“He ended up throwing up on my shoes”: Billy Corgan remembers his first time meeting The Cure’s Robert Smith

The Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan was immediately fond of Robert Smith – despite The Cure frontman being drunk as a skunk.

Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins

Image: Don Arnold / Getty Images

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While The Smashing Pumpkins certainly aren’t a goth band, frontman Billy Corgan wears his goth appreciation on his sleeve.

From his solo debut, 2005’s TheFutureEmbrace, to the Smashing Pumpkins’ entire aesthetic, Corgan has often dipped his toe into the world of goth. So it came as a nice surprise when Corgan finally met goth legend, The Cure‘s Robert Smith.

While Corgan eventually became close friends with Smith, even collaborating with him on TheFutureEmbrace, the pair met in peculiar circumstances. Speaking to Louder, Corgan recalls first meeting Smith on a “pretty wild night.”

“[Smith] was drunk out of his mind and he asked me to make out with him,” Corgan laughs. “He ended up throwing up on my shoes. It was a memorable introduction!”

“The next time I saw him, he just looked at me with those sleepy eyes and laughed, like, ‘That’s the way we roll in Cure world…’” Corgan continues. “When I think of The Cure, I think of a lot of alcohol being consumed. I’ve had some wild, fun nights with them.”

Corgan’s love of The Cure is well documented. The Smashing Pumpkins have covered a selection of The Cure tracks before, from A Night Like This to Friday I’m In Love.

In the same Louder interview, Corgan recalls how his Cure love affair began: “I was dating a goth girl who was obsessed with The Cure,” he says. “She spoke about Robert Smith like he was her friend, which I’ve found through the years is very common with Cure fans, they see Robert as almost like their buddy.”

When his goth girlfriend popped on One Hundred Years, he’d been expecting to hear the radio-friendly twang of The Cure’s poppier side. Instead, he was met with the darker side of Smith’s gothic brooding. “This isn’t the band I thought they were, it wasn’t the cute cuddly version,” he recalls.

“It made a big impression on me,” he continues. “I think The Cure are vastly under-appreciated. As idiosyncratic as they are, they have different modalities that are quite successful. Robert is an ace tunesmith, but then they’re totally able to do art-rock and do it well.”

The Smashing Pumpkins are set to hit the UK this June in support of their mega 2023 rock opera album ATUM.


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