The stomping ’60s R&B-inspired number delves into Suggs and Weller’s upbringing in Britain’s ’70s comprehensive school system in London and Woking respectively, according to a press release.
“Me and Suggs have been talking about doing something together for the last few years so to see it finally happen is amazing! I love the tune and working with him,” Weller explained.
“He’s truly a man of many talents. We wanted to do something special and I really think this track is.”
Suggs added: “I think teachers are the best people in the world, I love them with all my heart. But you know all those great teachers you read about who dragged their pupils up, and encouraged them and made them into the best possible version of themselves they could be? Well, unfortunately, I didn’t have one of those!
“‘Ooh Do U Fink U R’ was a phrase I heard more often than I wished and sums up my school years – constantly being told to know my place and keep in my box, being given no encouragement but still never giving in, and never giving up.”
He continued: “Chatting to Paul reminded me of those experiences. We both found enthusiasm and a purpose in music, and that pulled us through.”
‘Ooh Do U Fink UR’ arrives with an animated montage-style official video by longtime Madness collaborator DNO – tune in above.
A limited edition numbered 7″ vinyl edition of the joint single will arrive on June 17 – you can pre-order it here.
Weller and Suggs have known each on-and-off for the last four decades but began speaking regularly about music and their other shared interests during the early days of lockdown in 2020.
Later, ‘Ooh Do U Fink U R’ emerged after the pair started exchanging half-finished songs, demos and lyric ideas. The track was subsequently recorded at Weller’s Black Barn Studio in Surrey.
Weller appeared on Suggs’ BBC Radio Four radio series Love Letters To London in 2019.
Earlier this year, Paul Weller opened for Madness at their show at London’s Royal Albert Hall in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust.