We are soryy to repirt the death of Joe Moss the inspirational Manchester legend who managed  The Smiths and Johnny Mar who has died at the age of 72 following his battle with bone cancer.

Joe was the Smiths first manager and key in the development of the band, creating the space and encouragement crucial for the then young band. He was also a total gent and we enjoyed great chats about the Beats that he was enamoured with and I still have the copy of the Neal Cassady’s book that he gave me.


In the early eighties he owned the clothing store Crazy Face where he met the 17-year-old Marr who was running around town with his guitar and dreams. When Marr teamed up with Morrissey it was Joe that first recognised their talent and let them rehearse in his city centre warehouse and sorted out gigs and record deal and got the band off the ground until they parted ways in 1983, leaving him to book other bands in Night and Day and other projects.

Afterwards, Moss managed Marion and then Haven  until he resumed as manager for Johnny Marr in 1999, a position he held up until his death.

“Joe was a one off, an amazing person and totally unique,” Marr said in a statement. “He started looking after me when I was seventeen; it was Joe who put the idea in my head to go and knock on Morrissey’s door. He invested his time and money in us when no one else wanted to know, and his belief in us kept us going.”

“Without him there wouldn’t have been any Smiths,” Marr added. “He was an original beatnik and a true bohemian, respected by all. Everyone who met him loved him; he can never be replaced.”


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Award winning journalist and boss of Louder Than War. In a 30 year music writing career, John was the first to write about bands such as Stone Roses and Nirvana and has several best selling music books to his name. He constantly tours the world with Goldblade and the Membranes playing gigs or doing spoken word and speaking at music conferences.


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