To be honest this wasn’t that much of a gig. The support had been noisy in an inconsequential way and Morrissey didn’t get through two songs.
So, in fairness, it hardly constitutes a show at all. But there was something comforting in the fact that having had a pint thrown at him Morrissey decided he wasn’t going to come back on. Notoriously a difficult character, he was only really living up to the legend.
Having got through a robust version of This Charming Man the signs had been good that his return to Liverpool after an underwhelming show at the Empire would be one to remember.
Then some clown decides that we’d remember it for other reasons entirely. It’s difficult to understand the thought process that results in thinking chucking a beer at someone of Morrissey’s temperament would be a good idea.
You could see the beer splatter in the lights and Moz headed for the sidelines. A restless few minutes later we were informed over the PA that he wouldn’t be coming back.
To be honest I can’t say that I was too disappointed. I’d seen him many times both with and without The Smiths and there was something different about them all. I might have felt differently if I was there for the first time, but a Morrissey walk off just added to these various experiences.
I am always honoured and yet not necessarily pleased when you and I can share a similar concert-going experience, such as from the one and only time I have seen Morrissey live as well when he too was bottled off at Madness’ Madstock gig I may have already mentioned on here.
His ‘crime’ on that particular day was not only displaying an enormous backdrop of two skinhead kids’ faces, but also for cavorting in his gold lame jacket and waving a Union Jack in front of Madness’ very dubious hardcore skinhead following. I recall hearing that they threw everything they could find at him, from beer bottles to over 70 pounds in loose change collected from the stage. I don’t recall him returning after that either.
Hurtling projectiles at unfortunate performers can be a mixed bag of emotions for me. I don’t condone it at all and yet somehow find the footage of a very young Justin Bieber being hit by a bottle – endlessly repeated on a loop by some edit-savvy You Tuber – to be richly satisfying.
There’s clearly a downside to the action too, such as in your experience and mine too, and then also the incident at a show in Richmond, Virginia last year when Toots Hibbert of Toots and the Maytals was hit by a Vodka bottle from the crowd. The perpetrator not only received a six-month jail sentence for his actions but also got a stinging letter from Toots himself hoping that he truly suffered for his actions during his time inside.
Both incidents can be found as car-crash footage on You Tube – the Toots one being particularly distressing so be careful there – and the fascinating tale of Toots in Richmond is told in full here;
Thanks for sharing your post, mate, and sorry for hijacking it again but I’m loving reading your stuff again since I’ve missed it so much and hope you get an amazing response for this blog. Cheers.
Got caught in a fairly severe bout of bottling at Ozzfest once with no chance of getting out of the way. You just had to keep your head down and hope!