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Topic: Mike Featured in Gramophone Magazine< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
Inkanta Offline





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Posted: Nov. 03 2007, 19:21

Can rock learn anything from classical music?  Click here to read what Mike, along with Tim Hodgkinson, replies to Philip Clark of Gramophone magazine on the subject.

Thanks to Tati and mikeoldfield.it!

en español


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Marky Offline





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Posted: Nov. 04 2007, 07:52

Its a very interesting interview, and it seems it was lined up to promote Music of the Spheres on its original release date which was to be next week. Its nice to see some fresh questions being asked of Mike, and for an audience which might actually buy the record, if they can still remember it in three months.
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Matt Offline





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Posted: Nov. 04 2007, 11:36

Good interview. There seems to be an implication in there that Music of the Spheres can only be accomplished through the use of modern studios. The bits I've heard so far sound like well written compositions nicely played
(or beautifully sung) rather than something that absolutely *needed* a 100 track recorder to work!

Also not entirely sure that the "like football to croquet" works as an analogy  :laugh:


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The Big BellEnd Offline





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Posted: Nov. 04 2007, 13:33

I know what you mean, it seem's highly unlikely that there would have been any time for a game of football at the Alamo.

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Matt Offline





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Posted: Nov. 04 2007, 15:39

Quote (The Big BellEnd @ Nov. 04 2007, 17:33)
I know what you mean, it seem's highly unlikely that there would have been any time for a game of football at the Alamo.

Hey, I've got a copy of that song from when I was a kid!

Davy, Davy croquet (sic), king of the wild frontier

:p


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Ugo Offline





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Posted: Nov. 04 2007, 17:43

Quote (Matt @ Nov. 04 2007, 21:39)
Hey, I've got a copy of that song from when I was a kid!

What is that? "The Green Leaves of Summer" maybe? I love that song. :)

About the article,,, well, I like it when Mike talks "Technicianish" or "Engineerish", it gives me a very nice impression that he really knows what he's doing. :) Also, I agree about the 100-track thing being a bit exaggerated, but maybe it's a deliberated exaggeration to make the whole thing sort-of big... just like the one million overdubs thing - or whatever they were :D - on TB 1973.


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moonchildhippy Offline





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Posted: Nov. 04 2007, 17:58

Interesting article, thanks for sharing Tati :) .

I guess with the "football to croquet" comparison Mike was saying they're as different as chalk and cheese, It's a bit like comparing drag racing to knitting, unless of course someone invents "Extreme Knitting"  when it comes to leisure persuits.

I agree with Mike about how Tubular Bells was real fingers on real instruments. I don't know why Mike felt the need to remake Tubular Bells as TB 2003, but I think that maybe it was something he felt a need to do at the time.  I can see his point about early Rolling Stones recordings, having a raw energy too them, especially if on an old LP or 45. I feel that over remastering old recordings, can make then loose some of that raw edge, and can sometimes sound a little too "clinical" in their transfer onto CD.  Wasn't Tubular Bells flat music??? well not flat in tone, but flat as in created in a flat.  It can't be called garage music, as most flats don't come with a garage.

BTW I was very gratefully given a copy of Elgar's "Symphony No.2 and "In The South" recorded in 1927, but to listen to the CD I can't believethey're so old, sound as if they could've been recorded recently. I love old Laurel and Hardy films, and about 12 years ago I bought many of them on video, yep they've been cleaned up, but they still maintain that old magic. I think what I'm trying to say is technology is a wonderful thing, but it's possible to have too much of a good thing sometimes.

 

:)  :D


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bee Offline





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Posted: Nov. 04 2007, 18:16

Thanks to Tati & everyone for making the article available... refreshing to read, it was a bit more like a natural conversation rather than a question led interview.

This bit caught my eye,  'I now see Tubular Bells as being at the end of a line. It came out and was successful, but it didn't spawn lots of copies.' I think I agree with this, in a way, it was all his musical ideas leading up to that time formed into a totally original work. Although that could also be said of anything he composed after that date too, but it's still Tubular Bells  that stuns people, it's got something special in it that words cannot define. It also felt a bit sad to hear it was the end of a line.

And later on Tim Hodgkinson spoke about Classical Music and it's audience...'Rock music was eventually eaten up by commercialism, and I'm interested to see how equipped classical music is to deal with similar forces' and I notice from listening quite a lot to Classic FM just lately that the ads are geared to a certain audience. Where rock music appealed to younger people willing to go against their older generations' established ideals, it was quite easy for the marketing people to exploit them in so many ways selling all kinds of stuff. Now the classical audience may be a little less naiive and a lot more discerning; it's true they may have more money to spend but they'll not be quite so careless with it. They have experience and education and a bigger choice too. So what I'm saying is, it's a potentially big market  if they get it right. Whether that will effect the music long term is a bit more difficult to predict, I suppose it will, but if it respectfully makes great works of art more a part of many people's lives then I'm all for it. Where Mike fits into all this I do not know, but eventually when MOTS is released it would be f a n t a s t i c to hear a track or two in between the Bach and Haydn. I have learnt a lot by listening to Classic FM, new pieces, the names of some that were familiar to me and so on. But whether I get tempted and decide to buy 'a yamaha clavinova' that they're always going on about, is another matter!


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Alan D Offline





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Posted: Nov. 05 2007, 03:36

Quote (bee @ Nov. 04 2007, 23:16)
'I now see Tubular Bells as being at the end of a line.'

I wonder if almost everything truly great is the end of a line in that sense? The great work is invariably a one-off - a culmination of something that can't be repeated. (Obviously, it can be imitated, but not with the same essential fire of inspiration that made it great in the first place.)

After Wagner's 'Ring', for instance, there's simply nowhere left to go in that direction - or at least, not without significant original development that would make effectively a new creation in its own right.

(I'm not altogether convinced by my own statements - just trying them on for size.)
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Harmono Offline





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Posted: Nov. 05 2007, 15:37

I think the "100 track thing" is a good thing, just unconventional in orchestral music.
It's just great how Mike's guitar sounds so clearly on MoTS. I've listened to many guitar concertos and very often a single guitar is just swallowed by the massive sound of an orchestra. Thats something that could easily be fixed, but I guess it's just too unorthodox for the classical music people to even think about doing.
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Dirk Star Offline





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Posted: Nov. 05 2007, 20:08

I`m really going to have to stop reading Mike Oldfield articles as they just seem to wind me up.AlthoughI do think Mike and Tim both raise some good points in this piece, it reminds me very much of an interview Mike done alongside one of the Hartnoll brothers from Orbital a few years back. It`s almost as if it`s Mike`s alter ego talking here in places.It`s like he`s writing off his entire back catalogue to a degree.Distorted bells?And scratchy old singles?I didn`t hear much of those influences coming through during Tres Snoozes.Maybe I need one of those usb things from pc world,to help me re-evaluate here?Or maybe it`s just too much of Mike wanting to move on again rather than just answering the questions?

I think Mike`s point about the "ethnic drummers" on Ommadawn is in a roundabout way the answer to the question here really.There shouldn`t really be any need for a debate as to what rock music can learn from classical or vice-versa for that matter.One of the great things about Mike`s music is the amount of genres he manages to cross over.Almost seamlessly in fact during Ommadawn itself.I don`t know? I just think he`s doing himself down a little bit here,and I think he`s possiblly limiting himself by aiming his new album squarly at a "classical" market.I can see where he`s coming from with the "something I`ve never tried before" angle,but the cynic in me keeps telling me that there`s other factors at work here.

I think the bit that got to me the most though was the rock is dead creativly part.Yeah well maybe for Mike it is,or maybe he just needs to get out more? I went to see the Foo Fighters LIVE last night were believe you me everything was far from dead.In fact at one point during the evening I felt so alive I thought I was going to explode.Power and volume guys you can`t beat it."Ambient shmabient!" as Dave Grohl himself said during the course of the evening.They were ably supported by a certain Serj Tankien from System Of A Down,who`s repotoire was awash with numerous classical referances.Almost as humourus as Zappa in places,and equally as political.Although there was little mention of football and croquet I must admit.  

I agree with Harmono here about the whole 100 track thing by the way.One of the great things about Mike`s album is the way he has mixed it with his guitar playing.They just compliment each other perfectly in places.Now what would  Rodriguez have given for a mixing desk ? Or even just a Quantec room simulator?  :D
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Tati The Sentinel Offline





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Posted: Nov. 05 2007, 21:44

On Changeling,Mike did showed off he doesn't like HR a lot really.

And I love his sense of humor,ha ha  :p


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Fredde Offline





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Posted: Nov. 07 2007, 05:45

"The guys at Virgin were rubbing their hands with glee at the thought of the pound signs.
I made this pastoral piece based on a Welsh hilltop. It sold about seven copies."

Does anyone no anything about this? :D
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ProjectZ Offline





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Posted: Nov. 07 2007, 05:55

He means 'Hergest Ridge'  :p
of course it sold a bit more than 7 copies, but it was probably not such a big success as was expected/hoped by Branson & co.


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Velodynamic Offline





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Posted: Nov. 07 2007, 14:31

He didn't even seem to give it a second (or fifth) try, like with TB.  :D

Very nice article. :cool:


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It's like trying to connect football with croquet." -M.O.
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Matt Offline





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Posted: Nov. 07 2007, 16:00

re: the "100 track thing". All classical music as far as I am aware (and I admit to having limited experience of it) can be played successfully live.

Are people suggesting that will be impossible, even with the addition of some amplification, to play Music of the Spheres successfully live?

I say again. Does it *need* a 100 track mixing desk?


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Harmono Offline





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Posted: Nov. 07 2007, 16:38

Quote (Matt @ Nov. 07 2007, 23:00)
re: the "100 track thing". All classical music as far as I am aware (and I admit to having limited experience of it) can be played successfully live.

Are people suggesting that will be impossible, even with the addition of some amplification, to play Music of the Spheres successfully live?

I say again. Does it *need* a 100 track mixing desk?

I don't believe it would be impossible, but it would sound different. I don't mean it would necessarily be a bad thing though. If some amps were used, it would be better. There's also some (heavy) reverb on some tracks(very well done imho), leaving that out would change the overall sound(although good acoustics could "fix" that). That's just my opinion, just like the need for 100 tracks, it's a matter of taste. If there's a concert in the future, I hope it's done well. But whatever Mike decides, some people will be dissappointed.
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