The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982. They comprised the singer Morrissey, the guitarist Johnny Marr, the bassist Andy Rourke and the drummer Mike Joyce. They are regarded as one of the most important acts to emerge from the 1980s British independent music scene. The Smiths signed to the independent label Rough Trade Records in 1983 and released their first album, The Smiths, in 1984. They based their songs on the songwriting partnership of Morrissey and Marr.