Tubular Bells tribute bands are rather like London busses. You wait ages for one and then a whole fleet of them appear all at once! Which makes me ask the question: Is there any other band, artist or composer working in contemporary pop or jazz who has inspired so many interesting tribute projects with such a high quality of musicianship? Listening to the clips I discovered, I start to wonder.
Of course I had the album back in the day. Bought at the extremely groovy Virgin Records shop in Brighton A hippy progster heaven full of cushions, joss sticks and grateful dead bootlegs.
My quest for tubularity began late last night when I discovered that our very own Hubert Rawlinson had been involved in a project called Tubular Kazoos. YouTube rapidly pointed out to me that this was the tip of the Oldfield Iceberg. Hells Bells!
Asturias, Rome, Brooklyn, St Petersburg, Muswell Hill…
Tubular Tribute from Asturias in the north of Spain.
A very talented six piece band led by guitarist Ruben Alarez who play material from the whole of Mike Oldfiield’s career and have done a mini-tour in the Netherlands.
Tubular Brass – a large brass ensemble version.
Here’s what the arranger Sandy Smith says on the band’s website.
“I first encountered it as a teenager in the mid 70’s. The original vinyl album was central to our frequent Saturday night house parties, especially as the night drew late and a combination of fatigue and the effects of early experiments with alcohol took hold. It is almost impossible to convey to those not around at the time the seismic impact which the release of Tubular Bells had on young, enquiring musical minds.”
Brooklyn Organ Synth Orchestra
Over 20 different NYC female keyboard players playing different vintage keyboards:
Hammond M3 Organ Fender Rhodes Oberheim Xpander Dave Smith Instruments Poly Evolver Keyboard Steinway Upright Grand Piano RMI Keyboard Computer Jenco Celeste Baldwin Electric Harpsichord Bebot Magical Musical Thing Thingamagoop Hohner Clavinet D6 etc etc
As a wag comments in the notes, this is Tubular Belles.
I saw Mike Oldfield live once, Pre-Bells. At an Implosion gig at the Roundhouse playing with Lol Coxhill and David Bedfield in Kevin Ayers’s band. Magic!