When Tony Wilson interviewed The Smiths for Granada Reports

The Smiths, and Morrissey in particular made many television appearances during 1984 in promotion of the band’s second album, Meat is Murder. One such interview during this time was with none other than Tony Wilson, the man who regrettably did not sign the band to his label Factory Records.

During the interview, the strained relationship between the journalist/label owner and the man he used to call Steven, is made painfully obvious with the sarcastic introduction. Tony then goes on to make it a point to interview the rhythm section of Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce first, followed by Johnny Marr—who Tony credits with writing all the melodies.

When the interview finally gets to Morrissey himself, Tony interrogates him on the controversial lyrics on Meat Is Murder, especially the LP’s intro track The Headmaster Ritual. to which Morrissey barbs Tony with a grin on his face that he should try being a popstar to express his political views.

“Pity you didn’t sign The Smiths”

Bear in mind, that Tony did in fact help Morrissey several times during his solo career, despite his personal feelings. To understand the full range of complexity of Tony Wilson’s relationship with “Steven”, I suggest you watch the Prism Archives series of interview clips on the subject with the Mancunian label owner and Journalist himself.

The last project that Tony Wilson worked on before his death in 2007, was the Ian Curtis and Joy Division biopic film Control. The producer of that film has now made an unauthorized biopic about “Steven”, titled England is Mine, which features Mancunian icons Linder Sterling, and Billy Duffy as characters in the film.

Watch the trailer below

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