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Alain Gordon Whyte (pronounced Alan) (born 3 July 1967) is an English guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He is most known for being Morrissey's[1] main songwriting partner since 1991 and his lead guitarist from 1991–2004. He had previously been in the bands Rugcutters, Born Bad and the Memphis Sinners.[2] More recently, he has written for the likes of Madonna, Chris Brown, Rihanna, The Black Eyed Peas among many others. He won an ASCAP pop award in 2013 for his work as a songwriter on Chris Brown's hit single "Don't Wake Me Up".[3]

Alain Whyte
Alain Whyte at a Morrissey concert. Roseland Ballroom, New York City, February 2000
Background information
Birth name Alain Gordon Whyte
Born (1967-07-03) 3 July 1967 (age 50)
Camden, London, England
Genres Rockabilly, pop, rock and roll
Occupation(s) Guitarist, composer, singer-songwriter
Years active 1991–present
Labels EMI, HMV, Sire, RCA, Mercury, Sanctuary
Associated acts

Johnny Panic
Red Lightning
Tiger Army

Setting Fires


Personal lifeEdit

Currently Alain Whyte resides in Los Angeles, California, United States with his wife, Brittany, and their two children.


Whyte joined Morrissey's band in 1991 after appearing in the music video for his single "Sing Your Life". While playing on the Kill Uncle tour in 1991, Whyte co-wrote eight of the ten songs on the album Your Arsenal which was subsequently released in 1992. Whyte played lead guitar live with Morrissey from 1991 to 2004 until he was taken ill and replaced by Jesse Tobias. Whyte never returned to the touring act.

Whyte has co-written and/or performed on all of Morrissey's albums but three: Your Arsenal (1992), Vauxhall and I (1994), Southpaw Grammar (1995), Maladjusted (1997), You Are the Quarry (2004), Ringleader of the Tormentors (2006), and Years of Refusal (2009). As of Years of Refusal, Alain Whyte has a total of 81 known songwriting credits with Morrissey.

Songwriting credits with other artistsEdit








Songs written for TVEdit

  • Gossip Girl – "City Nights", "Martini Lounge", "NYC Streets", "Robot Talk", "At The Club", "Let You Down", "Manhattan", "Steady", "Changing Tides", "Park Avenue", "In The End"
  • Chuck – "Jingle Bell Rock (arrangement)", "Joy to the World (arrangement)", "We Wish You A Merry Christmas (arrangement)"
  • Without A Trace – "Feeling Fine"


  • Deerheart – "EP" (2009) Producer
  • Anya Marina "Whatever You Like (single)" 2009 Mixer
  • JoAnna James "Try" EP Recorded in 2009, Released in 2011

Songwriting credits with MorrisseyEdit

As of Years of Refusal, Whyte has 81 known songwriting credits with Morrissey. Whyte's credits include:

Your Arsenal (1992)

Vauxhall and I (1994)

  • "Billy Budd", "Hold on to Your Friends", "Why Don't You Find Out for Yourself?", "I Am Hated for Loving", "Used to Be a Sweet Boy", and "The Lazy Sunbathers".

Southpaw Grammar (1995)

  • "The Boy Racer", "The Operation", "Dagenham Dave", "Do Your Best and Don't Worry", "Best Friend on the Payroll", and "Southpaw" – "Fantastic Bird" (only on remastered version)

Maladjusted (1997)

  • "Alma Matters", "Ambitious Outsiders", "Trouble Loves Me", "Papa Jack", "Roy's Keen", "He Cried", and "Sorrow Will Come in the End".

You Are the Quarry (2004)

Ringleader of the Tormentors (2006)

  • "I Will See You in Far-Off Places", "Dear God Please Help Me", "The Father Who Must Be Killed", "Life Is a Pigsty", "I'll Never Be Anybody's Hero Now", and "To Me You Are a Work of Art".

Years of Refusal (2009)

  • "Something Is Squeezing My Skull", "Mama Lay Softly on the Riverbed", "When Last I Spoke to Carol", "It's Not Your Birthday Anymore" and "You Were Good in Your Time".

Swords (2009)

  • "Good Looking Man About Town", "Don't Make Fun of Daddy's Voice", "Ganglord", "My Dearest Love", "The Never Played Symphonies", "Shame Is the Name", "Munich Air Disaster 1958", "It's Hard to Walk Tall When You're Small", "Teenage Dad on His Estate", "Friday Mourning", "My Life Is a Succession of People Saying Goodbye", "Because of My Poor Education"

Non-album singles and B-sides

  • "Let the Right One Slip In", "There Speaks a True Friend", "Pashernate Love", "Boxers", "Sunny", "Black Eyed Susan", "A Swallow on My Neck", "Whatever Happens, I Love You", "Have-a-Go Merchant", "Nobody Loves Us", "You Must Please Remember", "Heir Apparent", "The Edges Are No Longer Parallel", "This Is Not Your Country" and "I Am Two People".

Unreleased tracks

  • "Action Man", "Teresa, Teresa", "When I Was Young", "I Was Bully, Do Not Forget Me", and "I'm Looking Forward to Going Back" are unreleased tracks from the Years of Refusal sessions.[citation needed]
  • "Home Is a Question Mark" is an unreleased track from the 2003 You Are The Quarry recording sessions. A song by this name on Morrissey's 2017 album, Low in High School was composed by Mando Lopez.

Other projectsEdit

  • Setting Fires – Setting Fires was a collaboration between Whyte and Mat Devine. Devine has been the frontman and principal songwriter for alternative rock group Kill Hannah since 1996. The two of them met in the summer of 2009, and Setting Fires was born. They enlisted Dean Butterworth (Good Charlotte) to play the drums, Davey Julson-Rieley to produce, and Joe McGrath (AFI, Green Day) to mix the songs for the EP.
  • Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams – Whyte played guitar in the band Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams (not to be confused with Johnny Panic) who released one single "When I Drink I Love You More" in 1998 then disbanded. The drummer of the band, Hodge arranged for an album to be released on Cherry red/Anagram records in 2006 titled Not Bitter But Bored, which contained three songs that went on to become Morrissey songs: "Irish Blood, English Heart", "First Of The Gang To Die" and "Don't Make Fun Of Daddy's Voice."
  • Red Lightning – In 2005, Whyte, Milo Todesco and John DiMambro formed Red Lightning. Their live debut came on 30 April in Los Angeles. Soon after, they recorded a full-length album with producer David Newton entitled L.A. Crash Landing. Red Lightning played at the South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas in March 2006, followed by a string of California concerts. Due to unknown reasons, Red Lightning split in January 2007.
  • The Gazmen with Gary Day, Born Bad, The Memphis Sinners, The Memphis Flash, Crash Action, The Rugcutters, and The Motivators.



Johnny Panic and the Bible of DreamsEdit

  • Not Bitter But Bored (2006)

Red LightningEdit

  • L.A. Crash Landing (2005)


Of Morrissey's 40 currently released singles, Whyte has written 16. However, Whyte did not join Morrissey's band until 1991. Since 1991, Morrissey has released 29 singles giving Whyte the credit of writing over half of Morrissey's singles since that time.


† Written by Whyte

Morrissey & SiouxsieEdit

  • "Interlude" (1994) UK#25

Johnny Panic and the Bible of DreamsEdit

  • "When I Drink I Love You More" (1998)


  1. ^ Strong, Martin Charles; Peel, John (25 October 2004). The great rock discography. Canongate U.S. pp. 1040–. ISBN 978-1-84195-615-2. Retrieved 7 July 2011. 
  2. ^ "Alain Whyte | The Daily". 1997-05-08. Archived from the original on 2014-08-19. Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  3. ^ "Most Performed Songs". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 

External linksEdit