Oasis’ contract asking for ‘sober’ staff and ‘quality lager’ sells for £4,000

Richard Vernalls
Tuesday 23 March 2021 13:39
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Liam and Noel Gallagher(PA Wire)

A gig contract from the early days of rock band Oasis requesting “sober-speaking” venue staff, “24 large cans of quality lager” and no fast food has sold at auction for £4,000.

In the pantheon of musical diva demands the listings seem modest, further specifying: four litres of still mineral water, 10 cans of assorted soft drinks, “sufficient glasses” as well as fruit juices, teas and coffee.

A further line from the pre-performance contract, from a 1994 gig at The Old Trout in Berkshire asking for “crisps, nuts, biscuits, fresh fruit (minimum of eight pieces)”, is scribbled out.

It goes on to read “a good quality, two-course hot meal (not fast food)” for up to eight people should be laid on, and, if not, £6 per head to the tour manager so they can buy the band’s provisions instead.

1994 Oasis venue contract

The legal document also sets out that the venue management should provide “at least two able-bodied, sober-speaking persons to assist the (band’s) road crew” in moving equipment and setting up the stage.

The Primary Talent International contract was drawn up on April 18 1994, a few weeks before the gig on May 7 that year.

The venue played host to other Britpop names of the era including Oasis’ chart rivals Blur, as well as performances from groups such as Everything But The Girl, Inspiral Carpets, Spiritualized and Pop Will Eat Itself.

The gig happened just three months before Oasis released their debut album Definitely Maybe, rocketing the group to chart-topping stardom.

The group eventually split in 2009.

The 1994 Oasis venue contract

The paperwork, valued at between £1,000-£1,500, went under the hammer at Hansons Auctioneers’ music memorabilia sale in Etwall near Derby Derbyshire, on Tuesday.

There was “massive interest” from music collectors, online, and two phone bidders, but in the end the contract went for almost triple its top-end valuation, said the auctioneers.

In the end it was snapped up by a private UK-based buyer, bidding over the internet.

Charles Hanson, Hansons’ owner, said: “There was phenomenal interest in this early Oasis contract, both from the media and the public, and we were not at all surprised to see it smash its estimate at auction.

“It demonstrates the enduring appeal of this legendary British band.”

Claire Howell, Hansons' music memorabilia specialist

Speaking ahead of the sale, Claire Howell, Hansons’ music memorabilia specialist, said: “Items like this are extremely rare and this lot comes with great provenance. It also includes a flyer advertising the gig.”

She added: “The seller is a lady who worked in the music industry and amassed an interesting collection over the years.

“She is now looking to sell some specialist pieces ahead of retirement.

“She confirmed the contract was purchased directly from a man who organised gigs at The Trout at the time.

“Memorabilia linked to Britpop bands from the 1990s is gaining in value and UK groups don’t come much bigger than Oasis.

“The Gallagher brothers, Liam and Noel, have had an enormous impact on the music scene and Oasis songs still resonate with fans today, even though the group split up more than 10 years ago.

Rumours are rife Oasis may reunite in 2021 and this 27-year-old find has certainly brought memories of the band’s early days flooding back.”

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