In his memoir Set the Boy FreeJohnny Marr of the Smiths revealed that he and former band mate Morrissey had discussed a Smiths reunion in 2008 that never came to fruition.


Talk of a Smiths reunion has fluttered as rumor multiple times over the years, but none actually came closer than in 2008 when Marr and Morrissey actually discussed the logistics. In September of that year, the two met up for a drink, which was the first time they had seen each other in more than ten years.

“We chatted, as we always did, about the records we loved, and eventually we moved on to ‘that subject.’ There had been rumors for years that the Smiths were about to re-form, and they were always untrue. I had never pursued any offer,” Marr wrote in his book. “Suddenly we were talking about the possibility of the band re-forming, and in that moment it seemed that with the right intention it could actually be done and might even be great. I would still work with the Cribs on our album, and Morrissey also had an album due out.”

For four days, the two discussed their options for reforming the band. They agreed that they would need a new drummer, as the original drummer Mike Joyce had sued Marr and Morrissey in 1996 over royalties, so that relationship had been damaged. “I was genuinely pleased to be back in touch with Morrissey,” Marr wrote. “For four days it was a very real prospect. We would have to get someone new on drums, but if the Smiths wanted to re-form it would make a hell of a lot of people very happy, and with all our experience we might even be better than before.”


A week of entertainment news in your in-box.
We find the news you need to know, so you don't have to.

Then, the communication shut down. “Then suddenly there was radio silence,” he wrote. “Our communication ended, and things went back to how they were and how I expect they always will be.”

In an interview, Marr explained that their original meetup had nothing to do with a reunion. They had just been talking about all the what ifs, and the subject came up. Today, Marr is just as pessimistic about a reunion as he was then. He shows no anger at Morrissey either. I think it’s run its course,” the guitarist said. “One of the things we had in common was that we lived for work, and we’re too busy doing what we’re doing now.”

Leave a comment

Read more about: