“There’s a Lot of Guitar Culture That I Don’t Like At All”: How Johnny Marr Placed The Smiths at the Forefront of the U.K.’s 1980s Music Scene

In 1982, I was on friendly terms with Smiths’ guitar maestro Johnny Marr. We met when he was working in a pretty cool, alternative clothing store in Manchester, England, and he recognized me from the band that I was in, Private Sector.

I’d see him in the store, at shows of other bands and some of my own shows, and we used to talk music, of course, and often the guitar in particular. We seemed to have a lot of musical interests in common, but I lost track of Johnny a few months before he formed the Smiths with Morrissey, and we never reconnected after that time.