And so it is nearly upon us, the anniversary of the year that every man and most women in their mid-thirties hail as THE year.
The year that, when we talk to our children about what it was like growing up, we immediately draw reference to 1994.
When teenagers talk about how amazing it is because they have seen One Direction, we chortle back in sarcastic indignation because WE saw 1994.
When kids talk about seeing Taylor Swift in a venue so big she was just a dot, we roll our eyes and snort with derision as we tell them about the time we saw Oasis in a roller skating rink.
Was there a better year to guide you through your pivotal teenage years? For me, god no. Those years moulded me into what I am today. My foundation of that music has been the basis for so many of my lifestyle choices, job choices, friends and acquaintances I have made and I have no doubt in my mind that had I been born a couple of years later, I would be a completely different person. To have lived through such a memorable time, I feel privileged. And to still get such pleasure from the memories, writing about them and passing those memories onto my kids is something I always feel fortunate for.
The impact of the time has never waived, the music still played as regularly in my house as it was 20 years ago and still sounding as fresh. Still evoking memories and inspiring me forward. As I type I have the entire Oasis back catalogue on a loop. 2 minutes in and the laptop was open. I was belting out Champagne Supernova at silly volumes but it’s not possible to hear that song and hum. It is timeless. So is there any better time to give the era a new lease of life and celebrate Britpop?
It’s fair to say the music today is lacklustre. No grit, no real element to anything that gets played on the radio and certainly nothing to inspire our kids to do anything other than paint their nails, play on their phones and fall into the mainstream. Where’s the inspiration to pick up an instrument, to sing, to wave a middle finger at what is the norm and do something worthwhile? The nineties had it, kids in garages forming bands, some of them very bad bands admittedly, I was in one of them. But we were inspired. We wanted to be Louise Wener and Noel Gallagher. If you weren’t playing an instrument, you were singing. If you weren’t singing you were watching your friends playing and singing. Never has a time been more prolific and never has there been such a need for those times again as now.
This week Gene and Menswear were thrown into the mix with rumours of a 2014 reconciliation. Never two more different bands, but both playing equal roles side by side through the 90’s. Gene were the band my Mum liked, still does, they oozed class and austerity where bands like Menswear just seemed to arse about, and if a good song came out of it, well, all for the better. More hairspray than aptitude but that was the beauty of Britpop. Daydreamer is as much of a Britpop anthem for me as Girls & Boys or Shakermaker. For every band singing and writing like their life depended on it, there was the ‘fun’ element. Never more appreciated than at live shows and although the back catalogue may only consist of one 35 minute album, they are firmly rooted in Britpops history.
For months now the rumour mill has gone into overdrive as speculation of an Oasis reunion is rife. Will they or wont they? The jury is out for me, although I am thinking possibly not. So who would be top of your reunion list?