• "The Smiths: Better than the Beatles?" - Salon article, interview with Tony Fletcher

    The Smiths: Better than the Beatles? by David Daley - Salon

    No band captured the tormented teen soul like The Smiths. The author of a new 700-page bio explains why they matter.

    The terrific British music writer Tony Fletcher has just published the definitive biography of the group, “A Light That Never Goes Out: The Enduring Saga of The Smiths,” taking almost 700 pages to tell the story of just 70 songs and this essential slice of the 1980s.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Article: The Smiths: Better than the Beatles? started by realitybites View original post
    Comments 40 Comments
    1. MORRIZSEY's Avatar
      MORRIZSEY -
      The Beatles are overrated, The Smiths are underrated

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    1. mcrickson's Avatar
      mcrickson -
      Wonderful read, thanks for this.

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    1. realitybites's Avatar
      realitybites -
      Quote Originally Posted by mcrickson View Post
      Wonderful read, thanks for this.
      I thought it was a great interview as well. Although, the title is a bit misleading.

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    1. Mrs. Phyllis Torgo's Avatar
      Mrs. Phyllis Torgo -
      Whether they're the best or not (whatever that means) can be debated, but I think the Smiths are certainly more unique and less imitable than the Beatles.

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    1. MIDNITE's Avatar
      MIDNITE -
      ........

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    1. MIDNITE's Avatar
      MIDNITE -
      Quote Originally Posted by realitybites View Post
      No band captured the tormented teen soul like The Smiths. The author of a new 700-page bio explains why they matter.

      The terrific British music writer Tony Fletcher has just published the definitive biography of the group, “A Light That Never Goes Out: The Enduring Saga of The Smiths,” taking almost 700 pages to tell the story of just 70 songs and this essential slice of the 1980s.

      Article/Interview in Salon


      ......[/B]

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    1. Anonymous's Avatar
      Anonymous -
      As songwriters, yes, The Smiths were more talented than the Beatles, but The Smiths wouldn't exist without the Beatles. Even if The Smiths weren't fans of the Beatles, everyone that they were influenced by (besides the girl groups and early motown) were. So every band that Johnny and Morrissey loved (which gave them a musical goal to shoot for) and hated (giving them a musical goal to rally against) wouldn't exist, and I don't think they would've had such a great drive to prove they were the best band of their era.

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    1. Tammy Waynette's Avatar
      Tammy Waynette -
      Smiths > Beatles

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    1. jimmotherwell's Avatar
      jimmotherwell -
      the smiths had the best of johnny and me, i have not heard that quote before, would have been a better title for the article

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    1. Oh my god, it's Robby!'s Avatar
      Oh my god, it's Robby! -
      I grew up listening to a lot of the Beatles, but they were "my mother's music" to me
      however, I do have to admit, The Smiths were one of the few bands of "mine" my mother really liked
      so to me they are inextricably linked, both being really great, just from different eras

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    1. Amy's Avatar
      Amy -
      Really, really enjoyed that article. Fletcher really knows his stuff when it comes to Morrissey & Marr - and kudos to him for being honest enough to discuss Morrissey's sexuality and "Catholic repression" etc. A great article.

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    1. Amy's Avatar
      Amy -
      Quote Originally Posted by jimmotherwell View Post
      the smiths had the best of johnny and me, i have not heard that quote before, would have been a better title for the article
      It's a great quote, but out of context in the interview - Moz said that in 1990 when his solo career had barely begun, and Fletcher makes it sound as though it's some sort of nostalgic comment from 2010 or something. I think it's pretty clear these days that Moz doesn't want to romanticise the Smiths to the detriment of his solo career.

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    1. Qvist's Avatar
      Qvist -
      I didn't get a good impression of Fletcher from that interview. He speaks with glib assurance of things he can't possibly know. Which usually s typical of the worst kind of muso journo writing. Anyone read his REM book?

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    1. Bluebirds's Avatar
      Bluebirds -
      I'd suggest The Beatles have had better books written about them

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    1. realitybites's Avatar
      realitybites -
      Quote Originally Posted by Amy View Post
      Really, really enjoyed that article. Fletcher really knows his stuff when it comes to Morrissey & Marr - and kudos to him for being honest enough to discuss Morrissey's sexuality and "Catholic repression" etc. A great article.
      I agree. I am looking forward to reading the book. Perhaps after the holidays.

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    1. realitybites's Avatar
      realitybites -
      Quote Originally Posted by Amy View Post
      It's a great quote, but out of context in the interview - Moz said in 1990 when his solo career had barely begun, and Fletcher makes it sound as though it's some sort of nostalgic comment from 2010 or something. I think it's pretty clear these days that Moz doesn't want to romanticise the Smiths to the detriment of his solo career.
      Great insight.

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    1. realitybites's Avatar
      realitybites -
      Quote Originally Posted by Qvist View Post
      I didn't get a good impression of Fletcher from that interview. He speaks with glib assurance of things he can't possibly know. Which usually s typical of the worst kind of muso journo writing. Anyone read his REM book?
      No good? He mentions R.E.M. several times in this article. I figured he had written about them or was in the process of doing so.

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    1. cornelius blaze's Avatar
      cornelius blaze -

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    1. realitybites's Avatar
      realitybites -
      Here is an excerpt from the book, published online in Time, Dec 3, 2012: Knocking on Morrissey’s Door: Remembering the Day The Smiths Met

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    1. jimmotherwell's Avatar
      jimmotherwell -
      Quote Originally Posted by Amy View Post
      It's a great quote, but out of context in the interview - Moz said in 1990 when his solo career had barely begun, and Fletcher makes it sound as though it's some sort of nostalgic comment from 2010 or something. I think it's pretty clear these days that Moz doesn't want to romanticise the Smiths to the detriment of his solo career.
      thanks amy, 1990 does add context,

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