I find it interesting and enlightening when a musician works with two different singers on the same song. All too often we hear a song done by a particular singer and it becomes “their song.” Anyone else singing the song after that is “covering” their song. That’s not an unfair assessment, but what if the musician at the heart of the song isn’t actually the singer?
Mike Oldfield is amazing and I’ve admired his work for years now. Like many, I started out with Tubular Bells and discovered that he was far more than atmospheric musician who created one of the greatest songs to one of the greatest horror movies of all time. Turns out the man is a hell of a guitarist and instrumentalist. He doesn’t sing on any of his own songs, but rather works with some excellent vocalists to make awesome music.
And that’s the catch, you see. It’s always his song, it just happens that sometimes a different singer is on it. Moonlight Shadow was a pretty decent hit for him, peaking at number four on the British charts in 1983. The original singer was Maggie Reilly, but he’s recorded and performed the tune with others and that’s what I’m sharing today.
This one here? It’s performed with Miriam Stockley, a voice people recognize but don’t know. She’s the vocalist behind the international new age hit Adiemus. As it happens, she’s got a cover of Peter Gabriel’s Mercy Street you should totally check out. But before that, dig on this live rendition of Moonlight Shadow.
Then there’s this version, with one of the more underrated singers out there – the great Helen “Pepsi” DeMacque. Pepsi has worked with Oldfield on numerous projects including live performances of Man in the Rain and the incredible Tubular Bells III Live concert. This VH1 studio performance is more laid back and, because of that, is a bit more intimate than a massive concert effort. Dig on both the videos, it’s a good song and it’s nice to hear the subtle differences between vocalists’ interpretations!