Brett Anderson memoir Coal Black Mornings mentions Morrissey / The Smiths

Discussion in 'General Discussion archive 2018 (read-only)' started by Famous when dead, Mar 22, 2018.

By Famous when dead on Mar 22, 2018 at 3:12 PM
  1. Famous when dead

    Famous when dead Vulgarian Moderator

    Dec 7, 2000
    Birmingham, U.K.
    Just read Brett Anderson's Coal Black Mornings and there are 4 Morrissey mentions & a few Smiths ones too.
    Didn't think it was earth shattering enough for general discussion, but if anyone would like to see them cut'n'paste here - it's no problem.

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 30, 2018
    1. Peppermint
      Yes please! If it's no trouble :)
    2. Anonymous
      Yes do As I’d forgotten all about it. Was it good. I need to get on ordering it
    3. Famous when dead
      Famous when dead
      It was very well written tbf.
      Here are the Moz / Smiths excerpts:

      Even when events that now seem seismic happened, I seem to have blithely glossed over them, preferring to enthuse about what we had for dinner or the score of a football game. What a ‘deeply boring young man’ I must have been. Maybe Morrissey was right after all. I suppose I had yet to acquire any sort of emotional depth or any sense of perspective. Subjects like the complex landscape of my parents’ marriage are represented by the odd sentence like Mum and Dad had a row, revealing myself to be an unusually myopic and self-centred child.

      I’d fallen in love with the Fall’s wiry surrealism – records like This Nation’s Saving Grace and The Wonderful and Frightening World had become almost sacred to me – and I had worn my stylus down to a nub playing Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures. Meanwhile, The Smiths’ colossal shadow of influence was ever growing; theirs was such a unique place in the world of pop – cultish and still distinctly marginal but with the reach to make thrilling little forays into the mainstream, so being a fan felt just as transgressive as being into the Pistols years earlier. They had hovered around my consciousness until one solitary evening when I was listening to Peel on late-night Radio 1 and heard Johnny Marr’s gnawing, insistent guitar hook coming through my tiny transistor speaker and Morrissey’s saturnine promise of leaping in front of a flying bullet, and that was it for me. Theirs was a truly special chemistry, at once familiar but unique, a perfectly balanced dance between jangly conceit and pitch-black humour that held me enthralled for years.

      I don’t remember there being an especially strong logic about our choice of name beyond the simple fact that it just sounded right. Later journalists would force me to pin some story on to the moniker, and I would try to nicely do as I was asked and blabber on about concepts of ‘beauty through cruelty’ and references to Elvis or Morrissey songs. But the truth is, I liked the way it sounded and I liked the way it looked and sometimes, in music and in life, that’s all that really counts. So we were called Suede and armed with this new impetus and identity we marched gamely on.

      Our next show was yet another at the Falcon, but a country mile away from the cruel pantomime we had endured there in December. This time, the palpable frisson and murmur of excitement in the crowd wasn’t just because Morrissey, Suggs and Kirsty MacColl had turned up to see us, it was because at last we had something that people seemed to want.

      The first original piece that Bernard played us was something called ‘Miller Man’. I remember it being complex and melodic with an obvious stylistic nod to Johnny Marr and, indeed, The Smiths’ writing dynamic became our model, with me trying to weld lyrics and melody on to Bernard’s crammed, intricate opuses.

      Pantomime Horse’ is still one of the greatest ever Suede songs. When Bernard first played me the music it was in a different time signature, and I think my suggestion that we put it in 6/8 waltz time was inspired by The Smiths’ ‘That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore’. Anyway, it worked, and I set about writing a slightly self-piteous lyric that built to a wild, passionate denouement. The final scream of ‘Have you ever tried it that way?’ is born from the torment of sexual jealousy but it’s also intended as a probing, haranguing question about class and poverty and privilege.

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    4. Anonymous
      Thanks. Number two is an especially apt description I think of the smiths appeal. Number five is also interesting. I was thinking today about how morrissey is always able to graft some compelling melody to almost whatever composition he’s given (in the case of kill uncle not even completed music). Marr must have really needed this as I can’t imagine how anyone else could find room in his music for a vocal more memorable than his guitar lines but here we are. Morrisseys ability to fit in there musically speaking is a gift
    5. Peppermint
      Thanks for that, FWD. Not a particular Suede fan but as you say, very well written and some interesting stuff.
    6. joe frady
      joe frady
      Thanks FWD.
      í have the book, but í am a laughably slow reader, so í may finish it in time for Christmas. 2020. May just buy the tape...
      í saw BA 'do a talk' on Wednesday night at a local Library, and very entertaining he was too. He is ageing like a fine wine, despite all The Chemicals.
      Looking forward to getting the silver 'Suede' box-set next week.

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    7. gordyboy9
      used to be a big suede fan a while back,another example of a great frontman and a great guitarist,looks like a good read so will get it ordered.
      So Young is still one of my favourite tracks of all time.
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    8. Anonymous
      Yeah I’m gonna order it as well. Amusingly Douglas Coupland whom I’ve just started reading gave it a good comment
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    9. Jamie
      Waiting on my copy across the pond. So there is no mention of the oft-repeated story of Mike Joyce responding to their musicians wanted ad?
    10. countthree
      It's a very poetic title.
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    11. Famous when dead
      Famous when dead
      The only Joyce reference:
      "I can’t remember the exact wording but I know we namechecked The Smiths as an influence. One of the few people who answered was a Mancunian called Mike. What we didn’t know until he marched into the rehearsal room at the Premises was that it was Mike Joyce. We were all slightly in awe, but Mike was a real gentleman. He politely listened to our average songs and jammed along with us and offered advice, but never monologued or lectured or played the seasoned pro. Over the next few weeks he would take us under his wing and in his kind, avuncular way try to nurture and encourage us. I’d like to think he must have seen some potential, but maybe he just felt sorry for us or liked hanging out."
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    12. countthree
      Now we are curious. People will have to read a future Joyce's biography if they want to know what he thought about Suede during those days. Brett could have made a phone call. Or maybe he could send Joyce a private message using twitter. Isn't he curious?
    13. Bluebirds
      Hi fwd how is the book, read some conflicting reviews. Not a huge Suede fan after the first two albums (which still stand up today imo) but always had a bit of a soft spot for Brett.
    14. david ingemarsson
      david ingemarsson
      Good old Brett Anderson!

      And I quite liked the description of him as: "...very entertaining he was too. He is ageing like a fine wine..."
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    15. ACTON
      Thanks for that! I have the book and will be reading it over Easter. Suede is a great band, and they know how to give a great concert. Richard Oakes more than filled Bernard Butler's boots.
      Now I just have to finish the Bernard Sumner biography 'Confusion'.
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    16. ACTON
      Brett is a very smart and saavy guy. I'd say he could write a book of fiction that is legible and quite good, I mean I like his style of writing.
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