Mark E. Smith

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Mark Edward Smith, known professionally as Mark E. Smith (5 March 1957 – 24 January 2018) was the lead singer, songwriter, lyricist and only constant member of the post-punk group The Fall.

Mark E. Smith, Tokyo 1990

Quotes[edit]

On the Glastonbury festival[edit]

  • Going to Glastonbury is so clichéd isn’t it...I’ve seen it with groups once they get a scent of fame. He’s been waiting 25 years for it. He’s got aftershave on. It’s like Ed Sheeran. I think Sheeran and Corbyn are evil twins. See Corbyn in Europe the other day? He’s started wearing what they’ve asked him to. He’s like ‘oh it’s my first hit record’. He’s turned into Rod Stewart.

On Telly Savalas[edit]

On the NYPD[edit]

On music and musicians[edit]

On James Blunt[edit]

  • There was always privilege in music, it was always like that, but nowadays you don’t have a chance in hell. Why Blunt would talk about it I don’t know but that’s what I’m saying. He’s looked at them cutting the army back, he’s in a tank and he’s gone to Daddy, ‘What shall I do?’ In the past it would have been ‘stick at it’, now his Dad is telling him to be a jazz singer. Imagine him as a tank commander, I’d shit myself.
    • NME, 25 January 2010
Smith performing at New York City's The Knitting Factory in 2004

On Mumford and Sons[edit]

  • We were playing a festival in Dublin the other week. There was this other group like, warming up in the next sort of chalet, and they were terrible. I said 'shut them cunts up' and they were still warming up, so I threw a bottle at them. The bands said 'that's the Sons of Mumford' or something, 'they're number five in charts!' I just thought they were a load of retarded Irish folk singers.

On bands citing The Fall as an influence[edit]

  • Haha! I mean, if you’re new to The Fall… a lot of these groups… I don’t know what it is. I think a lot of these group use it to sound a bit hip. When I was a teenager, people used to say 'oh well this group sounds a lot like this group', and then when you go and see them they sound like a pack of shit. They sound like the Talking Heads to me, and I’m not knocking them, it’s just misleading.
  • Brooklyn Vegan, 26 June 2006

On former members of The Fall[edit]

  • Dickheads who couldn’t hold their beer and needed to get home to Cheshire

On politics[edit]

  • I’m much more left now, though. I think Stalin had the right idea. Take one out of five fucking newspaper editors, and MPs, and shoot them. Then they’d buck up.

On selfies[edit]

  • The last time it happened to me it was because by mistake I blundered into a pub next to a Pixies concert in the summer. Fucking hell. I was just walking down and I was going to meet a fella about some business and I wanted a nice empty pub. I got to the pub and it was fucking jam-packed with all these Pixies fans who wanted selfies. I am totally oblivious to these things but it turns out the Pixies cover one of our songs. I never liked the Pixies but all these fans wanted pictures. It’s just fucking weird.
    • NME, 25 January 2010

On places[edit]

On Cardiff[edit]

  • I was in Cardiff recently. You should see the shops there. They’re fantastic. I had this breakfast in Cardiff; I could have eaten it every day. All the food was great. Manchester – the food, the shops – has always been crap.
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