Liam Gallagher may not be pegged for sentimental or sensitive, but it didn’t matter tonight at the BRITs. Performing at the British equivalent to the Grammys, Gallagher opted to play a stripped down version of the Oasis classic “Live Forever” in tribute to the victims of the Manchester Bombing.
Gallagher’s performance wasn’t even scheduled to happen, as the singer stepped in at the last minute for Ariana Grande. Grande, whose performance in May of last year at Manchester Arena was attacked by a bombing, was scheduled for the tribute, but had to cancel at the last minute due to illness. Gallagher’s fill-in appearance won over the crowd, with most standing in appreciation with cell phones in the air and arms wrapped around each other. A joyful Ed Sheeran was even seen singing along loudly.
Gallagher had previously performed the song with Coldplay at the One Love Manchester benefit concert, but it’s hard to imagine anything topping the energy that is visible in the audience during this BRITs rendition. Gallagher and his old band Oasis hailed from Manchester, and “Live Forever” was one of the earliest songs to put him on the map, from the debut album, 1994’s Definitely Maybe. Now, more than 20 years later, the song holds a whole new significance.