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Music

When the pizza delivery man joined Oasis for a party

Oasis were known for their excess, as was evident from the sprawling Be Here Now, which is a turbo-charged rock album, bolstered by gallons of cocaine and enthusiasm. Indeed, drugs were becoming a fixture of the band’s trajectory and life, and they proudly flaunted their use of cocaine by inviting others to partake in the party. On one memorable occasion, they even invited a pizza delivery man to partake with the band. Guitarist and musical director Noel Gallagher recounted the occasion in an interview with Shortlist magazine.

“One night – mountains of drugs everywhere – and a bloke came to deliver pizzas,” Gallagher recalled. “We were like, ‘Have a drink!’ He had the fucking greatest night of his life.” Gallagher didn’t elaborate on whether or night the pizza guy took the drugs a la Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street, but we can only draw our own conclusions as to what went on.

Certainly, the pizza guy enjoyed the occasion sufficiently to partake in the party with a band who were trying to party like it was 1999 (although by then, Noel Gallagher was determined to clean up his act.) The band were enjoying the fruits of their labour, although this may have explained their post-1990s output, much of it awful.

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Standing On The Shoulder of Giants was an interesting excursion into introspection, but by the time they recorded Heathen Chemistry, the band had abandoned creativity for the hackneyed approach to rock that had serviced a convoy of uninspiring rock outfits who were barely good enough to fill out a pub, let alone a stadium. They were resting on their laurels, barely making anything worthy of the public’s attention, let alone their interest.

By the time they recorded Don’t Believe The Truth, it was clear that Noel Gallagher was better off releasing his own work, rather than work with a band who were beyond repair. Bassist Andy Bell was also being wasted as a creative individual, so he was wise to return to shoegaze band Ride in 2014. Clearly, the band’s extracurricular activities had left them only a shadow of their former selves, but it obviously left them with a collection of good memories that each of them could remember fondly in their later years.

Noel Gallagher’s solo work has seen the songwriter delving from pastoral ballads (‘If I Had A Gun’) to the shimmering opulence of ‘AKA….What A Life’, showing the man’s demonstration for change and genre diversification. It’s unlikely he could have pushed the band into such obscure territories, as long as Liam Gallagher fronted them, but the singer-songwriter was always capable of writing something more substantial than a punchy, pounding riff with a thinly veiled reference to sex.

Whether or not Noel will ever write a song about the pizza man who came over to party is up to him, but he’s happy to put it on the record and admit it to the public. The pizza man joining Oasis shows that they were at least happy to engage with the public at large, and were happy to allow the working men to join in with an archetypally working-class band.

It’s hard to imagine King Crimson welcoming a delivery guy into their centre of trust, but no matter what, Oasis stayed true to their roots. The music may have lacked focus, but they stayed focused on their heritage: A working-class Manchester band, bolstered by ties to Ireland. And in their own way, they created a memory for the delivery man that goes beyond the musical, and into something that was deeply personal.

Stream Standing On The Shoulder of Giants below.