Blitz Vega – the duo made up of Andy Rourke of The Smiths and Kav Blaggers (formerly of Happy Mondays) – have released “Strong Forever“, their first new song in two years. The track, which features Rourke’s former Smiths bandmate Johnny Marr on guitar, is a teaser of new music coming in 2023. Listen to the song, which marks a brand new chapter for the band now below.
“This song is for the kids who are being bullied as well as people and families who are fighting battles to survive,” explained Kav. “Mental illness and depression can stem from feeling helpless. When all the odds are against you, you stand tall and take every challenge as it comes.”
“Everyone is dealing with their own challenges, especially now,” he continues. “People have to look out for each other a lot more at the moment. We all seem to be fighting to survive, but it’s not too late. There are lots of good people on this planet who want to do something positive, big or small, it’s just hard to notice them sometimes with all the noise. But now’s the time to make some kind of difference if you can.”
Originally written by Kav and Andy for a campaign against discrimination in football (soccer), a theme which he could easily explore by drawing upon his own experiences, “Strong Forever” evolved into a broader message of support that can apply to so many different situations; its song title and chorus – a rallying cry for inner strength in the midst of outside adversity.
Co-produced and mixed by Z-Trip (Kasabian, Public Enemy, LL Cool J), the song sees Andy Rourke and Johnny Marr recording together for the first time in 35 years. While the two have played together live several times over the years, including just two months ago in September Andy stepped on stage during Johnny’s show with The Killers at Madison Square Garden, performing ‘There Is A Light That Never Goes Out’ and ‘How Soon Is Now?’, a studio recording has never surfaced… until now.
Andy explains, “We approached a few people to guest on the track and I asked Johnny, who very kindly recorded some guitars and sent them over. Johnny and I have remained friends, we’ve known each other since we were 13 years old. He’s my oldest and dearest friend and I feel our friendship gets stronger as time passes.”