NEWTON le Willows singer Rick Astley has announced he will be performing with indie rockers Blossoms at a pair of gigs that will celebrate the music of The Smiths.

This week saw Astley join the band on stage at their show at London's O2 Kentish Town Forum where he dressed as Smiths frontman Morrissey to run through a selection of the beloved Mancunian band's songs.

The collaboration will now extend to two full shows with the 55-year-old teaming up with Blossoms for shows at Manchester’s Albert Hall on October 8 and London’s O2 Forum Kentish Town on October 9.


Astley, famous for huge hits like Never Gonna Give You Up and Together Forever, has mentioned before how he is a huge fan of The Smiths.

"From the moment The Smiths emerged in 1983 I was hooked and it's as a fan, with deep respect as a musician for Morrissey, Marr, Rourke and Joyce, that I'll be joining the endlessly enthusiastic and talented Blossoms on stage to sing their songs," he said in a statement.

"It's no secret that it's been an ambition of mine to turn an idea that first sounded crazy, making more sense as Blossoms and I talked about it and then rehearsed it, into a reality."

Blossoms, who have two number one albums to their arm, have frequently covered songs by The Smiths, including Bigmouth Strikes Again.

Frontman Tom Ogden said: "The Smiths have always meant so much to Blossoms, with even their rainiest songs complete with wry humour and soul-reaching musicianship and melody.

"Their poppier moments are pure, joyful, danceable poetry.

"Imagine backing Rick Astley to play the songs of The Smiths? We've had wilder dreams, but not many."

The Smiths, who also featured guitarist Johnny Marr, bassist Andy Rourke and drummer Mike Joyce, emerged from Manchester in the early 1980s with classic indie tracks like This Charming Man, How Soon is Now? And There is a Light That Never Goes Out.

They split in 1987 with Morrissey going on to have a successful solo career.