Craig Gannon

Craig Gannon (born 30 July 1966) is an English guitar player, best-known as the second guitarist in The Smiths. He is now a composer for film and television.

Gannon had already achieved some fame for his work with Aztec Camera and with The Bluebells before his work with The Smiths. When bass player Andy Rourke was fired from The Smiths in early 1986, Gannon was hired to replace him. Within a fortnight, however, Rourke was reinstated and Gannon moved to rhythm guitar becoming the official fifth member, playing on the “Panic” and “Ask” singles and touring the UK, Canada and the USA with the band. Gannon also played on the scrapped single “You Just Haven’t Earned It Yet, Baby”, which was included on the The World Won’t Listen compilation album. After the tour ended in October 1986, Gannon was no longer part of the line-up. Gannon has been affectionately known thereafter as “the Fifth Smith”.

After leaving The Smiths, Gannon joined Brix Smith in The Adult Net and Blue Orchids. He reunited with Morrissey at his debut solo gig and 1989 singles “The Last of the Famous International Playboys” and “Interesting Drug” but that same year saw him sue Morrissey and Johnny Marr for nonpayment of wages and over the degree of his involvement in songwriting (notably for “Ask”). The matter was settled out of court for the sum of £44,000. This amount included £30,000 for unpaid wages and £14,000 in legal costs. Gannon composed the music used on the ‘Inside The Smiths’ DVD, released by former Smiths Mike Joyce and Andy Rourke. In addition to this, he also appeared in and composed the music for a classic albums DVD of “The Queen Is Dead” – released in May 2008.

Gannon has played guitar with many other artists including Terry Hall, Roddy Frame, Morrissey, Alison Moyet, The Colourfield, The Adult Net, Black Grape, Denise Van Outen, Edwyn Collins and Paul Quinn (He was also asked to join Orange Juice’s James Kirk and Steven Daly’s band Memphis), Buzzcocks/FOC, The Bluebells, The Blue Orchids, Robert Lloyd, Deadly Avenger, Red Venom, Vinny Peculiar and The Family Foundation. In 2014, Gannon was asked to play with The Specials but he declined.

Discography (Partial)

With The Smiths


  • “Panic” (1986)
  • “Ask” (1986)


  • The World Won’t Listen (compilation, 1987)
    • “Panic”, “Ask”, “London”, “Half a Person”, “You Just Haven’t Earned It Yet, Baby” (and “Golden Lights” on post-1992 reissues)
  • Louder Than Bombs (compilation, 1987)
    • “Half a Person”, “London”, “Panic”, “Ask”, “You Just Haven’t Earned It Yet, Baby” and “Golden Lights”
  • Rank (live, 1988 [recorded 1986])
    • Appears on all tracks
  • Best…I (compilation, 1992)
    • “Half a Person” and “Panic”
  • …Best II (compilation, 1992)
    • “Ask”
  • Singles (compilation, 1995)
    • “Panic” and “Ask”
  • The Very Best of The Smiths (compilation, 2001)
    • “Panic” and “Ask”
  • The Sound of The Smiths (compilation, 2008)
    • “Panic”, “Ask”, “You Just Haven’t Earned It Yet Baby”, “Half a Person”, “London” (live version)

With Morrissey


  • “The Last of the Famous International Playboys” (1989)
  • “Interesting Drug” (1989)


  • Bona Drag (compilation, 1990)
    • “Such a Little Thing Makes Such a Big Difference”, “Interesting Drug”, “The Last of the Famous International Playboys”, “Lucky Lisp”
  • World of Morrissey (compilation, 1995)
    • “The Last of the Famous International Playboys”
  • The Best of Morrissey (compilation, 2001)
    • “The Last of the Famous International Playboys”, “Interesting Drug”
  • Greatest Hits (compilation, 2008)
    • “The Last of the Famous International Playboys”
  • My Early Burglary Years (compilation, 1998)
    • “Michaels Bones”
  • Suedehead: The Best Of Morrissey (compilation, 1997)
    • “The Last of the Famous International Playboys”, “Interesting Drug”

With Terry Hall


  • Home (1994)
  • Laugh (1997)

With Robert Lloyd


  • Me & My Mouth (1990) Virgin


  • “Funeral Stomp” (1990) Virgin
  • “Nothing Matters” (1990) Virgin
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