Morrissey (born Steven Patrick Morrissey, 22.5.1959)

Morrissey is an English singer and songwriter who first rose to fame as the enigmatic front man of 1980s band The Smiths.

Morrissey: Childhood

Morrissey was born in Urmston, Lancashire, to Peter and Elizabeth Morrissey, both Irish Catholic immigrants. He was raised, along with his older sister Jackie, in the Hulme area of Manchester. When the terraced streets began to be demolished, however, they moved to Stretford.

Morrissey developed an early interest in music and became fascinated with iconic singers such as Marianne Faithfull and Sandie Shaw, as well as movie icons like James Dean. Whilst he was a child, Ian Brady and Myra Hindley murdered a number of children in Manchester and this had a huge effect on him and his songwriting.

Morrissey's first ever gig was T. Rex at BelleVue in Manchester in 1972. Later in the 1970s, he became obsessed with the New York Dolls and set up a fan club for them. He also founded a fan club for The Cramps. He went on to form his own punk band, the Nosebleeds, with Billy Duffy, who went on to be in Southern Death Cult and The Cult.

Morrissey: The Author

In the early 1980s, Morrissey had two books published by Babylon Books, The New York Dolls and James Dean Is Not Dead.

Morrissey: The Smiths

Morrissey met John Maher (Johnny Marr) in 1982 and the pair began songwriting together. The drummer from The Fall, Simon Wolstencroft, drummed on their demo tapes but was replaced by Mike Joyce. Andy Rourke eventually joined on bass and they soon signed to Rough Trade Records, who released their debut single, 'Hand In Glove' in May 1983. The record was picked up by the BBC DJ John Peel and in February 1984, their debut album, The Smiths was released and went to number two in the UK album chart.

The band's second album, Meat Is Murder was the only studio album that reached number one in the UK album chart. In 1986, Andy Rourke was fired from the band for using heroin, though he was reinstated after two weeks. His temporary replacement, Craig Gannon, stayed in the band, on rhythm guitar. This five piece recorded the single 'Ask' with Kirsty MacColl on vocals. Gannon left the band in 1986 and the band left Rough Trade, signing a deal with EMI, much to the consternation of their fans.

The Smiths split shortly before the release of their fourth album, Strangeways, Here We Come.

Morrissey: Solo

Morrissey's debut solo album, Viva Hate was released in 1988. The album was produced by Stephen Street and also included Vini Reilly (of Durutti Column) and Andrew Paresi.

His second LP, Bona Drag, was a compilation of singles and B-sides and non-album tracks, such as 'November Spawned A Monster'.

Kill Uncle was Morrissey's next studio album and was produced by Clive Langer. Mark E. Nevin was brought on board as a songwriter. The band with whom he toured to promote the album later became his studio band for the next album, Your Arsenal, which was produced by Mick Ronson and included the Top 20 single 'We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful'.

Morrissey's second number one album came with 1994's Vauxhall & I. the album included the single 'The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get.' Despite saying at the time that he would quit after the album's release, he went on to record Southpaw Grammar, which reached number four in the UK album charts.

In 1997 - after a brief break due to a lengthy court case with Mike Joyce & Johnny Marr over The Smiths' royalties - Morrissey released the single 'Alma Matters', shortly before the album Maladjusted. Around this time, he moved to Los Angeles.

Morrissey took another, lengthier break from recording, until the release of You Are The Quarry on Attack Records. The lead single from the album was 'Irish Blood, English Heart', which reached number three in the UK singles chart. The album became one of the most successful of his career, selling over 1 million copies.

2006 saw the release of Ringleader of the Tormentors, which was recorded in Rome and featured the singles 'You Have Killed Me' and 'I Just Want To See the Boy Happy'. The album was recorded by previous David Bowie collaborator, Tony Visconti.

In 2007, it was rumoured that Morrissey may write the song for that year's Eurovision Song Contest but nothing came of his talks with the BBC on the matter. That same year, Morrissey ended his contract with Sanctuary Records and undertook a Greatest Hits tour, supported by Girl In A Coma and Kristeen Young.

'I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris' was the lead single from 2009's Years of Refusal.

Morrissey: Controversy & Personal Life

Morrissey has had a number of public feuds, with the likes of Robert Smith (The Cure) and Nicky Wire (Manic Street Preachers). When he took to the stage draped in a Union Jack at Madness' Madstock gig, he was accused of nationalism and of having far right political leanings.

In 2008, when NME pulled their financial support from a Love Music Hate Racism gig in London, Morrissey donated £75,000 to the event. This was following an NME interview with Tim Jonze in 2007, which implied that Morrissey still harboured racist ideas.

Morrissey is outspoken on the subject of vegetarianism and has been vegetarian since the age of 11.

For many years, the media has debated the subject of Morrissey's sexuality. In 1984, Johnny Marr stated that Morrissey was not sexually active at that time but that he had had plenty of girlfriends and male friends in the past.

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Morrissey Declines Offer For 'Alternative Christmas Speech' on Channel 4

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 9th December 2014

Former Smiths singer Morrissey has "politely declined" an invitation from Channel 4 to record an alternative Christmas Day television message. Morrissey released his latest album, World Peace Is None Of Your Business, earlier this yearAn...

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Morrissey Gives Two Fingers to Cancer, "If I Die, I Die."

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 8th October 2014

Morrissey has revealed that he has undergone a series of cancer treatments after repeatedly being hospitalized over the past year-and-a-half. The former Smiths frontman was diagnosed with a bleeding ulcer in 2013, pneumonia a few...

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Morrissey Reveals He Has Undergone Cancer Treatment

by Stephanie Chase | News | Music / Festivals | 8th October 2014

Singer Morrissey has announced he’s undergone a series of cancer treatments, after suffering with poor health for the past 18 months. In an interview with Spanish magazine El Mundo, the 55 year old was quoted...

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Dropped or Not, Morrissey Announces European Tour with UK Dates

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 26th August 2014

Despite enduring one of the most difficult periods of his career, Morrissey has announced an extensive European tour with dates in the UK, including a show at London's O2 Arena in November. The singer will...

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Morrissey's Record Label Deny He's Been Dropped, Singer Stays Silent

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 18th August 2014

Morrissey's record label Harvest Records has denied that the singer has been dropped, despite the former Smiths man telling fans that he's on the hunt for a new home. A post on Morrissey's site True...

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Morrissey Pays Tribute to "Demented Genius" Elaine Stritch

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 19th July 2014

Morrissey is one of numerous high profile stars to pay tribute to the late actress Elaine Stritch, who died on Friday at 89. The singer, who recently released his new album World Peace Is None...

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Famous Excuses Morrissey Has Used To Cancel Shows

by Dan Greaves | News | Music / Festivals | 16th June 2014

Earlier this week, former Smiths frontman Morrissey came under fire from fans after cancelling the remaining dates of his North American tour. The 55-year-old left thousands of US fans disappointed after pulling the gigs due...

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Morrissey Cancels Rest Of US Tour, Blames Opening Act Kristeen Young For Illness

by Nick Hill | News | Music / Festivals | 12th June 2014

Morrissey has left thousands of US fans disappointed!The remainder of the singer's US tour has been cancelled due to a respiratory infection, he contracted in Miami, worsening.At first Morrissey rescheduled a number of shows, hoping...

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Started Something I Couldn't Finish: Morrissey Cancels US Tour After Virus

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 11th June 2014

Morrissey has cancelled the remainder of his US tour after being "rushed" to hospital in Boston for a respiratory infection. The former Smiths frontman was midway through a 30-day tour of North American when he...

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Morrissey Teams Up With Pamela Anderson for 'Earth is the Loneliest Planet'

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 2nd June 2014

Morrissey has enlisted the help of Pamela Anderson for a spoken word video for new single Earth is the Loneliest Planet. The famous animal rights activists stand atop the Capitol Tower in Los Angeles, looking...

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What's Morrissey's New PETA Video All About?

by Joe DeAndrea | News | Music / Festivals | 21st May 2014

In what is possibly the least surprising collaboration of the year, legendary singer/songwriter Morrissey has teamed up with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) in an animated video that is backed by the...

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Did You Really Think Morrissey Had a Twitter Account?

by Jack de Aguilar | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 17th May 2014

When Morrissey apparently started Tweeting away, fans and detractors of the controversial singer were excited. He’s known for his outspoken views, and rarely seeks filtration when it comes to communicating with the public. Purely as...

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Morrissey Attacked On-Stage, Knocked To The Ground in San Jose

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 8th May 2014

Morrissey was attacked by a fan in the middle of his song in San Jose on Wednesday night (May 7, 2014). The former Smiths man was performing 'One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell' from Years...

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Animal Rights Activist Morrissey Is Brainwashed, According to Canada's Fisheries Minister

by Jack de Aguilar | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 24th April 2014

While Morrissey has spent a huge amount of time protesting against what he believes to be the maltreatment of animals, all the while regurgitating the title of The Smith’s second studio album, Meat is Murder,...

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Morrissey Live, With Support from Sir Cliff Richard and Tom Jones

by Michael West | News | Music / Festivals | 13th February 2014

Morrissey has announced two dates in the United States with support coming from Sir Cliff Richard and Sir Tom Jones. According to the reliable fan-site True To You, the former Smiths frontman will perform with...

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Morrissey Compares Eating Meat to Pedophilia, Nazism

by Jaclyn Brandt | News | Lifestyle / Showbiz | 8th January 2014

Morrissey likes to make a statement, but he especially likes to speak his mind when it may be for a good cause. The Smiths singer is an outspoken animal rights activist, and his latest comments...

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Morrissey's Autobiography To Become Audiobook, Read By...Morrissey

by Joe Wilde | News | Books / Authors | 5th November 2013

Morrissey sparked ample conversation last month when he finally released his long-awaited memoirs, titled Autobiography, through Penguin Classics. Over the weekend (on 3 Nov.) we learned that the book will be turned into an audiobook,...

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"Oh Lou, Why Did You Leave Us?" Morrissey on the Late, Great Lou Reed

by Michael West | News | Music / Festivals | 28th October 2013

Morrissey is leading the tributes to the late great Lou Reed, who died this week from unknown causes. The legendary Velvet Underground man had been in ill health for a while though his death sent...

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Morrissey's 'Autobiography' Tops The Best Sellers List And Breaks Records On The Way

by Joe Wilde | News | Books / Authors | 24th October 2013

Autobiography is the collected memoirs of Steven Patrick Morrissey, known best simply by his last name, Morrissey. Released after a long, controversial dispute with publishers Penguin (who, under Morrissey's supposed demands released it as a...

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NME Pick The Smiths' 'The Queen Is Dead' as Greatest Album Of All Time: Surprised?

by Lauren James | News | Music / Festivals | 24th October 2013

One cold and windy night in August, a band of cloaked NME staffers gathered around the office's Morrissey shrine and asked The Great One what more they could do to worship his glorious name in...

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Morrissey, "I Am Not Homosexual, I Am Attracted to Humans"

by Michael West | News | Music / Festivals | 21st October 2013

Despite releasing an autobiography clocking in at over 500 pages less than a week ago, Morrissey has felt compelled to set the record straight about his sexuality. The former Smiths frontman discussed his relationship with...

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Morrissey Escaped Down Fire Exit After Being Asked To Star on 'Friends'

by Michael West | News | Books / Authors | 18th October 2013

The vitriolic Autobiography by British singer Morrissey - published under the Penguin Classics imprint - is destined to become a Christmas bestseller after strong early sales. The score-settling memoir had topped Amazon's UK chart less...

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Morrissey Unleashes Scathing Attack On UK Justice System In Autobiography

by Joe Wilde | News | Books / Authors | 18th October 2013

Morrissey's new autobiography, tentatively title Autobiography, was released this week later than scheduled and to an eagerly awaiting public who couldn't wait to read about the singer's usually cloaked personal life. Early criticism has arisen...

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Morrissey Autobiography Spoofed In Online Video By Comedian Peter Serafinowicz

by Victoria Pavlova | News | Lifestyle / Showbiz | 17th October 2013

What was that about imitation and flattery? Perhaps Peter Serafinowicz’s musical rendition of the first page of Morrissey’s recently published autobiography wasn’t the most cleverly executed bit of comedy ever, but it does create some...

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Morrissey's Autobiography Reveals Gay Romance In His 30's

by Michael West | News | Music / Festivals | 17th October 2013

Morrissey's Autobiography - released as part of the Penguin classics range on Thursday (October 17, 2013) - reveals that his first relationship came with a man when he was in his 30s.The former Smiths singer,...

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Bigmouth Strikes Again: Morrissey To Publish Memoirs as 'Penguin Classic'

by Michael West | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 4th October 2013

Morrissey appears to have ended his dispute with publisher Penguin and will finally release his memoir, titled Autobiography, as part of the Penguin Classics range on October 17, 2013.According to a statement from the publisher,...

Tags: Morrissey - The Smiths - Johnny Marr

Morrissey Pulls Out Of Book Deal Three Days Before Publication, Says Semi-Official Fan Site

by Joe Wilde | News | Books / Authors | 14th September 2013

Morrissey is either as miserable now as he ever has been, or his fan site True-To-You is stirring up rumours that will probably do more harm than good to the former Smiths singer. According to...

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Morrissey Cancels Sale of Autobiography 3 Days Before Release Date

by Michael West | News | Music / Festivals | 13th September 2013

Morrissey, the former Smiths frontman, has ditched plans to release his autobiography just three days before it was due to be published.The memoirs were set to document the 54-year-old's life growing up in Manchester, his...

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Duck Dynasty's Fourth Season Premiere Shatters Reality TV Records

by Elinor Cosgrave | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 16th August 2013

Duck Dynasty has made history, breaking records by becoming the most-watched non-fiction series broadcast in the history of cable television. The fourth season premiere was broadcast on Wednesday night (14th August) at 10pm. According to...

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Morrissey's South American Tour Cancelled - Singer Claims 'Life Sucked Out of Him'

by Jack de Aguilar | News | Music / Festivals | 22nd July 2013

A tired Morrissey has confirmed that his tour of South America is off. The singer, who blames a "lack of funding," seems as if he’s ready to quit touring all-together. "Cancellations and illness have sucked...

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ManchesterMustard's picture

ManchesterMustard is the spot, mate.

8 years 11 months ago
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Hulmerist's picture


Morrissey - great lyricist and superb dietician!

9 years 4 months ago
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Hulmerist's picture


'Ringleader Of The Tormentors' is another great album from Il Mozallini! My fave track is LIFE IS A PIGSTY, plus there are over 7 glorious minutes of it - bless im. But fellow Moz fans do you fear that SPM is telling us the end is nigh?

8 years 9 months ago
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