Johnny Marr

English musician (born 1963) / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Johnny Marr (born John Martin Maher, 31 October 1963) is an English musician, songwriter and singer. He first achieved fame as the guitarist and co-songwriter of The Smiths, who were active from 1982 to 1987. He has since performed with numerous other bands and embarked on a solo career.

Quick facts: Johnny Marr, Background information, Birth na...
Johnny Marr
Johnny Marr in 2012
Background information
Birth nameJohn Martin Maher
Born (1963-10-31) 31 October 1963 (age 58)
Manchester, England
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • Musician
  • songwriter
  • singer
Instruments
  • Guitar
  • vocals
  • piano
Years active1982–present
Labels
Member of
  • Johnny Marr and the Healers
Formerly of
Website
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Born in Manchester, to Irish parents, Marr formed his first band at the age of 13. He was part of several bands with Andy Rourke before forming the Smiths with Morrissey in 1982. The Smiths attained commercial success and were critically acclaimed, with Marr's jangle pop guitar style becoming distinctive of the band's sound, but separated in 1987 due to personal differences between Marr and Morrissey. Since then, Marr has been a member of the Pretenders, The The, Electronic, Modest Mouse, and the Cribs, and he has become a prolific session musician, working with names such as Pet Shop Boys, Talking Heads, Bryan Ferry and Hans Zimmer.

Having released an album titled Boomslang in 2003 under the name Johnny Marr and the Healers, Marr released his first solo album, The Messenger, in 2013. His second solo album, Playland, was released in 2014, followed by a third, Call the Comet, in 2018. Marr's autobiography, Set the Boy Free, was published in 2016.[1]

Marr was voted the fourth-best guitarist of the last 30 years in a poll conducted by the BBC, in 2010.[2] Phil Alexander, editor-in-chief of Mojo, described him as "arguably Britain's last great guitar stylist".[3] In 2013, NME honoured Marr with its "Godlike Genius" award: "Not content with rewriting the history of music with one of the world's greatest ever bands, the Smiths, he's continued to push boundaries and evolve throughout his career, working with some of the best and most exciting artists on the planet."[4]