- 26 Mar 09
Morrissey has accused BBC Radio One of banning his music because the Controller doesn't like him. In an exclusive interview, the cover story of the latest Hot Press, he reveals: "I have a letter from him to my plugger which begins, 'let me explain to you why we will never play Morrissey'... which is alarming."
The decision to ban Morrissey's could be a reflection of the administration's own insecurities, the frontman suggests, in the course of a hugely informative and entertaining interview, conducted by Peter Murphy for Hot Press.
"It's human nature to dislike and even hate other people, sometimes without even knowing why, sometimes because they remind you of something within yourself that you dislike," says the 49-year-old Morrissey, who remains one of the most durable and intellectually stimulating rock icons of the post punk era.
He reveals that the BBC rationalised what amounts to a blanket ban by saying that he was 'too old to be played on Radio One' and that he didn't 'make consistently good music'.
"I found this quite fascinating because it is obviously untrue and also age-ist and possibly racist," he adds.
Recalling the case where Selina Scott successfully sued the UK television channel Five for telling her she was too old for a particular commission, he argues that he could take a similar action against the UK National Broadcaster.
"They play music by people that are older than me – McDonna, U2, REM and The Cure -- so it is absolute discrimination," he says.
"Radio One is also contractually committed to reflect public tastes and not to dictate public tastes," he insists. "I attended a board meeting with Universal Records in London recently and I casually mentioned that I have grounds to sue Radio One for being both age-ist and possibly racist. Everyone laughed nervously and looked away. Now I know how Joan of Arc felt."
Morrissey's latest album Years Of Refusal has been widely acclaimed, with Edwin McFee in Hot Press concluding that "Morrissey hasn't sounded so alive, relevant and downright essential in decades."
To purchase the new issue of Hot Press, click here.