The 10 Most Mexican Morrissey/Smiths Songs of All Time
Tomorrow, Morrissey will defy his doctor's orders and play a show at the Observatory. The show sold out in seconds despite the hefty price tag, and the show will overwhelmingly be Mexican, as they have been in Southern California for the past 20 years or so. I wrote about the phenomenon back in 2002, and Morrissey has only become even more Mexican since then.
Photo by the late, great Andrew Youssef Morrissey at his finest
Yet the question continues to get asked: Why do Mexicans like Morrissey so much? I will answer it anew in the video version of my ¡Ask a Mexican! column this coming Monday, but the short answer is the music: as I wrote in my article so long ago, "For all the machismo and virulent existentialism that Mexican music espouses, there is another side--a morbid fascination with getting your heart and dreams broken by others, usually in death." In other words, Morrissey--and behold 10 proofs for my conclusion: the most Mexican Morrissey/Smiths songs of them all.
10. "Glamorous Glue"
All these years later, I still don't know what the hell Morrissey is singing about save for the following, which I mentioned in my article:
The argument can even be made that Morrissey's acknowledgement of his Latino lovers goes back as early as 1992's Your Arsenal; on "Glamorous Glue," he wondered, "We look to Los Angeles/For the language we use/London is dead/London is dead/Now I'm too much in love." Elizabethan English and its people have perished, he tells us; long live the Spanglish race of Nuestra Lady de los Ángeles.
Morrissey would eventually get more blatant in his valentines to his Mexican fans, as the following songs will show, just like...
Um, DUH. Here's a lyric: "It seems if you're rich and you're white/You'll be all right./I just don't see why this should be so." Ranked low on this list, though, because it's a bit too obvious a bone thrown to the fánaticos and relies more on truisms than thematics for its Mexi mettle. On the other hand...
8. "Sing Your Life"
Morrissey expresses the fierce individualism that has characterized his career, the fierce individualism also praised in Mexican song and in the Mexican character--a fierce individualism that society always tries to smothere or rob. "You have a lovely singing voice/a lovely singing voice/and all of those/who sing on key/they stole the notion/from you and me," he sighed A particular favorite of the Mexican female Morrissey fans that I know, for the obvious reasons.