Thursday, July 14, 2011

THE ROCK SONG OF THE DAY IS: MIKE OLDFIELD - MOONLIGHT SHADOW

"Moonlight Shadow", by Mike Oldfield
"Moonlight Shadow" is a  song written and performed by English multi-instrumentalist Mike Oldfield, released as a single in May 1983 and included in the album Crises, of the same year.

The vocals were performed by Scottish vocalist Maggie Reilly, who had joined Mike Oldfield in 1980. It is Oldfield's most successful single to date. It was #1 in Italy, Switzerland, Sweden, Austria and Norway, #2 in Germany and Holland, #6 in UK and #4 in Australia.

The original cover art is an enlargement of the lower right corner of the Crises album cover. This shows a man with his foot on a ledge with the sea and sky in the background. The moon, the tower and its shadow from the album cover cannot be seen on the single cover. The artwork was originally a painting by UK artist Terry Ilott. The artwork for the 1993 reissue followed the style of the Elements artwork in most countries.

An early version of the song was entitled "Midnight Passion" with vocals by British singer Hazel O'Connor. Along with Maggie Reilly, a girlfriend of one of the roadies when Oldfield was on tour, Oldfield used a rhyming dictionary and recorded many of the lyrics word by word. According to Oldfield, Virgin Records were immediately happy with the song and wanted more pieces similar to it. Reilly also sang on "Foreign Affair" on Crises.

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