Family Man (Mike Oldfield song)

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"Family Man"
Single by Mike Oldfield
from the album Five Miles Out
B-side "Mount Teide"
Released 28 May 1982 (1982-05-28)
Format Vinyl
Recorded Buckinghamshire, 1981–1982
Genre Progressive rock, pop rock
Length 3:45
Label Virgin
Writer(s) Mike Oldfield
Tim Cross
Rick Fenn
Mike Frye
Morris Pert
Maggie Reilly
Producer(s) Mike Oldfield
Simon Heyworth
Tom Newman
Mike Oldfield singles chronology
"Five Miles Out"
"Family Man"
"The Mike Oldfield EP"

"Family Man" is a single by musician Mike Oldfield, released in 1982 on Virgin Records. It was released from the album Five Miles Out, with vocals performed by Maggie Reilly.[1] American duo Hall & Oates covered the song a year later gaining some chart success with their own version.

In the UK the song was released as a standard black 7-inch vinyl and a 7-inch picture disc featuring a photographic portrait of Oldfield.

Lyrical content[edit]

According to an interview in 1998, Oldfield wrote all of the music for the chorus, and verses were written by the other writers.[2] Tim Cross has also claimed to have written the majority of the lyrics for the song, and cited Rick Fenn as the inspiration of the "family man" mentioned in the song.[3]

The song is about a man who is being solicited by a prostitute and his protestations because he is a "family man." The original version has the woman storming off after his rejection.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Family Man" – 3:45
  2. "Mount Teide" – 4:10

Hall & Oates cover[edit]

"Family Man"
Single by Hall & Oates
from the album H2O
B-side "Maneater"
"Open All Night"
Released April 30, 1983
Format Vinyl record (7")
Genre Pop rock
Length 3:25
Label RCA
Writer(s) Mike Oldfield
Tim Cross
Rick Fenn
Mike Frye
Morris Pert
Maggie Reilly
Producer(s) Daryl Hall
John Oates
Hall & Oates singles chronology
"One on One"
"Family Man"
"Jingle Bell Rock"

The American duo Hall & Oates covered Oldfield's song for their H2O album and it reached #6 on the US Hot 100 in June 1983. Their version of the song has some altered lyrics, including a line in which the man finally gets the nerve to take up the woman's offer, but she has left, and he screams out the chorus.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Family Man"
  2. "Maneater"
  3. "Open All Night"

Music Video[edit]

Three versions of the music video exist. The original, which uses the standard album/single version of the song features Daryl miming the song & John playing guitar in a room full of young children who are playing rambunctiously. The guitar solo features G.E. Smith performing while a group of young girls in sleep attire surround him to watch. Throughout the video, computer animated lipstick kisses appear on screen and at one point across Daryl's face. There is also a computer animated male and female figure to illustrate the characters of the song making eyes at each other, as seen on the single cover.

A second version of the video was extended to match the length of the 12" extended rock mix of the song, and features a typical American family viewing the original version of the video on their television while each of their appearances slowly transform into looking like either Daryl or John.

A later version turned up in some places such as the 7 Big Ones music video compilation LaserDisc, which is the extended video re-edited to match the album version of the song. This results in some strange shots as the video begins to be seen through the television of the family in the aforementioned version, yet the family is not shown. When the 7 Big Ones video compilation was released on DVD, the full-length extended version of the video was used.


Mike Oldfield version[edit]

Chart (1982) Peak
Canadian Hot 100 29
UK Singles Chart 45

Hall & Oates version[edit]

Chart (1983) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 6
U.S. Billboard Hot Black Singles 81
U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks 36
UK Singles Chart 15

Other covers[edit]

In 2009, the original singer, Maggie Reilly recorded another version of the song for her album Looking Back Moving Forward.


  1. ^ "Singles". Amadian. Retrieved 2009-03-01. 
  2. ^ "Tubular Bells III press conference". 1998-09-05. Retrieved 2008-06-13. 
  3. ^ "Tim Cross Q&A". Tängmark. November 2007. Retrieved 2008-06-13.