Which Smiths song was inspired by the Chernobyl disaster? - RadioX

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Anonymous, Jun 14, 2019.

By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2019 at 1:30 PM
  1. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    THE SMITHS

    Which Smiths song was inspired by the Chernobyl disaster?
    13 June 2019, 16:07 | Updated: 13 June 2019, 16:11


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    The nuclear power station’s accident in 1986 has been the subject of an acclaimed TV drama… but the real events prompted Morrissey and Johnny Marr to write one of their most famous songs.

    One of the most talked about TV series of 2019 is HBO/Sky’s Chernobyl, about the nuclear disaster that befell the Soviet power station in April 1986. The hard-hitting mini-series, written by Craig Mazin, and directed by Johan Renck, has prompted a lot of conversation about the incident - but did you know it inspired one of The Smiths’ most enduring hits?

    One of the most rabble-rousing of The Smiths' songs, Panic was one of the Manchester band’s biggest hits, making Number 11 in the UK charts in the summer of 1986. The song - a stomping, guitar led tune that owes a lot to Metal Guru by Marc Bolan - talks of civil unrest around the country and bemoans the fact that “the disco” and “the DJ” play music that “says nothing to me about my life”.

    The music press at the time took this to mean that The Smiths - and Morrissey in particular - were attacking hip hop culture and black music in general. Paolo Hewitt in the NME wrote: “When he starts using words like disco and DJ, with all the attendant imagery that brings up for what is a predominantly white audience, he is being imprecise and offensive." Even as recently as 2012, Buzzfeed called the song a “condemnation of dance music”.

    Morrissey may have courted controversy before and after this furore, but the genesis of Panic was down to an exasperation at 1980s pop culture in general.

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    An angry Johnny Marr put the record straight in the NME in February. He explained that the song was inspired by the news reports about Chernobyl, and the terrible accident at a nuclear power plant in the then-Soviet Union.

    In the early hours of 26 April 1986, a safety test at the nuclear facility went catastrophically wrong, causing the core to explode and radioactive material was released into the air. An inxperienced team and inadequate designs at the plant were later found to be the cause - the quest to find whose fault it was is a key part of the Chernobyl TV series.

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    Hundreds of people were affected by the accident, including deaths from acute radiation sickness and the effects were felt as far away as the UK, where radioactive traces were found in parts of Northern Ireland, Wales, Northern England and Scotland. It remains, with the Fukushima accident in 2011, the worst nuclear disaster in history.

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    Marr recalled that he and Morrissey were listening to Radio 1’s Newsbeat programme giving the latest updates on the disaster - and at the time, people in the UK were worried about clouds of radioactive material heading their way.

    He remembered: “The story about this shocking disaster comes to an end and then, immediately, we're off into Wham!'s I'm Your Man. I remember actually saying 'what the fuck has this got to do with peoples' lives?'

    “We hear about Chernobyl, then, seconds later, we're expected to be jumping around to I'm Your Man... And so: 'Hang the blessed DJ'."

    Marr went on: “I think it was a great lyric, important and applicable to anyone who lives in England. I mean, even the most ardent disco fan wouldn't want to be subjected to that stuff, would they?"

    Morrissey and Marr were sufficiently outraged to put pen to paper and call out the inanity of daytime radio and pop music in general in the UK.

    It must have been odd to hear Panic on the radio then - among the songs that Morrissey and Marr were criticised. Thankfully, despite hitting the Top 20, The Smiths didn’t perform Panic on Top Of The Pops, sparing them no end of embarrassment.

    Panic went on to become a live favourite, thanks to the addition of second Smiths guitarist Craig Gannon, and Morrissey rammed the point home by cavorting around the stage with a noose to emphasise the chorus of "Hang the DJ, hang the DJ..."

    https://www.radiox.co.uk/artists/the-smiths/which-smiths-song-inspired-chernobyl-disaster/
     
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Comments

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Anonymous, Jun 14, 2019.

    1. Anonymous
    2. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      This feels like fake news to me. One of those after constructions you get when something enjoys a huge success like the series did.
      • Like Like x 1
    3. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      "The music press at the time took this to mean that The Smiths - and Morrissey in particular - were attacking hip hop culture and black music in general. Paolo Hewitt in the NME wrote: “When he starts using words like disco and DJ, with all the attendant imagery that brings up for what is a predominantly white audience, he is being imprecise and offensive." Even as recently as 2012, Buzzfeed called the song a “condemnation of dance music”."

      They just make up shit and print it as fact. Absolute bunch of cunts!
    4. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      It's true - from someone who was around at the time , that is the story that was told by Marr back in 86/87.
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    5. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Sorry, but I don't believe it for a second and never will. Panic was about riots all over UK.
    6. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      You can't just make up your own idea about what the song is about! Leave that to the NME! :)
      • Funny Funny x 1
    7. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Uhm no. I heard that explanation of the song being related to Chernobyl years ago.
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    8. jason lee charles hurst
      jason lee charles hurst
      Funny that, I thought "Panic" was partly written about that twerp DJ Steve wright on now BBC radio 2.
      in light of him not playing The Smiths on BBC radio 1. I watched an interview about a Smiths fan/bootleg band, doing something or other and Steve Wright was doing the interviewing and asked the question "what are your views on The Smiths writing the song panic about me?"
      never have i ever heard it being referenced about Chernobyl.

      P.S: i also had a t-shirt with the lyrics written on the back and an image of Steve Wright looking manic with the words "Hang the DJ" emblazoned across the top of him!



      Jason

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      Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
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    9. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Thank you and it was about him and some riots where radio ignored the riots and kept playing shit music.

      We've debunked this fake news story which was a sad attempt to hijack a swedish success story with a lie that would not have taken this long to publish in the first place it it has indeed been true.

      Next!
    10. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Checked all sources and no you are wrong, this is fake news.
      • Troll Troll x 1
    11. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      It wasn't about Chernobyl at all and had it been that news story would have run on these pages for ages. You tried and you failed to sell a fake news story.

      From a fellow troll I applaud the way you at least tried.
    12. The Truth
      The Truth
      But "This Charming Man" was about Hitler.
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    13. Surface
      Surface
      IP Hash: 51eca48cfc - this person has been posting all sorts of stuff for the last couple of days. It's as if they've just woke from a 40 year coma and discovered Morrissey and The Smiths?
    14. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Or, been banned and planning a comeback! :)
    15. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      They are probably 13-years old.
    16. The Wild Turkey
      The Wild Turkey
      Ya still got junk like this happenin'.
      I was watchin' a breakin' news update about a school shootin' a ways back.
      Next thing ya know, they cut to a commercial about murder burgers.
      Most of the slobs watchin' probably got hungry.
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    17. Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Nope.org
    18. SuedeMoz
      SuedeMoz
      One source you didn't check was Simon Goddard's Mozipedia (P. 316-317) which confirms the Chernobyl incident (and the playing of "I'm Your Man" immediately following the announcement) as the inspiration for Panic.
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    19. Happy as a pig in shit
      Happy as a pig in shit
      Well spotted, I knew I heard it somewhere, great book.
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