HOW THE WEST WAS WON. Bigger than The Beatles? Bigger than Bush? Bigger than Big Bob Dole himself...Oasis have stormed the US rock primaries and now they're heading for landslide victory. The last vestige of post-grunge austerity is blown away as America embraces proper British rock cool again. They've woken up with Morning Gliry at last. And it feels good...
Within fifteen minutes of their plane taking off for Kansas, Oasis have assumed battle positions. Liam Gallagher is in the toilet with a couple of stewardesses, and Noel is raking out lines of white powder. Guigsy is contentedly puffing on a huge spliff, while Alan White beats up a swimwear rep from Idaho. Bonehead is left well alone as he runs up and down the aisles, dressed only in a Heartbeat-style police motorcycle helmet and complete American gridiron football kit, custom made in City colours. His personal stereo blasts forth with The Great Ecape.
Or perhaps not. Guigsy sips calmly on a cup of in-flight coiffee, while Liam wrestles determinedly with a bag of peanuts. Noel, meanwhile, slumps back with the broad smile of a man for whom monopoly money has recently become indistinguishable from the real thing. Nothing untoward, even though this trip is being billed as the most important visit to the USA by a British group in the last 30 years. And it's not hard to see why. As Oasis touch down in Kansas, they're hurtling out of record shops the nation over. Oasis have cracked the American charts, big time.
When the Wonderwall single climbed to number 13, the record company, Epic, promptly took the bold step of deleting it, focussing all the attention (translation, money) on the band's album WTSMG. This too is flying across the counters, having leapfrogged from 36 to 18 to number four. It took the British outfit Bush a year to achieve a top five album in the US; Oasis swung it in five months.
Oasis' current fortunes have inevitably led to to anticipation that their huge success will break down the door for all the other UK acts to follow. But such an assessment feels wrong. Very wrong.
In the first week of their arrival stateside, Uk vocalist Seal will pick up three Grammy awards; Annie Lennox will also win, while the sales of Sixteen Stone by Bush are hardly slack.
Oasis are British - have been for years - but they are not the first contem[porary band to have hit big in America of late. And does anyone seriously believe that millions of Americans, on the strength of hearing WTSMG, will be saying, ' Wow, got to get more Pulp, Elastica and Blur into my life.'?
The truth is more prosaic. Oasis, like all great bands, have steered away from Little Englander flag-waving. They didn't spend years on the dole to benefit a multitude of lesser UK groups. No one does that.
No, the last British invasion, between 1963 and 1965, happened because of the four things that Oasis share with their revered Beatles and Stones. Great songs, attitude, timing and huge ambition.
This is why America has made the band a phenomenon, the exact same reason France, Italy, Spain, the UK, and most other countries have - Americas is responding like the rest of the world.
This is Oasis' seventh trip to the States. For a group who released their debut single just over two years ago, this is quite a figure. But then, everything has gone to plan concocted by band and management back when the dream that is their life now was just that, a dream.
If there is a first on this trip it's that now the fruit of the band's labour will finally be tangible. Now they can regularly hear themselves on the radio and see their name in the charts. Now they can take pride in the fact that every venue has sold out in 15 minutes flat. Rolling Stone want them for the cover; press and radio requests can now be vetted, not fretted over.
Oasis are about to become part of American musical history. Not bad for "five shitkickers from Burnage, Manchester".
At 1.30 the next day, a restless Noel Gallagher gets hold of his tour manager, Maggie, and requests a lift down to the gig with drummer Alan White. Noel had been unable to sleep, having woken at five, got back to sleep by six, up again at seven; a vicious circle of jet lag.
Maggie says fine, and they arrange to meet at the hotel bar. Two security guys, Kevin and Terry, accompany them. Terry will travel with Noel and Alan, Kev with the rest of the group.
Noel orders a beer, the rest opt for lemonades and cokes. Above us, the TV is on. CNN News. "Have you seen some of the stories they have on here?" Noel enquires. "Check this one I saw this morning. There's this guy who's 75 and he's got cancer. So his doctor tells him he's got about two years to live. So he thinks, 'Fuck it, I've always hated my wife, the stupid bag.' So he kills her. 'What the fuck, I've got nothing to lose.' Then he's put in jail but, the problem is, he doesn't die. He's 99 now and guess what he's doing?" Noel surveys our expectant faces. "Suing the doctor," he cackles. "He's taking him to court," he continues, pissing himself. "And he's saying, ' If it wasn't for what you told me I would never have killed my wife and now you owe me ten million pounds.' I'm sitting there thinking, 'I know I live in a mad country but it's not half as crazy as it is here.'"
Alan White laughs, rubs his head: "I've got to get a haircut soon. A number four, I reckon. I'm sweating like a c*** on stage." Noel: "That's becuase you are a c***. If you were a geezer like me, you'd sweat like a geezer. See?" Alan: "Thanks a lot, Noel." White gets it no more and no less than any of the other group members. Oasis, like any gang, are huige on taking the piss, winding people up. Americans are perhaps not notable for their humour in this department, but Alan is. He had no choice, despite his being a native South Londoner, he and the band cliicked straight away as people. Different accents, different clobber, but the same sense and sensibility. What they leave alone is his drumming. It's not hard to see why. Check his work on Wonderwall, or Don't Look Back In Anger or Champagne Supernova. Simple, deadly, effective.
An hour later, the rest of us pile into the bus for the 20-minute drive to the Kansas Memorial Hall. On the way over, the American driver asks Maggie if she's been watching TV.
"This guy Buchanan looks like he's going to win the nomination for the Republican party, and that guy is anti-everything," he explains, "I mean, everything. He wants to build a wall in Mexico and stop all the immigrants coming in." "You what?" Liam says in amazement, "Say that again." The driver repeats himself. "Dickhead, fucking dickhead," decides Liam. "They're off their tits here." He looks out of the window. He's dressed, as ever, in jeans that bunch up at the ankles and a large coat done up to the neck. All he can see is suburbia, American flags flying everywhere. "Imagine if us four were walking down the street," he announces, "They'd all say 9adopting a whining American accent), 'Look at those mad fuckers with their haircuts.' When in reality it would be them who are the nutters." His long fingers stroke his two-week old beard. "Thank fuck for Burnage," he says to no one in particular. Liam has also been up most of the night, chewing the phone, in the parlance of his brother's song Talk Tonight, waiting for the dawn light. Now he's in America and he's tired. "I already feel like an alien, " he mutters sourly. At the venue, Noel and Alan are already onstage. Noel is repeatedly playing a new riff, a long snaking tune bearing faint echoes of Jimi Hendrix. Then Guigsy and Bonehead plug in.
The first two songs are new, with Noel taking the vocals: "Where angels fly/You won't play...I'll put on my shoes/Walking slowly down the hall of fame." The working title is provocative, .Me And My Big Mouth. The second song is in the same vein, fast and melodic, proof that Noel has reverted back to writing on his electric guitar.
That said, either song could easily have been penned years ago and only now brought out to play. That's how Noel is, a bank of songs in one pocket and a bottle of Jack Daniel's in the other.
The band follow with Hey Now, which has been specially inserted for the tour (Round Are Way being given the elbow), and then run through the opening numbers Swamp Song, Hello and Roll With It.
Next, Noel soundchecks his acoustic guitar for his solo spot. Again a new song, this time titled Setting Son, and with a beautiful melody to boot. It also shows the strength in Noel's vocal, his ability to go from plaintive to passionate and back again within a single line. Then he loses his memory. This has been happening a lot of late. "What songs did I used to do in this part of the show, Mickey? he asks the lighting man, "I just can't fucking seem to remember." Mickey, a tall man with a ponytail, calls out a few titles, Cast No Shadow, Wonderwall. Instead, Noel plays a rich version of Slide Away and then Wobderwall. Now it's the support band's turn.
The hall itself has a capacity of 2,500 people. The dressing room is to the right of the stage, so if the band want to wander out, they'll have to go through the crowd.
Instead they go downstairs, eat their meals and then sit around the auditorium amiably taking the piss out of Terry and Kev umtil the support band arrive to soundcheck.
There had been plans to bring Teenage Fanclub over to provide support on the whole tour, but some record company shenanigans put paid to that. Instead, they elect to pick up a local band at each gig. Oasis retreat to the bus where they will spend much of their time over the next three weeks: sleeping, eating, reading, arguing and, naturally enough, getting out of it.
Noel comes up from the back of the coach and passes Guigsy a book on scooters and a large toy scooter he's bought that morning.
Scooters are a big thing with this band. Liam has a 1954 Vespa at home and Guigsy went on scooter runs when he was 16. Last year, on holiday in Italy, Noel bought each band member a scooter.
"I'm going to get a flight case made, take it on the next tour," reckons Noel. Liam: "What about mine?" Noel: "What about it? Not my problem." "Here y'are Bonehead," Guigsy says. "Sort it out with the coffee." "It's not fucking working," Bonehead answers. After an hour of changing filters and siphining water from one bottle into another, Bonehead and Guigsy finally crack it. It's like watching some cult comedy show." "Here y'are," Bonehead finally hands me a cup. "Instant coffee." Maggie climbs onboard. "Time to go, boys."
Instead of using the backstage entrance, Terry and Kevin take the band round the front of the building to the other side. Fans arriving late gawp in awe as Oasis walk right past them. "Alright mate," Noel nods to one, as though walking past an acquaintance on the way to the shop for some milk.
It's a good gig - not a great one. The band haven't played for a month and are conscious of the fact. As of late, they open a s a four-piece, blasting through Swamp Song. Halfway through, Liam enters to prowl the stage with his tambourine, leeringly staring the audience out.
Then it's the jagged opening chords of Acquiesce, another B-side, apparently unfamiliar in the wild of Kansas. Hey Now isn't played, but Champagne Supernova has finally been nailed as a live song, and the band take care to get its delicate timing right, so that the explosive chorus has even more impact. Things really take flight with Don't Look Back In Anger but by then it's too late. There's only Live Forever and I Am The Walrus in reserve.
The audience are pretty subdued, although there are some who want to storm the gates. Just not enough of them to really make the charge worthwhile.
Interestingly, as soon as Noel finishes Wonderwall, the first song of his acoustic set, loads of the crowd who've been screaming and flicking lighters in the air come streaming out of the hall to load up on refreshments. Wonderwall, the peoples' choice as Song For The UK in 1995, is clearly heading for the same status here.
There is no encore; there rarely is. At the mixing desk afterwards, two guys come over to Hugh, the sound engineer, asking if they can get backstage. "Not possible," says Hugh with a smile, but he gives them a set list as consolation and they depart, whooping as only Americans can whoop. They are from St Louis, some four hours down the road, and the next night's scheduled gig. But Kansas seemed a better bet for them, as Oasis have thrice cancelled St Louis (twice becuase of sick or missing bass players, the other time because Liam and Noel were rucking badly). No one in St Louis really thinks they're going to make it to tomorrow's gig.
In the dressing room, a coterie of fans have been let in after the band have got themselves together. It's always at this point that Noel will wander over to the production office to discuss the night's events with Maggie or Trigger, the road crew's manager.
Meanwhile, in the dressing room, there are three Scottish guys and a very drunk woman whose husband has just left her. One of the guys keeps asking the band if they know Paul Morrison, the organiser of Scotland's T In The Park fest. Oasis played there two years previously. "Top gig," remembers Liam. "No it wasn't, dickhead," Guigsy counters. "It rained on us." "Did it?" Liam replies, muzzily. "I can't remember nish these days."
The drunk woman moves in and sits down next to Guigsy on the sofa. She says hello and proceeds to put her hand on his leg. "Oi!" he responds immediately. "Get off!" She looks shocked, not understanding that this isn't the way to play things. Then she sees Noel entering the room.
Instantly, she gets up and buttonholes him. "Look," she's saying to him, "please understand. My husband has gone, I'm desperate. I don't know what to do. But you know what? That song of yours, Wonderwall." Her fingers grope towards him. "Yes, that song has saved me." "Really?" Noel replies. "It's made me a fucking millionaire. See you later." And he turns on his heels and is off.
Bonehead taps Guigsy on the arm and gestures to the Scottish guy who's now asking everyone, "Do ye know Paul Morrison? Do ye?" "It's amazing, isn't it?" Bonehead notes. "You can play anyhere in the world and you'll still hear that accent in the dressing room afterwards." What are Bonehead's thoughts on the gig? "It was OK," hes ighs. "Good for a first gig, but they really came just to hear Wonderwall." He shrugs. "It's true innit?" Guigsy says: "You see that bit of hair left on Bonehead's forehead? Yeah? Well, that's his third eyebrow when he gets drunk."
An hour later we're on our way to St Louis. I've brought along some tapes: Beatles, Kinks, couple of compilations. The band groove on it all and know about every song going, even Anada Shanka's sitar-led version of Jumping Jack Flash. "We used to have tis on in the van all the time," Bonehead says, cracking open another bottle. "Did you bring any Easy Listenming stuff?" Surely he must be joking. "Fuck am I," he replied. "I'm mad for it. Double mad. Sergio Mendes, all that stuff. When Coyle [Mark, initial producer and sound engineer, considered to be the sixth member before a bout of deafness sidelined him] was with us, we used to go off and buy loads and loads of stuff. I've got millions of records." "Yeah, but do you know about Robin Friday?" Guigsy asks. "Ah," Noel perks up. "Robin Friday, listen to this one." Friday was a footballer who Goal magazine had just profiled.Rtaed by many as the best they'd ever seen, Friday was a relatively unknown star who went to prison, pushed needles into his arms, flicked the V-sign at the goalie after scoring and was found dead in his flat after a heroin overdose. Friday is Oasis icon. Understand him and you understand them.
Four hours later we're in St Louis. It's here that we meet up with Oasis manager Marcus Russell.
As ever, Noel is one of the first to rise. Does he have trouble sleeping, or what? "No, it's just that I've got a girlfriend who somehow manages to ring me every day precisely two hours after I've gone to sleep. She says 'Hello?' and I say, 'Hello?' and she says, 'Are you asleep?' and I say, 'Yes, I am fast asleep, which is why I just said hello to you."'"
It's a beautiful day outside; the air feels fresh and summery. Which is just as well - to feed the insatiable appetite for Oasis-related matter back home, press man Johnny Hopkins has arranged a photoshoot so that all the papers can run pics of the lads in the States.
Consequently, the band meet outside the hotel at 2.30. The photographer introduces himself to Alan White. "I sjot you guys before," he says. "I did that shoot with the motorbikes." "Yeah I do remember that," Alan answers. "And we fucking binned the photos as soon as we saw them." "Thanks a lot," says the photographer, skulking off to get the rest of his equipment. The band are taken to three different locations. At length, Alan approaches the lensman. "Sorry mate, I didn't mean that earlier on." He is, of course, lying through his teeth.
The gig is situated right next door to the hotel. The band walk down the alleyway, signing autographs and then carry on through a large garage door into the venue.
At the soundcheck, Oasis tear into the new songs, while, outside, some British press loiter expectantly in the alleyway. One of them even tapes the soundcheck.
Currently doing the rounds is a fast-selling bootleg CD containing the earliest demos and first ever gig at the Boardwalk. Anything, anything, to do with this band, is a licence to print money.
Soundcheck finished, the band head on downstairs to eat. "Day off tomorrow," Guigsy offers brightly. "Is it fuck," Bonehead counters. "We've got a photoshoot for Rolling Stone and then we're doing a radio interview that doesn't finish until eleven." "Some fucking day off," Noel says flatly. The group finish their meal. Some get their heads down for a kip. Liam and Alan go shopping. The only thing to break the encroaching monotony is the arrival of the football results. Man City 3 Newcastle 3. All of them wish they'd been at home to see that one.
At 9.15, the band walk coolly onstage and it's straight into Swamp Song. This one is a much better gig, with more crowd energy than Kansas. At the end of Acquiesce Noel points out a guy in the audience to Liam. "This one's for the guy in the red and white striped suit," Liam intones over the opening chords to Supersonic. "Nice one, mate."
Later on, Liam notices another guy in the audience and excitedly points him out to the rest of the band, laughing loudly. The crowd keep looking round to see who he's talking about, but Liam gives no clues. It turns out the guy is a dead ringer for a mate of the singer's back in Manchester. Liam thought he was seeing an apparition.
As Noel thrashes out the lead guitar lines that close Champagne Supernova, Liam saunters over to the PA and puts his ear to the speaker. He genuinely just wants to check out the band, but unknowingly causes a near riot down the front. Liam takes no notice, lost in the music.
The gig over, and a good one to boot, a fan says to Liam, "You know, you remind me of Charlie Manson with that beard." Liam is astounded. "You what? What are you talking about? Here are. Here are. Have you ever seen Charlie Manson onstage singing with a band?" "I can't say I have." "Well thenm don't come in here calling me that, you dickhead. Fuck's sake."
The mood in the room is a little subdued and Liam can't handle it. He hates silence. With a passion. In Liam's world it's better to talk bullshit all day than be silent for one minute. His gaze falls upon the drummer. "Look at you, Whitey - in the group for one year and already you got the big house and the car. There's me, right, struggling along for fucking years and then what happens at Christmas? 'Here are, Whitey,' goes McGee, 'Here's your Xmas present.' And it's a car, a fucking car. 'Here are Liam, lead singer, original member, who's worked his arse off for years, here's yours.' Compared to you, nish, fucking nish, and you've been in the group a year. Outrageous tackle." The American girl standing next to me is utterly bemused, "I'm sorry, but could you please tell me what he just said? I really have got no idea at all."
Meanwhile, over in the production office, Marcus and Noel are talking and the news is, as ever, astounding. Back in the UK, DLBIA has entered the charts at number one, selling some 250,000 copies in its first week of release. Combine that with the sales of their two albums and 400,000 Oasis records were sold in the UK last week. And that's not taking into account what was going on in the rest of the world.
Consequently, Creation want to launch a new marketing campaign. Marcus wants to use a photo of the band that shows them smiling and laughing among themselves. "All the other ones have been full-on attitude," he tells Noel. "So it'd be good to use this one. What we need is a slogan to go with it." "How about, 'We The People For The People'." A line from Scorcese's Taxi Driver spoken by the politician stalked by friendly neighbourhood psycho Travis Bickle. "Sounds a little bit political to me, boyo," Marcus says. " Sounds like our American constitution," chips in the promoter, handing over huge wads of money to Maggie. "See," Noel says, "if you divide the sales of DM with MG, then there's 1.1 million who haven't got the second album." "And who can they be?" Marcus enquires. "Sony and Creation don't know who to target with this as idea." "Deaf people," Noel jokes. "I know, let's do an ad in braille. Or do it as a missing persons poster." He adopts his best American accent, "Hi, if you haven't got this album please could you ring the following number..."
Marcus has brought over a tape of the band's Top Of The Pops appearance for the band to view on the bus. It opens with Noel, holding the Union Jack guitar that his girlfriend Meg gave him for Christmas, wearing Lennon shages and a tasty white button-down collar. "Go on, our kid," his brother yells. Liam had been placed behind the piano for the clip, and would have got away with it had he not got bored and started doing 'chopstick' movements. Still, it hardly detracts from a stately, masterful performance. The band give Noel a round of applause.
Onscreen, Liam steps up to the mike and says, "Yeah, yeah, yeah," to the audience. The brothers shout, "Get your boots on, skinheads," and the band erupt into C'mon Feel the Noize. Much to everyone's amusement, Liam deliberately fluffs the famous line about singing out of time.
"There's only a few bands who have done two songs on Top Of The Pops," Noel beams contentedly. "That's us, The Beatles and The Jam. Good company, eh?" He sounds like a man who's just become a dad for the first time.
Making everything even sweeter for the band is the fact that recently-eclipsed arch-rivals Blur were on before them, peaking earlt at number seven. "The war was won tonight," Noel trumpets. "You know, I've heard he's doing a Brian Wilson at the moment, is Damon. Apparently, he can't stop playing MG, trying to figure out how to beat us. (Wilson did the same thing with Revolver and Sergeant Pepper) But you see, the thing is, all the pressure is on them now. They've got to come back with a great album." He settles back on his chair, drawing on his cigarette. "Whereas we've got all the time in the world."
Did Noel talk to Blur at the Pops? "Did I fuck. I can't even be in the same room as him. I refuse to be. The rest of the band went to the bar. I stayed back in the dressing room. Give a shit, me." When the rest of the band troop off to bed, the brothers keep going. The talk turns to The Beatles. Liam states that he'd rather be a dead Lennon than a live McCartney. Noel challenges him. "What? You'd rather be dead than alive?" And they're off on their first 'discussion' of the tour.
It's fascinating to watch, this verbal tennis match between the brothers. They've been playing it for years, the pair of them constantly vying to score points. They know one thing from their upbringing and that is you never back down. Not ever. Not for anybody. And that applies to your own brother. So on and on, back and forth.
At one point, Liam strays into religion, imploring, "Don't you care about your soul? I mean, really care about your soul?" "Look mate, I care about this band, about my music, about me ma, Meg and my close friends, and that is it. All i know is that tonight I've got to sleep and tomorrow I'll wake up and do whatever we're supposed to be doing." "But you don't know that. do you?" Liam says, pushing it. "Don't know what?" "If you're going to wake up tomorrow." "Look mate, I'm waking up tomorrow. I know that." "Oh, you know that, do you?" "Yeah, Ido." "You don't know what's going to happen." "Yes, I do. I know I'm going to carry on making hit records until I die." "No you don't." "Believe me," Noel says in all seriousness. "Oh yes I do." And so it goes on, all the way up to Minneapolis, and that's a mighty old long way down the never-ending dusty road.
Sitting in the hotel bar, sipping on his beer, Marcus Russell is in high spirits. The band have just finished the first day's shooting for the Rolling Stone cover and now liam and Bonehead are about to go downtown for a radio link-up with New York and Minneapolis.
The jock will play Oasis records and callers would phone in with questions. Noel was due to appear, but his hangover proved too much. He wanted a meal and then bed. Liam didn't. He wanted to keep going "until 1998. Maybe then I'll slow down, but until then, I'm mad for it."
"When did you know you were going to be big in the States?" asks David from Wisconsin. Liam and Bonehead are now installed behind the microphones. Liam: "About three hours ago, when someone told us we were four in the charts." "What was your biggest break?" Jason from New York wants to know. Liam: "My biggest break was 39." Bonehead: "Mine was a hole in one." "What makes you different?" This from someone called Alice. Bonehead: "Good songs." Liam: "And a handsome lead singer with a beard." What's the difference between DM and WTSMG?" asks Tim from Milwaukee. "We've got better songs," says Liam simply. Afterwards, the boys mooch along to First Avenue, Prince's club. Everything has been arranged, but when Terry takes them through the wrong door and gets some stick off a bouncer, he loses his rag. "Fuck 'em," he seethes, 2fuck 'em." And we retire to a nearby bar. There we meet a couple of fans who are coming to the next night's show. With Liam standing next to them, I start asking questions. "What's so great about Oasis?" "Oh, the songs. They're just great." "Why are they the first relevant British group to make it in recent times?" "Songs...and the attitude. There's been nothing like this group for years in America. Now there's these guys, actually saying something, standing up for something."
I shoot a glance at Liam. "What do you think?" "I don't know mate. I never analyse stuff, me. I just do it." He swigs his beer and pats his midriff. "I'm getting a bit of a beer belly." Success, it seems, is going to Liam Gallagher's gut.
The next night's gig is the best yet. Even though strict Minneapolis laws (this is a town where you hotel mini-bar automatically locks at 1 am) keep people in their seats, the upstairs of the hall, at least, truly rocks.
On board the bus Noel has been given a video about the mafia by his guitar roadie Jason. "You watch," he says. "We'll put it on and Liam will go, 'Wankers, yo ain't hard. I could have you.' You watch." Liam appears. "Put some music on," he says, plonking down. "Nah, we're going to watch this video." "What's it about?" "The mafia." "Mafia? Fuck's sake, why do you want to watch that? That's shit. Play some tunes, man." "Nah, we're going to watch this." "Oh, I suppose it makes you feel hard watching that kind of shit does it? Make you feel like a man, does it?" "No, we just want to watch a thing about the mafia." Someone leans over, pushing the play button. The video starts. "Fucking wankers," Liam spits, as Al Capone and his boys fill the screen. "I could have them. Any time." Noel grins triumphantly. Told you so. "Right, that's it," Liam fumes. "I'm going down the back and I'm going to play my tunes and I'm going to learn something and I'm not going to sit here getting all fucking hard and macho over this gangster shit because I'm into peace and love, me, and that's that." As he stamps off, Noel says to Alan White, 'He'll be back up here in ten minutes.' "Nah, he's serious, he'll stay down there." "Bet you a tenner?" "You're on." The group are all in a good mood. The gig was good one, auguring well for Chicago, the first really major town of the tour. As it happens, the windy city will be the one where the band do play a dream of a gig, with the crowd going mental from start to finish. But that's tomorrow. A minue later, Liam returns in a huff. "Bastard," says Alan to Noel, fishing in his pocket for the wedge. "What's going on?" Liam wants to know. "There's no fucker down there. I'm not going to sit on my jacks, am I?" "Right," Noel announces. "For you to sit here after all that gyp you gave us about watching the video, you've got to let me pull you're beard." Thsi is when the brothers get funny, real funny. Liam: "You're not pulling my bird. I spent a year pulling her." "No, come on, let me pull your beard." "Nah, pull your own." "I can't I'm clean shaven." "So leave my bird alone." As the bus carries Oasis deeper and deeper into America Noel recounts how he and his kid walked out of that day's rolling Stone photoshoot after about an hour. "But some bands give over eight hours for this," the photographer had remonstarted. Swiftly and bluntly, Noel and Liam put him straight on that one. "We're not 'some' band. And your paper didn't make us, mate. And you know what about youir Rolling Stone cover? Arsed mate, arsed." The Oasis stroy has really only just begun.