The Smiths, a Manchester-based English rock band, lasted a mere five years (1982-1987). But within those five years, the four full-length LP’s they produced were among the most important albums in rock history, with all four appearing on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Backed by arguably one of the best rhythm sections in English rock during the 1980s, The Smiths are best known for the brilliant guitar work of Johnny Marr and the crooning, melodic voice of Morrissey.
But many fans also find memorable the lyrics Morrissey wrote for The Smiths. Often hard-hitting and always genuine, Morrissey’s lyrics are an honest commentary on life. While some fans mistake the lyrical content as overly somber, there exists an underlying brilliant humor most fans of The Smiths recognize.
Nobody writes lyrics like Morrissey. Nobody.
From his days with The Smiths through his extraordinary solo career, Morrissey delivered some of the most memorable lines in pop music. Today I bring you some of my favorite lyrical lines from The Smiths. Each line brings a smile to my face whenever I hear it sung.
Consider using some of these lines in everyday life. For instance, when someone asks you about your summer vacation, you could reply, “I left the South. I traveled North. I got confused – I killed a horse. I can’t help the way I feel.” That should elicit an interesting response. Have fun with these lyrics and always remember the brilliance that was, and still is, The Smiths.
“How can you stay with a fat girl who’ll say: ‘Oh, would you like to marry me? And if you like, you can buy the ring.'” – William It Was Really Nothing
“Sweetness, sweetness, I was only joking when I said I’d like to smash every tooth in your head.” – Bigmouth Strikes Again
“A scanty bit of a thing with a decorative ring that wouldn’t cover the head of a goose. As Rose collects the money in the cannister, who comes sliding down the bannister? The vicar in a tutu.” – Vicar In A Tutu
“Some girls are bigger than others. Some girls’ mothers are bigger than other girls’ mothers.” – Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others
“Let me get my hands on your mammary glands, and let me get your head on the conjugal bed.” – Handsome Devil
“So, I broke into the palace with a sponge and a rusty spanner. She said, ‘I know you, and you cannot sing.’ I said, ‘That’s nothing – you should hear me play piano.'” – The Queen Is Dead
“I crashed down on the crossbar, and the pain was enough to make a shy, bald Buddhist reflect and plan a mass murder.” – Stop Me If You Think You’ve Heard This One Before
“You say, ‘Ere long done do does did’ – words which could only be your own – and then produce the text from whence was ripped. (Some dizzy whore, 1804)” – Cemetery Gates
“I thought that if you had an acoustic guitar that it meant that you were a protest singer. Well I just smile about it now, but at the time it was terrible.” – Shakespeare’s Sister
“But sometimes I’d feel more fulfilled making Christmas cards with the mentally ill.” – Frankly, Mr. Shankly
“Burn down the disco. Hang the blessed DJ, because the music that they constantly play – it says nothing to me about my life. Hang the blessed DJ.” – Panic
“I’d like to drop my trousers to the world. I am a man of means…of slender means.” – Nowhere Fast
“And if a double decker bus crashes into us, to die by your side is such a heavenly way to die.” – There Is A Light That Never Goes Out
“I am the son and the heir – oh, of nothing in particular.” – How Soon Is Now?
“He killed a policeman when he was thirteen, and somehow that really impressed me. And it’s written all over my face.” – I Want The One I Can’t Have
“Slap me on the patio. I’ll take it now.” – Reel Around The Fountain
“Oh, I think I’m in love. Oh, I think I’m in love. Urrrrghhh, I think I’m in lerv.” – A Rush And A Push
“I recognize that mystical air. It means I’d like to seize your underwear.” – Miserable Lie
“Now I know how Joan of Arc felt, as the flames rose to her roman nose and her Walkman started to melt.” – Bigmouth Strikes Again
“Girlfriend in a coma, I know, I know – it’s serious.” – Girlfriend In A Coma
“I said, ‘Charles, don’t you ever crave to appear on the front of the Daily Mail dressed in your mother’s bridal veil?'” – The Queen is Dead
“I don’t dream about anyone. Except myself.” – William It Was Really Nothing
“I left the South. I traveled North. I got confused – I killed a horse. I can’t help the way I feel” – Is It Really So Strange?
“Kiss my shades.” – Hand In Glove
“In my life, why do I smile at people who I’d much rather kick in the eye?” – Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now
“But I don’t want a lover. I just want to be tied to the back of your car.” – You’ve Got Everything Now
“A boy in the bush is worth two in the hand. I think I can help you get through your exams, oh, you handsome devil.” – Handsome Devil
“Spending warm sunny days indoors, writing frightening verse to a buck-toothed girl in Luxemborg. Ask me, ask me, ask me!” – Ask
“If you must write prose and poems, the words you use should be your own. Don’t plagiarise or take on loan. ‘Cause there’s always someone, somewhere, with a big nose who knows, and who trips you up and laughs when you fall.” – Cemetery Gates
“I want to live and I want to love. I want to catch something that I might be ashamed of.” – Frankly, Mr. Shankly
“But when you’re tied to your mother’s apron, no one talks about castration.” – The Queen Is Dead
“In the midst of life we are in death, etc. Etc! Etc! Etc! Etc!” – Sweet and Tender Hooligan
“Take my hand and off we stride. You’re a girl and I’m a boy. Take my hand and off we stride. I’m a girl and you’re a boy. La la la, la-la-la la la.” – Sheila Take A Bow
“I left the North again. I traveled South again. And I got confused – I killed a nun. I can’t help the way I feel. I lost my bag in Newport Pagnell.” – Is It Really So Strange?
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