MORRISSEY has astonished his many fans by revealing that, contrary to speculation, he has never once been made an offer to reform Smiths!
In a rare interview last week, he told a reporter from Denver’s Rocky Mountain News: “There has never been a financial offer for a reunion. It’s interesting that you think there would be. There’s never been an approach from any sort of established promoter or agent. Just goes to show that people’s preconceptions about these things are miles away from the truth.”
NME.COM immediately contacted some of the biggest promoters and booking agents in the country to ask if they would put on a show by Smiths and how much they would pay.
“It’d be a seven-figure sum,” he said. “They’d be playing arenas on a short tour initially. There’d be at least two sell-out Wembley Arenas in it. Then it’d off to America. I’d love to do it, but promoters aren’t allowed to approach Morrissey. He doesn’t like us.”
was positively glowing with excitement at the thought.
He said: “Well, it’s difficult to pin a figure down immediately, but I reckon you’d need to go to them with at least £1.5million initially for a short British tour. You’re talking five nights at Wembley Arena, then nights in Glasgow, Manchester and Birmingham. Tickets would be at top end – starting at £25 or £30 each. After the first few London dates it’d go mad. You could have any number of sold-out nights in Wembley with Smiths.
“Would I like to do it – bloody sure I would,” he added.
Smiths split in 1987 after serious musical differences between Morrissey and guitarist Johnny Marr. Since then there has never been any indication that the band would reform, although there remains a huge following for the outfit.
It had been assumed that Morrissey had simply ignored any financial offers, and refused to discuss a reunion despite NME naming Smiths the most influential band of the last 50 years in our recent 50th anniversary issue.
But Morrissey, currently on tour in America, went on to say: “I haven’t had a (record) deal for a long time, and there isn’t an album out. Yet the live audience seems to remain. That’s why I’m here, that’s why I’m going around.”
He added: “We’ve had an album for a long time, just waiting to be released. I’ve had some interest, but not enormous interest from labels. I’ve had many meetings with labels. Most people conclude with the question ‘Will your new songs blend with what’s happening now?’ My reply is always ‘No.’ And usually that’s the end of the interview. I don’t really want to blend with what’s happening now.”
Morrissey returns to the UK next week for two sell-out nights at London’s Royal Albert Hall on September 17 and 18. He will then play October 2 and 3 at the Ambassador Theatre in Dublin.
While NME staff couldn’t quite stretch to the seven-figure sum needed to draw Smiths out of retirement, a quick whip round raised £87.20 to kickstart a comeback fund. Email email@example.com if you wish to add to the kitty.