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Noel Gallagher holds court in Croke Park
He met his beloved music press to announce his Marlay Park show.
Craig Fitzpatrick, 26 Jun 2012
He'd only just finished soundchecking in the biggest stadium in Ireland (nice standing solo in the pit for that) for tonight's performance alongside The Vaccines and headliners RHCP, but Noel Gallagher was already plotting a return visit to Dublin. And so it came to pass that The Chief for the biggest British band of the '90s ambled into a plush suite overlooking that historic pitch to shoot the breeze with a bunch of Irish journos.
In typically gregarious and sharp form, he can only manage to hide his innate affability behind faux-grumpiness for so long. "Right, what can I do for you lot?" he sighed before fielding questions on everything from sport and politics to music (natch) and family life.
First on the agenda though – once he'd announced that he'd be co-headlining a very special Marlay Park gig with Kasabian on August 23 – was the GAA. Nearly 30 years ago, a 16-year old Noel had played football in Croker when the Manchester-based Oisin's came over for an exhibition.
"I can remember I scored," the songwriter said. "I scored a point. I mean, we got hammered, y'know, but I scored! It's a beautiful place."
GAA's loss would be music's gain however...
"It was decided that I'd be better off in the music business. I'm not an athlete. Too much hard graft. I enjoyed it at the time, still at school. Quite quickly after school is started smoking and drinking. Drugs take over. Watching football is hard enough."
And hurling? " Fuck that. It's like gang warfare!"
Later, Noel was asked whether his brood had given any indication that they'd quite fancy being rock stars. "Who doesn't want to be a rock star?!"
He went on to ruminate on the gender issues that still exist in the business. "With the lads, if they want to pursue a career in music that's great. Girls... it's a bit tricky with girls, isn't it? Girls in the music business, they tend to be exploited more. You wouldn't worry about two lads being in a band but you'd always think of Amy Winehouse. Girls tend to be solo artists and not very happy, in my own experience. If that's what they want to do, that's what they want to do. But I've assured them that they'll never be as good as me!"
There was the obligatory Oasis reunion question answered...
"It'd be great for everybody else, it'd be mega. I guess you don't know what you're going feel like in 20 years time but now... I was in Oasis for nearly 20 years, I've been doing what I'm doing now for one year. I'd like to see what it's like to do it longer. I don't think anyone's pushing it either. I spoke to Gem recently enough and nobody ever brings it up."
... Hot Press nabbed the final word by bringing up The Stone Roses. Mani (bassist and diehard United fan) had said the legendary act would only reform when Man City won the league. Given Mike Pickering recently told us that he'd been berating himself, Noel and other illustrious City fans via text at the start of the year ("he does that anyway!" Noel laughed), has Noel been reminding him of late that the English champions now play in blue? Of course he had.
Gallagher plays Marlay Park on August 23 in the company of old muckers Kasabian, The Cribs and more to be announced shortly on hotpress.com.
Tickets priced €49.50 go on sale on Friday June 29.