British rockers The Smiths almost ended up collaborating with Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt in the mid-1980s, when the inebriated wildman stumbled into the wrong recording studio.

The Smiths were recording their classic album THE QUEEN IS DEAD in the studio next door to Status Quo, who were taping IN THE ARMY NOW.

And Parfitt, who is undergoing surgery this week (begs12DEC05) to investigate a growth on his vocal chords, almost didn't realise the MORRISSEY-fronted band weren't his own bandmates.

Drummer MIKE JOYCE recalls, "We came in one day and saw this huge crate of wine. We were told, 'Keep your hands off, it's for Quo, they're next door.' So it was obvious they were on a bit of a mission.

"About a day later, our studio door opens and Rick Parfitt stumbles in, with shades on. We thought he'd come to say, 'Hi, guys,' but he hadn't. He was so p**sed that he thought we were Status Quo.

"It took him about 20 seconds to realise before he staggered off, f**king hammered, without saying a word."