Backstage : Common People
The aura that Britpop and indie rock evokes is difficult to describe but instantly recognisable. How would you outline the atmosphere of Common People?
Britpop is instantly recognisable due to the fact many of the artists that were at the forefront of the scene started through indie labels and were able to achieve substantial mainstream success during the time.
Playing these tunes some 20 years later it’d be a diverse crowd, both of the old and the new, getting down to music that we’re all probably very familiar with but don’t often get to hear out and about.
What is it about the ‘70s and ‘80s that seem to capture people in such a powerful way?
A large part of it would essentially be based around every era going through its own socio-economic challenges which would’ve influenced the sound coming out and given it its own identity. An obvious reflection of this would be the emergence of mod rock, the transition to punk followed by the mod revival.
A lot of these bands were influenced by the generation that came before. As you go through the night and play these tunes alongside each other you can really see these influences come through.
How does a night like Common People come about?
I just like music regardless of genre, style, era. I think if you look deep enough there’s great music across all classes which has substance. Most the gigs I do revolve around hip hop, funk, soul, disco.
I was doing a night up in Sydney where I was playing indie rock and Britpop along with the ‘70s and ‘80s bands that came before. It was a really loose and fun night where everyone went bat shit crazy, listening to bands they grew up with but barely ever get to hear played out at venues.
In Sydney it seemed there were plenty of other people that who were down for the same thing and I thought it would be good to do something of a similar nature in Melbourne.
Do you have specific Britpop and Britrock favourites?
I don’t have kids but I’m guessing this question would be similar to asking someone who their favourite child is. At this point I’d have to say bandwise Primal Scream and the Stone Roses. With the Stone Roses I’ve consciously not been playing them on Saturdays when I’m hungover on repeat.
I’ve always been into drums and that’s what got me into funk. But the thing that appealed to me most about the Britpop and indie rock sound coming out of the UK was the melodic guitars, the work of guys like John Squire and Nick Mcabe was killer.
It’s early to say, but how do you perceive Common People will evolve over time?
At the moment we’re just focused on throwing a dope party where people can come down have a boogie, jump around and yell to Song 2 and a whole heap of classics. I’m keen on having particular nights dedicated to particular bands, years, eras, like doing a Stone Roses party where you not only play their discography but get into what projects the individual band members go into afterwards because they all had stellar careers long after the Roses.
Apart from that see how the night builds and what direction it takes over the next few months and build off that.
It’s equally important to see what punters think and feel by seeing how they react over time and take it from there. At the end of the day we just want it to be a loose party where people go bat shit crazy and slur along to Common People, while being able to also play more obscure music that emerged from that whole scene.