The Day The Earth Went ‘Baggy’

This month is 25 years since both The Stone Roses and Happy Mondays hit the big time and appeared on Top of The Pops together, some would describe it as the day the 90s started.

There’s not a lot that I can say about that era that hasn’t been documented a thousand times over, especially following The Stone Roses reunion tour. At the time it felt exciting to be able to look at the charts and Top of The Pops and see music that you actually liked instead of cheesy pop, which is sadly where the charts seem to be again these days.
Ian Brown
Ian Brown and Shaun Ryder were fully fledged popstars and would just as likely be seen on the cover of children’s music mag Smash Hits as they would on the front of fashion magazines ID or The Face or the serious music weeklies of the day like NME, Sounds, Record Mirror or Melody Maker. This was a trend that continued throughout much of the 90’s with Nirvana, Suede, Oasis and Blur.

One thing that made the Madchester scene unique was the way it embraced dance music, although most of the bands were pretty straight forward indie bands that hadn’t developed much since the days of C86, however the clothes and attitude had changed.

Much of the 80s was about ‘us v them’, you either liked alternative music and culture or you were you typical lad who grew a mullet, wore a shirt &┬átrousers on a night out and often after a few lagers started a fight! Depressing days.

Suddenly that all seemed to end for a while and people actually seemed to get along. Maybe it was because there was a sudden emergence of clubs that no longer played Madonna all night and you’d hear music you liked, lets face it the mixture of cheap lager and cheesy pop all evening would make anyone want to start a fight.

My memory of the ‘baggy’ scene is that it didn’t last long, The Stone Roses disappeared after June 1990 and indie music went a little bit underground as the next wave of bands like Cud, Ned’s Atomic Dustbin and Thousand Yard Stare didn’t quite cut it with your average joe. Dance acts like 808 State and The Shamen on the other hand started having massive chart hits. The emergence of the shoegazing scene also changed things until Nirvana struck it big in late 1991.

Fans of The Stone Roses

Sadly, 25 years later we are left with something that couldn’t be further from those days, third rate baggy wannabes Kasabian sticking a massive banner up at Glasgow Arena thinking they’d get a huge cheer from the Scottish audience and promoting hatred. There’s sadly bad people everywhere so to generalise in such a way stands against everything the class of 89 were promoting. Of course, the band have since claimed it was a ‘production error‘ when they realised it backfired. Whatever happened to the attitude of “It ain’t where you’re from, it’s where you’re at” as quoted by Ian Brown at Ally Pally?

Kasabian - is this what its really come too?

Kasabian are to Baggy what Nickelback are to Grunge. Anyway, let’s go back to happier times, below are The Stone Roses and Happy Mondays on Top of The Pops – November 1989.