Hand In Glove – The Smiths

Morrissey with his distinctive, folky singing and Johnny Marr with his amazing guitar riffs has had a huge effect on music in general since they first played a wonderful set for John Peel back in ’83. Morrissey spoke for the dispossessed and, had I been younger than the 21 year-old ‘mature’ man that I was, I’d have fallen hook, line and sinker for his world. Even at that age I could see the genius behind Morrissey – his words, his demeanour, his laissez-faire. Who could fail to like someone who was given a top ten of reasons to hate Morrissey in The Sun newspaper?

Without even knowing it our songs took on an edge of Smith-ness, from my whining on Mr. Magic (b-side to Where The Traffic Goes) to Adam’s guitar riff on What’s Gone Wrong (originally written in triplets and sounding pretty much like What Difference Does It Make). Soul Station is the bastard son of Reel Around The Fountain. Seeing them live in London, it was pretty obvious that they had a cult audience of Morrissey clones from the beginning. I kinda liked that, weird though it was.

And yes, it’s true, Morrissey did see us play at The Living Room. I remember him sitting on his own at a small round table nursing a beer. I wish I had the courage to go up and speak to him. He looked so lonely. Alan McGee did speak to him and wasted no time in trying to link us with them, inviting them to do a joint single. We offered Ghost of a Young Man. After lots of murmurings, it didn’t happen. But the thought was there.

But Morrissey didn’t forget the Minks completely. A few years back while being interviewed by Paul Morley, he mentioned us and in Q magazine and again with June Brides in Uncut. It’s nice to be remembered…


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