The long standing dispute between Morrissey and the NME has finally come to a close with the famous music magazine conceding and issuing an apology printed in today’s issue. The trouble started as far back as 2007 when Morrissey took offense to an article in which he was quoted as saying among other inflammatory remarks:
“Although I don’t have anything against people from other countries, the higher the influx into England the more the British identity disappears.”
The singer took umbrage at the use of his quotes by the magazine, believing that they were presented specifically to portray him as a racist and that they were manipulated by the magazine as a publicity tool, effectively using the interview to entrap him. The intrigue deepened when freelance journalist Tim Jonze (who conducted the interview) requested his by-line be removed from the piece due to the NME’s revision of his initial article that he felt no longer contained his “voice”. Jonze did however stick by all the quotes he garnered from the ex-Smiths frontman claiming Morrissey was the type of person who has “said something offensive but is too scared to back this up, yet too stubborn to apologize.”
Morrissey issued a writ against the magazine and the case was due to head to court this summer, but now 5 years after the row started both sides have come to an amicable agreement with the magazine printing this statement:
“In December 2007, we published an article entitled ‘Morrissey: Big mouth strikes again’.
Following this, Morrissey began proceedings for libel against us. His complaint is that we accused him of being a racist off the back of an interview which he gave to the magazine. He believes the article was edited in such a way that made him seem reactionary.
We wish to make clear that we do not believe that he is a racist; we didn’t think we were saying he was and we apologise to Morrissey if he or anyone else misunderstood our piece in that way. We never set out to upset Morrissey and we hope we can both get back to doing what we do best.”