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smiths

why did you break up?

Well, this has been on the record for a while now…

You fell out with each other. That was it?

It wasn’t as simple as that. Things were getting out of hand, the more successful we were becoming. The music didn’t suffer that’s for sure but our personal dynamic…we used to very close at the start you know?

You drifted apart?

No. I think from my point of view it got a complicated, a bit twisted. And the other guys in the band were also kind of losing it a bit. There was a lot of drugs floating around. I dabbled but I tried not to let if affect the music and the band. But he started getting quite nasty with the others when they would make a mistake or show up late. I agreed with him though I’ve always been more kind of passive aggressive in these situations. It’s not an admirable trait at times but that’s how I tend to deal with stress and to be honest, i felt I shouldn’t have to deal with all of this fucking nonsense. For me, it was all about the music; writing, playing, recording, touring and we should all have focused on that instead of getting distracted.

How would you feel about a reunion?

I don’t know to be honest. I mean, part of me is like yeah! fuck, let’s do this! But then I start to think that my life now -with my own band, doing the odd session with really interesting people – it’s really good. I’ve got a nice family life going on and I feel stable for the first time in years. But then, we’ve all grown up haven’t we? Surely we can bury the hatchet and I would be lying if I said that the idea of getting back together didn’t excite me! There was magic there you know? We made some great fuckin music together! There is really only one reason we haven’t made it happen, all of the other petty recriminations of the past aside and everyone knows this, you know this! He doesn’t want to. He hates us apparently or at least he did a few years ago. Maybe he’s changed his mind. I mean, we’ve bumped into each other a few times and everything seems fine but I know there is a grudge there with me.

A grudge?

Yeah, I don’t know if I should go into it in case he gets his lawyers on to me again. He’s got a book coming out and I’m pretty sure from what I’ve heard that he goes into this a bit but yeah the main reason the band couldn’t go on is because he was infatuated with me. I mean we were soul mates musically don’t get me wrong, as close as mates can be but I wasn’t infatuated like he was. He was in love with me and because I didn’t feel the same way his behaviour became erratic towards the end, especially when the recording of the last album came around. I didn’t really say anything or bring it up but I made it clear by not responding to him and just concentrating on my guitar playing, writing tunes, getting lost in music and drinking a hell of a lot. It was unspoken in a way you know?

He’s been quoted recently as saying a reunion “would be unlikely but not outside the realm of possibility..”

Yeah, I’ve heard that but that’s not the full wording there now is it? You are twisting his words a bit. I think it was more, ” A reunion would be unlikely but not outside the realm of possibility. After all, they did manage to send a monkey into outer space.” So, I don’t know. It’s up to him. If we can move on from this thing and just remind ourselves of what got us into this industry in the first place. Just two lads with a passion for music,the power of a great pop song, the romanticism, the glory of that and how music can transport you to another place, away from the drudgery and the shit we saw consuming people we grew up with. We both had this dream and we lived it, are still living it I think. It can be magical, beautiful. I think we forget that sometimes. Our egos start getting in the way. But it’s all about creating that magic, creating popular art. Not elitist art, but these songs that connect everyone. It’s a gift, what we do it’s a bloody gift from the Gods and I feel we still have more to give. It’s our duty in a sense to give more before it all stops you know? To make those kids that feel like they don’t belong, that guy or girl in his bedroom listening to Bowie or Joy Division, reading books of poetry or what have you – feel that it’s okay. You are not alone.

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