Oasis Interviews Archive

A shitload of interviews from all the various members of Oasis and selected associates from the start of their career right up to the present day. These transcripts have been taken from various websites, forums and newsgroups over the years. Credit goes to those people who took the time to put these words online.

Saturday, December 19, 1998

Noel & Liam Gallagher - NME - 19th December 1998

Songs In The Turkey Of Life - Noel & Liam On The Tunes That Made Them Man

Alongside a computer-manipulated picture of Noel and Liam wearing Santa Claus outfits by Steve Double.

Q: First record you can remember?
Noel: "Ticket To Ride" by The Beatles. I wasn't really analysing music then so I don't know why I liked it. I suppose the first record I really liked was "Anarchy In The UK" by the Sex Pistols because it was angry and loud.
Liam: Peters & Lee - "It Was You Who Tripped Me Up". You c***.

Q: Song that reminds you of school?
Noel: "Going Underground" by The Jam. I've got good memories of school because I f*****g hated it and everyone else who was in our class. And the teachers. But there was one dinner lady who was a fine lady and that was our Mam. But I was glad that I left the year he [Liam] joined.
Liam: 'Hey Teacher Leave Those Kids Alone'. Before i get me dad in to sort you out! (He means "Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)" by Pink Floyd, of course - Ed)

Q: Song you fell in love to?
Noel: Erm, not sure about that...
Liam: Right, well her's my one. (Picks up tape and shouts into the mic) WHICH ONE? THERE WERE SO F*****G MANY!!! He can't say that, I can now. (NME should point out that this interview was conducted while Liam and Patsy were estranged.)
Noel: You'll f*****g regret that. Me, I wouldn't like to say. Probably something shit like...
Liam: Leave it, leave it at that.Noel: ..."The Bitterest Pill" by The Jam.
Liam: He's taking the piss out of me now!
Noel: I'm not.
Liam: Yer are, you cheeky bastard! I know! I know! (picks up mic) 'The Morning After...Pill'.

Q: Heartbreak song?
Noel: "Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life" by Monty Python.
Liam: "Perfect Day" by whatshisname, Lou Reed.
Noel: "Ticket To Ride" is a pretty good heartbreak tune, innit?
Liam: What's he mean by heartbreak tune?
Noel: A record that reminds you of feeling sad when a bird's leaving you.
Liam: Aaaaaaah...it's a 'Perfect Day'. D'yer geddit kids? Anyone fancy a pint?
Noel: You're gonna pay for that when this comes out.
Liam: No I won't, no I won't, no I won't, no I won't.
Noel: F*****g will!
Liam: F*****g won't, mate. It's a 'Perfect Day', what can I say? That's me heartbreak record.

Q: Song that evokes the greatest summer of your life?
Liam: Dodgy - "Going Out For The Summer" (sic)
Noel: Is it f***! Don't say that! He didn't mean that.
Liam: (Tries to throw the tape player into adjacent fish tank) Ginger-haired c***! (Stops) What, a perfect summer? "She Bangs The Drums" by The Stone Roses.
Noel: I'd go along with that, definitely.
Liam: That whole album. Best summer ever. Mad for it. Ask me the next one, yer c***.

Q: Anthem for a night on the tiles?
Noel: You've not heard it yet. It's one of our new ones, you wait.
Liam: Yeah, leave it at that. We're out of season now, man.
Noel: Yeah, one of our new ones...
Liam: Leave it at that!!!
Noel: OK. It's not my band.
Liam: Whose band is it?
Noel: You band.
Liam: Did you hear that?! It's my band!! It's my band!! Are you recording this, Mister Journalist? It's my band!
Noel: It's your band.
Liam: Hang on a minute...It's not my band now we're shit and nobody likes us! It was my band when we were popular! You sneaky bastard! (Aims kick at Noel's arse)

Q: Record that inspired you to form a band?
Noel: The Stone Roses' first album.
Liam: One of his.
Noel: You were in the band befor me, you daft c***!
Liam: Alright, alright. But it was still one of your songs that made us start the band.
Noel: Oh, yeah, so it is my band after all.
Liam: Right. "When The Levee Breaks" by Led Zeppelin.
Noel: Also, "The Queen Is Dead" by The Smiths.
Liam: PistolsRosespunkspunknewwave. Music

Q: Record guaranteed to clear the tourbus?
Noel: Any of Bonehead's, Cocteau Twins, The Sugarcubes, The Stranglers, A Flock Of Seagulls, Classix Nouveaux, Split Enz, Kajagoogoo...
Liam: I'm going to be a right hard bastard now and say anything by f*****g fat-arsed Williams. You can quote me on that! (Wheels away boxing the air) WHO WANTS IT?!!
Noel: Tubby-arsed Williams.
Liam: Tubby-arsed Williams. And quote me on that, right? That's from me, not him. Anything by Robbie f*****g Williams. Alright?
Noel: Not that we've ever played anything by him on the bus.
Liam: No f*****g way! But if they played it I'd f*****g run off. I'd rather walk. I'd rather be in the f*****g trailer. I'd rather trail the f*****g trailer!

Q: Midnight on New Year's Eve. What's on the hi-fi?
Noel: Not "Millenium" by Robbie Williams. Er, probably one of ours. Probably that one we can’t tell you about.
Liam: I'll be playing myself. Or the glockenspiel.

Q: What would you like played at your funeral?
Noel: "Going Underground" by The Jam.
Liam: "Natural Mystic" by Bob Marley. (Grabs NME by the groin, kisses NME on the cheek and stomps off.)

Tuesday, December 01, 1998

Noel Gallagher - Total Guitar - December 1998

The brains and the brawn behind Oasis has packed his guitar case and gone on support of Weller's tour. Does this mean a solo career beckons?

On the evening of our Paul Weller interview, there's a rather special guest preparing to play a short acoustic warm-up for his musical soulmate to a largely unsuspecting crowd. That man is Noel Gallagher, guitarist and main songwriter for Oasis, the biggest guitar band in British pop music history.

One thing that immediately strikes you about the nature of the Weller/Gallagher relationship is the mutual respect between these two giants of British pop music. While Weller's band sizzles into an impromptu jam during the soundcheck for tonight's gig, Noel Gallagher settles down in the front row seats and clocks every minute of it. When it's Gallagher's turn to run through a few songs on his acoustic to check his onstage sound, Weller parks himself at the front of the stage and nods away intently throughout the performance. Even when we rudely interrupt him for the photograph session, he spends his time working out the chords to Gallagher's songs, and strumming along th them through the rest of the soundcheck.

Noel Gallagher's love of Weller's music stretches right back to his days as a fan of The Jam, a band he places second only to the Beatles in the history of British pop music (he was outspokenly proud of the fact that only three bands have ever played two songs on the same edition of Top Of The Pops - The Beatles, The Jam and Oasis). [NB. Not strictly true - the Ramones also have the honour - A] While the two have guested on each other's albums, and made a number of onstage appearances together over the last few years, this relationship has now blossomed into mutual high regard, and culminated in the sort of support that Noel Gallagher is supplying to his friend's tour.

So, how did you get involved with the Weller tour?
I went round to give him his birthday present, that I'd bought for him for his...[mimes shock] 40th birthday, and he asked me what I was doing next week, and I said I'm not doing f*** all, so he said do you want to come out and do some gigs. There was only supposed to be three, but this is the eight one now.

You're obviously enjoying it...
Ah yeah. I've been doing a lot of writing at home and stuff. I'm not the sort who goes round, you know, if I'm not in the papers for two weeks I start getting nervous or anything like that, but if he hadn't have asked...I only did it because he was in a bit of a fix for an opening actm before Toploader turned up. But I've enjoyed doing it and it's been good for the fans more than anything else. It's been unannounced, so you should see their faces when I walk out, they all go 'F***ing hell, that looks like Liam Gallagher! F*** no, it's Noel.'

Is it good to get away from the showbiz and paparazzi, and back to music?
Yeah. It's something I do anyway, with radio stations, TV shows, I just get up and play guitar, and I'll play anywhere, so I'm quite used to doing it. I've done acoustic things in front of 20,000, so it's no big deal to me, but it's good to get back out and doing something again really.

What do you make of the NME's talk of British guitar music going up in smoke?
They've been saying it for 30 years, ever since The Beatles split up, you know, that rock'n'roll's dead. When ever there's a boom there's always a bit of a lull afterwards. I suppose that avant garde punk rock will come back for a while, and it will all be shit again, and then guitar music will come back. It's always going to be there. F***, it's been around since the 1920s, it's not going to go away now. I ain't goimng anywhere yet anyway.

You've played with Goldie and done other things...
Yeah, I've always played guitar with Goldie though. A lot of people think I'm some f***ing boffin or something. I mean I play on dance tracks if I'm singing or playing guitar. I can't play keyboards, I can play a little bit of piano. I did that thing for the 'X-Files', and people were calling it techno, but there's actually no electronic equipment on it, it's all live drums and live piano and bass guitar, and that's it really. I'm open to anything, but if I can't play guitar on my own records, what the f*** am I going to do, stand there and look good? Not really. I think our kid's the one for standing around and looking good. I've got to be doing something.

Is Oasis still going to be the outlet for your music, or are you gojng solo?
Nah, am I f***. I probably will do an album one day. I've got so many songs you see. I think every songwriter in a band wants to do a solo record, just to see if you can do it on your own, and I know I can do it on my own. And it would be nice to do it in a stress-free environment, without f***ing Liam running around the studio with ten cans of Guinness and a bottle of Jack Daniels, f***ing knocking things over. It's be nice to have abit of peace and quiet. But the next album will be an Oasis album, definitely.

You've been playing on stage with Paul Weller's band on this tour. Does that benefit you as a guitarist and a musician, to be working with other bands?
Well definitley as a guitarist, because I don't need to do backing vocals as well, you see, which is what's suffered over the years for me. We out so many harmonies on the records that we thought somebody better sing back up. So seeing as Bonehead's got a voice like Arthur Mullard, Guigs never speaks, and drummers can't sing fullstop, it was down to me really. So I feel like my guitar playing suffered a bit. Playing lead guitar and trying to do a backing vocal is f***ing hard, do you know what I mean? I really want to pack singing in live, 'cos I can't be arsed any more, it's too much like hard work. You break a sweat.

Do you feel you're still developing as a guitarist?
I've got a long way to go yet, man. I'm a songwriter, I'm more of a strummer than a lead guitarist. But again it's becuase when I joined the band Bonehead was already playing rhythm guitar, so I was the lead guitarist.

So, do you like playing lead guitar?
No, I hate it. It's f***ing rubbish. If you look at all the records, it's usually the same guitar solo but with a different melody behind it, so I just about get away with it every time. I'm more of a songwriter than a lead guitarist. Then again look at Jimmy Page. But he didn't sing backing vocals either...

Are you writing at the moment?
Yeah, I've demoed songs. I've got five on tape. I just write at leisure now. The last album was such a big f***ing deal, so I'd rather do thing on the quiet. There's no agenda for the next album, I don't even know what it's going to be like. The songs I've done are just me - I've played drums on them as well. I'm actually a better drummer than I am guitarist, to be honest with you. So if we kick the drummer ot and hire a lead guitarist, man...

So is it a case that when you've got enough songs and the band's ready, you'll do an album?
It will probably be next year now before we go in a studio.

Perhaps it will all simmer down a bit by then as well?
We're gutted that The Verve might split up, we were thinking they might take a bit of the heat off us. But it looks like they're going to screw up on themselves, doesn't it? I hope not. It's hard to say with a band like that, there's so many rumours going round. But they're still playinf, so they've not split yet. The fuss will die down because the rest of the bands that are coming through behind us are f***ing shit. And when we put a new record out it will go all f***ing haywire again. It would be nice if we could put a new record out on the quiet, but if you stick Oasis on the front, it goes f***ing apeshit dunnit?

Is following that kind of success difficult?
Nah. I could be a wanker and moan about success, but go and tell the chick out of Sleeper, go and tell the bands who've not had success, and they'll say 'that's what we want'. You've just got to take it as it comes, and just enjoy it.

Chris Hutton - Select - December 1998

It Couldn't Be You

Every group has had one: the hapless, well-meaning soul who can't play properly and makes goonish faces in the photos. It's either the band or them. They simply have to go. Meet music's nearly men...

Chris Hutton: ousted by Liam, but likes his Murphy's

"I can't stand The Beatles," says Chris Hutton. "And I don't remember Guigs ever mentioning he liked them either. I mean, you wouldn't have caught many Manchester lads getting into a group of scousers."

Chris was the first singer in Oasis precursor The Rain. He named the band, not in honour of the superlative Beatles B-side, but after the weather condition regularly prevailing in the band's native city. The Burnage-based line-up featured Paul 'Guigs' McGuigan and Paul 'Bonehead' Arthurs, both of whom he knew from Perry Boy footie casual days (essential uniform: moustaches and designer cardies).

Once Madchester had exploded, the 'taches went and they set about emulating their idols, in a kind of baggy take on Joy Division. Aside from an obvious Stone Roses influence, The Rain were hardly recognisable as a foretaste of what was to come. "There was a darker side to it," Chris says. "And I think the lyrics had more meaning."

One such song, called "Rooftop Rave", was inspired by the Strangeways prison riots of 1990.

The lyrics went: "See Paul Taylor on the roof/Playing a tune on his guitar/What about the rest of the boys?/They're having a rave on the roof!"

The trouble was, Chris wasn't counting on the Gallaghers and the persuasive power of their charms. While the elder brother was a distant figure known for disappearing for months at a time with Inspiral Carpets, Chris knew Liam. "We never saw eye to eye," he bristles. "We never fought, but we were definitely of each other." The Rain's gigs would regularly be attended by this monobrowed figure standing at the front. Then he started hanging around the band at soundchecks and rehearsals, too. "I just thought he was this funny hanger-on," Chris recalls.
His suspicions remained unaroused. Despite often seeing Bonehead and Guigs huddled in the corner with Liam talking urgently, the push, when it came in April 1991, was totally unexpected.

"It was a total surprise," says Hutton, still baffled. "There was never any warning. I just thought the band was doing really well, we were getting some good press and attention from [Smiths bassist] Andy Rourke."

The sacking technique was a combination of the old false split-up and the evasive phone call treatment. Chris remains convinced that Liam was bribing the others to take him on with the promise of Noel: "He was a name, with all the connections. I'm sure it was that, because Liam then wasn't any better at singing than me."

He was, he admits, "gutted". But having witnessed an early Oasis rehearsal at first hand, he says he wouldn't have been able to take Noel's dictatorial drilling.

"I wouldn't have stuck for any of the bullshit that they have. I'm not bitter about it, because of the way they've turned out. They weren't like that. Guigs was a totally different person then, he's just in the background now. You've got to have your own life."

He now works as a costcutter for a childrenswear company based near Burnage, still goes to a gig a week and reckons Oasis are "alright", but prefers their early stuff. Favourite tune?

"Acquiesce". But I think they made a real mistake there, putting that on the B-side."

Noel Gallagher - Melody Maker - December 1998

Psychobabble - Noel Gallagher

He would like to go on the piss with some aliens and desperately wants to meet Brett Anderson. Noel Gallagher plonks his arse on the Psychobabble couch and lets rip...

Would you be willing to go to a slaughterhouse and kill a cow?
No. If I had to, I would. If it was either me or the cow, the cow's gonna get it.

What's the worst psychological torture you can imagine suffering?
Being sat beside Liam on a 15-hour flight. It happened just the once, going to Japan or somewhere. It's just horrible.

Is your role as big brother to the band?
As long as I don't turn into Eddie Vedder, whingeing about everything, I'll be alright. I'm big brother to Liam only in the fact that I am actually his brother. I try not to give him any advice 'cause he wouldn't take it anyway. Everybody's old enough to look after themselves. I just don't like it when it gets in the way of the music, that's all.

How do you picture your funeral?
I'm not really bothered 'cause I won't be there. I don't give a shit.

Do you believe in life after death?

Do you believe in ghosts or evil spirits?
No, I believe in karma, though. I think about this quite alot. I do sit up for hours debating the meaning of life with friends. I believe what you give is what you get.

How's your karmic balance looking?
Fine. I don't tend to get into that much trouble and I don't tend to give people shit.

How do you rate yourself as a rock star?
As hellraiser, I'd say that I was way below average, but as rock star, I'm probably quite interesting. It depends on whether you like me or not. If you don't, then you'll probably think, 'Stupid twat, I hope he dies'.

When was the last time you fell over?
That would have been getting on the plane going to Australia.

Would you ever have plastic surgery?

Do you read your old interviews?
No I don't. I wouldn't want to 'cause I know what I've said in them. I'd laugh. If there's something I can't remember saying, I'd probably go back and read it and wonder what all the fuss was about. I'm paid to be a bullshitter, so therefore I bullshit. That's what rock'n'rollers are supposed to do, aren't they? That's waht I was told when I was growing up with The Sex Pistols, anyway. I don't know where it got waylaid by politically correct bands f*****g pissing about, talking about f*****g rainforests and all that. But it's a changing world in which we live.

Have you grown up much since you started?
Oh yeah, I've had to. I think the songwriting shows it. I suppose I'll always be a bit young and foolish, but you can't go on being a rocker at 50, can you? You can't go on pretending to be Johnny Rotten at 40. Even though he did. But he's good at it. Jagger's a pretty good rock star...Nah, he's not, he's pathetic. I like him as a person, I've met him a few times, but wearing tights on stage at 50? A grown man shouldn't be doing that.

Where will you be at 50?
Me? I'm finished at 35, anyway. I'll be a songwriter, some kind of Burt Bacharach-type character. Sitting behind the piano crooning with some orchestra full of chicks or summat.

You turned 30 this year, how was that for you?
I've always been 30 I think, since I was about 18, so that it's not that much different. It takes me longer to get over me hangovers, and I'm getting a bit fatter. That's all I've noticed, really. Getting a bit puffy 'round the face. But it's a state of mind, innit, yer age.? I don't think about it that much, really. I wouldn't want to be 17 again, put it that way. I'm getting a bit tired of it now, so I'll be five years more tired of it in five years. All of the extracurricular activities take it out of you. I haven't got as much stamina asd I used to.

Extra curricular? Er, doing promotion?
Yeah, all that stuff, and staying up all night partying takes it out of you as well.

Is that necessary?
It keeps you sane, anyway.

Or insane?
It keeps me sane. I couldn't just go on the road and go to bed after the gig. F*** that. There's got to be more in it for you than that: just do your job and go home. You're just working for The Man then, aren't you? Working for the record company. You've got to make the record company work by f*****g hiring a few decent lawyers to get you a bastard aeroplane somehwre. In five years, Oasis are only gonna make two more records.

What's that last one gonna sound like?
Probably shit. I dunno. I just don't see meself doing it when I'm 37, 38. You have to look back at what you wanted when you started, and I've got everything I wanted. Then again, if it goes on for 10 years and I'm still enjoying it then, so be it. I'm, in a funny mood today.

What's your favourite Oasis song today?
Today? The Masterplan.

How are Oasis comparable to The Beatles now?
We're not. We're working class and we're from the northwest of England and it just about ends there.

You both turn a good tune...
Yeah, I'm a pretty good songwriter and they were pretty good songwriters. Then again, there were three of them and there's just one of me. Our version of "I Am The Walrus" is better than theirs.

What are you like when you're drunk?
Funny. I usually end up standing up against a wall and, as the night wears on, sliding further down the wall telling shit jokes.

Are you a lover or a fighter?
A lover.

If you had a birthday party, which three people would you invite, and which three would you bar?
I'd invite Paul Weller, 'cause he makes me laugh. (Long pause) Just me and Paul Weller and the wife. No, Johnny Depp, 'cause he's me mate. And one of the Spice Girls, to give her a good kicking, I suppose. I'd bar Damon Albarn, the head of Cathay Pacific and brett Anderson - no, actually I'd like to meet Brett Anderson. Another one of the Spice Girls, then.

What's your most annoying habit?
Always being right.

Can you urinate in front of another person?

Who do you admire most?
Me mam, 'cause she brought me up. Me younger brother, 'cause he's as daft as a brush and makes me laugh. Paul Weller, 'cause he's still got his integrity after all these years.

When was the last time you were sick?
I got a stomach bug in the middle of the last American tour. I was a bit dizzy and pukin' up. Had to sit in a chair onstage. I don't usually get sick 'cause I take too many tablets.

If a flying saucer landed and some aliens offered to take you away for five years, would you go?
I'd give up everything I f*****g ever made out of this band to go to another planet with some aliens. I'd give all I've got to go the moon.