Maggie....WHO?






As Winter rears it's ugly head, I often begin listening to music that, for one reason or another, impacted my life during the coldest time of the year. One of those artists is Maggie Reilly. I know that most Americans are probably NOT familiar with the music of Maggie Reilly... at least by name. Let me explain.

In 1994, while working at Tom Tom Music (in Sandy, Utah), I purchased a beautiful four CD box set of the experimental, and incredibly talented artist, MIKE OLDFIELD. Most people are familiar with the music of Mike Oldfield, although probably not by name. Mike Oldfield burst onto the music scene in the early 70's with his progressive masterpiece, "TUBULAR BELLS". On the album, Mr. Oldfield played every instrument appearing on the album. If I recall correctly, it was in the ball park of 30 instruments. The album was  one progressive (literally) song, broken in to two parts, due to the restrictions of the vinyl medium of the day. The piece begins with the most recognized piece of Mike Oldfield's work, which was used as the theme to the classic Horror film, THE EXORCIST. To most Americans, that song is the "theme to The Exorcist", while to music buffs, it's known as "Tubular Bells".

Anyhow, with my listening of the box set, I discovered that Mike Oldfield did not limit himself to one style of music. Where TUBULAR BELLS was known as a "New Age" piece, he also delved into Pop music. In the 80's, Mike began using the talented MAGGIE REILLY, to sing vocals. While listening to the Mike Oldfield box set, I was smitten by the beautiful female voice that I heard on several songs. I had to hear more. Fortunately for me, I was the "import" buyer for the store. I contacted my import distributor, and he was able to get me the first solo album by Ms. Reilly. It was produced by Michael Cretu's "left hand man", Armand Volker. I should point out that Michael Cretu is the man behind ENIGMA, and Armand Volker was a frequent collaborator.

For several years, I collected the music of Maggie Reilly, and I was just reminded of her, the other day. I own a great board game, called "NAME THAT TUNE: 80's Edition". In the game, there is a DVD segment where you test your knowledge of music videos. You need to name the tune, the artist, or watch the video and answer a question about what you have seen. In the video segment of the game, there is a video for "MOONLIGHT SHADOW", by Mike Oldfield, featuring Maggie Reilly on vocals. I always get amused by that, as I have never met another person (in America) who knows Maggie Reilly by name, and it just seems odd that they would include that video in the game. I will include the video link for that song, so you can hear the beautiful voice of Maggie Reilly, while appreciating the diverse talents of Mike Oldfield.



Another interesting fact that I learned, after buying the Mike Oldfield box set, was that the song "FAMILY MAN", made popular in the States by Hall & Oates, was actually a Mike Oldfield composition, once again being sung by Ms. Reilly. The Hall & Oates version was unfortunately a mere clone of the original Mike Oldfield version, apart from the vocals. Again, here are links to both songs, so you can hear the similarities.






To summarize this rambling post, both Mike Oldfield and Maggie Reilly continue their respective careers. Mike Oldfield has experimented in different styles of music, including most recently, Electronica and Trance. An interesting choice of styles for a man known for his guitar prowess. Maggie Reilly continues to record, although none of her albums have had a proper stateside release.

If, for no other reason, I decided to post about Maggie Reilly (and Mike Oldfield, for that matter), because I feel that they are both incredibly talented people, and I hope that at least one more person can now be considered a fan of either artist. ALSO, I can consider this a musical "hint" for anyone that will be willing to compete against me, in "NAME THAT TUNE...".


And if you haven't seen enough video footage, I thought I would add the video taken from the house of Daryl Hall... or rather, from "Daryl's House"... that was mentioned by my friend, Kate, in the comment section. It is a tasty version... and the best part about it? No G.E. Smith mugging it up for the camera...

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Now playing: The Story - Amelia
via FoxyTunes

Comments

Kate said…
...And in case you *still* haven't had enough of "Family Man", there's this recent reworking from "Live From Daryl's House":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7Kz-xdqW-I

That Maggie Reilly -- she's a fine lass. Nice pipes! She sounds like *somebody*, but I can't put my finger on who...

This is why I love reading liner notes. You find out all this cool info about who's behind the scenes on these albums!