The Smiths’ Johnny Marr & Andy Rourke Are On A New Song Together For The First Time In 35 Years

The Smiths’ Johnny Marr & Andy Rourke Are On A New Song Together For The First Time In 35 Years

Do not hold your breath waiting for Johnny Marr and Morrissey to collaborate in any capacity again, but those holding out for some form of Smiths reunion can exhale. When Marr opened for the Killers at Madison Square Garden in September, Smiths bassist Andy Rourke joined him for a run through “How Soon Is Now?” and “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out.” Now Marr and Rourke have appeared on a song together for the first time in 35 years.

Blitz Vega is Rourke’s band with Happy Mondays guitarist Kav Blaggers. The duo’s new single “Strong Forever,” produced by DJ Z-Trip, features Marr on guitar. Blaggers tells Rolling Stone, “Andy calls me [one day], and he says Johnny said he’ll record some guitar on the track. I was like, ‘What? Johnny? Johnny Marr?’ He’s like, ‘Yeah,’ in his laidback but very Mancunian way.”

In the same feature, Rourke says, “I wanted exactly what Johnny does. He has a very distinctive sound, and that’s what he did. We love what he brought to the track.” Regarding Marr, he adds, “We’ve remained friends, we’ve known each other since we were 13 years old. He’s my oldest and dearest friend and I feel our friendship gets stronger as time passes.”

“Strong Forever” has been in the works since January 2020. Originally the song featured vocals by then-Kasabian frontman Tom Meighan, but after he admitted to committing domestic assault and left Kasabian, Blaggers laid down a replacement vocal take. Hear the end result below.

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