Jul 27, 2012
The eyes of over a billion people around the world were on Mike Oldfield as he performed an epic 20 minute live set in front of 80,000 spectators at the Opening Ceremony of London 2012 earlier this evening.
Oldfield reaffirmed his position as one of the most iconic and influential artists of all time after being called upon by Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle to be part of one of the most culturally significant events in British history.
A true British icon, his appearance was one of the big surprises at the Opening Ceremony. During the NHS section of the show he performed under the Olympic Bell, wowing the global audience with a spectacular swing version of pioneering hit ‘Tubular Bells’ as well as the timeless original, before launching into a rousing take on ’In Dulci Jubilo’.
In front of him an amazing 100-foot Voldemort appeared from one of the hospital beds, as proceedings moved on to the British villains section also featuring Captain Hook and The Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.
His Olympic appearance proves Oldfield is one of those rare breeds of composer whose music continues to be re-evaluated and re-appreciated to this very day. After delivering a performance which captivated an audience spanning many generations, ‘Two Sides’, a career-retrospective available to download now and in shops on Monday, will be warmly welcomed by fans old and new.
The music of Mike Oldfield is some of the most spiritual, ethereal, reflective and sensual in rock – and above all, incomparable. Since the release of his seminal album ’Tubular Bells’ - which kick-started the Virgin Records label and Richard Branson’s fledgling business empire in 1973, selling some 17m copies - the award-winning producer/musician has continued to break new ground with each fresh body of work. Other landmarks in Oldfield’s career include eight Top 10 UK Albums, including two further Number 1’s,‘Hergest Ridge’ and ’Tubular Bells II’, plus a string of classic singles including ‘Moonlight Shadow’ and‘Family Man’.
The self-taught multi-instrumentalist, producer and composer has worked throughout his career across a staggering variety of music styles – from folk and progressive rock to jazz, electronic, ambient, new age, world, pop and even disco. So it is fitting that a broad palette of his work is reflected here, with disc one he takes us on a musical journey through his more esoteric, experimental side and disc two contains his best loved tracks and hit singles.
Also available to buy on Monday 30th August is Mike Oldfield: Classic Album Selection (Six Albums 1973-1980). Presented as mini-LPs housed in an attractive slipcase, Classic Album Selections (Six Albums 1973-1980) is a 6 CD limited edition album mini box set that provides the perfect period – overview of Mike Oldfield’s amazing career. It includes the legendary albums ‘Tubular Bells’, ‘Hergest Ridge’,‘Ommadawn’, ’Incantations’, ‘Platinum’ and ‘QE2′.
‘Two Sides’ is available now and is nothing short of a ‘must buy’ for any music aficionado.