When I started out on this quest a few years ago on the old blog to review every UK single released by Morrissey, I didn’t have all of them in the collection – some 95% of them perhaps, but not all of them. I thought it would be a simple enough task to track down those that were missing.
This one proved a bit awkward unless, at the time I was prepared to pay over £40 for a copy. (It’s come down in price over the past 5 or so years but would still set you back around £20)
Although I’m a fan of I Just Want To See The Boy Happy (trombone playing on a Morrissey record??? Hurrah!!!) , it was the fourth single lifted from Ringleader of The Tormentors and as far as I was aware, the b-sides only had live versions of old songs. It also was released not long before Xmas 2006 and I’m no different from anyone else in wanting to having other priorities for my pennies and pounds at that time of year. It was sheer stupidity that caused me to overlook the fact that a previously unreleased song was on the CD single…here was me only looking at the two versions of the vinyl.
The three different formats, combined with the new song, and a couple of the best live recordings he’s shoved out, helped generate enough sales to take the single to a more than respectable #16 in the UK charts. But in January 2007, the record label made one final effort to get in some cash with a 12″ picture disc, limited to 1,000 copies, with all the tracks on the different formats brought together. And when I began this series, I was determined to track down an affordable copy of the single, which I did thanks to a seller from Germany.
mp3 : Morrissey – I Just Want To See The Boy Happy
mp3 : Morrissey – Sweetie-Pie
mp3 : Morrissey – I Want The One I Can’t Have (live)
mp3 : Morrissey – Speedway (live)
mp3 : Morrissey – Late Night, Maudlin Street (live)
The previously unreleased song, Sweetie-Pie, is a rather strange-sounding but entrancing track which I reckon should have been included on the LP just because it is so different from the majority of songs he was releasing at the time.
I really do like this version of Speedway, which I reckon is one of the best songs he’s recorded at any point in his career, solo or with his old band, while the performance of Late Night, Maudlin Street is also more than passable (and non-fans can take heart from the fact its a couple of minutes shorter than the original studio version).
I will not pass comment however, on the cover of the song by The Smiths.
All three live tracks were lifted from shows at the Royal Albert Hall in September 2002. These were at a time when he was without any sort of record contract and are reckoned by many to be among some of the best he’s ever played as he was determined to show the London media luvvies that he was still worth writing and talking about……it worked as he was back with a vengeance less than a year later.
As with so many of the other releases at this time, the sleeve photos were taken by celebrated Italian fashion photographer Fabio Lovino.