Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

All about The Smiths' music, gigs, stories, anything.

Postby Aziza » Tue Jul 25, 2006 2:55 pm

StellaMare wrote:Most of my close friends like the Smiths to some extent aswell, though not as much as I do.
Other people either don't know who they are or couldn't care less.
I've never had anyone critizise me for liking them..


You're very lucky... I have spent my life defending my love of The Smiths. :unsure:
All through my teenage years I was subjected to my older brother's incessant piss-taking Morrissey "impressions"... eventaully a couple of years ago he confessed that he actually quite respects Moz now (to the extent that he actually bought "First of the Gang to Die") although the mockery hasn't subsided.

Recently I seem to have found myself with a Moz-detesting boyfriend, so the misery continues... he introduced me to his mates thusly: "This is Aziza. She likes MORRISSEY." To which I faced interrogation from all of his mates about how I could possibly like 'that twat'.
I must confess though that sometimes I enjoy arguing with the boyf about it -- and it's quite funny to wind him up about how much I love Moz (I always wear my Smiths badges with pride when I go out with him) ;)
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Postby Lazy Dyke » Tue Jul 25, 2006 7:23 pm

My family laugh and joke about me being miserible, but are quite reasonable otherwise.

Nobody my age knows who they are - usually, and if they do, it;s because they like them.
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Postby Disco_dancer_in_a_coma » Thu Jul 27, 2006 3:59 am

I was a teenager in the late 80's, it wasn't uncommon for the less "top 40" of us to know and love The Smiths. But you know, in Houma, Louisiana, Smiths fans were fairly few and far between. :D I was introduced to them in 1986, and they were not yet popular in America at all then. In fact, they didn't get any radio play in the states until Strangeways... AFTER they'd split up!

They played in New Orleans in 1986. I have a bootleg of the concert. My college boyfriend was there (he was a few years older than I was--my parents would have never let me go to a concert in NOLA in 1986), and I will be eternally jealous that I missed that show. :(

And there's no accounting for taste. My Debbie Gibson CD was right next to Strangeways in my CD rack. And I also love Jimmy Buffett. I suppose I'm eclectic or something.
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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby Qvist » Sat Mar 22, 2008 11:41 pm

I remember things like being at a party once when I was in my 20s and a fellow Smiths fan, in fact a Morrissey look-alike, suggested that we should convince our friend the hostess to play some Smiths, and she moaned and groaned about what a moaner and groaner Morrissey is until we had to shut it off and listen to more "tasteful" crap like Billie Holliday (nothing on earth against Billie Holliday, but she's been co-opted by college students as a safe and generic choice).


I think this is what Garry Mulholland has very aptly described as "Fear of Music". If you're fortunate, you have one or a few music buddies who take it for granted that you will find it interesting to spend an evening not just talking and drinking, but also listening to a lot of music with nothing much in common except he thinks it's excellent. This is the sort of people who is not afraid to use music and to make it what it has the capacity to be for anyone ready to invest a bit of attention and care.

At least 95% of all people however suffer from "Fear of Music", and will, on all social occasions, be motivated primarily be fear of the inappropriate. Fear of playing something that puts other people off, fear of playing something that labels you the wrong way, fear of playing something that risks ridicule from the cognoscendi, fear of deviating from some unspoken norm of what music fits which occasion. Hence Billie Holliday: Almost nobody dislikes it, all music lovers virtually irrespective of taste respect it. It may not mark you as avantgarde, but certainly it shows that you do not have bad taste. It can be ignored if you want without much trouble, it is familiar and requires no effort to appreciate by anyone, it works as mood music, it is interesting enough to talk about. It is, in short, the sort of 100% perfectly safe music you put on when you don't want to take any chances. Not a big sin and we've all done it, but it does rather mean that if the particular party in question is going to get interesting, it sure as hell isn't going to have anything whatsoever to do with the music.

I used to find this a lot more difficult to accept as a student than I do now as an adult, and I think I was right about that, to be quite honest. There were - are - people who seem to think that playing anything else than a commonly agreed set of tasteful music that cannot possibly offend anyone is an unthinkable act of bad manners or base egotism, like showing up without having showered for two weeks or vomiting in the punch bowl. This suggests that music is a neccessary evil from a party point of view, like napkins - it's got's to be there don't you know, but if it becomes a topic of considerable attention, it's not the thing. Hence, much as I like Billie Holliday and Björk and all the other tastefully safe stuff that gets pushed on these occasions, it always did give me an overpowering urge to throw the CD out the window, followed by the host. Or leave. Or at the very least get drunk and insult someone. Or, well, get semi-drunk and be quite surly, or stay in the kitchen/on the balcony all evening and chat with the other refugees. Oh yes, they will be there, because any party automatically structures itself around a few dominat elements, and the music is almost always one of them. You can try to quench it by doing the Billie Holliday thing, but the sort of people who resent that sense it imediately, and respond instictively by simply drifting away from the core of the party and to its margins, where more congenitality might be found, an act of intuitive protest and rejection of the party's core values, one could perhaps say. :D

But that's when you're 18, or 25. Nowadays, it merely shows that the hosts are in possession of commendable hosting skills, because social gatherings are supposed to not be about music very much, but about more mature things. No, f*ck it, I've changed my mind - I still despise that just as much as I ever did.

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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby rorschach » Sun Mar 23, 2008 8:47 am

Qvist wrote:
But that's when you're 18, or 25. Nowadays, it merely shows that the hosts are in possession of commendable hosting skills, because social gatherings are supposed to not be about music very much, but about more mature things. No, f*ck it, I've changed my mind - I still despise that just as much as I ever did.

cheers


I think I like you. Reminds me of those people that regard themselves as Jazz fans because they own a Miles Davis record.

Anyways, when I tell people I like they Smiths they call them, but mostly me, gay(Which may or may not be true).
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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby helmoz » Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:03 pm

i like your description of "fear of music" - there have been far too many times i have been to a party or a club where they play exactly the same playlist every time and refuse to take requests that are even slightly different in case they frighten the punters with something unfamiliar. also, whenever older people have dinner parties they always seem to play something really bland in the background which can be easily ignored and talked over ("wallpaper music" as jeremy clarkson calls it).
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Re:

Postby WordsAsOldAsSin » Thu Apr 03, 2008 7:35 am

Aziza wrote:You're very lucky... I have spent my life defending my love of The Smiths. :unsure:
All through my teenage years I was subjected to my older brother's incessant piss-taking Morrissey "impressions"... ;)


oh God, has your brother met mine? because he did the exact same thing with the impressions. :P

By the way Aziza whats your heritage? Aziza is an arabic name right?
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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby lettucefetish » Fri Oct 30, 2009 5:23 pm

i wish i could find people who knew them- nobody's ever heard of them!
I've tried to get my friends into them and failed...I think some kids at school might like them, but only the ones that are like really really music collecteringy, like they say they like three hundred bands just cos it goes with their label. One of my friends told me it was 'depressing' music!!
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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby Pashernate_Lover » Mon Nov 02, 2009 7:23 pm

I don't find it depressing, I find it rather uplifting. I remember being a university freshman (wow-- was it THAT long ago??) and walking around at night with my portable cd player and headphones through the foresty bits of my campus under the moon and stars listening to Hatful of Hollow whenever I got depressed and needed a real pick-me-up. Magical.
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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby Nymphetamine » Mon Dec 14, 2009 12:14 am

I was one of the first people I knew to get into The Smiths, there was one chap before me who had been listening to them a year or so before me, but he never to my knowledge branded them his favourite band. He did tell me about them, he recommended them to me, but at the time I was into my Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit, Papa Roach and Disturbed phase, not too mention Metallica, Pantera and ZZ Top. I was very americanised thanks to Kerrang TV and Kerrang Magazine.

I was a misfit at school, the quirky child who never reached his full potential in anything, who wasn't popular and often mocked, who refused to stand out from the crowd. The Smiths intrigued me and I remember listening to them for the first time. I listened to This Charming Man and thought it was "rubbish", it sounded too pop like and was all coy and cutesy, it wasn't like the NU Metal and Heavy Metal genre I was used to listening to. I remember listening to The Boy with a Thorn in his Side and I could relate to the lyrics and it wasn't until I listened to Unhappy Birthday that I got it. I remember sitting in my room on my pc with this playing through headphones and I had it on loop for hours during the evening and I could relate to the bitterness and pain from rejection within the song and it started from there. My love of The Smiths was born, my idolisation of Morrissey was born. In the coming months, I stopped listening to Linkin Park and Papa Roach and in the coming years become more interested in British music, The Beatles, The Cure, The Stone Roses, David Bowie, Joy Division, Oasis, Pulp and Blur etc.

I never received a harsh time for liking The Smiths from friends and people I met, but my family suggested I seek counselling when they heard me playing Asleep and Unlovable at 2am in the morning while revising for a mock English test. I guess The Smiths are no longer controversial, society has changed completely since 1982, so much so that Morrissey came under fire for saying a few years ago in the NME where they tried the failed hatchet job on Morrissey painting him out to be a member of the British National Party.

I get more stick for being a Cure and Joy Division enthusiast. I remember wanting a tattoo of a segment of The Cure's infamous song "Pictures of You", it reads:

"If only I'd thought of the right words
I could have held on to your heart
If only I'd thought of the right words
I wouldn't be breaking apart.

It would have been a highly personal tattoo, but I decided against it. Everyone has a tattoo and I just couldn't possibly conform.
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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby neilno1 » Fri Feb 12, 2010 11:16 pm

I'm 17 discovered Morrissey and the smiths on I think 20th February last year when Moz was on Friday night with Johnathon Ross. Interestingly first he played 'im throwing my arms around paris' which i thought was crap, and still think ain't that great. But for some reason I persevered, and thank god I did. All I'd previously heard about Morrissey was really through my Dad who said he was a moaning depressing winging puff. On the basis I don't know why I felt I had to hear his next number but thank fuck I did. He played this charming man with the fuller heavier sound he has been recently and not exaggerating it changed my life.

I am now constantly listening to the Smiths and Morrissey, haven't really listened to anything since to be honest, and am totally transfixed by the lyrics and ideals. On the subject of a stigma against smiths fans it is true. I make it a point of principle of making sure that everyone knows I love the smiths, perhaps through the hope I'll meet someone else who does. But anyone who has heard of them my age just goes, 'oh you go and slit your wrists and kill yourself'. Which is obviously bollocks and a bit annoying but who cares what people think, isn't that the point of the smiths hey,

'and if the people stare, then the people stare'

Viva Moz!
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Re: Atmosphere for Young Smiths Fans

Postby robsince1991 » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:38 pm

dunno weather this is relivent but im 18 years old, live in sheffield and am a huge smiths fan. when i first got into them i thought it was strange and something only i would listen within to in my age group apart from very few others. this is not the case however as i quickly met loads of other people in sheffield the same age as me (allot of them girls) who have a similare obsession with the band. there is allot of possible reasons for this but still i think its really intresting there is abit of a fan base of young people even 20 years on. and ive never been shy or reluctant to admit being a fan of the smiths to anyone my own age. most adults however roll there eyes and say something along the lines of "well hes abit deppressing isent he" obviously reffering to morrissey lol.
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Re:

Postby DAVIE » Sat Mar 13, 2010 1:37 pm

Well on Morrissey solo, there's lots of us young kids! But if you meet your Dad's friend and say you like The Smiths or any 80s band they'll say. Well you never lived in that era and you weren't there! Or your way too young to know The Smiths. But the thing is, we have more research on them now than they did in the 1980s.
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