The Fall singer Mark E Smith dies aged 60

 

I don't think too many on the forum would know Mark E Smith or his band The Fall, but a bit of a sad day for me growing up listening (and dancing to in particular Mr Pharmacist) their music.

 

 

Mark E Smith, the distinctive frontman of Manchester post-punk band The Fall, has died aged 60.

 

Pam Van Damned, the band's manager, said he died at home on Wednesday morning and a more detailed statement would follow "in the next few days".

 

Paying tribute, Smith's former bandmate Marc Riley said the singer "taught me a lot about life and he taught me a lot about music".

 

Smith famously hired and fired more than 60 bandmates.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-42811968

 

 

 

Original Post

I'm amazed he made it to 60

Described as a musical genius in some reports, lol

He wasn't, his 'fame' if you can call it that, came from his behaviour (turbulent and antagonistic, to be kind) and longevity.

Can anyone - other than EC name a hit, a song, an album - hum a melody??

Nope?

 

He was notorious in musical circles, nothing more

 

And i'd go so far to say he joins that list of men that can only be seen as 'failures' at life - along with the likes of Kurt Cobain and Alex Higgins.

Saint posted:
Moonie posted:

I have one of their albums on vinyl 

I won it on a local radio phone-in many many years ago 

Have you listened to it more than once?

I haven’t listened to it at all, tbh. It’s in pristine condition. It’s with a lot of other vinyl that is laying about somewhere or other Sainty.

Moonie posted:
Saint posted:
Moonie posted:

I have one of their albums on vinyl 

I won it on a local radio phone-in many many years ago 

Have you listened to it more than once?

I haven’t listened to it at all, tbh. It’s in pristine condition. It’s with a lot of other vinyl that is laying about somewhere or other Sainty.

 don't worry, its some bloke down the pub shouting the same thing over and over into the microphone. And some bloke he met down the market who got a new guitar and discovered a riff by accident in his bedroom.

Saint posted:

I'm amazed he made it to 60

Described as a musical genius in some reports, lol

He wasn't, his 'fame' if you can call it that, came from his behaviour (turbulent and antagonistic, to be kind) and longevity.

Can anyone - other than EC name a hit, a song, an album - hum a melody??

Nope?

 

He was notorious in musical circles, nothing more

 

And i'd go so far to say he joins that list of men that can only be seen as 'failures' at life - along with the likes of Kurt Cobain and Alex Higgins.

 

I would hardly describe him and his band as musical genius', but they did plough a fairly unique furrow, loved by many, many people. Not a band for churning out chart 'pap', but having a sound you could say was 'The Fall'. Not your run of the mill band leader, but then again, Sun Ra was similar in his band leadership.

 

I could hardly call him a failure, but I do note you seem to have picked three example of people with some form of dependency, I'm surprised you did not lump in George Best. Having an addiction does not make one a failure Saint.

 

...and finally, on the subject of Mark E Smith being a failure, could you list all of the books you have written, the plays, the film adaptations, the music albums or anything in the creative arts.

 

Just can't see why you seemed to have taken a massive dislike to Smith especially as you seem to know so little about him and his work except what you have just read today.

 

Cos he was rubbish and doesn't deserve the adulation

It's not about addiction, its about rebels without a clue - anyone with an axe to grind for no particular reason ... whatever happens to come along.

Bono is another - I don't admire any of them.

I admire people who plough their own path whilst being a good father and husband.

Smith was a nuisance like a 13yr old boy is a nuisance

* Tiptoes carefully past Saint's posts  *

 

I wasn't a particularly big fan (The Fall went hand-in-hand with John Peel, and I generally preferred the comparatively softer-edged Janice Long show), but he remained unavoidable for anyone with anything approaching an interest in the Indie scene at the time. No, they never really had "mainstream" success (I suppose their Top 40 cover of "Victoria" came the closest), but they were enormously influential, and you don't get to release 32 studio albums over 38 years without a loyal fan base.

 

One of those loyal fans is a colleague of mine, who was rather depressed at the news yesterday. Neil - who's a big fan of John Peel to the extent that he works for Dandelion Radio (an internet radio station that keeps the Peel legacy alive) - summed it up thus:

"Mark E. Smith. R-uh I-uh P-uh.

 

 

As an aside, Smith's death has served as a reminder of one of the most important gigs in music history: The Sex Pistols playing The Lesser Free Trade Hall, Manchester, on 4th June 1976. Less than 40 people attended (paying 50p for the privilege!), but virtually every one of them went into the music business. The gig was organized by an early formation of The Buzzcocks: they were meant to be the support act, but weren't ready and instead supported the Pistols' second Manchester gig six weeks later. Also present at that first gig were Morrissey, Mark E. Smith, future photographer Kevin Cummins, future writer/journalist Paul Morley, and a group of lads who went on to form Joy Division. Apparently there's still some debate as to when exactly Tony Wilson saw the Pistols in Manchester, but that in turn led to Factory Records and The Hacienda...

Sex Pistols gig: the truth

Saint posted:

Silly sausage Eugene, lol

 

I just don't see who they influenced? Maybe they did - I dunno.

But I don't see people doing that sort of music or similar

Wiki lists a number of bands who've acknowledged The Fall's influence on their work, including Pavement, Happy Mondays, Sonic Youth, The Pixies, These New Puritans and LCD Soundsystem. Many of them have covered Fall songs at some point.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...%28band%29#Influence

 

I don't think I'm stretching it to suggest you can detect hints of Smith's darkness, edginess, and even humour in some of those bands, however I also think you have to be careful about reading too much into "influenced". The Smiths and Joy Division/New Order sounded nothing like the Sex Pistols, and yet they would never have formed in the first place if it hadn't been for that initial "influence". 

The Fall were an essential part of our pre going out rituals at one time....putting on make up ,choosing clothes and generally getting excited about the weekend! Totally Wired was a song I remember...they were different and were ahead of the game and not afraid to take risks, didnt compromise and sell out ..bands and people like Mark E Smith are rare gems in a sea of plastic

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