows continue, with dates in December and throughout 2014 (www.suggslive.com).

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