Men's Team

Johnny Marr’s Manchester Derby playlist!

Legendary guitarist, singer, songwriter and City fan Johnny Marr chooses his ultimate Manchester Derby playlist ahead of this weekend's clash.

Pep Guardiola's men welcome Manchester United to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday 6 March, with kick-off scheduled for 16:30 (UK).

This weekend represents our first home clash with United in front of supporters since January 2020 and will also conclude the Big City Weekender, which also sees our Under-18s sides in Derby action, while our Women's team face Chelsea in the Continental Cup final.

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Ahead of what promises to be a thrilling encounter, Johnny has chosen his ultimate Derby playlist to help get you in the mood for the weekend!

Contained within the playlist is Johnny's brand new single 'Night and Day', taken from the ‘Fever Dreams Pt 3’ EP - the third quarter of his recently released double album ‘Fever Dreams Pts 1-4’.

2022 will also see Marr return to the live stage, joining Blondie as a special guest on their ‘Against The Odds’ headline tour through April and May, including London’s O2 Arena, before heading out on The Killers’ headline US arena tour, beginning in August through to October.

With this in mind, we chatted to Johnny about both his new double album and musical journey in general, as well as his thoughts on both City and Pep Guardiola ahead of this weekend's huge encounter...

Johnny, thanks for selecting your Derby playlist. Of the current City squad, which player is the most rock n roll in your opinion?

Fernandinho. It’s an attitude. 

Do you think we will win the Premier League this year? 

I do, although I really have to admit that Liverpool are a pretty impressive team all over the pitch. Argh.  

Sum Pep Guardiola up in a one word? 

Visionary. 

Pep’s time in charge has been a real golden period for City. Will it ever get any better than this?

I think, or hope anyway, that the Club are clever and big enough to have the long term vision and plan, I can’t imagine that’s not the case, but there’s only one Pep Guardiola.

I think the Club is built in his image now. I had a great time during Mancini’s tenure though so I’m optimistic. 

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You’ve released your first double album, Fever Dreams Pts 1-4. Why a double album and how excited are you about it?

The idea for the double album came with the title. It sounded big, and gave me the opportunity to try some new things. I’m pleased to have done it. 

Has the pandemic changed our society? And if so, in what ways? Have the problems we have faced over the past two years informed this record?

I think we’ll see the changes over the next few years. Musicians will notice things behind the scenes like cancellations and air travel. The economics of touring is tricky.

The album definitely reflects some states of mind that most people might have experienced.

I was writing about estrangement and connection before the pandemic anyway but the things we went through played into the writing for sure. 

One of the most famous songs you composed was Electronic's 'Getting Away With It'. Tell me what the process was for writing that… how did yourself, Bernard (Sumner) and Neil (Tennant) collaborate?

A friend of mine and Bernard’s knew Pet Shop Boys and they introduced us.

I had a studio at my house and because I knew Neil and Chris (Lowe) were coming I thought I'd better have something prepared. I wrote the music for the chorus the day before and then we all pitched in when we got together.

Bernard came up with a verse riff and Neil got onto the words with Chris directing. We got off to a good start. 

Who’s the most talented person you’ve worked with during your time as a songwriter and musician?

Where would I start? Matt Johnson is a unique musician… I wrote a couple of songs with Pharrell Williams for the Spiderman movie which was interesting as you might expect.

I’ve been very fortunate to work with a lot of great people. Something always happens with Hans Zimmer. Alicia Keys is utterly brilliant. 

Which poets do you draw inspiration from? 

Inspiration-wise I like the energy of essayists, particularly Joan Didion. Burroughs is still something else.

For poets I’d say Spike Hawkins, Ferlinghetti. Anne Carson is an interesting poet.

Give me your top 5 Smiths songs? 

-How Soon Is Now?
-The Headmaster Ritual 
-Bigmouth Strikes Again 
-There Is A Light That Never Goes Out
-Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me

And finally, what are the top 5 songs you’ve been involved with since the Smiths? 

-Get The Message - Electronic 
-Dashboard - Modest Mouse
-Slow Emotion Replay - The The 
-City Of Bugs - The Cribs 
-No Time To Die - Billie Eilish

The ‘Fever Dreams Pt 3’ EP features four brand new songs from Johnny Marr’s anticipated first double LP - ‘The Speed Of Love’, ‘Night and Day’, ‘Counter-Clock World’ and ‘Rubicon’.

The EP will be released on limited edition gold vinyl on May 20th, pre-order HERE.

Johnny Marr's ‘Fever Dreams Pts 1-4’ is available on CD and double vinyl with the official store offering exclusive limited edition white vinyl and cassettes, alongside merch bundles with signed prints.

HMV and independent record stores will also be stocking a limited edition turquoise vinyl pressing. Pre-order/presale HERE.

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