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Difference between revisions of "The Smiths"

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| Associated Acts
| Associated Acts
| {{{Associated Acts |<span class="unknown">[[Sandie Shaw]], [[Kirsty Maccoll]]</span>}}}
| {{{Associated Acts |<span class="unknown">[[Sandie Shaw]], [[Kirsty MacColl]]</span>}}}
| Official Website
| Official Website

Revision as of 16:59, 13 June 2012

The Smiths
Members Morrissey
Johnny Marr
Andy Rourke
Mike Joyce
Past Members Dale Hibbert
Craig Gannon
Years Active 1982-1987
Record Labels Rough Trade Records (UK), Sire Records (US)
Associated Acts Sandie Shaw, Kirsty MacColl
Official Website Unknown




Post Careers


Johnny Marr

After Marr left The Smiths, he was very briefly an official member of The Pretenders. In late 1987, he toured with the band and appeared on the single "Windows Of The World". He recorded and toured with The The from 1988 through 1994, recording two albums with the group while simultaneously forming Electronic with New Order's Bernard Sumner. Electronic were intermittently active throughout the 1990s, releasing their final album in 1999. Marr has also worked as a session musician and writing collaborator for artists including Oasis, Pet Shop Boys, Billy Bragg, Black Grape, Jane Birkin, The Talking Heads, and Beck. In 2000, Marr formed The Healers and their debut album Boomslang was released in 2003, with all lyrics and lead vocals by Marr. A second album was originally scheduled for release in April 2005, and a short tour was expected soon after, but Marr has since stated that the band is on the "side burner" for the time being. In 2011, Marr began performing with The Healers again, although with a completely new line-up and is currently writing and recording material for a new Healers album.

In 2006, Marr began work with Modest Mouse's Isaac Brock on songs that eventually were featured on the band's 2007 release, We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank. The band subsequently announced that Marr was a fully fledged member, and the line-up toured extensively throughout 2006–07. The album reached number one on the American Billboard charts in late March 2007, Marr's highest chart position before that was with Electronic, who made the Top 40 in the singles chart with "Getting Away With It". In January 2008, Marr began working with Wakefield indie group The Cribs. In 2009, Marr recorded an album with the band titled Ignore the Ignorant, which was released on later that year. In April 2011, it was confirmed that Marr would no longer be part of the band.

Marr played a large role in scoring the 2010 Christopher Nolan film Inception with composer Hanz Zimmer. Using a 12-string-guitar, he produced repetitive, simple melancholic tones that became a character theme for the protagonist, played by Leonardo DiCaprio. On 13 July 2010, Marr performed with an orchestra conducted by Zimmer for a live internet broadcast of the soundtrack. Marr also worked on the soundtrack for the film The Big Bang in 2011.

Andy Rourke

Immediately after the break-up, Rourke and Joyce played with Sinéad O'Connor, with Rourke appearing on her 1990 album I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got. Along with Craig Gannon, they provided the rhythm section for two 1989 singles by Morrissey – "Interesting Drug" and "The Last Of The Famous International Playboys". Rourke also played bass on Morrissey's 1990 singles "November Spawned A Monster" and "Piccadilly Palare" and co-penned the songs "Yes, I Am Blind", "Girl Least Likely To" and "Get Off The Stage". Rourke has also played and recorded with The Pretenders, Killing Joke, Badly Drawn Boy (with whom Rourke toured for two years), Aziz Ibrahim (formerly of The Stone Roses), and ex-Oasis guitarist Bonehead as Moondog One, which also included Mike Joyce and Craig Gannon. Rourke also played bass for Ian Brown, both on tour and on Brown's album The World Is Yours.

Rourke, his then-manager Nova Rehman, his production company, Great Northern Productions, and others organized Manchester v Cancer, a series of concerts to benefit cancer research. The initiative was prompted when Rehman's father and sister were diagnosed with the disease. The first Manchester v Cancer concert took place in January 2006. It featured a reunion between Rourke and Johnny Marr, who performed one song together. The second Mancehster v Cancer concert took place in March 2007. Rourke performed with former Oasis guitarist Bonehead's band Elektrik Milk. Rourke was less involved in organizing the third concert in February 2008 or the fourth in December 2009.

In 2007, Rourke formed Freebass with bass players Mani (ex-The Stone Roses) and Peter Hook (ex-New Order) and remained active in the group until August 2010. Early in 2009, he relocated to New York City, where he has a program on East Village Radio and works as a club DJ with Olé Koretsky under the name Jetlag.

Mike Joyce

Immediately after the break-up of the band, Joyce and Rourke played with Sinéad O'Connor. They, along with Craig Gannon, also provided the rhythm section for two 1989 singles by Morrissey – "Interesting Drug" and "The Last Of The Famous International Playboys" and their b-sides. Session work with Suede, Buzzcocks, Public Image Limited, Julian Cope, P. P. Arnold and Pete Wylie followed throughout the 1990s. Joyce, Rourke, and Gannon reunited to work on a project with fellow Manchester musician Aziz Ibrahim (formerly of The Stone Roses), ex-Oasis guitarist Bonehead (as Moondog One), and Vinny Peculiar.

In July 2007, Joyce along with Rourke released Inside The Smiths, a film which chronicled their experiences of being in the band. Both speak highly of Morrissey and Marr in the film and convey how special they believed The Smiths were and still are to them. In October 2007 Joyce toured the UK playing drums for Vinny Peculiar with Bonehead on bass guitar.

In February 2009, Joyce took his radio show 'Alternative Therapy' to Manchester Radio online. In April 2010, the show moved to East Village Radio, as Mike Joyce's Coalition Chart Show. Joyce has been working in FM/Internet radio broadcasting for the past several years, alongside his worldwide club djing career. His show ‘Alternative Therapy’ began broadcasting in 2006 on 96.2 The Revolution. The station was taken over by Steve Penk in 2008 and Joyce took his show to Manchester Radio Online, which achieved an audience of 5 figures. The success of Joyce’s show caught the attention of Jon Tattersall from The Official Charts Company, who approached him to present The Coalition Independent Chart Show. After discussions, Joyce decided to take the chart show to East Village Radio. After 2 successful years at EVR, Joyce was approached by Beatwolf Radio with the offer of content director of the station, which he accepted. As well as hosting, “Alternative Therapy”, Joyce will also host 'The Official Record Store Chart', which features new releases from the top twenty singles and albums chart.

Joyce v Morrissey/Marr

Morrissey and Marr each took 40% of The Smiths' recording and performance royalties, allowing 10% each to Joyce and Rourke. As Joyce's barrister would later argue in court, the bassist and drummer were treated as "mere session musicians, as readily replaceable as the parts in a lawnmower".

In March 1989, Joyce and Rourke started legal proceedings against their former bandmates, arguing that they were equal partners in The Smiths and each entitled to a 25% share of the band's performance and merchandise royalties. Rourke, who was in debt at the time, settled almost immediately for a lump sum of £83,000 and 10% of royalties, renouncing all further claims. Joyce continued with the action, which eventually reached the High Court of Justice in December 1996. Morrissey and Marr had accepted the previous year that Joyce and Rourke were partners. "The only contentious issue was whether Mr. Joyce was an equal partner entitled to ¼ of the profits arising out of the activities (other than songwriting or publishing) of 'The Smiths'."

Joyce's barrister, Nigel Davis QC, asserted that "it was not until after the bestselling band split up in 1987 that his client discovered he was getting only 10% of the profits". Davis continued: "Mr. Joyce never agreed to 10%, he never assumed he was getting 10%. On the contrary he thought he was getting 25%." Morrissey and Marr – who were represented separately at the trial – insisted that the royalty split had been explained to Rourke and Joyce, though they were no longer sure when that discussion had occurred. As Marr's counsel, Robert Englehart QC, explained, "Some 13 years on, it is extremely difficult to pinpoint the moment when the 40:40:10:10 profit split came into being...But Morrissey and Marr acted throughout on the basis that they would be getting 40% each of the net profits from The Smiths earnings."

After a seven-day hearing, Judge Weeks found in favour of Joyce, ordering that he receive around £1 million in back-royalties and 25% henceforth. The judge also volunteered character assessments of the four antagonists, which were highly favorable to Joyce and Rourke (who gave evidence in Joyce's support):

He said of Mr. Joyce and Mr. Rourke that they had impressed him as straightforward and honest. He continued: "Mr. Morrissey is a more complicated character. He did not find giving evidence an easy or happy experience. To me at least he appeared devious, truculent and unreliable where his own interests were at stake." The Judge was also critical of Mr. Marr as seeming to the Judge to be "willing to embroider his evidence to a point where he became less credible." He concluded that where Mr. Morrissey's evidence differed from that of Mr. Joyce and Mr. Rourke, he preferred that of Mr. Joyce and Mr. Rourke.

The judge also ranked the band members by IQ, with Marr "probably the more intelligent of the four", Rourke and Joyce "unintellectual", and Morrissey presumably somewhere in between.

Morrissey offered a different interpretation in an interview eight months later:

The court case was a potted history of the life of The Smiths. Mike, talking constantly and saying nothing. Andy, unable to remember his own name. Johnny, trying to please everyone and consequently pleasing no one. And Morrissey under the scorching spotlight in the dock being drilled. "How dare you be successful?" "How dare you move on?" To me, The Smiths were a beautiful thing and Johnny left it, and Mike has destroyed it.

Asked some time before the trial whether he thought Rourke and Joyce had been short-changed, Morrissey responded: "They were lucky. If they'd had another singer they'd never have got further than Salford shopping centre." Morrissey's counsel, Ian Mill QC, conceded that his client's attitude "betrayed a degree of arrogance". Morrissey appealed against the verdict; Marr did not. The appeal was heard by the Court of Appeal in November 1998 and dismissed. Inspired by Joyce's success, Rourke sought legal advice on his own options. No further action appears to have been taken since that time. Rourke was declared bankrupt in 1999.

In November 2005, Mike Joyce told Marc Riley on BBC Radio 6 Music that financial hardship had reduced him to selling rare Smiths' recordings on eBay. By way of illustration, Riley played part of an unfinished instrumental known as the "The Click Track". Morrissey responded with a statement three days later revealing that Joyce had received £215,000 each from Marr and Morrissey in 1997, along with Marr's final back-payment of £260,000 in 2001. Morrissey failed to make his final payment because, he said, he was overseas in 2001 and did not receive the paperwork. Joyce obtained a default judgement against Morrissey, revised his outstanding claim to £688,000, and secured orders garnishing much of the singer's income. This was a source of ongoing inconvenience and grievance to Morrissey, who estimated that Joyce had cost him at least £1,515,000 in recovered royalties and legal fees up to 30 November 2005.


Studio Albums


Live Albums