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Why Morrissey Still Matters

Posted: 03/07/2013 4:38 pm

Morrissey (as an artist and public figure) has always had the uncanny ability to charm and repel at the same time. His staunch animal rights activism, his hatred of the throne, his A.E. Housmanesque gift for misanthropy, his refusal to adhere to any of the tenets of accepted celebrity behaviour have often landed him in hot water. But what's wrong with a little hot water when today's music and music industry are so depressingly tepid?

In the last couple of weeks, Morrissey has railed against Beyonce, Jimmy Kimmel, the Royals, Justin Bieber, Madonna, Paul McCartney, Victoria and David Beckham, and too many more to mention. And, yes, just in the last couple of weeks. It's all very entertaining and it's all usually in the name of animal rights, or anti-monarchism or anti-consumer culture. But it is also entirely in the name of Morrissey. I wouldn't want it any other way.

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  • Morrissey -- Irish Blood, English Heart

    Morrissey's Irish Blood, English Heart from the "You Are the Quarry" CD

  • Suedehead • Morrissey

    Morrissey performing "Suedehead", a single released in February 1988 from the album "Viva Hate". ℗ Why do you come here? And why do you hang around? I'm so sorry I'm so sorry Why do you come here... When you know it makes things hard for me? When you know, oh... Why do you come? Why do you telephone? And why send me silly notes? I'm so sorry I'm so sorry Why do you come here... When you know it makes things hard for me? When you know, oh Why do you come? You had to sneak into my room 'Just' to read my diary Was it just to see, just to see all the things you knew I'd written about you? And... So many illustrations I'm so very sickened Oh, I am so sickened now... Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use. Warner Music Group ©

  • Morrissey Hollywood Bowl {Complete Film}{HQ 2007}

    {Full Concert} The Epic Complete Performance, Live at the Hollywood Bowl. 8th June 2007. Intro 01 The Queen Is Dead 00:37 02 The Last Of The Famous International Playboys 04:38 03 Ganglord 08:30 04 The National Front Disco 13:20 05 Let Me Kiss You 18:07 06 All You Need Is Me 23:08 07 The Boy With The Thorn In His Side 26:48 08 Irish Blood, English Heart 31:04 09 Disappointed 34:19 10 I've Changed My Plea To Guilty 37:35 11 Everyday Is Like Sunday 41:19 12 In The Future When All's Well 45:24 13 I Will See You In Far Off Places 49:22 14 Girlfriend In A Coma 53:52 15 First Of The Gang To Die {Sync Out} 16 I Just Want To See The Boy Happy 1:00:30 17 You Have Killed Me {Sync Out} 18 That's How People Grow Up 1:07:08 19 Life Is A Pigsty 1:10:15 20 How Soon Is Now 1:19:02 21 Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want 1:26:40 22 Your Gonna Need Someone On Your Side 1:29:33 23 There Is A Light That Never Goes Out 1:34:16 Outro ~ Incidentally; i am aware that the sync is out on both First of the gang to die & You have killed me but the Audio does snap back in immediately after both tracks. (I did spend 10 hours editing, formatting & uploading, As much as i love Moz,, i couldn't go there again) ~ Follow the safe link below for a free DVD download. At the ever excellent Smiths Torrents smithstorrents.co.uk Courtesy of the ever generous DavidA

  • Morrissey - Action Is My Middle Name - David Letterman 1-8-13

    Morrissey - Action Is My Middle Name - David Letterman 1-8-13....As Seen On ©CBS Weeknights 11:35/10:35pm c, All Rights Reserved. Morrissey: itsmorrisseysworld.com FB: www.facebook.com Twitter: twitter.com Letterman Website: www.cbs.com Letterman Playlist: www.youtube.com Tweet Me: twitter.com

  • Morrissey - Everyday is like Sunday

    Trudging slowly over wet sand Back to the bench Where your clothes were stolen This is the coastal town That they forgot to close down Armageddon - come Armageddon! Come Armageddon! Come! Everyday is like Sunday Everyday is silent and grey Hide on the promenade Etch a postcard: "How I Dearly Wish I Was Not Here" In this seaside town That they forgot to bomb Come, come, come Nuclear Bomb! Everyday is like Sunday Everyday is silent and grey Trudging back over pebbles and sand And a strange dust lands on your hands And on your face On your face.. Everyday is like Sunday "Win Yourself A Cheap Tray" Share some grease-tea with me Everyday is silent and grey

  • Morrissey @ Glastonbury Festival 2011 (Full set)

    Set list: 1:12 - I Want the One I Can't Have 4:33 - First of the Gang to Die 8:15 - You Have Killed Me 11:20 - Shoplifters of the World Unite 14:27 - Everyday is Like Sunday 18:36 - There is a Light That Never Goes Out 23:33 - Alma Matters 27:58 - People are the Same Everywhere 31:41 - One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell 35:53 - Action is My Middle Name 38:47 - Satellite of Love (Lou Reed cover) 42:41 - Meat is Murder 49:31 - I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris 52:08 - Irish Blood, English Heart 55:18 - This Charming Man

  • Morrissey - There Is a Light That Never Goes Out (Live at the Hollywood Bowl)

    Morrissey: Live at the Hollywood Bowl was announced as a DVD documenting a live performance by Morrissey, but has never been released. The concert took place at the historic Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, CA, on June 8, 2007 on the first leg of Morrissey's 2007/2008 'Greatest Hits' tour.

  • The Smiths- How Soon Is Now? HQ

    DISCLAIMER: I do not own the song "How soon is now". It is owned by The Smiths and their label. If you like it, subscribe me;) "How Soon Is Now?" is a song by the British alternative rock band The Smiths. Written by Smiths singer Morrissey and guitarist Johnny Marr, it was originally a B-side of the 1984 single "William, It Was Really Nothing". "How Soon Is Now?" was subsequently featured on the compilation album Hatful of Hollow and on American, Australian and Warner UK editions of the group's second album Meat Is Murder (1985). It was belatedly released as a single in the UK in 1985, where it reached number 24 on the UK Singles Chart. Sire Records chief Seymour Stein called it "the 'Stairway to Heaven' of the Eighties", while co-writer Johnny Marr described it as "possibly our most enduring record. It's most people's favourite, I think." Despite its prominent place in The Smiths' repertoire, however, it is not generally considered to be representative of the band's style. Although a club favourite, "How Soon Is Now?" did not chart as well as writers Morrissey and Marr had expected. Most commentators put this down to the fact that the song had been out on vinyl in a number of forms before being released as a single in its own right. The original track runs for nearly seven minutes; however, the 7" single edit cut the length down to under four minutes. The complete version is generally used on compilations. The song has been widely praised for the artistry of its lyrics <b>...</b>

  • Morrissey - The Last Of The Famous International Playboys (hq)

    Morrissey - The Last Of The Famous International Playboys High Quality

  • Morrissey - Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want (Live at the Hollywood Bowl)

    Morrissey: Live at the Hollywood Bowl was announced as a DVD documenting a live performance by Morrissey, but has never been released. The concert took place at the historic Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, CA, on June 8, 2007 on the first leg of Morrissey's 2007/2008 'Greatest Hits' tour.

  • Morrissey / Smiths fans, 2012

    Inside Out, BBC1 [north west England] November 19th 2012

  • Morrissey - "Studio in Session" Complete Episode {Best Quality Moz-Only Edition}

    The combined parts 1, 2, & 3, of the "Studio in Session" episode, which aired on the Sundance Channel (Canada), plus all non-Morrissey bits cut out at the end. Featuring 4 new, unreleased songs: 1) "The Kid's a Looker" 1:22 2) "Scandinavia" 5:28 3) "Action is My Middle Name" 9:56 4) "People are the Same Everywhere" 14:05 Plus, lots of great Morrissey moments. :-) Enjoy! Songs 1,2, &,3 written by Morrissey/Boorer Song 4 written by Morrissey/Tobias The players: Morrissey: voice Jesse Tobias: Lead Guitar Boz Boorer: Guitars Solomon Walker: Bass Matt Walker: The Drums Gustavo Manzur: Keyboards All songs produced by Tony Visconti Recorded at Temple Lane Studios, Dublin, Ireland. July 2011 PS I claim no copyright to any of the images or music. I am just a fan/admirer/music geek.

  • Morrissey Interview - BBC Culture Show

    Morrissey interviewed for the BBC's Culture show

  • Morrissey on TV-am - 1984

    Paul Gambaccini interviews Morrissey, lead singer of the Smiths. Henry Kelly and Toni Arthur on the sofa too. You can purchase on-demand DVDs from the TV-am archive, including this clip and more. Contact us with your requirements and - when possible - we will compile a DVD for you.


Activism and individualism are the engines that drive Morrissey. He never shies away from the incendiary moment. And it would be wrong of me to give him a free pass. He makes some dreadful missteps. He frequently compares the slaughter of animals to the holocaust, he makes villains out of entire populations for the actions of their governments, he even calls for the assassinations of those who don't meet his artistic standards: "Bring me the head of Elton John... which is one instance in which meat would not be murder, if it were served on a plate." But seriously, anyone who takes these proclamations as not ironic or not hyperbolic is probably too stupid to help. I will concede that when he's at his worst, his claims are embarrassingly ineffective. Sometimes he's guilty of tipping his hand. Sometimes when he whines about Madonna or Justin Bieber, there's a tinge of jealousy in the tone. Morrissey has never been embraced by the people who run the Grammys, BRIT awards, etc. And you can tell that it eats away at him. After all, he's a man obsessed with his own old fashioned notion of the charts and he's (without a doubt) inspired countless recipients of such awards.

When he gets it right though, it's a thing of rare beauty. His criticism of the London Olympics was, in my opinion, not entirely spot-on but very much needed, and while Billy Bragg, John Lydon and other so-called "punks" caved in to the pressure of British nationalism, Morrissey stood resolute and launched this missive: "I am unable to watch the Olympics due to the blustering jingoism that drenches the event. Has England ever been quite so foul with patriotism? The 'dazzling royals' have, quite naturally, hi-jacked [sic] the Olympics for their own empirical needs, and no oppositional voice is allowed in the free press. It is lethal to witness."

Morrissey recently proclaimed: "The rhino is now more or less extinct, and it's not because of global warming or shrinking habitats. It's because of Beyonce's handbags." And I'm glad he said it. Beyonce and her husband, Jay-Z are part of a disgusting trend of wearing extreme cruelty. They are both avid wearers of the skins of elephant, crocodile, stingray, ostrich, cow, anaconda, alligator, boa, python, and lizard. It's barbaric behaviour. And no public figure other than Morrissey seems to have the guts to speak out against it. And when he forced the Staples Center in Los Angeles to not sell meat during his show (a feat even Paul McCartney could not accomplish), I'm equally glad. Activism is about action. If it's within your power to take action and change something on a large scale for the sake of the cause, then any activist worth her/his salt must take that action. We've learned in recent years, that action is Morrissey's middle name. I would also argue though that it's his fierce defiance that also leads to the best moments of Morrissey: songs like "Meat Is Murder" and "Scandinavia."

It seems that it's been this way from the start. He has recently been revealed as the author of the world's most biting teenage pen pal letters. And when stardom inevitably happened to/for him, he found that he could reach another octave of wit. In the '80s, when George Michael was sharing wisdom like "You'll never find peace of mind until you listen to your heart," Morrissey quipped "Sex is a waste of batteries." And these days, when Jay-Z offers up pseudo-wisdom: "I think relationships are broken up because of the media," Morrissey refuses to disappoint: "I have found that the best way to avoid ending your life an embittered wreck is to start out as one."

We need public figures who are individuals and understand what it means to be individualistic. I would go so far as to say that we are in desperate need of eccentrics. Clearly, eccentricity trumps compliance. Morrissey is Oscar Wilde + Gertrude Stein with the added bonus of a crooner's voice; he's the most sexualized "celibate" of our time; and the most infuriatingly provocative public persona imaginable. And it's because he acutely understands what it means to be enigmatic and what it means to be a fan. From his early days being a devoted fan of The New York Dolls, Shelagh Delaney, John Betjeman, and David Bowie, Morrissey understood the powerful, heartbreaking, and intimate intricacies of fandom and art. If we are clever enough to look, we will find some sense of hope with the few artists he holds in high regard today. We need more Patti Smith and less Will Smith. We need more Jeff Beck and less David Beckham. We need Morrissey for the simple reason that he is the best example of an artist and public figure whose individualism cannot be bought or sold.

 

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