The Smiths

English rock band / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982 and 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.

Quick facts: The Smiths, Background information, Origin, G...
The Smiths
The Smiths in 1985 (l–r): Andy Rourke, Morrissey, Johnny Marr and Mike Joyce.
The Smiths in 1985 (l–r): Andy Rourke, Morrissey, Johnny Marr and Mike Joyce.
Background information
OriginManchester, England
Years active1982–1987
Past members

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.[6] In 1986, the band briefly became a five-piece only in concert 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. Rourke died in 2023.

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