“I don’t exactly remember the first record I ever bought, neither when or where, but I know the very first record that really mattered to me. I was about 16 years old and still on summer holiday and was watching MTV. Who the hell was that guy getting off the helicopter and singing “All my people right here, right now?”
“He was Liam Gallagher and Oasis were launching the new single from their third album, Be Here Now. It was the summer of 1997 and this is how I started with music. Today I definitely love Noel Gallagher and not Liam, but at that time I was really amazed by the way I found every Oasis song so interesting; the more I was listening to them, the more I felt the urge to get their previous records.
I’ve managed to collect every Oasis single or record since then—big stores, ebay, local sellers—I needed to have them all. I honestly had a crush on the Spice Girls one year before, but it was just because I was a teenager and my hormones were abuzz. (I bought their album too.) After growing my sideburns in 1997, I also bought OK Computer and Urban Hymns and started building a solid knowledge of Britpop.
Since then I rapidly went for British music, The Beatles above all, books, tapes, CD’s, pictures…if you want to be a good music preacher you need to go back to the roots and love the work like a bible. Across the years I started listening to American music with a bigger and bigger interest—mainly folk rock and southern rock by the likes of Ryan Adams and Black Crowes, and I can say that Pipers’ stuff is now a good result of it. We’re not that Britpop band that you’d guess we are if you listened to our first record made in 2010. (Not anymore, anyway.)
I’ve tried to buy CDs every time I found music I’ve been listening to and loving as I’m a collector and I don’t like to have just one record from a band. If I love a band, I’m inclined to collect all the records from their discography.
I’m used to buying records mainly on CD and I’m not a great supporter of Mp3s. I think that tapes and records are old-fashioned and have to admit that it’s not my cup of tea, although I like to read the lyrics in the booklet, touch the different paper they’re printed on, and even smell them—just my personal choice though. I reckon that nowadays the music business exists across the web. We’re slowly turning off our senses. I’m sad about this.
I have got a few records, some that I have bought, and some others that I’ve been given as present. They are mainly old vinyl from The Beatles, but I’ve got one that I really care for and it’s not from the Fab Four. Bought at the Mauerpark market in Berlin 3 or 4 years ago, it’s Closer by Travis—I’m really obsessed with them and they are one of the biggest influences in Pipers’ music. I put them at the top of my personal ranking (together with The Beatles, Snow Patrol, The Frames, Ryan Adams, Turin Brakes, and Band Of Horses).
It was so special for me to get the stuff signed by Fran Healy straight afterwards as he lives in Berlin. One of the best pictures in memory:
As I said at the start of this, I don’t remember the very first album I ever bought, but the last two records that I bought are Rhythm And Repose by Glen Hansard and Moseley Shoals, Deluxe Edition by Ocean Colour Scene. In October Pipers are supporting Simon and Oscar from OCS for a bunch of dates in UK and I wanted to get myself a present…”
—Stefano de Stefano
Pipers’ “Ask Me For A Cigarette” is officially released on 18th October 2012 via Alvea Records.