One of the problems of being a music fan is that your musical heroes often turn out to be problematic. Barely a day passes without someone famous coming out as a terrible racist, homophobe or transphobe: we should call it “doing a Morrissey”. But there’s an answer, and that’s to pretend they’ve been dead for a very long time. Anything that’s happened since their death is the work of an impostor.
Let’s stick with Morrissey. When he died in 1987 he left a legacy of wonderful outsider pop music and only a few troubling interviews where he seemed a bit racist. There was no Fat Elvis period for Moz: no Bengali in Platforms, no interviews where he sounded a bit UKIP, no strings of cancelled gigs, no For Britain badges on the few shows still willing to book him. His death in 1987 was sad, for sure, but maybe it was merciful too.