“I Could Give A Rip”: Mike Oldfield & Hall and Oates

Trolling the “Stacks of Wax” in my collection, I stumbled upon this LP by Mike Oldfield. Five Miles Out was part of Oldfield’s transition from progressive rock/multi instrumentalist artist to someone who was interested in penning pop songs.

Oldfield’s ode to marital fidelity, “Family Man,” was covered by Hall & Oates back in 1983 and they did pretty well with the song (it was in the top 10), but Mike Oldfield recorded a version a year earlier that featured Maggie Reilly on vocals.

Like most folks in the U.S., I really only knew of the Hall and Oates version (and why wouldn’t I since MTV was playing the video every other hour back in the day), so I didn’t know it was a cover when I first heard it. Years later, J and I were shopping at “Rooks and Becords” on Polk Street (this would have been the late 80s) and she was asking the owner about getting Five Miles Out on CD. He said it was only available as an import and was something like $25 or $30. While she was mulling over whether to plunk down her credit card, I sauntered over to the used records and found a copy for $5.00. Nice! The owner didn’t even know he had that copy, so it was a minor win for us. J wanted a clean CD copy, but the LP copy had a few pops, but no major scratches. She bought it, we listened to the album a couple of times, and that was the first time I heard the original version of “Family Man.”

Oddly enough, as I was putting together this post, I couldn’t get snippets of the Hall and Oates videos out of my head. So, I hopped over to our trusted friend of video pop culture (i.e., You Tube) and I re-watched the video. My God! What a stupid video. I mean, did the director really think this video would somehow show the band in a “good light?” Jesus! I can’t believe Hall and Oates actually paid for this. But you know, after re-watching the video, I’m glad they don’t really air music videos anymore ‘cause I would have to watch crap like this more often. Then again, watching this video is preferable than having to hear “Hey There Delilah” by Plain White-Ts.

“Family Man” Mike Oldfield (Download)

“Family Man” Hall and Oates (Download)

–PK

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