Rock's Backpages Library Rock's Backpages
Rock's Backpages

Mike Oldfield: The Making of Tubular Bells

Johnny Black, Q, August 2001

One of the most influential pieces of music in rock history – much imitated, used in movies, TV commercials and documentaries, sampled by Janet Jackson, Ice-T, Paul Hardcastle – was also the foundation of the entire Virgin empire. And Richard Branson didn't much like it. This is the story of Tubular Bells.

Total word count of piece: 1915