If there is a light that never goes out, it’s a musical light featuring Morrisey and the Smiths. The British band, which was active from 1982 to 1987, certainly had some strange ways, but there was never any need to panic, because even when they sang that the queen is dead, it was more of a metaphor of Britain’s decline than an actual account of Her Majesty’s health. Morrisey was just being a boy with a thorn in his side, taking on the English establishment during the Thatcher years.
It has been 23 years since the band broke up, but the Smiths still have their fans. One of these fans, Janice Whaley, has been covering the Smiths’ entire catalogue—71 songs—on her blog and on Youtube. She recorded her own versions of the songs in her home, using only her voice to cover all the instruments. The result is a remarkable tribute to one of the iconic bands of the 1980s. Never one to say, “Stop me if you think you’ve heard this one before,” Whaley brings her own unique interpretation to each of the songs, adding wonderful a cappella harmonies to the somber lyrics and haunting melodies.
When she’s not recording the Smith’s music, the San Jose resident is busy tending to her 5-year-old son. There is no question what lullaby she sings him to sleep.