I was a 16 year old geek, covered in acne and with a penchant for wearing Kappa sweatshirts, when I boarded a Condor Ferry from Jersey, bound for Knebworth.
Oasis. My band. My life. My gig. It was history for me, and 250,000 others alongside me.
I was obsessed with them. I remember having a heated debate in a biology lesson once, about how Oasis were so much better than all the grungy bands my classmates were into. It was shortly after that lesson when my teacher wrote in my school report that my attention span was akin to the nursery school kids I’d looked after during a recent spell of work experience. My Dad went ballistic. At the teacher. He made her rewrite the report. Legend.
Everyone owned a copy of What’s the Story (Morning Glory). It was epic. Still is. Friends who’d previously liked Bananarama or Take That or Michael Jackson or Chesney Hawkes were now singing along to Wonderwall and Don’t Look Back in Anger and saying Madferit. It was a glorious time.
Knebworth itself? All I can remember is that it was hot. We were miles away from the stage and yet, we reckon, we were about a third of the way from the front. John Squire came on and destroyed Champagne Supernova. In a good way. It took forever to get home. I nearly passed out. Basically, it was incredible.
“This is history,” Noel said that night. A few months later he was at Number 10 Downing Street, celebrating a Labour landslide. Of the general election variety, not a Champagne Supernova type.
Where we were, now here we are. 21 years on, and Oasis – well, Noel and Liam – are back at the front of people’s minds. Don’t Look Back in Anger became a fitting tribute to the devastating Manchester attacks last week.
The genius behind that song, Noel Gallagher turned 50 on Monday, while Liam released his first song as a solo artist on Wednesday.
All the while, Labour’s leader Jeremy Corbyn is threatening to do a Jarvis Cocker, and run onto Theresa May’s stage and point his bare backside backside in her general direction. And by that extended metaphor I mean, whisper it, Labour might actually win. As for Jeremy’s backside, well, Theresa started it…
Jeremy Corbyn. But he’s totally unelectable, right? He’s a bit like Liam Gallagher, hated by great swaths of people, if my Twitter feed is to be believed. But could Corbyn really take Labour back to Downing street?
When May declared this snap election two months ago, it was a play for more power. She wanted to strengthen her position ahead of the Brexit discussions. Yet she looked anything but ‘strong and stable’ when Jeremy Paxman had finished with her on Monday evening…
On Wednesday, while the rest of the major party leaders were debating the key policies in Cambridge, Theresa was eating some cheese in Bath. Where’s that drive for power, Theresa? She’s more likely to Dundee in her bare feet.
May called this election, having initially said she wouldn’t – seven times – so that she could concentrate on Brexit. She should be romping home to victory in this campaign. Instead she’s stumbling along, her feet constantly in her mouth rather than on the road ahead.
Corbyn may have his critics but I honestly believe he’s the best person to lead our country forward. I like his pragmatism on issues like Brexit, the NHS and social reform, while he’s right that our approach to tackling terrorism needs a rethink. Our current stance isn’t working.
There may be parallels to the mid-nineties, but this isn’t the same happy go lucky era. I’m worried for the future, worried about the world my kids are growing up in. I keep feeling this sense of guilt, that they’re having to grow up in such terrifying times. Will they be too scared to do things, like go to a concert with their best mates, watching their favourite band? Maybe instead they’ll watch it on Facebook Live – no need to even leave the house. How sad.
Whoever wins the election next week, make sure you vote for the party that truly represents you and your views. Can’t ask fairer then that.
Then when you’re done go put on your favourite band on and kick back. I’ll be playing Liam Gallagher’s new tune Wall of Glass over and over again. As you were.