Morrissey A-Z: "I'm OK by Myself"


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We continue our tour through the letter "I" with this Morrissey/Tobias song, the closing track on the Years of Refusal album.

What do we think?


Love it! Great energy and tones. I like the way the pace seems to change to set up the different lyrical sections. I love all the "No oooooooooooooooooooooo" parts.

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Took me a while to warm up to this one, but once I did, I did for good. It’s a great rocker, with some of his most personal and revealing lyrics on the album. It’s quintessential 2009 Moz, I think.

This Charming Bowie

Welcome to this knockabout world
Love, love, love this track! Refusal is such a great album, especially in its sequencing: starting and finishing the album with two punchy, in your face songs is an exhilarating trick that carries momentum all the way through the album. Great vocal delivery, with production and intensity that sets this (and many other tracks) from standard chug-rock tropes. Lyrics were probably somewhat shocking at the time: Morrissey? OK by himself? But I think it illustrates the power that he has in isolation: it subverts the tropes of the past to open up interesting futures. And, of course, the ending is just completely bonkers, in the best way possible.


the leather belts.
always liked this,saw him do this in dundee about ten years ago and it just showed how good his voice was.some good lines as well.
9 okays/10 okays.


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Years of Refusal was a slightly weird one due to the fact that, as some of the reviewers noted, You Were Good in Your Time feels like such an obvious closer. It meant that the last two songs felt sort of tacked onto the end, and it didn't help that Sorry Doesn't Help isn't the strongest of tracks.

Judged on its own merits, I quite like I'm Ok By Myself and I enjoy its over the top bizarreness. It's not exactly subtle, but Morrissey is in great voice and Jerry Finn did a very professional job with the production (especially if, as reported, he wasn't fond of the song).

In the poll on the Hoffman board it ranked 67th from 264 solo songs.


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I quite like the melodrama of this one! Musically it's slightly better than the standard chug-rock backing (but only slightly) and the lyrics are entertaining. It's nowhere near a top-level Morrissey song for me, though...


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It's quite a statement to close an album with. Was he anticipating the rise of the morality brigade when he wrote:
I find I'm OK by myself
and I don't need you
or your morality to save me.

Yes, it is very powerful and his voice is very strong, but the music veers too close to heavy metal for me to wholeheartedly embrace it.


Amazing song - 10 out of 10, and a brilliant album closer. I'd love to know who (if anyone) the song is directed at. I know it's the obvious candidate, but was it written towards Johnny after Morrissey changed his mind and decided against that Smiths reunion mentioned in his autobiography? Was it aimed at Alain, who was finally given the boot with this album, and given his marching orders in the car park when he turned up for recording? Or was it for Jake, or one of the other 'significant others'? Or a mixture of all of 'em?

No 27

This song has no actual tune and the sentiments expressed were not new. Why anyone thinks otherwise is pretty baffling.

Ben Budd

Well-Known Member
Quite fun. Good bass sounds. Enjoyed Sol's solo at the end of each set playing this


Great "closer " on Years of Refusal . Not as good as Speedway or Hurling, but still great . I love the phrase homespun philosophy and I adore Solomon pounding the bass on the edge of the stage . Hmmm.... 8/10


A fine song if a bit bland to my ears. Has a nice energy I just wish parts of it were busier. I always felt birthday was the obvious closer for refusal

Ketamine Sun

Refusal has some great songs on it, this isn’t one of them.
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