26 Facts About Mike Oldfield

1. In 2004 Mike Oldfield launched a virtual reality project called Maestro which contains music from the re-recorded Tubular Bells album.

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2. In 2003 Mike Oldfield released Tubular Bells 2003, a re-recording of the original Tubular Bells with updated digital technology and several "corrections" to what he saw as flaws in the album's original production.

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3. Mike Oldfield recorded "Opus One" during his one allotted week at the Manor in November 1972.

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4. Late in 1971 Mike Oldfield joined the band of Arthur Louis who were recording demos in the Manor Studio.

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5. Mike Oldfield recorded it when he was 19 and played most of the instruments.

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6. Mike Oldfield has had more than 30 charting albums and 25 charting singles on the British charts and many more around the world.

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7. Mike Oldfield has lived outside the UK in the past, including in Los Angeles and Ibiza in the 1990s and, for tax reasons, Switzerland in the mid-1980s.

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8. In 2007, Mike Oldfield criticised Britain for being too controlling and protective, specifically concentrating on the smoking ban which England and Wales had introduced that year.

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9. Mike Oldfield is interested in cars and has owned a Ferrari and a Bentley which was a gift from Richard Branson as an incentive for him to give his first live performance of Tubular Bells.

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10. Mike Oldfield used a modified Roland GP8 effects processor in conjunction with his PRS Artist to get many of his heavily overdriven guitar sounds from the Earth Moving album onwards.

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11. Mike Oldfield has contributed experimental vocal effects such as fake choirs and the notorious "Piltdown Man" impression on Tubular Bells.

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12. In 2012, Mike Oldfield was featured on Terry Mike Oldfield's Journey into Space album and on a track called "Islanders" by German producer Torsten Stenzel's York project.

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13. In 2008, Mike Oldfield contributed an exclusive song to a charity album called Songs for Survival, in support of the Survival International.

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14. In March 2008 Mike Oldfield released his first classical album, Music of the Spheres; Karl Jenkins assisted with the orchestration.

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15. Mike Oldfield headlined the pan-European Night of the Proms tour, consisting of 21 concerts in 2006 and 2007.

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16. On 12 April 2004 Mike Oldfield launched his next virtual reality project, Maestro, which contains music from the Tubular Bells 2003 album and some new chillout melodies.

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17. Mike Oldfield added to his repertoire the MusicVR project, combining his music with a virtual reality-based computer game.

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18. In 1998, Mike Oldfield produced the third Tubular Bells album, drawing on the dance music scene at his then new home on the island of Ibiza.

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19. In 1995, Mike Oldfield continued to embrace new musical styles by producing the Celtic-themed album Voyager.

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20. In 1994, he had an asteroid, 5656 Mike Oldfield, named after him.

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21. Mike Oldfield continued to embrace new musical styles, with The Songs of Distant Earth exhibiting a softer new-age sound.

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22. In 2013 Mike Oldfield invited Sir Richard to preside over the opening of the new school hall at StAndrew's International School of The Bahamas, where two of Oldfield's children were pupils.

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23. In 1974, Mike Oldfield played guitar on the critically acclaimed album Rock Bottom by Robert Wyatt.

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24. Mike Oldfield is featured on two Ayers albums, Whatevershebringswesing and Shooting at the Moon.

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25. Mike Oldfield has released more than 20 albums with the most recent being a sequel to his 1975 album Ommadawn titled Return to Ommadawn, released on 20 January 2017.

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26. Mike Oldfield recorded the 1983 hit single "Moonlight Shadow" and a rendition of the Christmas piece "In Dulci Jubilo".

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