[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mike_oldfield_oldfield_021_2754.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:One slightly...''distorted'' guitarist.]]

Mike Oldfield (1953-) is an eclectic musician who has, in the span of a career going into its fifth decade, explored various musical genres. Mostly famous for his 1973 album ''TubularBells'', His SignatureStyle is the use of overdubbing in studio recordings, which allows him to play most or all of the instruments on a given piece -- a practice that was much less widespread when he began using it. Although he has done several radio-friendly pop singles, his better-known works are long instrumentals, occasionally clocking in at one hour of continuous music.

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!!Selected discography:

* ''TubularBells'' (1973)
** ''The Orchestral Tubular Bells'' (1975)
* ''Hergest Ridge'' (1974)
** ''The Orchestral Hergest Ridge'' (1976) (will never be released for various reasons) [[note]]chief among them that, due to a long day of interviews and having to learn how to be conducted and tune a classical guitar in about an hour, his acoustic guitar solo, played by himself, has several self-admitted "very bad" mistakes[[/note]]
* ''Ommadawn'' (1975)
* ''Incantations'' (1978)
* ''Exposed'' (1979) (his only live album)
* ''Platinum'' (1979)
* ''[=QE2=]'' (1980)
* ''Five Miles Out'' (1982)
* ''Crises'' (1983)
* ''Discovery'' (1984)
* ''Film/TheKillingFields'' (1984)
* ''Islands'' (1987)
* ''Earth Moving'' (1989)
* ''Amarok'' (1990)
* ''Heaven's Open'' (1991)
* ''Tubular Bells II'' (1992), Master of Ceremonies: Creator/AlanRickman
* ''The Songs of Distant Earth'' (1994)
* ''Voyager'' (1996)
* ''Tubular Bells III'' (1998)
* ''Guitars'' (1999)
* ''The Millennium Bell'' (1999)
* ''Tr3s Lunas'' (2002)
* ''Tubular Bells 2003'' (2003)
* ''Light + Shade'' (2005)
* ''Music of the Spheres'' (2008)
* ''Tubular Beats'' (2013) (remix album)
* ''Man on the Rocks'' (2014)
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!!!!!'''(Tropes partaining to TubularBells or its sequels go on the TubularBells page)'''
!!!'''This musician contains examples of:'''
* BandOfRelatives: Both types.
** Type 1: Occasionally recorded with his sister Sally (vocals) and brother Terry (winds) on solo albums, and his son Luke (guitar) played with him at the Olympics (see below).
** Type 2: Mike and Sally were a folk duo, The Sallyangie, years before ''Tubular Bells'' and released one album as said duo.
* ColbertBump: Has been on the giving and recieving end of this:
** The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band probably wouldn't be half as well known if it wasn't for Vivian Stanshall doing the narration of TubularBells.
** This very page wasn't created until Mike was mentioned in a [[http://www.cracked.com/article_19647_the-6-most-elaborate-f-yous-from-musicians-to-industry.html Cracked article]]
** He's also gotten a recent bump in notoriety thanks to having one of his new songs featured in the E3 2014 trailer for ''[[VideoGame/MetalGearSolidVThePhantomPain Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain]]''.
* CreatorBacklash: Notably [[AvertedTrope averted]] for anything in his entire discography. Even TubularBells, which is basically the only thing he's known for [[note]]outside of Europe, at least[[/note]], is exempt. In his words: "It's a great song, I don't mind if people know me for it"
** Almost played straight with ''Heaven's Open''. He's called it "a turkey of an album" and laments that it was a nightmare to produce; However, he is appreciative of fans who enjoy it.
* GloryDays: Oldfield released his greatest hit within his debut album. While he has released several other respectable hits, none has really matched it in terms of critical success or musical influence.
* GratuitousForeignLanguage: Any of his worldier pieces will contain this.
* IAmTheBand: He played most of the instruments on many of his earlier albums.
* {{Instrumentals}}: Many of his albums and other side-long suites are either instrumental or contain brief vocals or chants (relative to the total length of the piece):
** His first four albums were all instrumental, save for a few minutes of ''Ommadawn'' in Part 1 and its epilogue, "On Horseback", ''Incantations'' in Parts 2 and 4, and though not sung, the instrument introductions in ''TubularBells''. Then there's the ''Platinum'' title track, ''[=QE2=]'', 90% of "Taurus 2", the ''TubularBells'' sequels...the list goes on.
* {{Leitmotif}}: In addition to the aforementioned re-recordings, the intro to ''TubularBells'' has been recycled in some of his later works, such as "Taurus 2", which itself has riffs recycled in other songs of ''Five Miles Out''.
* LiveAlbum: ''Exposed''
* LyricalDissonance: "Moonlight Shadow" and "Crime of Passion".
* NewSoundAlbum: There's a pretty good chance one Oldfield album is quite different than the one right before it. Even his first four albums, despite all being record-long pieces, had some remarkable diversity to them: ''Tubular Bells'' was mostly of rock instrumention (minus drums save for five minutes in part two), ''Hergest Ridge'' was much more pastoral and laid-back, ''Ommadawn'' added synthesizers and folk percussion to his arrangements, and ''Incantations'' used full string and brass ensembles, and was generally a slower-paced work, most influenced by minimalism of all his albums. Later albums featured full-on experiments in different styles, such as the electronic ''Light and Shade'' and the orchestral ''Music of the Spheres'', his first project focused entirely on the orchestra.
* NotChristianRock: Although he uses various religious themes in his music, when asked, he'll describe himself as "spiritual", rather than religious.
* OlympicGames: Composed and performed for the opening ceremonies of the 2012 London games...plus the biggest and loudest tubular bells in Europe.
* PopStarComposer: Wrote the soundtrack for ''Film/TheKillingFields''.
* [[RepurposedPopSong Repurposed Christmas Carol]]: "In Dulci Jubilo" was originally a folk carol before Mike turned it into an instrumental showcase. Repurposed a second time when he used it the aforementioned Olympics segment honoring England's National Health Service, featuring MaryPoppins and [[Literature/HarryPotter Voldemort]] of all characters.
* StepUpToTheMicrophone: His 1991 album ''Heaven's Open'' is the only album where Oldfield performs all the vocal parts on his own. He reportedly took singing lessons before recording it, and was pleasantly surprised by his own voice, as he used to think of himself as a bad singer.
** Before that, On Horseback from ''Ommadawn'' in 1975 had the song On Horseback, which was sung/spoken by him; later the title tracks of ''Five Miles Out'' and ''Crises''.
* TakeThat:
** ''Amarok'' is one huge one directed to Richard Branson, whose relationship to Mike became very icy by the late 80s...
*** Branson demanded Oldfield write a ''Tubular Bells'' sequel and Oldfield gave him about the farthest thing from it possible.
*** Tubular bells were in fact played on the album, but Oldfield called them "long, thin metallic hanging tubes".
*** The real ''Tubular Bells II'' wouldn't be written and released until directly after Oldfield's split from Virgin Records.
*** For sixty minutes of music, it was divided into 48 sections and was arranged so that it was almost impossible to market any parts of it on the radio.
*** "This record could be hazardous to the health of cloth-eared nincompoops. If you suffer from this condition, consult your Doctor immediately."
*** "FUCK OFF RB" in Morse Code.
*** The Margaret Thatcher impersonator talking about "fresh beginnings" and how "nothing much is happening at the moment" towards the end of the album.
** The oft-forgotten ''Heaven's Open'' (the only album Mike did all the lead vocals for) also has quite a few at Branson:
*** It's the only album to be credited to "Michael Oldfield"
*** The first song, "Make Make" has the lines "We're on the make make | Don't mind, it's fake fake | We're on the make make | We're making heartbreak" and "Don't you know we're not Virgin?"
*** The third song, "Mr. Shame", asks the titular character to "embrace love", most likely referring to Branson.
*** "Gimme Back" [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything has Mike asking for various body parts back]].
*** The last song, "Music From The Balcony" ends with someone laughing and saying "Now fuck off!" It's also about a one-third scale spiritual sequel to ''Amarok''--try finding an excerpt of this one to put on radio.
* UncommonTime: But of course, he's a progressive rock musician.
** Tubular Bells is one of the most famous examples of this in popular music, with the beginning riff switching between 7/8 and 8/8.
* VocalTagTeam: Pick any album or tour from the 80s. Sometimes Mike was on the team, and sometimes he wasn't.