What Difference Does It Make?

Album: The Smiths (1984)
Charted: 12

Songfacts®:

  • This song is about being rejected by a close friend after they find out a secret about you. Some fans believe The Smiths' front man, Morrissey, is singing about how he was snubbed by a friend after revealing that he was gay.
  • Morrissey told Following The Mozziah that he was not at all fond of this song's lyrics: "'What Difference Does It Make' is musically interesting but lyrically it is very...Simon Le Bon [Duran Duran]. I find the lyrics facile and mildly embarrassing. Otherwise it's a majestic pop melody by Johnny and, ironically, had the lyrics indeed been penned by Simon Le Bon, I would probably cover it! As it is I'd feel too ashamed."
  • The Smiths planned to use a photograph of Terrence Stamp on the set of the 1965 film, The Collector, for the single artwork. Stamp initially denied the band the use of his image, so Morrissey re-enacted the photograph instead. Stamp later changed his mind, and the original artwork was printed as planned. Those early pressings with the alternative Morrissey artwork are now very collectable.
  • This song is lifted from The Smiths' self-titled debut album, which peaked at #2 in the UK in 1984. In 2003, the album ranked at #481 on Rolling Stone magazine's "The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time" list.

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