Showing posts with label Mike Oldfield. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mike Oldfield. Show all posts

Thursday, 14 May 2020

Tattoo - Mike Oldfield

I guess I should save this single for December because of its seasonal B-side, but heck, this is Mike Oldfield and this is Tubular Bells, so I couldn't really wait that long. 'Tattoo' was released in 1992 and charted in - you guessed it - December of that year, peaking at number 33 in the UK singles chart.

It was one of three single releases taken from his album 'Tubular Bells II', a different take on his classic 1970's album. Years later, he would also make 'Millennium Bells' and 'Tubular Bells III', and we're all still waiting for 'Tubular Bells IV', which is rumoured to be an interactive thing. We can't wait.

My collection: 7" single no. 6280
Found:, received May 12, 2020
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'Tattoo (edit)' / 'Silent night'

Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Tubular bells - Mike Oldfield

It is whispered that Mike Oldfield is working on a fourth version of 'Tubular bells'. Let's hope so, because with each version the tune is becoming more awesome. However, nothing comes close to those first few minutes of the original 'Tubular bells'.

Oldfield and his record company probably realise this, because they released this beautiful picture disc 7" in 2013. There's also a history-rewriting B-side: 'In dulci jubilo', originally released as a single in 1975 - two years after 'Tubular bells'. By the way, the A-side of this single is not the original single version. Instead it contains a new edit of the opening minutes of the album version of 'Tubular Bells (Part One)'.

My collection: 7" single no. 6119
Found:, received June 11, 2019
Cost: 5 euro
Tracks: 'Tubular bells' / 'In dulci jubilo'

Friday, 15 April 2011

Shine - Mike Oldfield with Jon Anderson

'Shine' was released in 1986 as a single by Mike Oldfield, featuring Jon Anderson on vocals. It barely scraped the UK singles chart, reaching number 100, but peaked at number 31 in the German singles chart.

The music video for 'Shine' features use of computer graphics, such as a computer generated game of chess. Oldfield plays a Gibson SG guitar in the video.

My collection: 7" single no. 5079
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 9, 2011
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'Shine' / 'The path'

Friday, 25 March 2011

Tubular bells - Mike Oldfield

'Tubular bells' is Mike Oldfield's signature theme and he has released several versions around the theme of the thunderpipes, as well as several singles. The original album was released in 1973 and at the time it came with a single in the UK and a different single in the US.

The American single was released when Mike Oldfield's music was used in the motion picture for 'The Exorcist', and this single features an extract from the album that differs from the UK single. I never knew this, of course, and so when I found out, I had to have this single. It's a bit of a shame it's not in better shape.

My collection: 7" single no. 5044
Found:, received March 23, 2011
Cost: 4 euro
Tracks: 'Tubular bells (Now the original theme from 'The Exorcist')' / 'Tubular bells'

Friday, 16 April 2010

The time has come - Mike Oldfield featuring Anita Hegerland

I bought this single with an information sheet from the German record company which released this single on November 9, 1987. According to this, Mike Oldfield employed the Norwegian ex-child star Anita Hegerland on lead vocals for 'The time has come'. 'Voll geschmeidiger Kraft interpretiert sie das spannungsreiche, melodische 'The time has come', fur dessen Sphärensound auch Michael Cretu as co-produzent verantwortlich zeichnet.'

Or, as Google Translate tells us: 'Full supple strength she interprets the tension-filled, melodic 'The time has come' records, for the spheres sound even as co-producer Michael Cretu responsible.' You've got to love automatic translators.

My collection: 7" single no. 4806
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 10, 2010
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'The time has come' / 'North point'

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Blue Peter - Mike Oldfield

Mike Oldfield recorded a rendition of the theme tune of the BBC Television programme 'Blue Peter' in 1979. It was used by the show between 1979 and 1989. A single was also released, the royalties of which went to the Cambodia appeal launched by the show. The single peaked at number 19 in the UK singles chart.

Traditionally, the debut of a new version of the famous theme tune 'Barnacle Bill' is accompanied with an introduction by the presenters at the time explaining the reasons behind the new rendition. Mike Oldfield's version had its genesis in his appearance on the programme in 1979 to demonstrate how modern pop music was created using multi-track recording techniques. Oldfield also recorded a new version of the programme's closing music, which runs for just 20 seconds and has never been commercially released.

My collection: 7" single no. 4804
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 10, 2010
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'Blue Peter' / 'Woodhenge'

Saturday, 20 March 2010

The William Tell Overture - Mike Oldfield

The 'William Tell Overture' is the instrumental introduction to the opera 'William Tell' by Gioachino Rossini. There has been repeated use (and sometimes parody) of this overture in popular media and it is quoted by Dmitri Shostakovich in his Symphony No. 15. William Tell was composed in 1829 and was the last of Rossini's 39 operas.

Mike Oldfield recorded a guitar-based version of the William Tell Overture in 1976. When released as a single, it failed to chart in all territories. It remains one of his lesser known singles.

My collection: 7" single no. 4733
Found: Kringloop, Den Haag, March 20, 2010
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'William Tell Overture' / 'First excursion'

Friday, 25 December 2009

In dulci jubilo - Mike Oldfield

'In dulci jubilo' ('In sweetest rejoicing') is a traditional Christmas Carol. The original lyrics, a macaronic alternation of Medieval German and Latin, is thought to have been written by the German mystic Heinrich Seuse circa 1328.

Mike Oldfield released an instrumental arrangement of this in December 1975. It reached number 4 in the UK singles chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 2797
Found: December 14, 1996
Cost: 2 guilders
Tracks: 'In dulci jubilo' / 'On horseback'

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Guilty - Mike Oldfield

'Guilty' was Mike Oldfield's attempt to capitalise on the disco/dance music trend of the late Seventies. It sounded a lot more danceable than his previous singles. When released in April 1979, the single reached number 22 in the UK singles chart.

I've had the 12" single of 'Guilty' for some time now, and I decided I wanted to have the 7" single as well. After all, you don't really own a single unless you've got the 7" single, do you?

My collection: 7" single no. 4316
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 21, 2009
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Guilty' / 'Excerpt from Incantations'

Saturday, 28 November 2009

Tricks of the light - Mike Oldfield

'Tricks of the light' was the second single taken from Mike Oldfield's 1984 album 'Discovery'. Vocals were performed by Barry Palmer and Maggie Reilly, who also appeared on the two previous singles: 'Crime of passion' and 'To France' respectively.

The single did not perform well in the charts: it only reached number 91 in the UK singles chart and number 46 in the German singles chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 4250
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 21, 2009
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'Tricks of the light' / 'Afghan'

Friday, 27 November 2009

Innocent - Mike Oldfield

Mike Oldfield and Anita Hegerland, who became his partner in the mid-Eighties, said during an interview that 'Innocent' was inspired by their daughter Great, who also appeared in the music video for the song. Anita Hegerland provides vocals on 'Innocent', while Mike Oldfield composed and performed the music.

The single was taken from Mike Oldfield's 1989 album 'Earth moving'. The single did not chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 4247
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 21, 2009
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'Innocent' / 'Earth moving (Disco version)'

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Five miles out - Mike Oldfield

Released in February 1982, 'Five miles out' was a single from the Mike Oldfield album of the same name. The song makes numerous references to flying. It has a complex structure despite its short length. Maggie Reilly makes her first appearance on a Mike Oldfield song, but her voice is almost drowned in Mike Oldfield's voice (which is processed through a vocoder).

The single was a modest success, reaching number 43 in the UK singles chart and number 42 in the German singles chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 4241
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 21, 2009
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'Five miles out' / 'Live punkadiddle'

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Take Four EP - Mike Oldfield

The EP 'Take Four' was released in 1978. It contained one new track: 'Wrekorder Wrondo', plus three previous singles. 'Sailors hornpipe' was the finale on Mike Oldfield's most famous album, 'Tubular bells', while 'Portsmouth' and 'In dulci jubilo' were top 5 hits in the UK in 1976 and 1975 respectively.

Although this collection of tracks spans five years, it's surprising to hear the consistency in the sound of this EP. It's not that the tracks sound the same, but the folky instrumentation is there throughout the entire EP.

My collection: 7" single no. 4238
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 21, 2009
Cost: 0,5 euro
Tracks: 'Portsmouth', 'In dulci jubilo' / 'Wrekorder wrondo', 'Sailors hornpipe'

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Sentinel (Single restructure) - Mike Oldfield

With 'Sentinel', Mike Oldfield introduced his album 'Tubular bells II' to the world. The single was a remixed version of a track on the album, produced by Trevor Horn, Mike Oldfield and Tom Newman. It was the most successful single from the album, peaking at number 10 in the UK singles chart.

A remix cd-single appeared at the same time as this vinyl single, featuring three spacey versions of 'Sentinel' by the Orb. I didn't know this cd-single existed until very recently - so I bought it on eBay. That's how it goes these days - for this 7" single I had to fly to London. (Well, not only for this single, but you know what I mean.)

My collection: 7" single no. 1775
Found: Virgin Megastore, London, October 21, 1992
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'Sentinel (Single restructure)' / 'Early stages'

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Theme from 'Tubular bells' - Mike Oldfield

Recently a luxury box set of Mike Oldfield's 'Tubular bells' was released. The so-called 'Ultimate edition' features a new stereo mix of the original album, demos, a surround sound mix, a book and a vinyl LP. When I was listening to all this, I also heard 'Mike Oldfield's single', a single released in 1974 to promote the album. It was a beautiful outtake from part 2 of 'Tubular bells'. (Part 1 is universally acclaimed for its 'Exorcist' theme, but part 2 is actually lesser known by most people).

I decided to try and get my hands on a copy - which is a lot harder than it sounds. I found a copy but unfortunately it does not have a picture sleeve. Well, anyway, it contains the music and that's the most important thing. The single reached number 31 in the UK singles chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 4008
Found:, received August 22, 2009
Cost: 4 pounds
Tracks: 'Theme from 'Tubular bells'' / 'Froggy went a-courting'

Friday, 21 August 2009

The bell / Sentinel-Restructure - Mike Oldfield

Mike Oldfield's magnum opus 'Tubular bells' was first released in 1973. In 1992, he recorded 'Tubular bells II', a reworking of the original 'Tubular bells' produced by Trevor Horn. From this release, several singles were taken. 'The bell' was the third single, released in early 1993.

This 12" single was released in the USA and featured four remixes of 'Sentinel', the first single from 'Tubular bells II'. One of these, the 'Tubular beats' remix, was never released commercially in the UK.

My collection: 12" single no. 512
Found: Esprit Mail Order, 1999
Cost: 5 pounds
Tracks: 'Sentinel (Trance mix)', 'Sentinel (Tubular beats)', 'The bell (edit)' / 'Sentinel (Satoshi Tomii interpretation)', 'Sentinel (Global Lust mix)'

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Shadow on the wall - Mike Oldfield

'Shadow in the wall' by Mike Oldfield was taken from his 1983 album 'Crises'. Vocals on this track were performed by Roger Chapman, formerly from the band Streetwalkers. The single had an aggressive sound, very different from the biggest hit from the same album, 'Moonlight shadow'.

The single was a number 1 hit in Austria, reached number 10 in the Netherlands and stalled at number 95 in the UK singles chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 218
Found: Studio Echo, Den Haag, 1983
Cost: 5,5 guilders
Tracks: 'Shadow on the wall' / 'Taurus 3'

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Heaven's open - Michael Oldfield

In 1991, Mike Oldfield suddenly called himself Michael Oldfield and released his final album for Virgin Records, 'Heaven's open'. At a time of friction with his record company, Oldfield included some veiled attacks on Richard Branson on the album.

The single 'Heaven's open' featured lead vocals from Oldfield himself for the first time. The single did not chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 3970
Found: Record Exchange, London, August 5, 2009
Cost: 1 pound
Tracks: 'Heaven's open' / 'Excerpt I from Amarok'

Monday, 3 August 2009

Guilty (live) - Mike Oldfield

It's a wellknown fact that Mike Oldfield reached his artistic peak right at the beginning of his career when he composed 'Tubular bells' in 1971, the debut album released two years later would be the career-defining work that is still celebrated nowadays - most recently with a luxury 'ultimate edition' comprising a cd with demos, a surround sound mix and a hardback book. Oldfield has milked it a bit too, releasing a 'Tubular Bells 2' and 'Tubular Bells 3', a 'Millennium bell' and a seemingly endless array of cd and dvd releases.

This single is a lesser known Tubular Bells rarity. This live version of 'Guilty' is taken from Oldfield's 1979 live album 'Exposed' and contains a short Tubular Bells theme within the song. What's more, the B-side is an abridged version of the live performance of Tubular Bells which is found on 'Exposed'. I was really happy to find this single, because at the time I was making my own cd compilation of Tubular Bells rare tracks, the so-called 'Tubular best'. Now why didn't any record company come up with that idea?

My collection: 7" single no. 3034
Found: Record fair, Amsterdam, September 26, 1998
Cost: 5 guilders
Tracks: 'Guilty (live)' / 'Extract from Tubular bells (live)'

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Moonlight shadow - Mike Oldfield

An early version of 'Moonlight shadow' was entitled 'Midnight passion' with vocals performed by British singer Hazel O'Connor. When Oldfield re-recorded the song with Maggie Reilly, a girlfriend of one of the roadies when he was on tour, Virgin Records were immediately happy with the song and wanted more pieces similar to it.

There was a long running urban myth (largely fuelled by the tabloid press) that the lyrics are a reference to the murder of John Lennon. Oldfield responded in a 1995 interview: 'It was originally inspired by a film I loved - Houdini, starring Tony Curtis, which was about attempts to contact Houdini after he'd died, through spiritualism'.

The single was one of Oldfield's biggest hits, reaching number 4 in the UK singles chart and number 2 in the Netherlands. Over the past few years, the song has been wrongly attributed to Kim Wilde on various filesharing networks.

My collection: 7" single no. 1894
Found: Record fair, Amsterdam, May 2, 1993
Cost: 2 guilders
Tracks: 'Moonlight shadow' / 'Rite of man'

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