Hi everyone, I hope you’ve had a good week and are enjoying the weekend… or what’s left of it at least. If you read my post last week you’ll know it was a bit of a strange one. There was a mix of positive and negative feelings within me at the time of writing it, but it’s something I wanted to share with you. As I said last week, I’m only human. Life certainly isn’t perfect, but it’s what you make it and I’m not afraid to admit that I have struggles sometimes.
I’m not reviewing any products this week or telling you about a shopping experience. Don’t get me wrong, I love writing that sort of thing for you guys but this week I wanted to talk about someone I admire greatly: Steven Patrick Morrissey.
Here’s a little bit of background for you, as I’ve not encountered many people who know who Morrissey is, which is downright bizarre. If you do know who this beautiful human is, then good for you. Feel free to skip ahead a paragraph or so..
Steven Patrick Morrissey was born in Lancashire on May 22nd 1959. He was born into a family with an Irish background but lived in Manchester in his youth. In 1982 he and Johnny Marr formed The Smiths – the greatest indie band I’ve ever known. They are literally the soundtrack to my life. And no, I haven’t seen 500 Days of Summer…
I found The Smiths like many people do – during a darker time in their life. At the time, I still had a few years before I was out of my teens and I lived in Germany with my family, who were stationed over there with my dad who is in the Armed Forces. I felt really cut off from the rest of the world – I went to school with a lot of British kids who were in the same boat as me, but they didn’t really stick up for their own; in fact, if I’m honest they weren’t the easiest to get along with and me being socially awkward didn’t help. I had a few friends but I was admittedly lonely. I tried to learn German when I was in school but I couldn’t grasp it, so outside of the camps we lived on and nearby I was even more cut off than before. We didn’t even have internet. Talk about first world problems, but when the main way of keeping in touch with your school friends from the UK isn’t that easily accessible, it can be a little rough.
Sadly, I don’t remember how I came across The Smiths in the first place. They just ended up on my playlist one day and they never really left. I can’t say that I’ve gone many days however without listening to some of my favourite and most relatable songs of theirs. Songs such as I Know It’s Over and How Soon Is Now? have always been songs that I can relate to on another level. For most of my teenage years I dealt with depression, and unfortunately my demons have followed me along the path of adulthood.
Of course, The Smiths are not the only musicians I’ve fallen in love with. I adore Amy Winehouse for her brutally honest lyrics that were based on her life experiences. I love an artist that can be real to themselves and if you’ll pardon the pun, sing their lives (Morrissey fans will know what I mean). In my opinion, it makes the music deeper, and you can really see the passion from an artist when songs are written this way.
That’s why I love Morrissey as an artist, even away from my beloved indie band. Hearing lyrics like “You found love but never found peace with your life“ or “Wish I had the charm to attract the one I love. But you see, I’ve got no charm..” when I’ve been in a pretty crappy place mentally have given me an outlet, too. There is something about Morrissey’s work that speaks out to me and many others. Even when Morrissey was in The Smiths he was never afraid to show who he was and what he believed in (even if it was incredibly controversial). Without trying to sound like a biased and somewhat idiotic fan-girl, Morrissey has always shown people all over the world of all ages that it is okay to be who you are and not give a shit about anyone else’s perception of you. Now that may seem rather cliché to you, but his attitudes and work have given a lot of people hope. There is nothing wrong with being vulnerable and having shame. It is what makes you a human being.
I have always loved Morrissey for tackling the typical idea of masculinity. Morrissey has always been sexually ambiguous, mysterious yet at the same somewhat pours out of his lyrics is very “what you see is what you get“.
I will admit that Morrissey does have many flaws. Do not read this post and think of it as biased hero worship… In fact, as he has gotten older and more cantankerous, he sadly reminds me of a drunken, politically-driven conversation at 3am. While I have listened to some of his new music from his latest album that is due to release in November, I don’t believe he has lost his touch in terms of music. Spent the Day In Bed is so ironically upbeat even my OH likes it!
One last thing I would like to talk about is how Morrissey and The Smiths have influenced many people including myself. If you are aware of who Morrissey is you’ll know that he is now Vegan but has been Vegetarian for most of his life. If I recall correctly from an article I read, Morrissey was mentally scarred by a documentary about abattoirs as a young child. In 1985 The Smiths released their second studio album, Meat Is Murder.
Before I was aware of even the existence of my favourite band, I wanted to stop eating meat. I have been an animal lover all my life and I can finally say that I have successfully made the transition to Vegetarian, which I have been now for almost 6 months. My goal is to eventually become Vegan and cut out any animal-made products altogether. I never had the willpower to get to that point until this last June, and I believe that the 1985 album’s title song Meat Is Murder has a powerful message.
So that’s it for this week’s post. I hope you’ve enjoyed it and maybe you’re even keen seeing what The Smiths are all about for yourself. If you’re already a fan of Morrissey then I’m sure you have your fingers crossed for a UK tour soon like I do!
See you next week! Xoxo