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Foreman performing live with Madness at Manchester Arena in 2014
|Birth name||Christopher John Foreman|
8 August 1956 |
St Pancras, London, England
Christopher John Foreman (born 8 August 1956 in St Pancras, London) nicknamed 'Chrissy Boy', is an English musician, and songwriter who achieved success as the guitarist for the second wave ska band, Madness.
His father attempted to teach him to play guitar as a child but he could not maintain an interest. He bought a cheap second-hand guitar when he was 17 and became more enthusiastic about the instrument when he began to learn chords. He then acquired a Fender Telecaster which he used whilst recording Madness' debut album.
1976–1986, 1992–2005, 2006-present: Madness
Foreman formed Madness with keyboardist Mike Barson and saxophonist Lee Thompson in 1976. Foreman was one of the group's main songwriters, mostly writing music with other members, usually Suggs or Lee Thompson, providing the lyrics. After Madness disbanded in 1986 he formed a new band The Madness with Thompson, Suggs and Chas Smash but they broke up after releasing their debut album, the eponymous The Madness. Then he, alongside Thompson, created another group called The Nutty Boys with Thompson on lead vocals. They released an album called Crunch! in 1990. The band are now known as Crunch!, and play in London every couple of years. Foreman reunited with all seven original Madness members in 1992, but in 2005 announced that he was leaving the band.
However, on Thursday 30 November 2006 it was confirmed that Foreman was returning to play on Madness' forthcoming UK Christmas tour, and he has been with the band ever since.
In 2006, Foreman began using a mobile phone attached to his guitar to record short videos from his position on stage during live Madness performances to provide his fans with a unique perspective from the "guitar's eye view". He coined the term "Axecam" to describe this filming technique. By December 2008, he had acquired a higher quality digital video camera which he attached to the shoulder strap of his guitar using an "Axecam holder", crafted by a member of the stage crew just before Madness went on stage at The O2 Arena on 19 December 2008. The new "Axecam" produced a far more stable picture and Foreman posted the first video from this performance ("It Must Be Love") to the MadnessStudio2008 Channel on YouTube on 20 December 2008.
Chrissy Boy Meets And Greets...
Foreman also maintains a series of videos made with the Axecam entitled "Chrissy Boy Meets And Greets...", in which he meets famous people that have either appeared alongside Madness at festivals, or that have attended awards ceremonies with Madness. The video is normally a close up of the famous person's face, with Foreman out of shot, and usually consists of a few spoken words, and perhaps a joke or humorous reference from Foreman to the star's career. Each clip is normally less than ten seconds long. Stars featured have included: Dizzee Rascal, Al Murray, Plan B, Alex James, Graham Coxon and Damon Albarn, former Madness singer/drummer/manager John Hasler, all six members of the reformed Specials, ex-Bodysnatcher and Madness collaborator Rhoda Dakar, Martin Freeman, Eamonn Holmes, Jeremy Clarkson, Lulu, and Peter Andre, as well as an Elvis Presley lookalike security guard from Australia.