“His distinction was so terrific and unconventional and he proved it could be done,” Morrissey wrote of Andy Rourke, his former bandmate in The Smiths.
This week, the music world mourns the loss of Andy Rourke, the talented bassist of the iconic band, The Smiths, who passed away from pancreatic cancer.
Read all the latest product & music industry news here.
Rourke’s contributions to indie-pop and rock music have left a lasting impact, as was acknowledged by his bandmate Johnny Marr, their label Rough Trade, and now, Smiths lead singer Morrissey.
In a heartfelt statement on his website, Morrissey paid tribute to his former bandmate, emphasising that Rourke’s music will ensure his eternal presence. Morrissey’s words highlighted Rourke’s unique musical power, emphasising that his playing was truly original and unmatched.
Despite the challenges the band faced after their breakup, including legal disputes over royalties between Rourke, drummer Mike Joyce, Morrissey, and Marr, Rourke eventually settled with his former bandmates.
Notably, he continued to collaborate with Morrissey on various songs, showcasing their enduring artistic connection. Andy Rourke’s musical legacy will forever be cherished and celebrated.
“Sometimes one of the most radical things you can do is to speak clearly. When someone dies, out come the usual blandishments … as if their death is there to be used. I’m not prepared to do this with Andy. I just hope … wherever Andy has gone … that he’s OK. He will never die as long as his music is heard. He didn’t ever know his own power, and nothing that he played had been played by someone else. His distinction was so terrific and unconventional and he proved it could be done. He was also very, very funny and very happy, and post-Smiths, he kept a steady identity – never any manufactured moves. I suppose, at the end of it all, we hope to feel that we were valued. Andy need not worry about that.”
Born on January 17, 1964, Rourke’s influence within the world of alternative music, from his time in The Smiths and beyond, is undeniable. His distinctive bass lines played a crucial role in shaping the band’s unique sound, with his melodic and rhythmic sensibilities providing a solid foundation for the entirety of The Smiths’ discography.
Beyond his work with the Smiths, Rourke collaborated with various artists, including fellow bandmate Morrissey, showcasing his versatility as a musician. Although he has passed, Rourke’s legacy will undoubtedly continue to inspire generations of musicians to come.
To find the original post dedicated to Andy Rourke on Morrisey’s website, head here.