The Smiths

January 29, 2011 by staff 

The Smiths, The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982. Based on the writing partnership of Morrissey (vocals) and Johnny Marr (guitar), the band also included Andy Rourke (bass) and Mike Joyce (drums). Critics have called their group the most important alternative rock out of the British independent music scene of the 1980s. The group was signed on indie label Rough Trade Records, for whom they released four studio albums and several compilations, as well as numerous non-LP singles.

Although they had little commercial success outside the UK while they were still together, and never released a single-track number over 10 in their home country, The Smiths won a growing Next, and remain cult favorites and business. The band split in 1987 amid disagreements between Morrissey and Marr and refused several offers of meetings since then.
Steven Patrick Morrissey, a writer who has been a big fan of the New York Dolls and briefly faced punk rock band The Nosebleeds, and John Maher, a guitarist and composer, formed the Smiths in early 1982. Maher had changed his name to Johnny Marr to avoid confusion with the Buzzccks drummer John Maher, Morrissey and performed under his name. After recording several demos with Simon Wolstencroft (later of The Fall) on drums, Morrissey and Marr recruited drummer Mike Joyce in the fall of 1982. Joyce had once been a member of punk bands The Hoax and the victim. In addition, they added bassist Dale Hibbert, who also provided the group with demo recording facilities at the studio where he worked as sound engineer. However, after a concert, Marr’s friend Andy Rourke replaced Hibbert on bass, because Marr believes that playing the bass nor Hibbert nor its crisis of personality in the group.

The group received its name in part as a reaction against names used by groups popular synthpop of the early 1980s as Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and Spandau Ballet, because they consider these fancy names and pompous. In a 1984 interview Morrissey stated that he chose the name The Smiths “… because it was the most ordinary name” and because he thought it was “… the time ordinary people the world showed their faces. ” Signature indie label Rough Trade Records, they released their first single, “Hand in Glove”, May 1983. The case has been championed by DJ John Peel, as well as all their singles later, but not at the table. The following singles “This Charming Man” and “What difference does it make?” performed better when they have reached numbers 25 and 12 respectively on the UK Singles Chart.

In February 1984 the band released their debut album The Smiths, which reached number two on the UK chart albums. Both “Reel Around the Fountain” and “The Hand That Rocks the Cradle” met with controversy, some tabloids alleging the songs were suggestive of pedophilia, an allegation strongly denied by the group.

The album was followed that year by the non-album singles “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” and “William, it was really nothing,” which featured “How Soon Is Now?” on its side B. Securing first Top Ten of the band in place, “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” was also important to mark the beginning of the engineer and producer Stephen Street long-term relationship with the working group.

More controversy followed when “Suffer Little Children”, the b-side of “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now”, addressed the theme of the Moors murders. This caused an outcry after the grandfather of one of the murdered children heard song on a jukebox pub and said the group was trying to market the murders. After a meeting with Morrissey, he agreed that the song was a heartfelt exploration of the impact of these murders. Morrissey subsequently established a friendship Ann West, mother of victim Lesley Ann Downey, who is mentioned by name in the song.

The year ended with the compilation album Hatful of Hollow. This simple collected, B-sides and versions of songs that were recorded throughout the previous year for shows Peel and Jensen.

The Smiths have influenced a number of alternative rock bands through their careers. Even as early as 1985, “the band had spawned a rash of soundalike bands, including James, who opened for the band on their tour in spring 1985.” Cranberries combined “the melodic jangle of post-Smiths indie pop guitar textures with singing, trance sound of the late 80′s dream pop, creating their sound with “triple, guitars chime and spare some tunes.” In addition, the band used Stephen Street as producer, who was known to “maximize the moodiness of the Smiths.” Cranberries fused the sound with lyrics that echoed the love, the literary style Morrissey. “Smiths singer bookish, fiercely intelligent lyrics also provided a blueprint for the calm, literate Scottish band Belle & Sebastian” play guitar Marr “was a huge building block for more Manchester legends that followed The Smiths – The Stone Roses “. Their guitarist John Squire said that Marr has been a major influence. Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher called Smiths influence, especially Marr, Gallagher said that “when the slot Jam, The Smiths began, and I am all for them.”

But insofar as Annie goes, I think so McMillan here. First, his suggestion that the Smiths develop a vehicle “original” star Willow – one with “ethnic pride” – is monumentally wrongheaded. Encourage originality on homogeneity in this tender age? You’re basically condemning her to a lonely life of iconoclasm. Not even Will and Jada can afford to keep a child in graduate school forever; arguments Christmas dinner on Foucault and Queer Theory alone break them. (Also: in musical theater, originality and ethnic pride have always been regarded as signs of weakness.)
McMillan worried that they were “p**ped and exploited” by their famous parents when she heard that the Smiths are forming the “film of risk” to facilitate an LLC reimagining of Annie with the Big Willow with orphans. (No word on how that can be whipped traditional fright-wig is Tangerine, but these days, hair appliances, even iconic autotuned may be.)

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