2013

NME, 12 January 2013

'We're all messengers, aren't we? That's what life is, sending out and receiving messages. It can be a gesture, positive or negative, it can be the ultimate act of selfless love...'

 

Finally setting out on his own, the guitar godhead talks us through his solo debut, track by track.

Q, January 2013

'I'm done with collaborations. I just want to work on my own records now.'

 

Q Hero: Johnny Marr by Chris Catchpole. 


Short interview conducted at the Q Awards ceremony, late 2012.

Shortlist, 14 February 2013

'You should always, always have a black shirt. Not always wear a black shirt, but always own a black shirt. And never stray too far away from Clarks shoes...'

 

Johnny Marr on style, football and stepping out on his own. Interview by Mark Beaumont.

NME, 16 February 2013

'I've always been pathological about moving forward. And I feel like I've got enough to be getting on with right now.'

 

Heaven knows he's godlike now by Barry Nicolson. 


Ever since he formed The Smiths, Johnny Marr has been at the forefront of indie rock, shaping it for future generations. That's why on February 27 he will be crowned Godlike Genius at the NME Awards. Barry Nicolson traces his path to Godliness, and hears about some e-mails to Morrissey...

Something For The Weekend, 22 February

'I can't play music I don't believe in.'


The Messenger by Jacqui Swift. 


Interview in which Johnny talks politics and about the ideas and motivation behind The Messenger.

Magnet, February 2013

'After 70 songs and an incredible time, it was just the right moment to move on.'


This charming man by Jonathan Valania. 


Twenty-five years after quitting the Smiths, Johnny Marr finally goes solo. Plus, everything you wanted to know about the Smiths but were afraid to ask and/or didn't have their phone numbers.

Mojo, February 2013

'I quickly recognised the value of having my own spirit in this record . . . When the record was finished I thought I'd achieved those things.'


The boy with the thorn in his side by Pat Gilbert. 


Blessed yet bedogged by the legend of The Smiths, Johnny Marr has spent 25 fast-moving years as a globetrotting genius-for-hire, tripping balls with The The and rocking out with The Cribs. Now he's come home, inspired by English weather, Aldous Huxley and his younger self to take the role he's always shunned: frontman and solo artist.

NME, 9 March 2013

Godlike Genius Johnny Marr 


Coverage of the NME Awards in which Johnny was bestowed the honour of Godlike Genius, + a Q&A between Johnny and his famous fans.

City Life, 22 March 2013

'I think it's right for every artist to want to break out of stereotyping and clichés.'


Coming home by Sarah Walters. 


Short article/interview with Johnny before his homecoming solo gigs in Manchester.

Loaded, March 2013

'I was hungry to write some words and I was hungry to sing. I was eager to make a record where all the guitars were done by me.'


Time for a little bit Marr by Matthew Drake. 


A quarter of a century since leaving indie icons The Smiths, Johnny Marr's reputation as a true guitar legend is well-established. About time he released his first solo album, then...

Nylon Guys, March 2013

​'I needed to reconnect to the energy of music when I was starting out....I'm a British musician for better or worse.'


This Charming Man by William van Meter. 


Interview with Johnny about The Messenger, lyric-writing, and moving back to Manchester.

Q, March 2013

'At the moment, collaborations don't seem that interesting to me. The great thing about doing your own record is it's all your own notions.'


Ca$h for questions by Chris Catchpole. 


He was expecting queries about "my hair and getting The Smiths back together". So how would the six-string legend tackle topics such as La's mystery man Lee Mavers and "the worst chord in the world"? Oh, and The Cribs' hair?

Vive Le Rock, March 2013

'I tend to pathologically look forward - I really fear looking back too much. When I've done something for a while, unless I can see change in it, I don't want to stay. I can't imagine being in the same situation in a three or a four year period.'


A Charming Man by Scott Zverblis. 


Widely regarded as one of the most influential musicians of his generation, Johnny Marr has demonstrated a steadfast commitment to the one thing that fuels his creativity: writing songs. From his meteoric rise to fame as guitarist and songwriter with Manchester band The Smiths in the 1980s, to their premature and messy breakup, to his subsequent collaborations, Marr has done whatever it takes to feed his creative appetite. Scott Zverblis spoke to the guitarist about those dreaded Smiths reunion rumours and more importantly, about the making of his debut solo album.

People, 15 April 2013

'It's a good feeling to play a song that people love. It fills the room with a proper vibe.'


Catching up with The Smiths' Johnny Marr by Jessica Herndon. 


Very short interview with Johnny about his new solo album, and his songwriting partnership with Morrissey.

NME, 20 April 2013

Short feature in which Johnny chats about some of his favourite and most influential records, including Sister Sledge, T Rex, The Everly Brothers, and The Beatles.

Real Detroit Weekly, 24 April 2013

'I like my audience, the ones who understand me, who know what I'm about . . . they're quite quirky and quite funny.'


God of the guitar by Alysa Zavala. 


Interview with Johnny prior to his April 26th gig in Detroit, in which he discusses his solo career, working on soundtracks, Motown, and his fan base.

Event, 5 May 2013

'It was an amazing song and the start of an amazing thing that happened. I am very proud of it.'


How I wrote the riff that lit up the Eighties by Craig McLean


Interview with Johnny to mark the 30th anniversary of the release of 'Hand in glove'.

NME, 18 May 2013

'I'm a pretty idealistic person. I like over-achievers with something to say the best.'


God of fuckin everything by Matt Wilkinson. 


Godlike genius, unmistakable wordsmith and legendary guitar player. Now we can add US conqueror and all-round cosmic guy to Johnny Marr's career feats. Matt Wilkinson heads to California to catch up with the man himself to talk mind, body, spirit and...Aldous Huxley.

NME, 22 June 2013

"I gave up trying to put out unheard Smiths tracks" 


Guitarist says he's lost heart in getting rare tracks from his former band released as a box-set, as bootlegged material continues to emerge online.

NME, 24 August 2013

'It's about delivering a good experience, whatever the genre. If you're on a stage, you have to do something on it.'


Short interview prior to Johnny's appearance at the Reading and Leeds festivals, 2013.

Uncut, August 2013

Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes by Nick Hasted. 


Photo article covering Johnny's life and career from adolescence to now.

NME, 7 September 2013

Pieces of me by Johnny Marr. 


The jangly Smith-turned-solo-hero on his love for T Rex, Portland, Oregon and his regal jukebox.

Metro, 17 September 2013

'Pop culture means something to people and it's worth it - people are passionate about it. Take it from me, people really do care.'


60 Seconds by Andrew Williams. 


Interview with Johnny about music, his solo career, and writing lyrics.

Q, November 2013

'Luckily for me, I've based my life on stuff that's happened, like making records and touring, so things that haven't happened yet don't panic me.'


Last Word 


The ex-Smiths guitarist reveals when he last blubbed and why he stole Luke Skywalker's goggles.

The Music, 11 December 2013

'I'm not interested in sitting in the corner of a room with the lights off saying, "Nobody understands me".'


Leaving the lights on by Steve Bell. 


Interview in Melbourne's free music and culture magazine, in the lead-up to Johnny's first Australian tour as a solo artist.

The Weekend Australian, 14 December 2013

'You hope one of the payoffs of getting older is getting wiser.'


10 Questions by Trent Dalton. 


Short interview with Johnny prior to the Australian leg of The Messenger tour.

NME, 21 December 2013

'We need to not take the fun out of being in a band, and liking bands, for granted. We need to start ignoring the crass mass media by not engaging with and not believing in it.'


The queen's speech is dead by Johnny Marr. 


Starting the year by being crowned our Godlike Genius, Johnny Marr gets to sign it off with his alternative Queen's speech. But if you're Spotify, David Cameron and Haim... well, best stick to Her Majesty's effort.

GQ, December 2013

Johnny features in a two-page fashion spread, and also answers the GQ&A questionnaire.

Mojo, December 2013

'I'm at Smiths speed now: let's do another, then another.'


Carry On Admiral by Keith Cameron. 


Live review of Johnny's set at Bestival, followed by a short interview.

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2014

NME, 22 February 2014

'I felt that my life was a myth in the making.'


What difference did it make? by Barry Nicolson. 


Thirty years on, The Smiths' debut album has had an immeasurable impact on the definition of indie. But it wasn't without its difficulties, Johnny Marr tells Barry Nicolson.

Q, March 2014

'I used to think art and entertainment were mutually exclusive; I'm glad that they're not.'


Aussie Rules by Alex Needham. 


Live review of Johnny's gig at the Oxford Art Factory in Sydney, plus an interview conducted shortly after.

NME, 29 March 2014

'Kids who feel alienated at school from the mainstream types and want something different from life will always bond over guitar bands. It's happened too long to think it'll ever be any different.'


NME Heroes: Palma Violets meets Johnny Marr by Al Horner. 


Joint interview between Johnny and Palma Violets frontman Chilli Jessen as part of NME's 'Heroes' issue.

Esquire, May 2014

'You should dress in whatever is your mental mode. I'm a musician and an artist. I don't want to be looking like a City gent.'

 

Sound Check by Johnny Davis. 


Extensive fashion spread + short interview.

Mojo, May 2014

'It's heavier; more energetic; more new-wavey.'


Mojo Working: Johnny Marr by Lois Wilson. 


Short feature on Johnny's upcoming, as-yet-untitled, second solo album.

The Blues Magazine, Issue #13

'He had the anti-style aesthetic 40 years too early. And he lived the romantic life of a bluesman, on the road with his band...'


Under the influence: the record that changed my life by Johnny Marr. 


Interview with Johnny about one of his heroes, Rory Gallagher.

NME, 14 June 2014

'I haven't gone off anywhere with my yoga mat to meditate and take a deep look at my inner self to share with the world. I just formed rock'n'roll band who play uptempo music and I want to continue that way for a long time.'


Marr's Attack by Rhian Daly. 


Interview with Johnny about his upcoming second solo album, as well as issues such as pay-to-play and the prison guitar ban.

Q, September 2014

'My words are important. I wouldn't want to write a stream of consciousness and hope that it stuck; it has to be about something.'


Blooming Marr-vellous by Chris Catchpole. 


Short interview about Playland prior to its release, conducted at RAK Studios in London.

NME, 4 October 2014

'I'm definitely a working musician. I've never known any other life.'

 

Jesus Christ Super Marr by Angus Batey. 


Released just 18 months after his debut, Johnny Marr's new solo album examines the tug between hedonism, distraction and release...

Hot Press, 15 October 2014

Marr Attacks! by Roisin Dwyer. 


The former Smiths guitarist has had a fresh lease of life following the release last year of his first solo album. Now he's back for seconds with a cracking follow-up. He discusses growing old with dignity, playing music with his sons [sic] and why he sees himself as an 'actor' who doesn't like to be typecast.

Loaded, October 2014

'I just say I'm Noel Gallagher when I get recognised' by Andy Welch. 


Hallowed ex-Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr talks his love of taking the Tube, his hatred of Tony Blair and why he worships Britain's youth. Just don't drop the Morrissey bomb if you see him on the Underground. Or ask about the chances of a Smiths reunion...

Q, November 2014

'I've been called a workaholic but I don't think I'm driven in any negative way. I'm just enthusiastic. I believe in bands, I believe in music, I believe it's art. I believe, still, there's nothing quite so powerful as an 18-year-old with nothing to lose.'

The boy with a thorn in his side by Sylvia Patterson. 


Since 1987, Johnny Marr has been a full-time member of bands such as The The, Electronic, Modest Mouse and The Cribs. He's worked with Talking Heads and The Pretenders. He's just releases his excellent second solo LP. And yet people only ever want to know when he's re-forming The Smiths...

Rolling Stone (Australia), November 2014

“In our day-to-day living, particularly in cities, when we’re chasing consumerism, sex and drugs and money and status, is it because we’re not able to be with ourselves? Is the pursuit of those things creating the very things that we’re escaping from? Neurosis and addiction and paranoia?”

 

Keep Moving by Michael Dwyer

 

Short interview about Johnny’s solo career and Playland.

Guitar Player, December 2014

'I know that some people like to be very experimental in the recording studio. But I just love playing live, and this record is directed at what I do onstage.'


Dynamo! by Michael Molenda. 


Johnny Marr details the wild, live-energy strategies in play for 'Playland'.

Vive Le Rock, December 2014

'It's important to sound like your environment and on this record that's London and Manchester. The feeling of the cities and the people make it into the music.'


Star Guitar by Eugene Butcher. 


With new album 'Playland' topping many a critic's end-of-year list, Johnny Marr has stepped out of the shadow of The Smiths and embraced his love of American alt...

Please reload

2014

NME, 22 February 2014

'I felt that my life was a myth in the making.'


What difference did it make? by Barry Nicolson. 


Thirty years on, The Smiths' debut album has had an immeasurable impact on the definition of indie. But it wasn't without its difficulties, Johnny Marr tells Barry Nicolson.

NME, 29 March 2014

'Kids who feel alienated at school from the mainstream types and want something different from life will always bond over guitar bands. It's happened too long to think it'll ever be any different.'


NME Heroes: Palma Violets meets Johnny Marr by Al Horner. 


Joint interview between Johnny and Palma Violets frontman Chilli Jessen as part of NME's 'Heroes' issue.

Q, March 2014

'I used to think art and entertainment were mutually exclusive; I'm glad that they're not.'


Aussie Rules by Alex Needham. 


Live review of Johnny's gig at the Oxford Art Factory in Sydney, plus an interview conducted shortly after.

Esquire, May 2014

'You should dress in whatever is your mental mode. I'm a musician and an artist. I don't want to be looking like a City gent.'

 

Sound Check by Johnny Davis. 


Extensive fashion spread + short interview.

Mojo, May 2014

'It's heavier; more energetic; more new-wavey.'


Mojo Working: Johnny Marr by Lois Wilson. 


Short feature on Johnny's upcoming, as-yet-untitled, second solo album.

The Blues Magazine, Issue #13

'He had the anti-style aesthetic 40 years too early. And he lived the romantic life of a bluesman, on the road with his band...'


Under the influence: the record that changed my life by Johnny Marr. 


Interview with Johnny about one of his heroes, Rory Gallagher.

NME, 14 June 2014

'I haven't gone off anywhere with my yoga mat to meditate and take a deep look at my inner self to share with the world. I just formed rock'n'roll band who play uptempo music and I want to continue that way for a long time.'


Marr's Attack by Rhian Daly. 


Interview with Johnny about his upcoming second solo album, as well as issues such as pay-to-play and the prison guitar ban.

Q, September 2014

'My words are important. I wouldn't want to write a stream of consciousness and hope that it stuck; it has to be about something.'


Blooming Marr-vellous by Chris Catchpole. 


Short interview about Playland prior to its release, conducted at RAK Studios in London.

NME, 4 October 2014

'I'm definitely a working musician. I've never known any other life.'

 

Jesus Christ Super Marr by Angus Batey. 


Released just 18 months after his debut, Johnny Marr's new solo album examines the tug between hedonism, distraction and release...

Hot Press, 15 October 2014

Marr Attacks! by Roisin Dwyer. 


The former Smiths guitarist has had a fresh lease of life following the release last year of his first solo album. Now he's back for seconds with a cracking follow-up. He discusses growing old with dignity, playing music with his sons [sic] and why he sees himself as an 'actor' who doesn't like to be typecast.

Loaded, October 2014

'I just say I'm Noel Gallagher when I get recognised' by Andy Welch. 


Hallowed ex-Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr talks his love of taking the Tube, his hatred of Tony Blair and why he worships Britain's youth. Just don't drop the Morrissey bomb if you see him on the Underground. Or ask about the chances of a Smiths reunion...

Q, November 2014

'I've been called a workaholic but I don't think I'm driven in any negative way. I'm just enthusiastic. I believe in bands, I believe in music, I believe it's art. I believe, still, there's nothing quite so powerful as an 18-year-old with nothing to lose.'

The boy with a thorn in his side by Sylvia Patterson. 


Since 1987, Johnny Marr has been a full-time member of bands such as The The, Electronic, Modest Mouse and The Cribs. He's worked with Talking Heads and The Pretenders. He's just releases his excellent second solo LP. And yet people only ever want to know when he's re-forming The Smiths...

Rolling Stone (Australia), November 2014

“In our day-to-day living, particularly in cities, when we’re chasing consumerism, sex and drugs and money and status, is it because we’re not able to be with ourselves? Is the pursuit of those things creating the very things that we’re escaping from? Neurosis and addiction and paranoia?”

 

Keep Moving by Michael Dwyer

 

Short interview about Johnny’s solo career and Playland.

Guitar Player, December 2014

'I know that some people like to be very experimental in the recording studio. But I just love playing live, and this record is directed at what I do onstage.'


Dynamo! by Michael Molenda. 


Johnny Marr details the wild, live-energy strategies in play for 'Playland'.

Vive Le Rock, December 2014

'It's important to sound like your environment and on this record that's London and Manchester. The feeling of the cities and the people make it into the music.'


Star Guitar by Eugene Butcher. 


With new album 'Playland' topping many a critic's end-of-year list, Johnny Marr has stepped out of the shadow of The Smiths and embraced his love of American alt...

Please reload

2015

Guitar World, January 2015

'I'm singing the way I'm singing onstage. It's a very live record.'


Johnny Marr Returns with Playland by Richard Bienstock. 


Short article/interview about Playland and Johnny's signature Jaguar.

Mojo, January 2015

'You can't compete with a myth. You just have to get over yourself and realise how lucky you are. Playing a song to 1,200 in a room, 40,000 people in a field, and them loving it, just cuts through all that bullshit.'


Johnny the Revelator by Pat Gilbert. 


Hungry for risk, guitarslinger Marr hits Bournemouth and Brixton (with a little help from Noel Gallagher).

Guitarist, March 2015

'Noel Gallagher's got my black Les Paul that I used on The Queen Is Dead. But he's a good boy, so I'll let it go...'


10 Questions We Ask Everyone 


Guitar-centric Q&A with Johnny.

Dynamic, April 2015

“I like my audience. It’s interesting to me to know what some of them do and what they’re about. I’ve always thought the fans were really important.”

 

Every word’s hidden meaning by Aly Stevenson

 

In-depth interview with Johnny about fan culture, lyricism, spirituality, philosophy, The Situationist International, and of course, Playland.

City Life, 2 October 2015

“I am from a culture of opposition and socialism, but I’ve always tried to make the records that are outside of that and not brought down by it.”

Marr-ied to the job of guitar god by Sarah Walters

 

Short interview with Johnny about his solo albums, touring, and Freeheld.

Loud and Quiet, October 2015

Your best piece of advice for others?

“Don’t be a dick.”

 

Johnny fills out the Getting to know you questionnaire for this free, independent music newspaper.

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2016

2017

Q, January 2016

'I'm singing the way I'm singing onstage. It's a very live record.'


Johnny Marr Returns with Playland by Richard Bienstock. 


Short article/interview about Playland and Johnny's signature Jaguar.

Q, 30th anniversary special, August 2016

“No matter what, you must learn not to second-guess yourself. People recognise when you do something for reasons that are genuine; the fact that my trajectory may be seen as eccentric is a bonus.”

 

Q Modern Hero: Johnny Marr by Pat Gilbert

 

Short interview covering topics such as past bands, working with Hans Zimmer, and Q magazine itself.

The Guardian Weekend, 29 October 2016

“I really like the word free. It has a sense of energy, and idealism, which I’ve always felt.”

 

Last night I dreamed that everybody was cool now

 

Interview about Set The Boy Free, plus an exclusive extract ahead of the book’s release.

The Australian, 28 November 2016

“I needed to work to make sense of life and I think you hear that in the music. What am I doing here, what does it all mean, what’s bugging us?”

 

Johnny Marr has moved on by Will Hodgkinson

 

Interview about Set The Boy Free and Johnny’s personal legacy.

Herald Sun, 8 December 2016

“My lifestyle isn’t part of some contrived old rock star regret or anything like that, I just do whatever I think is going to make me the most productive.”

 

On the Marr side by Cameron Adams

 

Interview for an Australian weekend newspaper, covering such topics as Set The Boy Free, The Smiths, and veganism.

Classic Pop, December 2016

“I made a pact with myself when I was younger that I was never going to be about nostalgia or reflection, which is a drawback when you’re writing your autobiography! But the book has an energy, and it doesn’t feel too reflective.”

 

The history boy by John Earls

 

Interview about Set The Boy Free.

Q, December 2016

“I think my love of music meant that I had a lot more to do than just one group.”

 

The last great guitar-slinger by Dorian Lynskey

 

Lengthy, album-by-album career retrospective interview.

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2018

Guitar & Bass, February 2017

“The most revealing aspect of writing the book was just how young I was, especially where The Smiths are concerned.”

 

Marr on life by John Earls

 

Alternative version of John Earls’ Set The Boy Free-centric interview with Johnny, previously published in Classic Pop (December 2016).

Big Issue North, 5 June 2007

"Let's put it this way: I always followed what I thought was best for my growth and inspiration as a musician."

 

Strings of by life by Saskia Murphy

 

Johnny talks about Set The Boy Free, and the Manchester Arena attack.

The Guardian, 11 December 2017

“It’s the job of the artist to stand up to oppressive forces.”

 

Manchester United by John Harris

 

Joint interview with Johnny and Maxine Peake, about ‘The Priest’, politics, and future collaborations.

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Q, January 2018

“I was trying to imagine an alternative society.”

 

Johnny Marr taps into the past by Tom Doyle

 

One of the earliest interviews about Johnny’s (then-unnamed) third album, Call The Comet.

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