When I was in high school there were only two musicians my mom and I could agree on to accompany us on long car rides – ABBA & The Smiths.
When I was lazing about Gainesville’s apartment complex swimming pools, post college graduation years, a good friend came back from his cross-country road trip with a Smiths pin he’d picked up in some random record store along the way for me. The pin has moved from hoodie to hoodie, to countless black cardigans through the years of cold office cubicles.
When I was fresh out of two-kids-in-two-years and back in the job market, hoping to land yet another really interesting entry-level job, I interviewed with my black cardigan over my dress. Mostly because I was too daft or naive to realize a Smiths pin on my cardigan during an interview might actually deter one from hiring me. I was hired and years later my then boss would tell me, casually, she hired me BECAUSE of my Smiths pin.
Years later, in a less interesting & ill-suited (for me) entry-level job, the corporation’s lawyer told me, over break room lunch, about driving in the back of a car with Morrissey. He worked for a law firm representing Morrissey, I believe, during another canceled tour legal matter. He said Morrissey made them stop the car on the side of an LA highway because he didn’t like the energy inside it. A car of giddy fans stopped & picked Morrissey up on the side of the road.
Repeatedly, consistently I am stopped because of my Smiths pin. And not always by people I would think had heard of them, much less liked them. After 25+ years in my life, The Smiths have taught me they are the great equalizers in life, to not judge a book by its cover & that joke isn’t funny anymore.
I put together some of my favorite Smiths songs in a playlist – for everyone.
The Smiths Mixtape
- Bigmouth Strikes Again
- Hand In Glove
- Frankly, Mr. Shankly
- A Rush And A Push And The Land Is Ours
- Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others
- I Want The One I Can’t Have
- That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore (2008 Remastered Version)
- Barbarism Begins At Home (2008 Remastered 7″ Version)
- Vicar In A Tutu
- Meat Is Murder
- Paint A Vulgar Picture
- Half A Person
- Girl Afraid
- Stretch Out And Wait
- Golden Lights
- Reel Around The Fountain
- I Know It’s Over