Madness (1 Viewer)


Knock Knock
Newly released from the archives of Belgium TV show ‘Follies’, a clip of CHAS SMASH of MADNESS dancing to ONE STEP BEYOND followed by an interview (1980).
“I was born in London, moved to Ireland, moved back to London, then back to Northern Ireland,” said Cathal Joseph "Carl" Smyth aka Chas Smash.
“I tend to think I’m first generation London/Irish. Due to my father’s job we travelled quite a lot , which had its good sides and bad sides. Growing up was like being an army kid, so locking into people was hard – you’d just get used to being with a bunch of people and then you’d be off again.”
“I had a cousin three years older that me, who I really looked up to. He was a really sharp dresser skinhead-wise, and I was just at that age when I was too young to be out and about on my own, and I couldn’t really follow the trends. I wasn’t really allowed by my parents. He was a hero figure and the early skinhead dress thing was really sharp, really looked cool.”
“The ska explosion had happened in the ’60s, and when the skinhead/ska thing was happening late ’60s, early ’70s, really I got into it. And then I became a sort of collector, going back, hunting through stuff, old records and shops, getting your fingers dirty, trying to find the right cover for the single, that kind of thing.”
“I really liked things like Laurel Aiken, Jesse James, Blood and Fire – it’s so long ago – Ten Commandments, all that stuff. All the Prince Buster albums were great. I’m terrible at titles. I see everything as a dancer. I don’t go out of my way to remember artists or tracks. I remember all the rhythms, I remember all the breaks. The stops, the full starts, all that sort of thing.”
“Carl and his brother started the dancing thing,” explained Chris ‘Chrissy Boy’ Foreman.
“There really was no name for it – it was just jerky, robot-like movements. I think they first got the idea from a track by Roxy Music called For Your Pleasure. We used to sit back and watch these four peanut-heads doing this crazy dance. No one seemed to copy them though. It was very unusual, different – and that was what we wanted to be.”
“ I never went near a dance floor until I was 17,” continued Chas.
“I was always scared and nervous. I still find it really hard to dance but when you’ve had a few bevvies, you have to move about don’t you?”

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