Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Mike Oldfield's Single (Theme from Tubular Bells)

Today’s “Wordless Wednesday” release is “Mike Oldfield’s Single (Theme from Tubular Bells).” This was UK single release that differed from his American 45, which became the theme for The Exorcist. While both singles came from the progressive rock LP “Tubular Bells,” they were different movements from this album. “Tubular Bells” was the first album release from Virgin Records in both the US and the UK, and the respective singles were the first Virgin 45s issued in both countries.

Although originally released in 1974, I procured my copy of this import single in 1978 from a record store in Barboursville, West Virginia. Its pastoral theme that hearkens to the traditional music of a previous century struck a chord with me – I believe that chord was a Bm. I actually prefer this movement than the one that was popular in the US. It is believed that Oldfield played all of the instruments in this movement except the oboe, which featured Lindsay Cooper.

While the American single release had a flip that was an edit of a different movement from the same album, the UK single’s B-side did not come from the “Tubular Bells” – it was the traditional song “Froggy Went A-Courting.”

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