Legends

The Smiths Guitar

The informant is a 23 year old musician who enjoys learning exchanging stories about legendary bands with his fellow musicians. This piece would be exchanged during a band practice  or when speaking with another musician to prove knowledge of game-changing bands.

“So, uh, some label executives were trying to woo The Smiths to sign with them. I believe it was probably the one that they ended up taking, so it was Warner in the US for distribution. And um, they, you know, took them out to the guitar shop – ‘cause that’s how you could woo people back then and they had the budget to do that kind of thing. And so, he saw the beautiful red, hollow-body guitar with all gold hardware, and it ended up actually being the guitar he used for like the entirety of The Smiths, and like a big part of their sound. But, uh, he sat down, and the first thing he played, the first thing that popped into his head that he did was the opening riff of “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now.” Which is ironic, seeing as like, the guitar, you know, like spoke to him and like made him happy. But that’s what it’s all about. It’s all about the duality, the irony. That’s what The Smiths are all about.”

My informant learned this piece from a fellow band-mate. The Smiths is one of my informants favorite bands. Many modern-day indie-rockers look to The Smiths for inspiration and guidance on how to make music that is important but popular as well. This would be exchanged during band practice or when speaking to fellow musicians to prove one’s knowledge of music.

Analysis:

This piece is interesting because it has the nostalgia factor of what the music industry used to be with the line “‘cause that’s how you could woo people back then and they had the budget to do that kind of thing.” Today’s musicians envy the prominence of labels and flow of money that bands had just ten years ago. However, today’s musicians enjoy their freedom and the fact that most of them don’t have to answer to a label.

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