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In [[Mention::Autobiography]], Morrissey observes:<br>
"Nerve deserts me in 1986 as I spot the American writer and social reformer James Baldwin sitting alone in the lobby of a grandiose Barcelona hotel. He is weathered and intense, absorbed in his own thoughts, with a face there could never be enough time to describe. I drink him in, but can do no more. I pin so much prestige to James Baldwin that to risk approach places my life on the line; I’d hang myself at any glimmer of rejection. History books overlook James Baldwin because he presented an unvarnished view of the American essence – as blunt and rousing as print would allow. His public speeches were intoxicating, his motivational palette of words so full of fireworks that you smile as you listen – not because of humor, but because he was so good at voicing the general truth, with which most struggled. His liking for male flesh gave the world a perfect excuse to brush him aside as a social danger, and he was erased away as someone who used his blackness as an excuse for everything. In fact, his purity scared them off, and his honesty ignited irrational fear in an America where men were draped with medals for killing other men yet imprisoned for loving one another. Pitifully, on this Barcelona day, I do not have the steel to approach James Baldwin, because I know very well that I will jabber rubbish, and that his large, soulful eyes will lower at someone ruefully new to the game. Shortly thereafter, he is dead."
Baldwin interviews & clips were often used as part of the pre-show videos prior to concerts.
Backdrop circa 2018:
File:James baldwin dancing.jpg | [https://www.cnn.com/2022/01/21/us/gallery/steve-schapiro-photos/index.html source]
File:Baldwinmoz.jpg | [http://mozzermatters.blogspot.com/2021/09/listener-meet-lyricist-morrisseys.html source]
Drum header and photo pass in 2017:
File:Jamesbaldwin.jpg | [https://www.themarginalian.org/2016/05/09/james-baldwin-freedom/ source]
File:James baldwin 2017 photo pass.jpg | [https://www.instagram.com/p/BSPm31TAeEX/ source]
[http://web.archive.org/web/20170320051752/http://www.true-to-you.net/morrissey_news_170315_01 True-To-You.net] advertised a James Baldwin t-shirt on March 15, 2017 which would be available via North American concerts & [[Mporium]].
File:TTY_baldwin_tshirt.jpg|Mporium Baldwin shirt - later withdrawn.
The shirt became the subject of controversy and many media outlets highlighted it (examples follow):
* The Guardian: [https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/mar/20/bigmouth-strikes-again-row-morrissey-james-baldwin-t-shirt-the-smiths "Bigmouth strikes again: row over Morrissey’s James Baldwin tour T-shirt"]
* The Independent:[https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/news/morrissey-tshirt-james-baldwin-tour-sale-racist-backlash-unloveable-lyrics-a7640716.html?amp "Morrissey removes 'problematic' T-shirt featuring image of James Baldwin from online sale"]
*Spin: [https://www.spin.com/2017/03/morrissey-james-baldwin-shirt/ "Morrissey’s New T-Shirt Is A Very Bad Idea"]
*Consequence: [https://consequence.net/2017/03/morrissey-is-at-it-again-with-a-controversial-new-t-shirt/amp/ "Morrissey is selling a James Baldwin “Black Is How I Feel on the Inside” t-shirt"]
*Factmag: [https://www.factmag.com/2017/03/15/morrissey-racist-james-baldwin-t-shirt/ "Morrissey is selling racist t-shirts because he is a fucking idiot"]<br>
The shirt was never offered for sale online or at concerts as a result.<br>
(see [https://www.morrissey-solo.com/threads/tty-new-morrissey-t-shirt.139825/ forum article] for larger media items list).<br>
On the third night of his second Vegas residency (July 6, 2022), Morrissey wore a badge featuring James Baldwin & [[Nina Simone]]:
File:140811 r25323a2.jpg | [https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2014/08/11/raised-voice source]
File:IMG 20220725 192344.jpg | [https://twitter.com/Intl_Playgirl/status/1545430106637602816 source]
[[Category:Influences on Morrissey - Literature]]
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