Their music was fantastic and there's no doubting that Morrisser was the finest singer-songwriter of his generation. A modern-day Byron, and as I wrote, Perdican Reborn.
The Smiths were Morrissey and Marr--well, Morrissey, no disrespect to Johnny. Like Freddie was Queen. They were more or less consigned to history when Freddie died, and after The Smiths' split, Morrissey went on to even bigger things.
The fans are loopy, so I never adhered to the 'ritualistic' side of things. I always liked meat, always liked sex, and was never keen on being miserable and shutting myself away in my bedroom.
But Morrissey, I could never admire enough because he's a man of my heart. Like Brigitte Bardot and myself, he's not afraid of saying what he thinks, even if he gets lampooned or hammered for it--like us, he's never found the need to hide behind the curtains. Perhaps this is why, when I brought out my first book about him--admittedly, I'd allowed him read the script beforehand--he said that he wanted to 'dust me down and stick me on the mantlepiece'. Of my predecessor, Johnny Rogan, he'd wished him dispatch on the M1, until learning that Johnny didn't drive whence the fatwah was transferred to demise by flames! Moz if the most quintessentially English gentleman I've known since my late father-on-law. It has nothing to do with racism, but with wishing to remain parochial. I wasn't keen on his comments about the royals, though to a certain extent I could see his point when he said that an old lady who lived near his Mum had died of hypothermia because she couldn't afford to pay her gas bill--while they'd found a newspaper in the house with a feature saying Princess Diana had paid £6,000 for a frock.
Neither is Moz miserable. When we received a special invite to his show at Drury Lane, I joked that it would be nice if we could have the royal box--he arranged it (our companions for the evening were The Pet Shop Boys) and even curtsied when he came on stage! Then when everyone had gone home, we all got hammered in the bar!