Led by truculent frontman Morrissey and guitarist Johnny Marr, the band helped create the template for a generation of indie bands.
Now the Portsmouth stand-up has lifted the opening line of their 1986 single Ask for his new show: Shyness is Nice?
He will be performing it at The Fox in Southsea on June 15, with fellow local comic Joe Wells who will be previewing his new show I Am Autistic.
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Portsmouth stand-up comic Matt Roseblade
As Matt explains: ‘In my formative years I spent a lot of time listening to The Smiths, but being a miserable teenager, I focused too much on the misery of Morrissey rather than the delightful joy of Johnny Marr and his music.
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‘As I’ve got older – and as Morrissey has got older, we’ve taken different paths,’ in recent years the singer has endorsed the far-right party For Britain and aired numerous controversial opinions, ‘and I’ve found myself closer to Johnny Marr.’
And it was actually a 2013 gig by the latter at The Wedgewood Rooms which ended up being the catalyst for Matt trying his hand at stand-up.
‘I enjoyed it so much,’ he recalls, ‘that I came home and wrote a review of it and I showed it to some people. They said: “That’s really funny”, and I thought: “Yeah, I can do funny”.
‘So I started writing a blog and I shared that with some people. More people said it was funny and it got to the point where I was being mobbed – I’m exaggerating, but I work in IT – by mums at my kids’ school. They said it was really funny and I should go on stage.
‘Armed with that validation, I thought I should try stand-up.
‘I lied my way on to the bill at The Fat Fox, and they said: “Oh, you’re not terrible – you can come back”. And when I did come back they twisted my arm and made me take over running the night.’
It is a role Matt still holds – putting on the monthly Comedy at The Fat Fox nights.
And now? ‘250 gigs all over the place later, I find that I’m a different person.
‘When I was a younger man I was terribly, terribly shy. I come from a long line of shy people. I was a very shy kid and it didn’t really help me.
‘The follow up line to “shyness is nice”, is that: “and shyness can stop you from doing all the things in life that you’d like to”.
‘So being a stand-up, essentially through humiliating myself, and getting usually positive feedback from a group of strangers and making them laugh, I found that shyness doesn’t really have a place in my life any more.’
Matt recently performed three nights of the show in Brighton, but he does harbour a ‘bucket list’ ambition.
‘I have a day job which I enjoy and a family which occupies a lot of my time. I’m essentially Dobbie the house elf – I do the cooking and the ironing and some of the cleaning, and… I’m making excuses. It’s on my bucket list to take a show around the festivals – because there’s more than just Edinburgh.
‘But when the children have left home.’
In the meantime though, The Fat Fox nights continue to go well
‘It never ceases to amaze me that we sell out every month – we’ve sold out six consecutive months. Every night I think this can’t get any better, and it does.
‘We had Robert White last week, in at short notice. Robert was a BGT finalist, and whatever the right metaphor is he tore it up, he stormed it, he set the place on fire, whatever – people were aching with laughter.
Advance tickets for Matt and Joe Wells on Wednesday, June 15 are £5. Go to wegottickets.com.