Mike Oldfield Newcastle City Hall 22nd May 1980 and 11th September 1982

Mike Oldfield Newcastle City Hall 22nd May 1980 and 11th September 1982
miketix80“Tubular Bells” was a massively popular album in the mid 70s, and a big favourite of mine. It is an important and groundbreaking album which broke new ground for progressive/classical rock music, helped to establish Virgins records, and received further recognition when the opening was used in the 1973 film The Exorcist (I still have the nightmares about Regan :)), introducing the work to a broader audience. The nearest I got to seeing a live performance of Oldfield’s magnum opus was a concert at Newcastle City Hall which featured a film of Mike and friends performing “Tubular Bells”, accompanied by live performances by Gong and Hatfield and the North; a concert which I have already blogged on. Mike Oldfield was quite reclusive at the time and didn’t tour until the late 70s. mikeprog80 By 1980, when his “In Concert” tour called at Newcastle City, Mike was moving to a more pop-oriented style and was including covers and songs on his albums. He had also hit the singles chart with “Portsmouth”. The tour was in promotion of the “Platinum” album, which is the fifth album by Oldfield, and was released in 1979 on Virgin Records. His earlier albums were, of course, “Tubular Bells” (1973), “Hergest Ridge” (1974), “Ommadawn” (1975) and “Incantations” (1978). The tour featured the whole of the “Platinum” album and selections from his previous releases, including “Tubular Bells”, which is what we all wanted to hear.
miketix82Setlist: Platinum Parts 1 to 4; I Got Rhythm; Punkadiddle; Incantations Parts 1 to 4; Tubular Bells Parts 1 and 2; Guilty; Ommadawn Part 1; Blue Peter; Portsmouth; Polka; Radetzky Marsch; Blaydon Races.
Musicians: Mike Oldfield (guitar, keyboards, vocals), Peter Naphtali Lemer (synths and keyboards), Mike Frye (percussion), Tim Cross (keyboards), Pete “Bimbo” Acock (saxes), Nico Ramsden (guitar), Hansford Rowe (bass), Benoit Moerleb (vibrophone), Wendy Robert (vocals), Pierre Moerlen (drums and percussion).
A couple of years later Mike was back on tour again, this time to promote the “Five Miles Out” album (1982). In the interim he had also released “QE2” (1981).
mikeprog82Setlist: Tubular Bells Part 1; In High Places; Etude/Recuerdos De La Alhambra; Platinum Parts 1 and 2; Conflict; Ommadawn Part 1; Incantations Part 4; Hergest Ridge Part 2; Taurus II; Five Miles Out; Mount Teidi; Orabidoo.
Mike’s band was more compact this time: Mike Oldfield (guitar, keyboards, vocals), Tim Cross (keyboards), Tim Renwick (guitars and bass), Pierre Moerlen (drums and percussion), Maggie Reilly (vocals), Devra Robitaille (keyboards, guitar and vocals).
This was before the release of the great “Moonlight Shadow” which is a classic track. Both concerts were excellent, featuring perfect renditions of Oldfield’s intricate music, much credit for which must go to his backing musicians.

3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by dawn on January 24, 2014 at 11:48 pm

    Who does not have a copy of Tubular Bells unfortunately never saw it performed live without looking thought my vast record collection im sure i have another album he did called Incantations.


  2. Posted by Ian on October 17, 2015 at 10:08 pm

    I went to both of the Mike Oldfield shows at the City Hall too, Great musicians and great shows. I recall at one (or maybe both) of the shows there were animated films of Escher drawings showing men perpetually going up the same flights of stairs etc. Apart from Pink Floyd, projections were quite rare back then; I remember going down to the Bingley Hall cow shed to see Rush in 1979 when they brought over their “full North American projection show” which had never been to the UK up until then due to the limitations of the smaller UK venues.


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