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Date: Wed, 7 Dec 1994 11:13:44 -0500 (EST)
From: Slang King <RKARR[at]>
Subject: Mark E. Smith

As the list's resident Fall-head, I have to reply.

Stephen Larsen writes:

> Mark E. Smith is a very serious (pretentious?)
> musician who has clearly found out what makes his heart sing. Fish is a
> very lighthearted musician who has found out what makes his heart sing.

Erm, I think you've completely misread the Fall. Few bands are as funny, few
singers as bitingly funny as Smith. The difference between Pat and Mark's humor
is the difference between, say, the Marx Brothers and Kubrick's Dr.
Strangelove: One is more obviously humorous, more directly lighthearted. The
other is much darker, much more bitter, but every bit as funny. And absolutely
intended to be so.

> Smith is (or was, until the "Manchester" thing) very strongly associated
> with Northern music. So Fish wants to be a Southern, lighthearted
> version of Mark Smith. The line on the _Scandal_ version of "Southern
> Mark Smith," "hey, don't you know they only make pop records out of
> plastic" tells listeners to not take pop music too seriously, as Mark E.
> Smith, or at least his serious fans, do.

I'd argue Pat is making light of the very _notion_ of a Southern Mark Smith
being possible. Being Mancunian is so completely part of what Smith is. . . .

Rick G. Karr Engineer, Reporter
rkarr[at] National Public Radio Midwest
* 230 N. Michigan Ave, Ste. 520
* Chicago, IL 60601
Tel: +1(312)263-4530 Fax: +1(312)263-0213