BOOKING OI POLLOI
If you want to contact us about playing at your gig/festival/pagan wedding etc then the e-mail address to write to is:-
oipolloi_alba (at) hotmail.com
If you want us to come to play a one-off benefit festival abroad then we will need the following:-
- 3 return air tickets from Edinburgh in Scotland and one from Helsinki in Finland
- Vegan food and drink
- A place to sleep after the gig
Post gig sleeping places don’t have to be anything fancy (we don’t demand hotels for instance) but from bitter experience we now have a few stipulations about where we crash:-
The sleeping places should be free from the following:-
- bed bugs
- head lice
- body lice
- pubic lice
- pools of urine
- canine, feline or human excrement
The sleeping place should not be uncomfortably cold or hot eg if the temperature outside is sub-zero there should be no broken windows or gaping holes in the wall with gusts of snow whistling in.
If the sleeping place has no door it should ideally not be situated right beside the dancefloor of an all-night crust and D-beat disco.
Being dry, having a light and a functioning toilet are distinct plus points. Absence of cockroaches would be nice in an ideal world but it’s not a deal-breaker.
You get the idea – thanks in advance!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What does “Oi Polloi” mean? Is it Gaelic?
Our band name comes from the ancient Greek phrase “hoi polloi” which means “the many”, “the ordinary people” or “the mob”. Today the phrase “hoi polloi” is often used in a derogatory manner by privileged English-speaking rich people when talking about those less economically fortunate than themselves eg “I say Rupert, this is a jolly good hotel, very exclusive, they don’t let the hoi polloi in here haha.” “Yes, Tarquin, oh look at that homeless beggar outside in the cold hahaha – care for another glass of champers, what?”
Can you organize a gig for my band in Edinburgh?
The best people to ask about this are our friends at the House of Crust gig collective who set up great DIY punk gigs in Edinburgh. Contact them at:-
Can you help my band set up a UK tour?
The best person to ask about this is our friend Irena from Active Rebellion distro and tour booking. Contact her at:-
irena (at) activerebellion.com
Can my band play with Oi Polloi at your gig in (insert town name here)?
Unless it’s a gig that we are organizing ourselves in Edinburgh then you are best writing directly to the gig promoter themselves as it’s almost definitely up to them rather than us to choose which bands will play.
You are from Edinburgh, home of the Exploited, are they a nazi band?
No they are not!! None of us know Wattie personally but we do know plenty of other people who have played in the Exploited over the years and almost all of them have been really sound folk, several of whom have been involved in antifascist activity. While it’s clear that we may have a different approach from the Exploited to some things it’s utter nonsense to claim that they are a “nazi” band. There are enough REAL nazis around to worry about – fight them instead!
Where do you get those excellent vegan steel toe-capped para boots that some of you guys wear? They look really good for kicking spotty nazi ass!
You can get them (and a load of other good vegan footwear) from Vegetarian Shoes at:-
I’m getting a tattoo and want it to be in Gaelic. Can you translate “Punx and Skins Unite!”/”Fuck The System”/etc etc into Gaelic for me please?
As learners rather than native speakers we’re maybe not the best people to ask about this but you can find reliable Gaelic translations of individual words through this online translator from the Gaelic college Sabhal Mòr Ostaig:- http://www2.smo.uhi.ac.uk/gaidhlig/faclair/sbg/lorg.php
I want to interview you for my zine/website – can I send you some questions?
Certainly, we’re always happy to do interviews. Just send the questions to us at: oipolloi_alba (at) hotmail.com and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.
WHY WE DECIDED TO SING IN THE GAELIC LANGUAGE
There are estimated to be somewhere in the region of 6,000 different languages currently spoken on planet earth. In the face of rampant globalisation, however, 90% of them are expected to be extinct by the end of this century. Here in Scotland our indigenous Celtic language, Gaelic, is one of those threatened. For hundreds of years Gaelic speakers here have been subject to oppression and persecution from central government and its attempts to wipe out the language. Up until the 1970s children in the Scottish highlands could be beaten for speaking Gaelic in school and even today Gaelic speakers still lack the same basic linguistic human rights as those of English speakers. Today the number of those speaking the language is down to somewhere around 55,000 people or just over 1% of the population but a growing number of Gaelic language activists are now fighting back to demand their rights and preserve their ancient tongue. These songs here are part of that struggle to defend our indigenous language – not, we hasten to add, out of some kind of narrow-minded xenophobic patriotism (which as anarchists we totally oppose) – but out of a belief in the value of diversity and respect for different cultures. We believe that ALL minority languages and the linguistic human rights of their speakers should be respected. Whether it is Saami in Finland, Sorbisch in Germany or Gaelic in Scotland we believe it is a tragedy for ANY threatened minority language to disappear. The Gaelic songs on this album then are part of our contribution to the fight for multicultural societies where all indigenous languages like Manx, Welsh and Gaelic are able to thrive and where children have the opportunity, if they so choose, to be able to grow up with a bi-lingual education, having both the benefits of the indigenous language of the area where they reside as well as English or whatever as a lingua franca. Those interested in more information about the links between indigenous cultures and bio-diversity and lnguistic diversity should visit www.terralingua.org or read some of the great books on the subject out there like David Crystal’s excellent “Language Death”, Mark Abley’s “Spoken Here – Travels Among Threatened Languages” or the highly recommended “Linguistic Genocide in Education – Or Worldwide Diversity and Human Rights?” by Dr Tove Skutnabb-Kangas. For more information about the Gaelic language itself visit www.smo.uhi.ac.uk/gaidhlig/english.html or just come and ask us at our gigs.