Oasis’ Noel Gallagher recently spoke about a gig he wasn’t allowed to play. The musician couldn’t attend the show because the country banned him as ‘an enemy of the people.’
In 1996, Oasis was to perform Tibetan Freedom Concert in New York to support the independence of the Tibetan people from the People’s Republic of China. However, at the time, only Noel Gallagher looked positively to the idea and performed. The rest of the bandmates weren’t there.
According to the Oasis singer, the concert wasn’t fun, and he was waiting for his set to be over. He regretted performing after, but he also found it was an adverse decision for his future performance since China banned him from coming to the country.
When Oasis was going to play in China, the government and the band worked out a proper setlist to let them into the country and be allowed to play. While China welcomed the rest of the band members, Noel wasn’t allowed. Furthermore, the government announced the musician as ‘the enemy of the people.’
Here is the fascinating China story told by Noel:
“I’m an enemy of the people. I only found out I was banned when Oasis got invited to go to China 20 years ago. We’d agreed to go, and all the paperwork came, and you had to send through a list of your songs, and the Chinese government sent you back a list of songs that weren’t appropriate, and we’d agreed to do all that.
About a month before we were about to leave I got a letter saying you lot can come but you can’t because of this thing you did for the Tibetan people. I’d forgotten I’d even done it. The reason that they didn’t want you there was in case you started spouting off some pro-Tibetan sh*t.
I was like, ‘Mate. I’m not even interested in Tibet; I’m not arsed. Just let me go.’ They were like ‘No.’ I’ve got a letter from the Minister of The Interior saying, ‘You are an enemy of the people,’ or something like that. The rest were invited with open arms.”
He continued about the Tibetan concert by saying:
“Oasis were on tour at the time, and it was a day off, and Oasis got asked to do it, and no one else would do it, so it was like I’ll do it. All my equipment was in Ohio, and I wasn’t into playing acoustics then. We never used to do Wonderwall with an acoustic. We used to do it electric.
They said, ‘Can you just do it?’ So I did it. I walked out on stage in front of 50,000 people. As I walked out, I thought, ‘Why have I agreed to do this? I’m not even the f*cking singer. I’ve got a Marshall stack, and I’m going to do Wonderwall and Cast No Shadow.’ I only did about three or four songs, but it felt like it was about four hours long. I was on in between Radiohead and U2, full bands.”
In 1991, Oasis began its musical journey. However, its demise came in 2009 when the fights between the brothers, Noel and Liam, got to extremes. They sold over 100 million records worldwide and are considered one of the best rock and roll acts. Still, nothing of this sort matters when getting permission to perform in a country such as China.