Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

BrummieBoy

BrummieBoy
"The Morrissey myth. Not a seer, or a pioneer, or a free spirit — just a bore" Michael Henderson 26 October 2013

"This kind of pretentiousness has been taken at face value for so long by the more credulous members of the pop media that it’s no surprise that Morrissey regards himself as an artist...This is not an iconoclast speaking. Morrissey is not a seer, or a pioneer, or a free spirit cutting through swaths of prejudice. He’s a bore, every bit as tedious as the buffer who drains a chota peg in St James’ and tells his companions the world has gone to the dogs.

Shamefully Penguin fell for this ruse, and lent a spurious respectability to a mucky exercise. They must know they will never be allowed to forget it...

It is worth quoting Bennett, one of the few people of whom Morrissey approves. ‘It’s all very well never to do what is expected of you,’ he wrote in The Old Country, ‘but what do you do when the unexpected is what people have come to expect?’ Quite.

Morrissey is midway through his sixth decade and, emotionally speaking, he’s still waiting for his balls to drop. You can’t help thinking it has been a sad life."

http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/9063331/morrissey-this-charmless-man/
 

Playcat2000

New Member
"The Morrissey myth. Not a seer, or a pioneer, or a free spirit — just a bore" Michael Henderson 26 October 2013

"This kind of pretentiousness has been taken at face value for so long by the more credulous members of the pop media that it’s no surprise that Morrissey regards himself as an artist...This is not an iconoclast speaking. Morrissey is not a seer, or a pioneer, or a free spirit cutting through swaths of prejudice. He’s a bore, every bit as tedious as the buffer who drains a chota peg in St James’ and tells his companions the world has gone to the dogs.

Shamefully Penguin fell for this ruse, and lent a spurious respectability to a mucky exercise. They must know they will never be allowed to forget it...

It is worth quoting Bennett, one of the few people of whom Morrissey approves. ‘It’s all very well never to do what is expected of you,’ he wrote in The Old Country, ‘but what do you do when the unexpected is what people have come to expect?’ Quite.

Morrissey is midway through his sixth decade and, emotionally speaking, he’s still waiting for his balls to drop. You can’t help thinking it has been a sad life."

http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/9063331/morrissey-this-charmless-man/

But he is still awesome and we love him so Michael Henderson can go f*** himself.
 

Peterb

Well-Known Member
In a way, I think Michael Henderson and the woman who wrote the Guardian article last week and maybe Brummieboy (Christ please don't this
bring down your ire on me Brummie. You know I'm a fan) are making the same mistake
that they implicitly accuse the fans of making. That it by focussing on the froth.
Essentially he should be judged as an artist.
All the stuff about his sexuality and opinions and stuff, surely they're distractions?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
In a way, I think Michael Henderson and the woman who wrote the Guardian article last week and maybe Brummieboy (Christ please don't this
bring down your ire on me Brummie. You know I'm a fan) are making the same mistake
that they implicitly accuse the fans of making. That it by focussing on the froth.
Essentially he should be judged as an artist.
All the stuff about his sexuality and opinions and stuff, surely they're distractions?

Peterb, you're making a point about fiction in another thread and about how it can convey a reality that non-fiction can't and I understand that, I think. I prefer biography myself, but I enjoy fiction. Fiction often is based on reality and making it fiction allows us to explore areas that would be problematic in non-fiction. Much of The Sopranos is based on real people, for example, if not specific real people, and making it about specific real people would be impossible. I mean you couldn't make a film about real contemporary criminals of that sort and name them, and you couldn't explore their family relationships. Who would know? It's got to be fiction to work.
Now, consider that this is also true of Morrissey's art. How can his opinions be a distraction from his art, particularly when they are in this case his own words and have not been manipulated by editors? I don't think Celine Dion's art would suffer or be enhanced by knowing her politics, but Morrissey's music is often all about his opinions. I don't care who he has sex with but I care when he seems to be ashamed of it. And some of the things he says that we have made excuses for, for years, start to be more difficult to defend when he seems like maybe he really did mean them that way. "Life is hard enough when you belong here" never stuck out to me until I heard people that have had that sort of thing directed at them spoke about it. Then I thought, well, he can't mean it how they think. But if you look into discussions of that song people have built up epic arguments about how Morrissey felt that he himself did not belong and that this was some kind of message of solidarity and inclusion.
Well... maybe not. And it certainly matters. It matters to me because if I'm listening to someone decreeing who belongs here and who doesn't I'm not comfortable whether it's a song or a pamphlet from the National Front. We are not ready here and now in this forum to discuss his sexuality because sexuality is still not understood well enough. Homosexuality is illegal in some places even today. So let's forget that and get to the other stuff. Some of the other stuff is not very appealing and it does affect the experience of hearing him sing, in my opinion.
If he is antisemitic, xenophobic, or just judges people based on their appearance rather than their behaviour there's no reason not to look at that except that it takes the blinkers off and ruins the listening experience for a lot of people. For others it probably enhances it. I mean... he wrote this book and now we should ignore the icky bit? I disagree. I don't think that is froth.
 

Peterb

Well-Known Member
Peterb, you're making a point about fiction in another thread and about how it can convey a reality that non-fiction can't and I understand that, I think. I prefer biography myself, but I enjoy fiction. Fiction often is based on reality and making it fiction allows us to explore areas that would be problematic in non-fiction. Much of The Sopranos is based on real people, for example, if not specific real people, and making it about specific real people would be impossible. I mean you couldn't make a film about real contemporary criminals of that sort and name them, and you couldn't explore their family relationships. Who would know? It's got to be fiction to work.
Now, consider that this is also true of Morrissey's art. How can his opinions be a distraction from his art, particularly when they are in this case his own words and have not been manipulated by editors? I don't think Celine Dion's art would suffer or be enhanced by knowing her politics, but Morrissey's music is often all about his opinions. I don't care who he has sex with but I care when he seems to be ashamed of it. And some of the things he says that we have made excuses for, for years, start to be more difficult to defend when he seems like maybe he really did mean them that way. "Life is hard enough when you belong here" never stuck out to me until I heard people that have had that sort of thing directed at them spoke about it. Then I thought, well, he can't mean it how they think. But if you look into discussions of that song people have built up epic arguments about how Morrissey felt that he himself did not belong and that this was some kind of message of solidarity and inclusion.
Well... maybe not. And it certainly matters. It matters to me because if I'm listening to someone decreeing who belongs here and who doesn't I'm not comfortable whether it's a song or a pamphlet from the National Front. We are not ready here and now in this forum to discuss his sexuality because sexuality is still not understood well enough. Homosexuality is illegal in some places even today. So let's forget that and get to the other stuff. Some of the other stuff is not very appealing and it does affect the experience of hearing him sing, in my opinion.
If he is antisemitic, xenophobic, or just judges people based on their appearance rather than their behaviour there's no reason not to look at that except that it takes the blinkers off and ruins the listening experience for a lot of people. For others it probably enhances it. I mean... he wrote this book and now we should ignore the icky bit? I disagree. I don't think that is froth.

Everything you say is reasonable enough. Maybe it's just me but I've never analysed his lyrics or related them to what he has said. They're just great words that fit in a great song. Similarly, his book, so far, is simply a great read. But I understand where you're coming from.
 

BrummieBoy

BrummieBoy
In a way, I think Michael Henderson and the woman who wrote the Guardian article last week and maybe Brummieboy (Christ please don't this
bring down your ire on me Brummie. You know I'm a fan) are making the same mistake
that they implicitly accuse the fans of making. That it by focussing on the froth.
Essentially he should be judged as an artist.
All the stuff about his sexuality and opinions and stuff, surely they're distractions?

Largely agree, in which case: why did he release this travesty of a book stuffed full of speculations on his (a)sexuality, opinions and stuff? when he can't write? didn't he realise?

He should be judged artistically on his vocals and lyrics, he does nothing else. Other than vocal melodies, he can't write music and he certainly can't write prose.
 

BrummieBoy

BrummieBoy
Everything you say is reasonable enough. Maybe it's just me but I've never analysed his lyrics or related them to what he has said. They're just great words that fit in a great song. Similarly, his book, so far, is simply a great read. But I understand where you're coming from.


& @anonymous

If this book had been entitled "Magical-Realist Stream of Consciousness: An Imaginary C.V" it would be just fun. However, as it claims to be both an "Autobiography" and a serious artistic statement, it's ridiculous to give Morrissey a pass.

For example, his crass and inflammatory use of the word "Israelites" in relation to LA music moguls. He absolutely knew what the reaction would be, but he thinks he can troll and never be finally cast into the abyss as he's got away with it for so long. If he claims there's a 'conspiracy' against his career stopping him selling records, then links that to Jewish business people who are subject to egregious 'conspiracy theories' by racists, he can't fail to understand why eyebrows are raised. At best, he's a thick troll and irresponsible, or anti-semitic at worst. I don't know which unless/until he is actually interviewed by someone who doesn't fluff him throughout the interview as some untouchable 'icon'. He isn't. His achilles heal/feet of clay are there in print. His own words. No excuses possible.

With his face-time attention whore comments on missing Madeleine McCann he's expelled himself serious consideration as a thinker, by all but the most delusional fan/cult consideration

There's no contextualisation or apologies for previous egregious errors of taste and judgemetn from Brighton to Oslo to David Banda to the Chinese 'sub-species'. He seems to think that because he is a minor celebrity that that means he is beyond a metaphorical slap about the ear. Well, he's not.

You don't see the irony when you write "I've never analysed his lyrics or related them to what he has said. They're just great words that fit in a great song. Similarly, his book, so far, is simply a great read."? It amuses me that Morrissey thinks he is a credible 'intellectual' and that he is above 'thick as pig shit pop stars" when, on the evidence of this ridiculous book, he lacks the power of critical thought, his fans don't read it before commenting, and many, like you, are totally disinterested in his words anyway. It's just someone droning over a banging beat. Mostly, it is.

Morrissey has the fans he deserves, but not a wider Audience. Most who buy the book do so to laugh AT him, not WITH him. He can't evade that realisation for ever. Not even until Christmas. He is revealed as a flake, and is indeed now "This Charmless Man".

regards. BB.

Reader meet Author: Reader doesn't read, Author can't write..what could possibly go wrong?
 

realitybites

making lemonade
Subscriber
& @anonymous

If this book had been entitled "Magical-Realist Stream of Consciousness: An Imaginary C.V" it would be just fun. However, as it claims to be both an "Autobiography" and a serious artistic statement, it's ridiculous to give Morrissey a pass.

For example, his crass and inflammatory use of the word "Israelites" in relation to LA music moguls. He absolutely knew what the reaction would be, but he thinks he can troll and never be finally cast into the abyss as he's got away with it for so long. If he claims there's a 'conspiracy' against his career stopping him selling records, then links that to Jewish business people who are subject to egregious 'conspiracy theories' by racists, he can't fail to understand why eyebrows are raised. At best, he's a thick troll and irresponsible, or anti-semitic at worst. I don't know which unless/until he is actually interviewed by someone who doesn't fluff him throughout the interview as some untouchable 'icon'. He isn't. His achilles heal/feet of clay are there in print. His own words. No excuses possible.

With his face-time attention whore comments on missing Madeleine McCann he's expelled himself serious consideration as a thinker, by all but the most delusional fan/cult consideration

There's no contextualisation or apologies for previous egregious errors of taste and judgemetn from Brighton to Oslo to David Banda to the Chinese 'sub-species'. He seems to think that because he is a minor celebrity that that means he is beyond a metaphorical slap about the ear. Well, he's not.

You don't see the irony when you write "I've never analysed his lyrics or related them to what he has said. They're just great words that fit in a great song. Similarly, his book, so far, is simply a great read."? It amuses me that Morrissey thinks he is a credible 'intellectual' and that he is above 'thick as pig shit pop stars" when, on the evidence of this ridiculous book, he lacks the power of critical thought, his fans don't read it before commenting, and many, like you, are totally disinterested in his words anyway. It's just someone droning over a banging beat. Mostly, it is.

Morrissey has the fans he deserves, but not a wider Audience. Most who buy the book do so to laugh AT him, not WITH him. He can't evade that realisation for ever. Not even until Christmas. He is revealed as a flake, and is indeed now "This Charmless Man".

regards. BB.

Reader meet Author: Reader doesn't read, Author can't write..what could possibly go wrong?

If that comment isn't anti-Semitic, I don't honestly know what is. I cannot for the life of me understand why there are exactly three people discussing this... you, me, and that blogger we both linked to in other threads. I am not even Jewish. And I could be wrong, but I don't think you are either.
 

Peterb

Well-Known Member
Re: Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

& @anonymous

You don't see the irony when you write "I've never analysed his lyrics or related them to what he has said. They're just great words that fit in a great song. Similarly, his book, so far, is simply a great read."?

Hey Brummie, I think I don't disagree with anything you say.
However, I seriously don't see the irony. I know I'm being thick but I don't see anything contradictory about what I said.
Even on re-reading I can't see what you mean.

- - - Updated - - -

If that comment isn't anti-Semitic, I don't honestly know what is. I cannot for the life of me understand why there are exactly three people discussing this... you, me, and that blogger we both linked to in other threads. I am not even Jewish. And I could be wrong, but I don't think you are either.
Ofcourse you are right.
Is there not some story about a fax he sent with some highly offensive anti semitic insult.
 

BrummieBoy

BrummieBoy
If that comment isn't anti-Semitic, I don't honestly know what is. I cannot for the life of me understand why there are exactly three people discussing this... you, me, and that blogger we both linked to in other threads. I am not even Jewish. And I could be wrong, but I don't think you are either.

It's because there is a vast reservoir of goodwill, hope and expectation invested in The Myth Of Morrissey, and, also, a lot of media careers riding his coat-tails to oblivion. At some stage, reality will intrude on the love-fest launch in Goteborg honeymoon. Then people will have to their senses and finally face what is actually written (which you also spotted). Come to terms with some unpleasant facts that have always been hidden in plain sight, but can no longer be ignored now that there has been this spectacular pile up ending his career.

For the critics who have fawned to realise they have been made fools of, to turn around read what is written and truthfully respond, is just too painful. At the moment. But when the shock wears off, others will see what you and I saw, felt like an electric shock. And then The Cult Of Morrissey disintegrates.

He is either a troll, a person with examined or unexamined issues about Judaism and the culture of that diaspora, or he is a complete idiot whose risible attempts at literature should be mocked remorselessly. Forever.
 

BrummieBoy

BrummieBoy
Re: Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

Hey Brummie, I think I don't disagree with anything you say.
However, I seriously don't see the irony. I know I'm being thick but I don't see anything contradictory about what I said.
Even on re-reading I can't see what you mean.

- - - Updated - - -


Ofcourse you are right.
Is there not some story about a fax he sent with some highly offensive anti semitic insult.

You're not being thick. Morrissey imagines people listen to his music because he claims he's intelligent. He isn't, and they don't. They listen because he has a beautiful voice and writes mostly wonderful lyrics, albeit they are a tragic indictment of his life. If you told Morrissey you thought his lyrics were not important to you as a listener, he'd be up and away from the table like you'd ordered frog's legs.
 

realitybites

making lemonade
Subscriber
Re: Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

You're not being thick. Morrissey imagines people listen to his music because he claims he's intelligent. He isn't, and they don't. They listen because he has a beautiful voice and writes mostly wonderful lyrics, albeit they are a tragic indictment of his life. If you told Morrissey you thought his lyrics were not important to you as a listener, he'd be up and away from the table like you'd ordered frog's legs.

But not even a peep from the dissenting reviewers? Did they actually read the book?
 

CrystalGeezer

My secret's my enzyme.
Re: Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

A bandwagon's a bandwagon. THe perceived racism one is not as interesting as his thoughts about The Smiths and the fact he isn't gay. Boohoo.
 

BrummieBoy

BrummieBoy
Re: Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

But not even a peep from the dissenting reviewers? Did they actually read the book?

I believe he waved other suspicious regime flags on his Emerging Markets Sales Tour. He accepts the 'honour' of Tel Aviv because, y'know, it means people love him. He'd love any crowd of more than 10 who pandered to his 'star' delusion. The people who 'flocked' to see him in Greece and Israel and the rest of those places probably went to see Justin Timberlake or Gaga the next week. They're the same well-heeled international tourist trash middle-class trustafarians who wander around London like cultural vampires trying to 'understand' the culture of the island of Britain as parlayed through heritage industry tat like the Queen and Morrissey with his 'cups of tea that taste like Thames piss' tropes. Clueless. Like most fans of Morrissey. Like Morrissey.

Is there anywhere he wouldn't go because of the regime's behaviour. Oh, right: Canada...

Let's get Roger Waters and Morrissey to have a heated debate about Israel-Palestine. Of course, Morrissey couldn't debate with Roger for 5 minutes. And Mr Waters is easily one of the greatest lyricists of English popular music. No doubt, Morrissey will one day discover Pink Floyd just as he has done The Rolling Stones. But Pink Floyd are the big one, a cultural statement that will echo for centuries after Morrissey is vaguely recalled as a troll ingenue Wilde wannabe.

@anonymous "Morrissey is obviously anti-Semitic - everyone already knows how much he hates Jews."

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2012...n_1695141.html

I very much doubt he is either anti-Semitic or hates Jews. That's not the accusation and won't be unless he refuses to retract or address his imagery. The accusation is of inexcusable and deplorable writing, using words like 'tribe' and 'Israelite' to discuss the LA music moguls who, allegedly, frustrated his 'bigger than Elvis' nonsense fantasy. He's probably too stupid to realise what he's done: hence my anger at Penguin who have realised, but put him out for the public stocks, just to sell a few more copies. Or maybe they too haven't even read the book yet, and didn't read the ridiculous draft manuscript before it went to the printers. It needs a re-write with Errata and Apologies, not Apologias for the crimes against taste and literary decency contained within. Morrissey's get-out clause: Blame Penguin. He was ill, they had a duty of care. He's just a confused teenager of 54 and can't be held responsible for his actions given his health problems prior to publication. And on and on. You can be sure his 'people' are brainstorming all this now. Trust me on this one.
 

BrummieBoy

BrummieBoy
Re: Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

A bandwagon's a bandwagon. THe perceived racism one is not as interesting as his thoughts about The Smiths and the fact he isn't gay. Boohoo.

I don't see racism. I see the unredacted use of N****r, not N***a, which is as tiresome as Tarantino and indicative of the same unexamined white Privilege. Like Tarantino, Morrissey is a provocative troll pour epater les bourgeois. I, personally, don't think anyone should use the N word lightly, especially not rappers of colour, whether black, brown or Caucasian. Or shock-jock singers or auteurs. You can't hide your skin colour, but you can hide your sexuality easily, some claim that's what Morrissey has done, but he hasn't, he just hasn't confirmed it exists, and thinks that's 'intriguing' rather than boring. Asexual? Come out of the closet! Nobody cares. Yes, he's felt the need to deny the label 'gay' but hasn't clarified why. Is it because he's homosocial and asexual? Or thinks that word would damage his career if he allowed it to be attached to debate about his relationship with Jake and 'Gelato'? Seriousy, who cares? It's 2013, not 1963. I know he was traumatised by what happened to Jobriath, but if he's so insecure that he has to deny like Tom Cruise, rather than refuse to defuse like Matt Dimon, then that's all very 'interesting'. but not for the reasons he imagines.

I'd love to see Krishnan interview Morrissey on Channel 4 news, about his use of the words "n****r, fatso, and Israelite, etc. And about his, ahem, 'deeply mysterious' sexuality/asexuality/dance of 7 veils about his private life. Oh, and why was he so outraged at being asked if he'd ever gone 'cottaging' when he wrote the lyrics to "Handsome Devil" which can quite easily be interpreted as a comment on anonymous underground gay/bi male sexual subcultures? Why did he threaten to sue Melody Maker? What on earth would it mean to say "yes/no" to a simple question: did you seek anonymous sex as a teenager? I did, so what? Why does he worship Orton, and why does he try and buy Charles Hawtry's house and add a rather interesting bit of prose to that account about sailors and blow-jobs? Why does such rough trade stuff fascinate him so if he isn't gay and has never sucked a man's cock or taken it up the arse? Or has he and didn't like it? I've shagged men for Jayzus, and find it very odd that anyone in this day and age finds that remotely 'scandalous' or 'damaging'. Or did even in 1983 when Jimmy Somerville stumbled on me blowing a policeman in Hyde Park. At least I think it was Jimmy, but he had that clone look so it might have been a fan of his. He *might* instruct his lawyers to contact me via NSA/GCHQ to deny he was on the prowl for manflesh and seek punitive damages. Oh, dear! I don't mean to ruin your reputation, Jimmy! Don't cry for me, Liberace, and don't sue me in the High Court, like all the other Norman Toraigh Reputation Whores!!! *sigh*

Quentin tells Krishnan he's "shutting your butt down". It would be hilarious were Morrissey to say the same in relation to such questions. Would he ever dare to face a serious live interview? I doubt it!

 
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realitybites

making lemonade
Subscriber
Re: Morrissey. "This Charmless Man"

I believe he waved other suspicious regime flags on his Emerging Markets Sales Tour. He accepts the 'honour' of Tel Aviv because, y'know, it means people love him. He'd love any crowd of more than 10 who pandered to his 'star' delusion. The people who 'flocked' to see him in Greece and Israel and the rest of those places probably went to see Justin Timberlake or Gaga the next week. They're the same well-heeled international tourist trash middle-class trustafarians who wander around London like cultural vampires trying to 'understand' the culture of the island of Britain as parlayed through heritage industry tat like the Queen and Morrissey with his 'cups of tea that taste like Thames piss' tropes. Clueless. Like most fans of Morrissey. Like Morrissey.

Is there anywhere he wouldn't go because of the regime's behaviour. Oh, right: Canada...

Let's get Roger Waters and Morrissey to have a heated debate about Israel-Palestine. Of course, Morrissey couldn't debate with Roger for 5 minutes. And Mr Waters is easily one of the greatest lyricists of English popular music. No doubt, Morrissey will one day discover Pink Floyd just as he has done The Rolling Stones. But Pink Floyd are the big one, a cultural statement that will echo for centuries after Morrissey is vaguely recalled as a troll ingenue Wilde wannabe.

@anonymous "Morrissey is obviously anti-Semitic - everyone already knows how much he hates Jews."

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2012...n_1695141.html

I very much doubt he is either anti-Semitic or hates Jews. That's not the accusation and won't be unless he refuses to retract or address his imagery. The accusation is of inexcusable and deplorable writing, using words like 'tribe' and 'Israelite' to discuss the LA music moguls who, allegedly, frustrated his 'bigger than Elvis' nonsense fantasy. He's probably too stupid to realise what he's done: hence my anger at Penguin who have realised, but put him out for the public stocks, just to sell a few more copies. Or maybe they too haven't even read the book yet, and didn't read the ridiculous draft manuscript before it went to the printers. It needs a re-write with Errata and Apologies, not Apologias for the crimes against taste and literary decency contained within. Morrissey's get-out clause: Blame Penguin. He was ill, they had a duty of care. He's just a confused teenager of 54 and can't be held responsible for his actions given his health problems prior to publication. And on and on. You can be sure his 'people' are brainstorming all this now. Trust me on this one.

I agree. I think is just carelessness and ignorance. And the failure of an editor to actually edit.
 
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