'I don't attach Morrissey's political opinions to his music' - Jimmi Simpson/Under The Radar Feature

Interview with Jimmi Simpson where he talks quite a bit about our Mozza.



Kyle Mullin (Under the Radar): Why did Morrissey leave a big impression on you?

Jimmi Simpson: Most of us find Morrissey when we're teenagers. And we think of ourselves as dreamers: "We're going to meet and write poetry in the cemetery, because we're gothy, and we don't fit in anywhere else." And to have someone sing about that, in such a frolicking way, it's like "Oh, you get me."... The thing that's so great about The Smiths is it transcends that angst of teenage years. You can pop it on in your 30s, 40s, 70s, and just feel understood for a second.

When you talk about being a misunderstood gothy kid, it reminds me of your character from House of Cards. That was my first introduction to you, actually, and you were immediately memorable. Do you think The Smiths was as indispensable to him as they were to you?

Yeah, oh yeah. He was certainly an outsider. He was only comfortable with himself, his gerbil, and his dubstep. He liked his music a little more linear and, uh, through the center of his cortex than I do. [House of Cards showrunner] Beau Willimon actually wrote in that dubstep music as part of the character. Time and time again, we're connected to characters and storylines through song. Whether it's The Smiths sweetly bringing you along, or dubstep making your brain feel like it's crushed.

Does Morrissey's recent controversies spoil The Smiths at all for you? I saw Nick Cave say recently that fans of The Smiths shouldn't despair, but instead focus on the classic material, even if they disagree with him.

See, I've been following Nick Cave for ages and the things he's gone through in his personal life, and the way he's opening up the doors for other people to understand that experience through his keen observations...he's kind of like a saint. Of course I read that article as soon as it came out. I was torn for a while and there was a lull in my Morrissey listening, and then I read that Nick Cave article. And it was so eloquently stated. It wasn't just "Hold onto the classics" it was, I'm paraphrasing but it was something like: "You should understand, as musicians, we create a song and release it, it's a Rorschach test for you to make of it what you will." So now when I listen, I'm only projecting my stories on it. And I thank these artists so much for giving me this ability to meditate musically. But I don't attach Morrissey's political opinions to his music. Just read the Nick Cave article, it's brilliant. And it's truthful too. It's not giving anybody a pass, he's just explaining to you what's happening with the craft and the art of music.
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I’m so glad I’m not one of those bitter far left woke sheep, that walk around with blinkers on, believing fake news is actual reality, hating morrissey because some jealous journalist with a chip on their shoulder tells you how to think.....
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