Tag Archives: Morrissey

The Wrath of Morrissey Versus the Wrap of Maccie D’s

Every time the newish McDonald’s advert comes on during the adverts between halves at Euro 2016, it is irksome to say the least to hear the strains of Pete Shelley (who grew up about half a mile from where I’m writing this) and his fellow Buzzcocks, and their song, What Do I Get?, whilst a faux-Punk food assistant person of the biological female genus prepares a wrap for a pubescent adolescent, who happens to be in the company of his papa, it seems, seated as they are in a Ford Cortina circa 1978 (which conveniently links, or links conveniently, depending on how you feel with split infinitives, to the era said song hails from) at the window of the McD’s drive-thru, and as the pubescent adolescent fairly drools over the food assistant person as much as you’d imagine him drooling over the wrap he’s just ordered, and as the faux-Punk food assistant person makes eyes back at the pubescent adolescent, which if you think about it really does make her a Punk of the most faux kind because if you had an ounce of Punk sensibility you’d be unlikely to want to work in McD’s in the first instance, and even if you did you certainly wouldn’t participate in your own self-objectification where you’re kind of putting yourself on the same level, metaphorically speaking, as a Big Flavour Wrap.

It is irksome because someone has chosen money over self-respect. Selling a Punk song that was written and performed by a band that had credibility and which was aware of its working class heritage is unforgivable – some things are worth more than money, or at least they should be. You can make a crappy McD’s advert with any piece of crappy music that is spewed out of the pop music machine – The Buzzcocks are not of that ilk, yet decades of resistance have been compromised with one foolish decision where money takes centre stage. And yes, I know that sounds naïve and a tad Romantic, but that’s how things should be. It is distressing to hear of this song, and even The Jam’s That’s Entertainment, being used in a way that is wholly incompatible with their angry-youth origins. And I’m not the only one to think so. Morrissey is also pissed. And so we should be. Not just because we’re both plant-eating liberal humanists (not actually sure if Morrissey is but I’d like to believe he’s that way inclined), but because money cannot be allowed to corrupt every single thing of worth – because if we allow that to happen, how do we place true and meaningful value on anything?

Click the links and tell me if you think these songs are worthy of such misappropriation. Go on – I dare you.

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Pictures of Morrissey – The Story of Indie

Mark Radcliffe’s (@themarkrad) The Story of Indie, still only two-thirds of the way through, is surely significant for a whole number of reasons, but with attention spans towards blog posts being slight it seems prudent to name just two.

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  1. The section during the second programme, “Alternative 80s,”looking at The Smiths’ importance to the indie scene is particularly notable when one considers Morrissey’s look/style/image. Compared to members of The Jesus and Marychain, Joy Division, Cocteau Twins, and others, Morrissey’s style transcends the decades that have passed, and looks as relevant now as it did whilst he walked through the shit-ridden streets of his home town. From top to toe, Morrissey oozed effortless grace – still does, some might say. This is where the importance of talismanic individuals comes in.

    What the Morrissey segment did was to emphasise the overall importance of iconic performers, that it’s not just about the music, it’s the attitude that spreads to those disaffected kids growing up in shit-laden streets, just like Morrissey, and for whom the prospect of having someone express sentiments in terms that affect them readily is immeasurable, palpable, and necessary when the established order is all about being “content” with your lot – even if that “lot” is surviving drudgery on a daily basis.

  2. The second thing to mention is the unassuming manner which Mark Radcliffe adopts, and the way he opts to keep the narrative, and not himself, as the primary focus. Radcliffe’s constant reference to the person who played a major part in promoting indie music, John Peel, reveals his humility and perhaps because of this he is blind to the fact that he will likely be remembered as the person following most closely in Peel’s footsteps. The Story of Indie seems to be as important a project as Radcliffe’s The White Room, a music show that only lasted a short while but that had a lasting effect on popular culture. Bravo Monsieur Radcliffe, bravo.

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