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The Smiths — What Difference Does It Make?
Album: Hatful Of Hollow
Avg rating:
7.2

Your rating:
Total ratings: 3897









Released: 1984
Length: 3:08
Plays (last 30 days): 2
All men have secrets and here is mine
So let it be known
For we have been through hell and high tide
I think I can rely on you
And yet you start to recoil
Heavy words are so lightly thrown
But still I'd leap in front of a flying bullet for you

So, what difference does it make?
So, what difference does it make?
It makes none
But now you have gone
And you must be looking very old tonight

The devil will find work for idle hands to do
I stole and I lied, and why?
Because you asked me to
But now you make me feel so ashamed
Because I've only got two hands
Well, I'm still fond of you, uh-ho-ho

So, what difference does it make?
Oh, what difference does it make?
Oh, it makes none
But now you have gone
And your prejudice won't keep you warm tonight

Oh, the devil will find work for idle hands to do
I stole, and then I lied
Just because you asked me to
But now you know the truth about me
You won't see me anymore
Well, I'm still fond of you, uh-ho-ho

But no more apologies
No more apologies
Oh, I'm too tired
I'm so sick and tired
And I'm feeling very sick and ill today
But I'm still fond of you, uh-ho-ho

Oh, my sacred one
Oh...
Comments (391)add comment
Just happened to listen to "Hatful of Hollow" all the way through recently. I'm still amazed at what an outstanding album it is through and through. Not a single bad track. And the musicianship is awesome across the board. They were all great musicians, despite Marr getting the most attention.
 cely wrote:

God what a riff!  Super hard to play with consistency, but obviously not for Johnny Marr.




I  Agree!!
 rbrise wrote:


So now you can't watch a Woody Allen movie or one by Clint Eastwood or one which stars Kevin Spacey or Jon Voight or Ron Silver etc... this is madness and has deprived us of too much already including  possibly a President Al Franken. Enough already,  you need to compartmentalize the work from the artist. When politics pervades everything everything becomes as caustic and boring as politics.


It's easy, just draw the line at what people do and not what they say. A man saying it's ok to bang a stepdaughter is not the same as a man actually doing it.
 GingerandMe wrote:

Massive legends here in Manchester, UK.
Always will be.




And, they SHOULD be!   Thanx RP!  
Massive legends here in Manchester, UK.
Always will be.
I remember hearing The Smiths and thinking “these guys are… different!”
And your prejudice won't keep you warm tonight. 
- Apropos Morrissey quote
One of the most tender and moving love lyrics of all time.
uh ho ho.

i love that.
 doktorkev wrote:

One of my favorite  guitar riffs ever. Probably took me 2 months to get it down.

Cant say enough about Johnny Marr. What an incredible influence 




I Agree!   GREAT TUNE!! GREAT GUITAR WORK!!  Thanx RP!  
One of my favorite  guitar riffs ever. Probably took me 2 months to get it down.

Cant say enough about Johnny Marr. What an incredible influence 
Oh my sainted Aunt..  How fantastic were The Smiths.  And, let me tell you, Johnnie Marr is one of the most solid guys in the world.  Kind of like an english Dave Grohl!!
"The Queen is Dead"  is one of my all time top 5 albums.  (with utter respect to our recently departed Her Majesty The Queen)
I happened upon a recording of a live Johnny Marr concert just the other day and there was Johnny singing a Smiths song...I think it may have been Shoplifters when I turned it on...and ewww...he shouldn't do that.  Smiths' songs without The Mozzer's Pope of Mope schtick don't work...in spite of Marr's excellent licks.
 springof63 wrote:


doing it now....
skip!



Thank You for being polite about it!  Everybody has different tastes. 
"But I'm STILL fond of you... ah-ah-ha"
 tm wrote:

I love the smiths - haters you know what you can do…



doing it now....
skip!
Great to pick me up on a Friday morning  to be ready for the weekend    Just reaching for the volume is always a good sign.
Johnny F-ing Marr!
 rbrise wrote:


So now you can't watch a Woody Allen movie or one by Clint Eastwood or one which stars Kevin Spacey or Jon Voight or Ron Silver etc... this is madness and has deprived us of too much already including  possibly a President Al Franken. Enough already,  you need to compartmentalize the work from the artist. When politics pervades everything everything becomes as caustic and boring as politics.

Your choice Americano but your chosen list of arseholes proves that you can't compartmentalize the work from the artist.
I love the smiths - haters you know what you can do…
I can't Morrissey and his whiny, entitled demeanor.
Original mix is a lot better. 
 cavemanleong wrote:

Morrisey is an insufferable twat. Aside from that, the band's music is pretty damn good.

Johnnyy Marr's guitar and Morrissey's lyrics made for a brilliant combo - one of them seemed to tire of their part of the band. Sad but they never got boring...

JOHNNY F.....G MARR
Wish he would cheer up a bit
Tthis riff - My Phone Ringtone. I grew up listening to my copy of 'Hatful' I bought it when it was released and still have it. The CD copy has been in every car I have ever owned.
The complex interplay and layering of all the instruments and vocals in this is truly staggering, even as it seems they are each doing their own wild groove
 cavemanleong wrote:

Morrisey is an insufferable twat. Aside from that, the band's music is pretty damn good.




I I agree on both counts! In that WIKI photo, he looks like he wants to chew somebody's face off!
 rtrt wrote:

On the Main and Rock mixes at the same time - whats that about...




Greatness!!
 ce wrote:


I've said it before and I'll say it again:
All hail Johnny Marr! 



SAY IT AGAIN!!!!   
 itsme_bygolly wrote:
I agree that the guitar player is frequently overlooked while Morrissey got the attention. But no one would have noticed Morrissey if not for the astonishing guitar.


I've said it before and I'll say it again:
All hail Johnny Marr! 
 cavemanleong wrote:

Morrisey is an insufferable twat. Aside from that, the band's music is pretty damn good.




I Agree!! Great music!! And a D-bag with a great voice! 
Morrisey is an insufferable twat. Aside from that, the band's music is pretty damn good.
Only a 7.2 rating? Ha! Behave yourselves!...

On the Main and Rock mixes at the same time - whats that about...
My God, this blew me away back in ‘84!!! First year sober, flailing about the dance floor!!
i grew up in the era but I really missed out on the Smiths...
GREAT!!!
 rbrise wrote:


So now you can't watch a Woody Allen movie or one by Clint Eastwood or one which stars Kevin Spacey or Jon Voight or Ron Silver etc... this is madness and has deprived us of too much already including  possibly a President Al Franken. Enough already,  you need to compartmentalize the work from the artist. When politics pervades everything everything becomes as caustic and boring as politics.

I didn't express an opinion one way or the other...was just wondering about other's thoughts.  And, honestly, I think there is a scale of "ick-ness" and his being, at the very least, a semi-cloaked white supremacist is pretty high up that scale.  I'm not in favour of the whole cancel culture at all.  We all do dumb shit and looking back on my life...even though I'd say I'm a pretty decent human person, I've done some shit that I would never want publicly discussed.  But you make a point...when I watch a Woody Allen movie, I am uncomfortable.  I do think of him marrying his step-daughter.  Ick.  And it does affect my feelings for that movie.  BUT...The Smiths were more than Stephen...and maybe for that reason, I find that I don't have the same reaction...

Yeah, and Franken got humped for pretending to do something that I'm sure he thought was silly in the moment.  We've lost the ability to find humour in our humanity, I'm afraid... 
 t0m5k1 wrote:

I don't think it does. Whilst the thoughts and opinions of Morrisey may affect the lyrics and what ends up in a given track it is this that also makes a given track take the path it does. As he has said many times he doesn't want people to focus on his quirks and personality just the music and this is why he's kept himself and his life out of the spotlight as much as possible, what you do see about him is due to persistent probing which also pisses him off so what you perceive of him being an asshat is also thrown into question because his asshattery may actually be the result of the constant questions which he doesn't want.

Well, that certainly does allow him some wiggle room in terms of off-putting behaviour.  But doesn't the act of creating art (especially as a solo artist) that is meant to be publicly consumed automatically presume that the artist becomes part of that art?  It's very rare that any of the better known creators manage to remain apart from their creations.  We know of Van Gogh's madness...and George Michael's sexual preferences...and Morrisey's "quirks".  All things that I'm sure they would have preferred to have remain hidden.  I know it's all a discussion about the place of celebrity in our culture...which is a giant issue...
 eileenomurphy wrote:

The Smiths are hit or miss for me. This is a HIT! ...GREAT tune!




I just "upped" my rating!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 sfoster66 wrote:

The Smiths/Morrisey raise an interesting question that is semi-addressed in the comments here...if one of the members of a band is an undeniable asshat (looking at you Morrisey), does that taint the quality of their catalogue?  Does the music rise above and exist apart from the behaviour of the artists involved?  I don't have the answer....I like the Smiths but am having a harder time listening knowing what I know now...thoughts?



So now you can't watch a Woody Allen movie or one by Clint Eastwood or one which stars Kevin Spacey or Jon Voight or Ron Silver etc... this is madness and has deprived us of too much already including  possibly a President Al Franken. Enough already,  you need to compartmentalize the work from the artist. When politics pervades everything everything becomes as caustic and boring as politics.
 jimmy99s wrote:

The Smiths were as good as it gets in 80s England. Anyone who says they're miserable clearly has missed the point.



hasn't Morrisey made a career out of being miserable?
The Smiths are hit or miss for me. This is a HIT! ...GREAT tune!
 dougnichols wrote:
Morrissey's solo career eclipsed his work with the Smiths - what about Johnny Marr? 

He may have possibly sold more records in his solo career than The Smiths did, especially since he released twice as many albums as The Smiths did, but I'm not sure "eclipsed" is an accurate description.  His solo career would not have happened if not for his work with The Smiths.
Johnny Marr has been steadily working since the break-up of The Smiths, though not enjoying as much commercial success as his former bandmate has.
Have never been a big Smiths fan, but this one is quite good.  Perhaps more useful for my fellow listeners (and Bill, if you happen across this) is one of Mr. Marr's post-Smiths projects, Johnny Marr & the Healers. Their album Boomslang is a mighty rockin' treat from start to finish; it practically demands to be played loud. Saw them do it many years ago at the Mielkweg (sp? -- translation: Milky Way) in Amsterdam, and they tore the place up, thoroughly and well.
 sfoster66 wrote:

The Smiths/Morrisey raise an interesting question that is semi-addressed in the comments here...if one of the members of a band is an undeniable asshat (looking at you Morrisey), does that taint the quality of their catalogue?  Does the music rise above and exist apart from the behaviour of the artists involved?  I don't have the answer....I like the Smiths but am having a harder time listening knowing what I know now...thoughts?


I don't think it does. Whilst the thoughts and opinions of Morrisey may affect the lyrics and what ends up in a given track it is this that also makes a given track take the path it does. As he has said many times he doesn't want people to focus on his quirks and personality just the music and this is why he's kept himself and his life out of the spotlight as much as possible, what you do see about him is due to persistent probing which also pisses him off so what you perceive of him being an asshat is also thrown into question because his asshattery may actually be the result of the constant questions which he doesn't want.
Van Halens Ain't  Talking 'Bout Love into The Smiths, got to love RP. 
 itsme_bygolly wrote:

I agree that the guitar player is frequently overlooked while Morrissey got the attention. But no one would have noticed Morrissey if not for the astonishing guitar.


Morrissey's solo career eclipsed his work with the Smiths - what about Johnny Marr? 
 tkelley wrote:

I have always hated The Smiths.  Two note singing of nonsense.  Repetitive guitar work with uninspired drumming. Total crap. 


Cheers! It's a solid 8 in my book. Love me some Smiths.
The Smiths/Morrisey raise an interesting question that is semi-addressed in the comments here...if one of the members of a band is an undeniable asshat (looking at you Morrisey), does that taint the quality of their catalogue?  Does the music rise above and exist apart from the behaviour of the artists involved?  I don't have the answer....I like the Smiths but am having a harder time listening knowing what I know now...thoughts?
 itsme_bygolly wrote:

I agree that the guitar player is frequently overlooked while Morrissey got the attention. But no one would have noticed Morrissey if not for the astonishing guitar.
 
The guitar player, aka Johnny Marr, was quite amazing.  I believe he did a stint with Modest Mouse in the late 90's/early 2000s?
I have always hated The Smiths.  Two note singing of nonsense.  Repetitive guitar work with uninspired drumming. Total crap. 
Love the drumming in this. My son still looks at me oddly when I do a full air drumming set with surprising accuracy (25 years of practice 😂)
'What difference does it make' if I become an insufferable and boring zenophobe?
I don't know, but he still sounds good.
 stunix wrote:
I do like the drummer.   
 
I logged on to say that this is either the best or the worst drumming I've heard in a while.  I'm just not sure which. Certainly is noticeable.
 jimmy99s wrote:
The Smiths were as good as it gets in 80s England. Anyone who says they're miserable clearly has missed the point.
 
Joe Strummer says hi.
The first song by the Smiths that I ever heard. Love.
A wonderful riff and a fantastic yet atypical "malaise love song", it's  pure Smiths.
 MilesW wrote:



But no more apologies
No more apologies
Oh, I'm too tired
I'm so sick and tired
And I'm feeling very sick and ill today

Miserable
 
He's got plenty to apologise for these days.
 jimmy99s wrote:
The Smiths were as good as it gets in 80s England. Anyone who says they're miserable clearly has missed the point.
 


But no more apologies
No more apologies
Oh, I'm too tired
I'm so sick and tired
And I'm feeling very sick and ill today

Miserable
 cbhutchinson50 wrote:


Great guitar player but I’m sorry Morrisey’s voice grates like nails on a chalkboard
 
I agree that the guitar player is frequently overlooked while Morrissey got the attention. But no one would have noticed Morrissey if not for the astonishing guitar.
The Smiths were as good as it gets in 80s England. Anyone who says they're miserable clearly has missed the point.
 jelgator wrote:
PSD'd my way through Shpongle, Eddie Vedder, Neil Young, and Radiohead.  Ahhh, this feels much better.
 
And you still think RP is the best radio station for you?
 serban.popadiuc wrote:
The Smiths should be played more. Their catalogue is unbelievably good. Not to mention Morrissey, who's "Low in High School" album is stunning. Also, his earlier work is fabulous too! 

More Smiths/Morrissey!
 

Great guitar player but I’m sorry Morrisey’s voice grates like nails on a chalkboard
 serban.popadiuc wrote:
The Smiths should be played more. Their catalogue is unbelievably good. Not to mention Morrissey, who's "Low in High School" album is stunning. Also, his earlier work is fabulous too! 

More Smiths/Morrissey!
 

The Smiths should be played more. Their catalogue is unbelievably good. Not to mention Morrissey, who's "Low in High School" album is stunning. Also, his earlier work is fabulous too! 

More Smiths/Morrissey!
Thank you, Bill for helping me choose what Smiths tracks to put in my playlist.
Good stuff.
 Grayson wrote:
Morrissey nowadays is like having to go find a relation with dementia who has wandered off from the home. Again. He sure poisoned his own damn well, and real good. 
 

Apart from that its alright then ?
Back in the 80s, I accidentally bought a Smiths CD.  I thought I was buying a Smithereens disk.   I liked it just the same and kept it.
My missus got a free ticket to the Smyth's a tribute band who's tag line is we show up more than the Smiths ever did, which says a lot really. I would have liked to see them given Morrissey wasn't there. Oh and she came home with a Gladdy...
The Smiths - the joy of anguish!
PSD'd my way through Shpongle, Eddie Vedder, Neil Young, and Radiohead.  Ahhh, this feels much better.
Morrissey nowadays is like having to go find a relation with dementia who has wandered off from the home. Again. He sure poisoned his own damn well, and real good. 
"Your prejudice won't keep you warm tonight."
God what a riff!  Super hard to play with consistency, but obviously not for Johnny Marr.
A fun blast from the past that always sounds fresh. Play more Smiths!
I've never understood the Church of Morrissey, and far too often can't handle his voice (let alone his subject matter and tone), yet Johnny Marr's guitar work occasionally pushes my annoyance aside and I find myself bopping along with a smile.
Ahh, the genius of Marr/Morrisey. 

How wonderful that veganism is ascending and Morrissey's stance is now mainstream 
 evandfitz wrote:
pretty good
 
lol
 evandfitz wrote:


pg
 
pg

Morrissey's egregious personality aside, I find his singing really, really dull. Always the same phrasing and minor third rise when he's 'improvising' on the melody. I really don't get why some people like him.
I never knew anything personally about Morrissey, which based on the info given here is a good thing.  I always thought he had a ridiculously dark, wry, sarcastic humor.  I find his lyrics funny, but if he's a jerk it kind of ruins it.  Oh well.
I own a 12inch https://www.discogs.com/The-Smiths-What-Difference-Does-It-Make-/release/8100232
with a version that I like much more than this one. Clearer, Rougher.
Morrissey has done the impossible, turned into an even bigger dick than he once was.
love this....

 

Freakin' awesome tune.  Thanks for sharing and making my day, RP!


Nice 80's set now.  
 Thanks Bill! 
 ScottishWillie wrote:
The Smiths were a band I idolised back in the day, in spite of Morrissey. However some of his comments after the Manchester terrorist attack were outrageous even for someone with a proven record of being a bampot. Best not to know anything about your hero’s!  


Politically, he's seemingly gotten more conservative of late - or at least is an admirer of Nigel Farage.  It's apparently another point of contention between he and Johnny Marr.   They made some great music though.  Hard to believe this song is 35 years old.
 ScottishWillie wrote:

The Smiths were a band I idolised back in the day, in spite of Morrissey. However some of his comments after the Manchester terrorist attack were outrageous even for someone with a proven record of being a bampot. Best not to know anything about your hero’s! 



 
He's got feet of clay, right enough, which he keeps putting in his mouth. A great songwriter, but an awful prick of a man.

The Smiths were a band I idolised back in the day, in spite of Morrissey. However some of his comments after the Manchester terrorist attack were outrageous even for someone with a proven record of being a bampot. Best not to know anything about your hero’s! 


Ace tune but not done justice by this version
This song takes on greater meaning for me because I just finished reading Johnny Marr's autobiograph. A great read about following one's passion to wherever it leads. Marr is one of the most diversely talented guitarists in history, and to think it all started here...
Fond memories being in UK at the time The Smiths were playing in Oxford.
Amazing band and tune.......
Urrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgh 

Please stop this noise 
Mark Twain said that Wagner was better than it sounds. Smiths songs would be so much better without Morrissey's dreadful yodelling.
Back when Morrissey was a knob head who mattered. Good memories. Miserable music done well.
 LowPhreak wrote:

{#Roflol}

 
Twice in one day is barely enough
 springof63 wrote:
The Smiths - twice In one day. Why?

 
{#Roflol}
                    I 'm relieved, that all men have secrets
                    He said '' But now you know the truth''
                  Otherwise I had to be one who had to lie
                     Now I'm glad he let it his be known
The Smiths - twice In one day. Why? (never is too often for me) PSD - i can't stand 'em..
 Proclivities wrote:

Fun Boy 3 was also from the 1980s.  It would be good to have some of their tunes here.

 
Oh yeah, I agree, agree, agree, broaden your palette, anything with Terry Hall in fact.
 stunix wrote:
I do like the drummer.   

 
panic on louder than bombs is also a strong drumming
Smiths are eternal !!!
 Baby_M wrote:
Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign song!

 

 

{#High-five}


 jsed wrote:
Look, The Smiths evoke some strong reactions.  I get it.  Many times I just want Morrisey to shut up.  But when I peel back the Morrisey lyric I am always struck by the Johnny Marr guitar and the Andy Rourke bass.  Their arrangement and sound is unique, it's complex and well played.  Marr and Rourke were a pretty special pair.

 
You are ignoring Mike Joyce.
 Zep wrote:

Try a chronological approach, and start with Hank Williams, Bill Monroe, or Bob Wills. 

 
Or dig up and album from pretty much any country song in the RP Library. :)
I do like the drummer.   
favorite song by the Smiths—-but there is a better version, yes?
And I'm still fond of this...:)
 arlvatom wrote:
I'm soo tired, sick and ill of the 80s.  How about some Fun Boy 3.
 
Fun Boy 3 was also from the 1980s.  It would be good to have some of their tunes here.
More Morrissey and Jonny Marr please...
 
 Baby_M wrote:
Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign song!

 
Her and Jeb must have flipped a coin.
Look, The Smiths evoke some strong reactions.  I get it.  Many times I just want Morrisey to shut up.  But when I peel back the Morrisey lyric I am always struck by the Johnny Marr guitar and the Andy Rourke bass.  Their arrangement and sound is unique, it's complex and well played.  Marr and Rourke were a pretty special pair.
 I must be being punished my Gods of RP for my recent Coldplay comment because as soon as I turn the sound back on... Morrissey. DOH! 
Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign song!
 arlvatom wrote:
I'm soo tired, sick and ill of the 80s.  How about some Fun Boy 3.
 
The more that I see, the less I believe.