Gin in a plastic cup and a sticky floor.
My Saturday night.
My Saturday night was loud, hot, sticky, and fabulous. Drinks were served in plastic cups, to save me ripping up my feet over broken glass.
I should really preface this little tale with the context that my usual Saturday night consists of lounging on the sofa, PJs on, nibbling on a snack watching The Voice or some similar inanity. It’s good, it’s comfortable, though maybe I was ready for something a bit different?
So this weekend saw me out and about, in Birmingham, at the O2 Academy. If anyone can drag me away from the comfort of my sofa, it’s these guys…
The Wonder Stuff.
Now it’s time to let you know a little about teen-me. My best mate and I loved our music. Lived for it. Every Wednesday we’d faithfully pop and buy our NME, and we would always, always have a gig booked to look forward to, along with her sister. We saw some great bands back then but our absolute favourites were The Wonder Stuff. I’m actually not sure how many times we saw them, but it’s fair to say it was many times and they never ever disappointed. And we were there, July 1994 at Phoenix festival, along with around 30,000 others, when they played their final gig. That was a night to remember.
A fair bit has changed since those days. My best mate (yep, after 26 years, we’re still besties, love her to bits) might now be a respected and brilliant deputy head teacher, married with two kids, her sister might be a Cambridge grad History teacher, married and a mum to three, and I’m mum to two, studying and blogging away here, a chance to share my thoughts with the world. But when The Wonder Stuff came on stage on Saturday night, it’s like nothing had changed. Not one thing.
As I stood there watching Miles Hunt belting out hit after hit, I was 17 again. Every lyric was familiar, it was impossible not to sing out every song, for me to move and jump about, and for me to end the night with a sore throat and ringing ears.
Everyone around me loved it. I found myself musing as to whether we’d met before, a couple of decades earlier, had we sweat and moshed alongside each other as youths? Perhaps these people used to talk to me?
At the end of the night things were a little different to the way they used to be. We made our own way home rather than waiting for one of our dads to come and pick us up. We went back to our respective husbands, rather than all sleeping together in one room, discussing the set-list until the early hours. I was awoken at 4am by my daughter kissing my cheek, then again at 6.30am by a three year old lying on top of me, followed by a six year old’s soft play party at midday, rather than blearily rising mid-morning and spending the following hours dissecting the gig again and again and again.
But you know what? I think it was even better. They were fantastic. And these days, I get to have The Wonder Stuff and my family, and the best combo of the two? On the way to that party yesterday I played Hup in the car and my girl and I sang along to a favourite of mine, Golden Green. My daughter loved it, and getting my girl into music that I love so much is just priceless. I’m spotting a next generation Stuffy right there.
Gin in a plastic cup & a sticky floor. My Saturday night took me right back. Oh, in another world…
Oh and yes, this post is liberally sprinkled with The Wonder Stuff lyrics, as the truth is that in some cases, these words are not my own. Just for you, Jen 😉