"Is it true you're planning a rock musical called Ring Ring based on the life of Alexander Graham Bell?" When Alan Partridge met Oasis' Noel Gallagher (and future Mission Impossible star Simon Pegg)

Noel Gallagher meets Alan Partridge
(Image credit: YouTube)

"My next guest can be described as... [checks watch, gives clearly disinterested shrug]... a singer."

With these words, British broadcasting legend/writer/Crash Bang Wallop! What a Video presenter Alan Partridge welcomed Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher on to a streamlined, bijou edition of his acclaimed chat show Knowing Me, Knowing You on Live From The Lighthouse, a a charity fundraiser for the Terrence Higgins Trust, hosted by Stephen Fry, and broadcast on Channel 4 on World AIDS Day in 1998.

At the time, with his band's third album, Be Here Now, having been declared the UK's biggest selling album of 1997, with 1.47 million copies sold, Gallagher was arguably the country's biggest rock star, but Partridge was clearly not overawed in his company: when the guitarist milked the live audience's applause upon his entrance, the King of Chat reprimanded him, saying, "That's the kind of misbehaviour I'd expect from your brother." 

Ever the professional, Partridge shakes off this minor distraction and was soon interrogating Gallagher in a manner that the late Michael Parkinson could have only have dreamt of.

"Coward. Edmonds. Gordon. And now Gallagher. What is it about Noels, throughout the ages, that has captured the public imagination?" Partridge queries, following up the question with another, pondering what might link these iconic cultural figures, a common denominator across the ages.

"We're all called Noel," Gallagher answers. 

"It's as simple as that," says the host, calling time on the interview with some might say - ahem - indecent haste. But not before posing one final question.

"Is it true you're planning a rock musical called Ring Ring based on the life of Alexander Graham Bell starring [English singer/actor/entertainer] Darren Day?" he asks.

"No," Gallagher says.  

Interestingly though, Oasis' sixth studio album would feature a song called A Bell Will Ring, written by Gem Archer. The title of the album? Don't Believe The Truth.

Makes you think.

Watch the interview below, preceded by a chat with a man whose face will now be er, familiar to millions - ahem, again - thanks to his role in the Mission Impossible film series...

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.