The Smiths

The Smiths
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

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The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982. The group consisted of vocalist Morrissey, guitarist Johnny Marr, bassist Andy Rourke, and drummer Mike Joyce. Critics have called them one of the most important bands to emerge from the British independent music scene of the 1980s. In 2002, the NME named the Smiths "the artist to have had the most influence on the NME". In 2003, all four of their albums appeared on Rolling Stone's list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time". The band broke up in 1987 due to internal tensions and have turned down several offers to reunite. Andy Rourke died from pancreatic cancer on May 19th, 2023.

Final lineup: Morrissey – lead vocals, percussion (1982–1987) Mike Joyce – drums (1982–1987) Andy Rourke – bass (1982–1986, 1986-1987) Ivor Perry – guitars (1987)

Former members Johnny Marr – guitars, piano, keyboards, harmonica (1982–1987) Steven Pomfret – guitars (1982) Dale Hibbert – bass (1982) James Maker – dancing, maracas, backing vocals (1982–1983) Craig Gannon – bass (1986), guitars (1986)

Session and touring members: Simon Wolstencroft – drums (1982) Guy Pratt – bass (1986)

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The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982, composed of singer Morrissey, guitarist Johnny Marr, bassist Andy Rourke, and drummer Mike Joyce. Morrissey and Marr formed the band's songwriting partnership. The Smiths are regarded as one of the most important acts to emerge from 1980s British independent music. The Smiths signed to the independent label Rough Trade Records in 1983 and released their first album, The Smiths, in 1984. Their focus on a guitar, bass and drum sound, fusing 1960s rock and post-punk, was a rejection of the synth-pop sound predominant at the time. Several Smiths singles reached the top 20 of the UK Singles Chart, and all their studio albums reached the top five of the UK Albums Chart, including the number-one album Meat Is Murder (1985). From that time, they bolstered their sound with the use of keyboards while still keeping guitar as the main instrument. They achieved mainstream success in Europe with The Queen Is Dead (1986) and Strangeways, Here We Come (1987), which both entered the top 20 of the European Albums Chart. In 1986, the band briefly became a five-piece with the addition of guitarist Craig Gannon. Internal tensions led to the Smiths' breakup in 1987, followed by public lawsuits over royalties. The members each said that the band would never reunite and refused all offers to do so.