Noel Gallagher Makes "Substantial" Donation To Drug Research

September 18 [7:55 EDT] -- Oasis' prime creative voice, Noel Gallagher, seems to have made amends for claims he made last winter that drug use was as common as drinking tea, even in the House of Parliament.

Gallagher has donated what his people call "a substantial sum" to Britain's Institute for the Study of Drug Dependence, an information clearinghouse that was supported by the late Princess Diana.

The money came from a settlement Noel received from a British tabloid that had alleged he'd been chatting up a stripper at a New York City club last spring, at which time Gallagher was actually mixing the new Oasis album "Be Here Now."

The guitarist/songwriter seems to have dug himself out of the P.R. hole he found himself in after making the initial statement.

As we reported earlier this month, Gallagher and the rest of Oasis have received an informal invitation from British Prime Minister Tony Blair to perform

for the leaders of the free world next spring.

President Clinton and others are due in the grimy British industrial town of Birmingham next May for the Group of 8, or G8, economic summit. Blair, who recently invited Noel Gallagher to his post-election party, would like Oasis to headline a G8 concert. The band hasn't responded yet to Blair's invitation, but we'll keep you posted.

With all the headlines the band manages to make, Noel Gallagher says that he'd still rather be making music.

"It's like anything. If you're an actor, or a painter or a writer, you've always got to entertain yourself first, before you can even consider other people," Gallagher told MTV News about his creative process. "If it doesn't excite you, it's hardly gonna excite anybody else. [1MB QuickTime] You always have to take it to another level. You don't necessarily have to always take it up a level,

I mean the next album, could be stripped down. We basically could do it live in the studio, or we could go sideways or go left field, really experimental.. as long as you keep yourself interested in it, I think it's going to come across on the record."