The Smiths Turn Down $5 Million To Play Music Festival

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One of the most common questions in life, aside from the "Where do you work" or "Where are you from" questions is about music. Its a universal question and everyone has their own answers and reasons to enjoyment of music.

I consider my musical pleasure mostly derived by the 1980 New Wave bands, from such acts as New Order, Depeche Mode, The Cure, U2, Midnight Oil, and The Smiths to name a few. I'm not sure why but it was The Smiths that I mostly identified with, with its harmonic cords by Johnny Marr and deep lyrics of Stephen Patrick Morrissey (now just "Morrissey").

Even today I find myself retooling my iPod to create Morrissey / The Smiths playlists when I go into work. Every album that Morrissey makes I usually buy, hoping that once again he can capture that same spirit of 20 years ago. I always dream that one day I can see them again in concert, but knew that the band broke up on bad terms. Johnny Marr basically was a bad drunk, worn out from touring and tired of Morrissey's musical stubbornness. Marr said, "I didn't form a group to perform Cilla Black songs." Marr left the band in 1987, and Morrissey was very unhappy about it.

Imagine my surprise today when I read that The Smiths turned down $5 million dollars to play at Coachella Valley Arts & Music Festival in southern California. First off, the concert looks to be amazing with a whole smattering of eclectic bands to play on April 29th and 30th. Secondly, I would have easily been at that concert if The Smiths announced they were playing. My sister Stephanie would have gotten a phone call with me inviting myself out to crash for a weekend.

But, sadly, money can't make people like each other again. Clearly, Morrissey feels betrayed by Marr still, after all these years. Morrissey is clearly doing well as a solo artist and $5 million to The Smiths (i'm guessing it would be like $1 million per performer) is a drop in the bucket to him. It would take a serious act of contrition from Marr to persuade Morrissey to ever walk up on the stage again with him.

Maybe one day...

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This page contains a single entry by Furey published on March 17, 2006 12:30 AM.

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