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Tubular Bells, revisited.

Discussion in 'music' started by Martyn Miles, May 30, 2021.

  1. Martyn Miles

    Martyn Miles pfm Member

    Looking for a particular John Denver CD, I came across a copy of Tubulars Bells - 25th Anniversary Edition.
    Must admit I’d forgotten I owned a copy...

    What a revelation to hear it on modern kit.
    The last time it was played ( about 25 years ago ! ) I was using an old Arcam CD player.

    My up-to-date Marantz amp. & CD brought the music to life.
    I also didn’t realise the quality of the bass, even through my little Stirling V3s.

    I gave my son an LP of TB last Christmas, but hadn’t been around to hear it.
  2. Seeker_UK

    Seeker_UK I had amnesia once or twice...

    TB is one of the soundtracks to my life, if not *the* soundtrack.

    The 25th Anniversary edition is a very good version but has (annoyingly) cut the initial attack of the first guitar note at the start of Part 2 which makes it sound like it's going fast. My 'go to' version is a first press CD from Switzerland, but that's because I can't get my hand on a VDP-64 copy...
    Tarzan likes this.
  3. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    The original black/white label & gloss laminated sleeve vinyl here. V2001, the first Virgin label record. Oldfield has certainly picked away at it way, way too many times over the decades since, never improving anything IMO, but the original still stands up as a soundtrack to that part of the 1970s, and of course The Exorcist.
    Wolfmancatsup likes this.
  4. Vinny

    Vinny pfm Member

    To think - the Branson empire and gazillions are based on a punt while at college? university? sixth-form?

    Genius, luck or stupidity?
  5. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I have very little respect for what Branson later became, but at that point he was a fascinating character taking some real risks on some very left-field music; Faust, Gong, Tangerine Dream, Hatfield & The North, Ivor Cutler, Robert Wyatt, Ash Ra, Steve Hillage etc. Virgin was one of the more interesting labels of the ‘70s and that followed through to the punk and new wave era with Sex Pistols, PIL, Magazine, Japan etc. One thing they were remarkably good at was spotting growth and giving artists dropped from a short contract on another label a second chance to grow into something different (Faust, TD, Japan etc).
    tobermory, htm_1968 and guydarryl like this.
  6. Vinny

    Vinny pfm Member

    Born and remained a shrewd business-man I strongly suspect, never changing.;)
  7. ciderglider

    ciderglider pfm Member

    Which came first, the record label or the chain of record shops?
  8. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    To my mind Virgin Records was a proper business. I don’t begrudge anyone success, I just apply a little cynicism towards those suing the tax payer over NHS contracts etc (Virgin Care).
    Nytechy and Paul Mc like this.
  9. Vinny

    Vinny pfm Member

    the label, by quite some margin.

    Because he is a shrewd business-man who is a LONG way from the sharp end these days and has equally shrewd business-men to handle his empire.
    ciderglider likes this.
  10. Seeker_UK

    Seeker_UK I had amnesia once or twice...

    Branson was from a rich family and was already making money from the Manor and his record import and retail business. His 'luck' was that he had an oppo, Simon Draper, who suggested releasing it when no other major record label knew how to market it.
  11. Tarzan

    Tarzan pfm Member

    'Tubular bells' never gets old and is superbly recorded.... that said Mr Oldfield has kicked the b------s out of it.:D
  12. Finnegan

    Finnegan pfm Member

    Or Oldfield for that matter. From fey hippy to reactionary old Tory.
  13. Finnegan

    Finnegan pfm Member

    Precisely. Nothing particularly shrewd in getting a leg up from wealthy parents.
  14. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    File under ‘one hit wonder’ IMO. The 1st press of TB is all I’ve ever had the slightest interest in. It is just one of those ‘time/place’ albums that was always ‘there’ as I was a kid growing up in the ‘70s. My earliest mental image of a record shop is seeing the local shop with a window full of Tubular Bells covers. One of those records that when a copy eventually came my way a years or two later I realised I knew it and had heard it everywhere. It is what it is.
    tobermory and tiggers like this.
  15. Marchbanks

    Marchbanks Hat and Beard member

    I guess it depends how you define ‘chain’. The original Brum store was definitely open in 1971 (from my personal teenage punter knowledge) so there were at least two links in it then, the London shop having opened before that. The label started (TB being one of the first batch of releases) the following year.
    Rockmeister, ciderglider and Vinny like this.
  16. mjw

    mjw pfm Member

    I have a memory of accessing the VR record store on Oxford St via a shoe shop then up some stairs when I was on a course in that London. The occasion was to buy the Max Merritt and the Meteors album that i’d Heard a track from on John Peel and that album was a couple of years after Tubular Bells. My point being that the store seemed dragged together (or, perhaps, temporary) as late as 1975.
    Wolfmancatsup likes this.
  17. Vinny

    Vinny pfm Member

    Really - take a look around at the train wrecks parented by the rich and uber-rich.

    In my experience, having parents that would most likely bale them out encourages their kids to have the balls to go out on a limb, sometimes a rotten one.
    Kids that grow up where money is tight, very frequently are massively conservative, financially.

    I am VERY firmly in the latter group.
  18. Wolfmancatsup

    Wolfmancatsup Empire State Human

    I remember going there! Stairs at the back of the shoe shop.

  19. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    There was certainly a Virgin store in Liverpool as long as I can remember, first in Bold St, later in St John’s Precinct. I barely remember the former as I’d have been very young at the time, but I bought a fair bit from the latter in the new-wave era. I learned very early on that the local store to me (Rox, a Wirral chain) had very competitive prices, but did so by offering cut-outs and often quite dodgy quality EU pressings, so I tended to get on the train and go to Probe or Virgin in Liverpool to get the real deal. I’ve been a proper record collector geek forever!
  20. essgee

    essgee pfm Member

    Before any of the record stores, RB used to sell mail order only from a tatty couple of rooms near Paddington station, St Mary's wharf rings a bell. Remember travelling there after getting completely wrong albums by post in order to complain and get what was originally ordered. At least his PR brain quickly kicked in and all sorted within 10 minutes and a couple of bonus albums for my trouble. Scruffy pair of people, him and his then cohort, operating out of very small space but it got him going and good luck to him for that.

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