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Shaun Ryder says Happy Mondays will be ‘going to bed’ for a few years after tour

Lead singer of the Happy Mondays Shaun Ryder has said the band will be “going to bed for about three or four years” when they take a break after their upcoming UK tour.

The 61-year-old will embark on the Been There Done That Tour in March alongside band members Mark ‘Bez’ Berry, vocalist Rowetta, guitarist Mark Day, drummer Gary Whelan and keyboard player and guitarist Dan Broad.

The band will then take a break from the road while Ryder concentrates on other projects.

He told the PA news agency: “I’m really looking forward to it (the tour). I mean, it’s gonna be the last one anyway.

“It’s not really. I mean, we’ve just come back from touring Australia, not long ago, we were on the road doing festivals, but it’s going to be the last tour for a while.

“We’ve constantly been doing the Mondays now since 2012 with the original line-up, so it’s now time to make this the last tour and no summer shows so I can concentrate on (bands) Black Grape and Mantra Of The Cosmos and a few things.”

He added: “The Mondays are going to bed for about three or four years.”

Ryder co-founded rock group Black Grape in the 1990s and the band released debut album It’s Great When You’re Straight…Yeah in 1995.

In 2023 he revealed he had formed a new band called Mantra Of The Cosmos.

Speaking about the possibility of retirement, Ryder said: “In this game you don’t, you stop when you f****** want to or when you can’t walk on stage anymore.”

Ivor Novello Awards 2016 – London
Mark Day, Paul Ryder and Shaun Ryder of The Happy Mondays with the Inspiration Award during the 61st Annual Ivor Novello Music Awards at Grosvenor House in London in 2016 (Ian West/PA)

He added: “When we were young men, you made an album, you toured it for three years, came back, made another album, and toured that for three years.

“So you’d do that for years and years and years and you’d go touring, you learn what touring is about.

“Now, I don’t do that. I mean, we do a lot of festivals all over the place with the Mondays and Black Grape, we just toured Australia, I do it at my own pace now. I tour when I want to at my own pace.

“And I’ve gone through hating it then loving it to f****** hating it, to loving it, to f****** hating it, to loving it, and I just do it at my own pace now.”

Speaking about the upcoming dates, he added: “Manchester’s always mad. We have more guestlists then we have fans in Manchester… it gets a bit mad.”

ITV Palooza 2018 – London
Shaun Ryder has said he likes to tour at his own pace (Ian West/PA)

During the tour the group, who will be joined by music artists Inspiral Carpets and Stereo MCs, will perform some of their classic hits including 24 Hour Party People, Step On, Hallelujah, Loose Fit and Judge Fudge.

Shows will take place in cities including Glasgow, Bristol, Manchester, Brighton and London.

Happy Mondays signed to Tony Wilson’s Factory Records in the late 1980s and blended their love of funk, rock, psychedelia and house with sounds from the UK’s emerging rave scene.

In 2016, the band won the Ivor Novello Inspiration Award and in recent years members Ryder and Bez have been spotted in episodes of Channel 4’s Celebrity Gogglebox.

The band, who are now without Ryder’s brother, bassist Paul, who died in 2022 aged 58, finished a tour of Australia and New Zealand in October.