The Telegraph: "No record label will touch Morrissey – and that’s the music industry’s loss" (June 4, 2021)

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Telegraph have done an opinion piece hoping Morrissey gets a new record deal - despite accusing him of supporting the EDL. 🙄

Edit: it would probably help if I remembered the link.


No record label will touch Morrissey – and that’s the music industry’s loss​

However objectionable you find the Smiths singer, he shouldn't be reduced to hawking his new album to the highest – or lowest – bidder
JAMES HALL 4 June 2021 • 2:10pm

The last 12 months have been unkind to us all. Even, it seems, rock stars living in Los Angeles. Morrissey, the pugnacious former Smiths singer, said this week that he’s had “the worst year of my life”.
On one level, sympathy may be in reasonably short supply. Partly because of the LA rock star thing but mainly because Morrissey has in recent years made a barrage of offensive pronouncements including swipes at the Chinese, seeming defences of individuals accused of sexual abuse and sympathy for groups such as the English Defence League. But all of this notwithstanding, the former king of bedroom melodrama has still had a genuine shocker.
Last summer his beloved mother died. In April he was lampooned in an episode of The Simpsons called Panic on the Streets of Springfield. The show featured a vegan singer from the 1980s called Quilloughby – complete with thick-rimmed glasses and a quiff – who sang in a band called the Snuffs. But Quilloughby turned out to be a figment of Lisa Simpson’s imagination and was actually an overweight, meat-eating man with anti-immigrant views. Morrissey’s manager called the episode “hurtful and racist”.
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And last November, Morrissey was dropped by his record label. “We wish him well in the next chapter of his career,” BMG said in a statement at the time.
That’s a bad 12 months, indeed. Heaven knows he’s miserable now. But on Sunday Morrissey sprung a surprise on us all. “The worst year of my life concludes with the best album of my life,” he said. He has recorded Bonfire of Teenagers in LA, an album of 11 new songs with none-more-Morrissey titles such as Rebels Without Applause, My Funeral and Saint in a Stained Glass Window. His lack of a record deal? No problemo, as Bart Simpson might put it. A message on the singer’s website read: “Morrissey is unsigned. The album is available to the highest (or lowest) bidder."

That’s right. Morrissey’s new record will be sold to the highest record label bidder. My initial thought was “Poor lonely man”. It was accompanied by a slight sucking of teeth. “Bit embarrassing if no label buys it,” I mumbled to myself. But this was soon overridden by a feeling of “Why not?” There was even a dollop of respect there. It’s a ballsy thing to do. A bold "f––– you" to the system. How typically Morrissey.

Besides, traditional means of music distribution – whereby a label puts out an album by an artist to which it has paid an advance – have long since broken down. Technology and the streaming revolution have seen to that. There are countless examples of artists seeking alternative ways of releasing new music. And auctioning an album to a label is another addition to this list.

In 2007 Radiohead, out of contract with EMI, released In Rainbows as a pay-what-you-want download. This honesty box approach saw 62 per cent of downloaders paying nothing (but those who did pay spent an average of around £5 globally). Four years later the Kaiser Chiefs released The Future is Medieval as a create-your-own-album concept. The band streamed snippets of twenty songs online and let fans choose their 10 favourites for £7.50. In 2014 U2 famously gave away Songs of Innocence to 500 million iTunes users free of charge: it appeared on iPhones and iPads around the world (whether people wanted it or not – millions didn’t).

The point is, anything goes when it comes to getting an album out there. My favourite alternative release story probably relates to rap collective Wu-Tang Clan. In 2015 they printed just one CD copy of their album Once Upon a Time in Shaolin and auctioned it off as an art object. A legal stipulation meant that its contents could not exploited commercially until the year 2103. The CD was bought by businessman Martin Shkreli, who reportedly paid $2 million for it. But in 2018 Shkreli was convicted for securities fraud and a federal court seized his assets, including the Wu-Tang album.

I hope the Morrissey album is picked up. Because despite his stupid pronouncements he is on something of a musical roll. When he was dropped by BMG he said that his three albums with them – 2017’s Low in High School, 2019’s California Son, and last year’s I Am Not A Dog on a Chain – were the best of his career. “I stand by them till death,” he said. While not quite up there with Vauxhall and I or Viva Hate, they are very strong records.

Last year’s single Bobby, Don’t You Think They Know? featured Don’t Leave Me This Way singer Thelma Houston on guest vocals. It’s an epic and slightly bonkers track that is completely absorbing. And 2017 single Spent the Day in Bed is up there with his best solo work.

This isn’t to say that Morrissey would be an easy artist to have on your roster. He was the final performer I reviewed before lockdown kicked in last year. His gig in Leeds in March 2020 was typical of the man: he slated critics, largely ignored his hits, and at one point mock-sneezed on the crowd to make some kind of point about Covid-19. Perhaps if he’d known what was around the corner, he’d have been more circumspect.

Or perhaps not. A comment on his website at the weekend about his upcoming Las Vegas residency (called Viva Moz Vegas) said the following: “Morrissey’s 5 nights at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas start on August 28, and there are no anti-social distancing or facial concealment rules in place.”

But however "toxic" people find Morrissey, there are many musicians who have done things far worse than him who have record contracts. There are members of rock bands with record deals who’ve spent time in prison for domestic abuse; meanwhile it was reported last year that a British drill rapper was offered a record deal while in prison awaiting trial for murder. No matter how abhorrent you may find Morrissey's opinions, he's committed no crime.

So here’s my message to labels: take a deep breath and snap up Bonfire of Teenagers. It’ll probably be quite good. And you might just cheer up music’s biggest grump.
 
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ACTON

Don't Leave Us In The Dark
In this case, the recording is already done. So it's for the label to take it or leave it. If no one is leaping in to release it, either they don't think the music is good and/or they don't think they will make any money off it.
I know the record is complete. I meant why would Marr bother to work with Moz if they don't get along. And vice versa. People move on and make new friends. Plus Moz is probably high maintenance unless you are collaborating remotely or just meeting for 1 or 2 days to do one song together.
 

ACTON

Don't Leave Us In The Dark
Sometimes it IS worth it, especially when, if you are able to recognize
who and what Morrissey is, or at least, is to you.

“Beauty is in the eye of ....”


And because today may be your last
it will be worth it.


ponder that.


:cool:
I'm a Moz fan and love his last few albums as much as his first few albums (and those in between). And I'll go see him in concert if he's playing in Ireland. I usually buy his vinyl and CD, and am tripping over old Smiths and Moz concert cassettes. Personally I think it would be worth collaborating with Moz, but at the same time I wish he was a bit more positive and easier to get on with. His portrayal in the press (and in his own words in interviews) is so negative. Life is ticking on by regardless.

In my converted attic listening to John Carpenter LPs and supping IPA. Sizzled from a day in the sun (the sun came out just in time for our bank holiday weekend).
 
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Ketamine Sun

<><><><><><><><><><>
I'm a Moz fan and love his last few albums as much as his first few albums (and those in between). And I'll go see him in concert if he's playing in Ireland. I usually buy his vinyl and CD, and am tripping over old Smiths and Moz concert cassettes.

umm, ok.

Personally I think it would be worth collaborating with Moz, but at the same time I wish he was a bit more positive and easier to get on with.

Maybe he wishes that too? or maybe
he’s accepted who he is and so will just do what he thinks best, which
I’m sure we can both agree that an acceptance of one’s character ‘flaws’ is a positive move, no ?

And again, if you want to work with someone, then you will find a way. And their ‘flaws’ won’t be an issue anymore.

It’s really up to you.


His portrayal in the press (and in his own words in interviews) is so negative.

Well the ‘portrayal’ is created by all parties, so who’s to blame? So to perceive all the portrayals of Morrissey is merely a perspective,
to see it as negative most likely reflects how you view the world in general.

Life is ticking on by regardless.

Is it? Time is a concept. And life? what is it? Does it ever start or ever end for the human soul?, or maybe it just continually passes through one body and mind to the next, never knowing birth or death, just passing through forever.


:cool:


 

ACTON

Don't Leave Us In The Dark
umm, ok.



Maybe he wishes that too? or maybe
he’s accepted who he is and so will just do what he thinks best, which
I’m sure we can both agree that an acceptance of one’s character ‘flaws’ is a positive move, no ?

And again, if you want to work with someone, then you will find a way. And their ‘flaws’ won’t be an issue anymore.

It’s really up to you.




Well the ‘portrayal’ is created by all parties, so who’s to blame? So to perceive all the portrayals of Morrissey is merely a perspective,
to see it as negative most likely reflects how you view the world in general.



Is it? Time is a concept. And life? what is it? Does it ever start or ever end for the human soul?, or maybe it just continually passes through one body and mind to the next, never knowing birth or death, just passing through forever.


:cool:
You lost me at "umm, ok".
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Luckily for Morrissey he made his fortune a long time ago. He doesn't actually need a record deal.

If it comes down to it, he'll release "Bonfire..." himself.

Morrissey does his own thing and he isn't reliant on anyone.

"You should never go to them...let them come to you"

Did you not read his Morrissey Central post? He's practically begging for a label. He's got a complete product that he doesn't want to put out himself. He and his organization are not capable of putting out a record or else why would he put that he was looking for bids? Maybe he was he being funny or looking for pity, either way it's not a good look.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Did you not read his Morrissey Central post? He's practically begging for a label. He's got a complete product that he doesn't want to put out himself. He and his organization are not capable of putting out a record or else why would he put that he was looking for bids? Maybe he was he being funny or looking for pity, either way it's not a good look.
It's hard to know what is going on. I understand that music artists with maybe less money and resources than Morrissey has and are less famous are able to put music on places like "Spotify" and "SoundCloud". There is something called "Bandcamp". I don't understand downloading music and streaming I don't understand the modern technology but lots of people do.

There are 3 big record companies Universal, Sony and Warner. Those record companies own lots of subsidiary labels. I don't know what record companies offer exactly but I guess they can get studio time in good quality recording studios but you probably have to pay them back. They can offer promotion of albums and maybe artwork and branding. A tour could help to promote an album. The record companies might have teams who understand the modern technology and social media. They probably have a PR (public relations) team. I don't really understand how it all works.

I have heard of recording artists starting up their own independent labels. But they are often a subsidiary of a bigger record company or they get bought out and that makes me question just how independent they really are. Then there is the issue of Royalties and owning your own masters.

I don't think Morrissey is trying to be funny or is looking for pity. I think you are wrong about that. I don't see Morrissey as a victim of the music industry I see him as a survivor.
 

marred

Member
What I love is hearing all the whining and complaining about how Morrissey needs to be less like Morrissey so that he'll be more likeable, easier to get on with and easier to work with. If that's what you want then there are plenty of lame ducks out there to listen to.

Here's a newsflash for you. Anyone who has an original vision for their art is not 'easy' to work with. Just because people have been deemed 'difficult' to work with, that doesn't mean they're painful to work with. Please show me the testimonials of the producers, engineers and musicians who are ranting about how painful it was to work with Morrissey. Even the ones like Gannon, Street and Reilly that he's rubbed the wrong way still seem to say that it was a great experience working with an artist like Morrissey.

Those here that just love to hear themselves complain about Morrissey's rough edges might want to think about why they ever listened to him in the first place. Or there's always the option of growing up and getting over your Morrissey whinge.
 
D

Deleted member 29235

Guest
What I love is hearing all the whining and complaining about how Morrissey needs to be less like Morrissey so that he'll be more likeable, easier to get on with and easier to work with. If that's what you want then there are plenty of lame ducks out there to listen to.

Here's a newsflash for you. Anyone who has an original vision for their art is not 'easy' to work with. Just because people have been deemed 'difficult' to work with, that doesn't mean they're painful to work with. Please show me the testimonials of the producers, engineers and musicians who are ranting about how painful it was to work with Morrissey. Even the ones like Gannon, Street and Reilly that he's rubbed the wrong way still seem to say that it was a great experience working with an artist like Morrissey.

Those here that just love to hear themselves complain about Morrissey's rough edges might want to think about why they ever listened to him in the first place. Or there's always the option of growing up and getting over your Morrissey whinge.

But the discussion is not about musical collaborators, it's about record labels. Last time I looked, he's had fifteen record labels in just over thirty years. It's his chronic inability to behave decently and professionally towards those who have fronted the money for his recordings and tours over the decades that's at issue.
I don't know what's happening behind the scenes at the moment. For all I know there's a press release being prepared as I write announcing that Sony EMI Warner Megacorp OCP Media Monster Corp. has signed him for a thirty-one record deal with fifty squillion pesetas up front. But you must concede that in a time when Morrissey's popularity is waning, his now famous and entrenched reputation for being gratuitously disagreeable generally, and particularly combative towards his record labels means that quite a lot of labels are just going to conclude that he is simply no longer worth the hassle.
 

Vegan

Well-Known Member
100% agree, it's their loss and a sign of the times.

He's committed no crime, except maybe thinking outside the box.
It's true. The man has a right to his opinion and to believe what he wants. I despise the right wing like every rational, reasonable, compassionate person but Moz really hasn't done and said anything that rises to this level of derision. My only gripe is he hasn't made any real effort to defend that right other than whine from far away.
 

Vegan

Well-Known Member
What I love is hearing all the whining and complaining about how Morrissey needs to be less like Morrissey so that he'll be more likeable, easier to get on with and easier to work with. If that's what you want then there are plenty of lame ducks out there to listen to.

I've loved Moz's recent albums and am eagerly awaiting purchasing the new one. I think he has always gotten shabby treatment from the press. What's frustrating to me is how easy it would be for him to set the record straight on some things. The man is not racist for example but he just lets these things fester. Why do I care? Well I admire him for his career of defending the rights of animals. I think it's heroic considering the stick vegans get and especially used to get. (Yes I know he's probably been only vegetarian much of the time). I admire him for his contribution to music. I thank him for the entertainment. The man is an icon. But to be portrayed as a bigot and him just letting it fester just doesn't feel right. But is it his fault? Kinda. He's smart enough to know how the game is played for someone in his position. He doesn't really defend himself so why should I? Does he need to? Not really.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I've loved Moz's recent albums and am eagerly awaiting purchasing the new one. I think he has always gotten shabby treatment from the press. What's frustrating to me is how easy it would be for him to set the record straight on some things. The man is not racist for example but he just lets these things fester. Why do I care? Well I admire him for his career of defending the rights of animals. I think it's heroic considering the stick vegans get and especially used to get. (Yes I know he's probably been only vegetarian much of the time). I admire him for his contribution to music. I thank him for the entertainment. The man is an icon. But to be portrayed as a bigot and him just letting it fester just doesn't feel right. But is it his fault? Kinda. He's smart enough to know how the game is played for someone in his position. He doesn't really defend himself so why should I? Does he need to? Not really.

I'd like to address the "only vegetarian" attitude. In the 1980s, being a vegetarian was still a pretty radical way of life. And to make "Meat Is Murder" the title of your album was a radical stand. It's just been in the last 10 years that there have been enough vegan products available at a reasonable price, so that vegans don't have to make all their own food or be very rich to support that lifestyle, especially while travelling.
 

Verso

Well-Known Member
What I love is hearing all the whining and complaining about how Morrissey needs to be less like Morrissey so that he'll be more likeable, easier to get on with and easier to work with. If that's what you want then there are plenty of lame ducks out there to listen to.

Here's a newsflash for you. Anyone who has an original vision for their art is not 'easy' to work with. Just because people have been deemed 'difficult' to work with, that doesn't mean they're painful to work with. Please show me the testimonials of the producers, engineers and musicians who are ranting about how painful it was to work with Morrissey. Even the ones like Gannon, Street and Reilly that he's rubbed the wrong way still seem to say that it was a great experience working with an artist like Morrissey.

Those here that just love to hear themselves complain about Morrissey's rough edges might want to think about why they ever listened to him in the first place. Or there's always the option of growing up and getting over your Morrissey whinge.
So, which one is it? Morrissey isn’t difficult to work with or he is difficult to work with but that’s to be expected from a brilliant artist? Also, what does woke mean?
 
V

Vegan Cro Spirit .777

Guest
🧐
peeps ignore the woke trolls, the album
will be released as soon as negotiations
are completed:hammer:
 
V

Vegan Cro Spirit .777

Guest
So, which one is it? Morrissey isn’t difficult to work with or he is difficult to work with but that’s to be expected from a brilliant artist? Also, what does woke mean?
:rolleyes:
BGV, didnt you say you werent 'woke', for the benefit
of the simpler minded?:hammer:
if you claim not to be something then you would have
to already know what that something is FFS:hammer:
 

Phranc & Open

Well-Known Member
Other major artists have shelved albums. Isn't it a romantic idea, that it will see the light of day when I am 75 and Morrissey will have some kind of revival or something (like Neil Young)?
 
V

Vegan Cro Spirit .777

Guest
Here's something to ponder. We never know if today will be our last say. So why spend it working with someone difficult? Mortal plebs like us might have no alternative but well-off musicians have a choice, so why spend it with someone who's talent is burning bridges. Life is too short.
WTF who is WE? the plebs who have no choice :rolleyes: ?
if they have no choice then they have no choice but to
work with someone difficult FFS:crazy:
:hammer:
 

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