Mark E. Smith's NME Godlike Genius Award up for auction

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 6 March 2018
The Fall's Mark E. Smith

The Fall's Mark E. Smith

The Fall frontman Mark E Smith's NME Godlike Genius Award is going to auction with £5,000 of the proceeds going to Chelsea's Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals Charity

Mark E. Smith's NME Godlike Genius Award is going to auction this month.

The late Fall frontman - who sadly died aged 60 on January 24 following a battle with lung and kidney cancer - was honoured with the gong at the NME Awards in 1998, and passed it onto his former manager John Lennard as a thank you for "putting up with him".

The trophy is expected to fetch between £5,000 and £8,000 when it's put up for sale by auctioneer Hansons on March 14.

It is said that £5,000 of the proceeds will go to Chelsea's Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals Charity, which specialise in heart and lung disease.

Valuer Jim Spencer - a lifelong fan of The Fall - said: "It was an honour to handle and catalogue this object having been introduced to The Fall by my older brothers when I was ten years old. I still love the discordant sinister glam stomp of New Big Prinz, the wired pop of Hit the North and the mellower hung-over mood of Bill is Dead. Mark E. Smith was deceptively clever in both his lyrics and vocal style and, though he appeared anti-intellectual, he was well read. His lyrics are often poetic and inspired.

"I'm sure he would find me oily and unctuous for saying that. I know he admired John Walters for describing The Fall as 'the worst tuneless rubbish I've ever heard'. This is a piece of cult pop history."

Recalling when Smith handed him over the coveted prize, Lennard told the Manchester Evening News newspaper: "Mark handed the award to me telling me I deserved it for putting up with him. He then hugged me and disappeared into the night. The following day I took the award to our London office where it has sat ever since."

The moment Smith went to collect the prize at the 1998 ceremony was a memorable one, as he stormed the stage before presenter Eddie Izzard had even read his name out, and proceeded to wave the middle finger statuette at interviewers backstage.

Comments

1. John Spencer7 Mar 2018, 6:44pm Report

Wonder what the Joy Division road case will go for !

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