Johnny Marr Announces Autobiography Details - Rolling Stone
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Johnny Marr Announces Autobiography Details

The Smiths guitarist’s book ‘Set the Boy Free’ out this fall

The Smiths co-founder Johnny Marr has inked a book deal with Dey Street Books. The autobiography, titled Set the Boy Free, is due out November 3rd, 2016.

“I wanted to convey a feeling of breaking free, that has been a constant throughout my life,” the British guitarist said in a statement about the book. “A feeling that expresses itself as both escape and discovery. Transcendence. I found it through rock & roll and art and a journey living both in the modern world.”

The book will span Marr’s childhood growing up in 1960s Manchester, England and his time in the seminal alternative band the Smiths. After leaving the group in 1987, Marr went on to work with Modest Mouse, the Cribs, the The, the Pretenders and Electronic, his band with New Order frontman Bernard Sumner. Marr’s last solo LP, Playland, was released in 2014.

Marr has been planning the release since 2011. Last August, he told Rolling Stone he’d been doing research and sketching story ideas for the book, but his touring schedule cut down on his ability to write. 

In 2013, Marr’s Smiths counterpart Morrissey published his memoir, Autobiography. Rolling Stone‘s Rob Sheffield hailed its “morally reprehensible wit.” More recently, the brooding singer published his debut novel List of the Lost, which won a dubious “Bad Sex Award” for its awkward love scenes by the Literary Review in 2015. 

Marr told Rolling Stone last year that despite Morrissey releasing his autobiography first, Marr’s book will be “my life story, it won’t be any kind of response to anything.”

In This Article: Johnny Marr, Modest Mouse, The Smiths


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