Main content
Sorry, this episode is not currently available

40 Years of Virgin Records

Richard Branson chats to Stuart to mark 40 years since the release of Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells. He talks about how the Virgin empire began with a bunch of odd records.

Marking 40 years since the very first release on Virgin Records; Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells, Richard Branson chats to Stuart about how the Virgin empire began with a bunch of odd records.

Speaking at Virgin's new London offices Richard tells Stuart how his unique hippy capitalism started with a painfully shy 15 year-old Mike Oldfield, a bold risk-taking attitude and his faith in good music.

The interview follows the history of the label up to the release of Sex Pistols' Never Mind The Bollocks. The signing propelled them from an alternative independent to major status following the publicity and controversy surrounding the albums title.

2 hours

Music Played

  • Robert Wyatt

    I'm A Believer

    • Virgin.
  • Slapp Happy

    The Secret

    • Virgin.
  • The Monochrome Set

    Strange Boutique

    • Virgin.
  • Egg

    Wring Out The Ground (Loosely Now)

    • Virgin.
  • The Flying Lizards

    The Flood

    • Virgin.
  • Kevin Coyne


    • Virgin.
  • Mike Oldfield

    Tubular Bells (Excerpt)

    • Virgin.
  • Faust

    Giggy Smile

    • Virgin.
  • Gong

    Pot Head Pixies

    • Virgin.
  • Henry Cow – Beautiful As The Moon

    Terrible As An Army with Banners

    • Virgin.
  • Magma

    Nebehr Gudahtt

    • A&M Records.
  • Tangerine Dream


    • Virgin.
  • Hatfield and the North

    Let's Eat (Real Soon)

    • Virgin.
  • Mike Patto Tim Hinkley

    Slin Sideways

    • Virgin.
  • The Human League

    Almost Medieval

    • Virgin.
  • Brand X

    Nuclear Burn

    • Charisma.
  • Steve Hillage

    The Salmon Song

    • Virgin.


Role Contributor
Producer Dan Cocker