It was a THRILL to see Morrissey perform live at the newly restored historic Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY – Saturday, January 19th. This was his last performance of the East Coast leg of his US tour for 2013.
The Capitol Theater, located in Westchester county, is a few blocks from the Metro North station and convenient by car. This theater has been renovated with great attention to detail. I am thrilled with wheelchair accessibility and the super accommodating staff. The architecture has been painstakingly preserved and maintained with a nod to its illustrious past. I admire those with vision who go to great lengths to preserve and update historic venues. Too often, politicians and developers decide to tear down these gems and replace them with nondescript strip malls, adding to the blandness of the American landscape. What’s the point of replacing our historical landmarks with over priced condos and obnoxious big box stores which rhyme with “fart”?
Now, onto MORRISSEY…. I have been a stalwart fan of The Smiths and its lead singer, Morrissey since 1984. I fell in love the very second I heard their songs of teen angst, unrequited and tortured love, social and political issues, sung in a soulful baritone. Morrissey was the voice for misunderstood teens who questioned their sexuality, their feelings of alienation from the high school “cool” crowd and the peer pressure to conform. He was the hero who sang songs saying it was okay not to fit in. I related to him since my life as a teen in affluent suburbia mirrored his lyrics. It was impossible to fit into the typical high school cliques of cheerleaders and jocks. I took a different route, thumbing my nose at the packs who rarely had a creative thought or differing opinion. You can even see the same high school class hierarchy today. The “in” crowd bullies the artsy, geeky and non-conformist kids, this time using social media as a potent and damaging weapon. I cringe when I see packs of girls wearing the same uniform of sloppy sweats, fuzzy wuzzy scuffed boots, a logo encrusted “it” bag and a sense of entitlement.
I am a wild fan of Morrissey not only for his magnetizing music but also for his charismatic style. Carefully coiffed pompadours, meticulously groomed sideburns, Buddy Holly-esque glasses and slouchy cuffed jeans make me SWOON. Get me smelling salts, a fan and a fainting couch….QUICKLY! Morrissey has an ’80s/’50’s style that few can emulate, but try they do! I love people-watching at all his shows. Some of the men in attendance dress like Morrissey, circa mid-’80s. Others wear Goth band t’s and one in particular, a fresh faced private art school freshman, sported a goatee, floppy hair, original pressed CBGB T and Doc Martens. Wow! So great to see everyone’s enthusiastic reaction to their hero’s wry lyrics, “..My only weakness is a listed crime, but last night the plans of a future war, was all I saw on Channel Four” or “Everyday is like Sunday. Everyday is silent and grey” and finally the anthem song “There’s a club if you’d like to go, you could meet somebody who really loves you, so you go and you stand on your own, and you leave on your own, and you go home and you cry and you want to die.” These songs have and always will keep me a staunch and loyal fan of Steven Morrissey.
What am I wearing? Dress by Kenzo, flapper hat (recycled sweaters & chiffon) by Ki Piermont, NY, arm warmers by Jamie Kreitman, Boots by Marc Jacobs, Mary Portas fishnet stockings & OCC lipstick bright orange lips in “Grandma.”
In a June 6, 2012 interview with Juiceonline.com, he said he would plan on retiring by 2014 at the age of 55. He cited that he would like to leave the spotlight because:
“I am slightly shocked to have gone as far as I have. This is my 30th year, and I’ve aged a lot recently, which is a bit distressing for me, as it must be for everyone. The body changes shape and there’s nothing you can do about it . . . I take one hour at a time.”
Come on Morrissey, if Rod Stewart can still wear the same shamefully shaggy hairdo for decades and record a Christmas album as his latest and greatest achievement, then you can stick it out to the ripe age of 70. We love you and don’t care what you may look like. Even if you enter the stage with a bald head, reeking of patchouli, wearing a Grateful Dead tie-dye tee, rainbow flip flops, devouring a lamb shank, we will still love you. We will always pay tribute to a man who has always said things unapologetically, with conviction and aplomb.
Lastly, please watch this interview of Morrissey on Colbert October 10th, 2012. It is quintessentially Morrissey and he takes all of Colbert’s jabs with grace.
Here is my favorite line from the interview. After expressing how much Morrissey hates the Royal family he asks Colbert: “Do you have a Royal family?”
Colbert responded: “Uh, yes, it is called the Romneys.” SNAP!
Also, check out some great images from the show photographed by Robert Altman.