Johnny Marr Mixes Rock Royalty on 'How Soon Is Now?' With Ronnie Wood

Ex-Smiths guitarist rehashes career in dull Reddit AMA

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Kyle McGovern WRITTEN BY
Kyle McGovern

Johnny Marr just delivered his first-ever solo album, The Messenger, but the former Smiths guitarist continues to dust off classics from his days with the seminal 1980s misanthropes. Late last year, Marr treated BBC Radio to a solo rendition of "Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want"; earlier this month, the longtime axman-for-hire strummed "Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now" for the first time in 25 years; and last night (February 27), the "Godlike Genius" performed the Smiths' all-star single "How Soon Is Now?" at the NME Awards.

True, Marr has played Meat Is Murder's warped howler without his old bandmates before, but this high-profile gig featured a guest appearance from Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood. Watch the two elder statesmen team up for a speedy, straightforward, but nonetheless thrilling version of "How Soon Is Now?" up above.

"I've known Ronnie for a long time," Marr explained in a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) earlier today. "He's a such a good guitar player, obviously. I heard that he was presenting my award so I invited him to play. That was [fun.]"

Other than confirming that Wood is a talented guitarist — and that Marr is way more pleasant than Morrissey — the 49-year-old's Q&A with fans didn't serve much of a purpose. Marr admitted that he still hangs out with former associates the Cribs (another collaboration may be in the works at some point); when a fan asked who his favorite tourmates were, Marr picked Modest Mouse ("Unpredictable, and unquantifiable," he wrote); and revealed that if there's one song by another artist that he wishes he wrote, it would probably be "Perfect Day" by Lou Reed.

As for where Marr stands on Jimmy Kimmel's anti-vegetarianism skit, we just don't know.

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