Meet The Neighbours: Christine McVie, Fleetwood Mac

Henry & James
Property News, Belgravia & Chelsea
24th March 2017

Christine McVie and Lindsey Buckingham are releasing a duet album this summer. In a rare interview, Christine, the legendary Fleetwood Mac singer songwriter and keyboardist talks to us about her love of London, her inspirations and early years in the music business.

Q: How did you get started?
A: I was originally taught to play the piano at an early age. And became quite good at it, reaching Grade 7, my parents very generously supported me. One day I found some Fats Domino scores in a music stool and started to write a couple of songs, then I went to art college. Eventually, I left college and joined Chicken Shack, playing in blues clubs up and down the M1.

Q: What attracted you to the music business?
A: I really enjoyed blues music. It just felt right for me. I often find myself in that situation – things feel right. I naturally morphed into music.

Q: If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things would you take with you?
A: Umm, can I have electricity? [Yes]. Then I would take a hair dryer. I would eat fresh fruit and there would be plenty of fish in the ocean to eat. I would also like to take some French bread with me. And music? I would take an anthology of the Beatles – a good collection of their songs. And classical music? Possibly some Elgar. Plus some Jazz: oh yes, Miles Davis.

Q: Who or what inspires you in life?
A: It would have to be Fleetwood – it is a living, breathing eternity in my life. Fleetwood Mac will be playing in America with (15 concerts around June) and are coming to London in 2019.

Q: If you could sing with anyone in the world, who would it be?
A: It would have to be Paul McCartney because we would sing well together.

Q: What were your favourite Fleetwood Mac songs over the years?
A: I still play a lot of great songs: Dreams, Go Your Own Way and Songbird.

Q: How many albums did you sell?
A: Over the years, we sold millions and millions of records.

Q: What do you like about London?
A: I lived in the country for a while, in Kent, but now live in London. I have gone back to my roots. London is electrifying. We used to play and gravitate to the Berkeley Hotel in Knightsbridge, south west London.

Q: Do you have a new album coming out? Can you tell us a little about it?
A: Yes, I have duet album being released with Lindsey Buckingham. It will be released on June 9. You can buy it on iTunes and vinyl – it will be available everywhere! And that’s another good song… Continue reading

Fleetwood Mac: Tango in the Night review – timely reissue coasts from gloss to gloom | The Guardian

Alexis Petridis’s album of the week
The Guardian
March 23rd, 2017

This 1987 classic is a blend of solid-gold pop and super-slick production, interwoven with the sound of a band sliding into chaos

Fleetwood Mac … ‘No gloss can hide the turmoil’ Photograph: Alamy Stock Photo

The mid-80s were not the kindest time for 60s and 70s rock legends. For every gimlet-eyed operator who successfully navigated an alien and unforgiving landscape of power ballads, crashing snare drums, Fairlight synthesisers and MTV moonmen – the Eagles’ Don Henley and Glenn Frey; Tina Turner – there were scores who seemed utterly lost. It was a world in which the natural order of things had been turned on its head to such a degree that the drummer from Genesis was now one of the biggest stars on the planet. David Bowie, Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Lou Reed … at best, they ended up making albums that diehard fans pick over for tiny morsels that suggest they’re not as bad as the reputations preceding them; at worst they made stuff they’d spend subsequent years loudly disowning, involving terrible clothes, inappropriate producers, awful cover versions and – in extreme cases – attempts to rap. Continue reading

Listening Guide – Fleetwood Mac | Q Magazine

Q Magazine, Review, Reissues
May 2017

Fleetwood Mac have been through many different incarnations over the course of their five-decade existence. There has been the psychedelic blues period in the late ’60s, the freaky jazz-rock of the early ’70s, and then the mega-selling West Coast pop years, including the bit where they loved each other, and then the bit where they hated each other. MARK BLAKE joins he dots of their definitive work.

Last of the Guitar Heroes
THEN PLAY ON (Reprise 1969)
By Fleetwood Mac’s third album, their co-founder, guitarist Peter Green was frazzled by LSD, convinced he’d found God and demanding he and his bandmates giveaway all their money. He wasn’t alone Fellow guitarist Jeremy Spencer had become disillusioned, barely
played on the LP and would join a religious commune soon after. Fleetwood Mac might have been in psychic disarray, but Then Play On is both a sterling swan song for Green and a showcase for thee newly recruited 19-year-old guitar prodigy Danny Kirwan. Sturdy blues songs such as Rattlesnake Shake share space with trippy psych-rock (Coming Your Way) and Oh Well, a single whose double A-side mashup of hard riffs and spaghetti western melodrama was so good it was included in the LP’s second pressing.
Listen To: Oh Well

Lost in Space
FUTURE GAMES (Reprise 1971)
After Peter Green’s departure, Fleetwood Mac made four largely forgotten albums with American guitarist/frontman Bob Welch. Future Games is the first from the Mac’s lost-era
with their earlier blues shapes replaced by jazz-rock, stoner lyrics and harmony vocals. Welch joined his new bandmates and their extended family of roadies in a communal house in Hampshire. The group’s fascination with hallucinogenics and all things mystic permeate the fees of Woman Of A 1000 Years and Sands Of Times tellingly, Welch once convinced himself a flying saucer driven by a Navajo shaman had landed on the house’s tennis court. Future Games reflects this space cadet environment, and while its excellent title track isn’t quite the burnished West Coast pop of Rumours, it’s heading that way.
Listen To: Future Games

Sex, Drugs and Rock n’ Roll
RUMOURS (Reprise 1977
When Fleetwood Mac invited Lindsey Buckingham to replace Bob Welch in 1975, he
insisted his girlfriend, singer Stevie Nicks join too. The Buckingham-Nicks duo regenerated the band, encouraged keyboard player Christine McVie’s nascent’ songwriting, and helped turn that year’s self-titled LP into a US Number 1 hit. But it was the next one, Rumours, which transformed Fleetwood Mac’s lives. Dreams, Don’t Stop, The Chain and Go Your Own Way became huge hits,while detailing Buckingham /Nicks and Christine McVie and her bass playing husband John’s disintegrating relationships; the marital disharmony compounded by the group’s Herculean drug intake The 40 million-plus selling  Rumours’ sumptuous harmonies and easy grooves are a smokescreen. Inside its as hard as nails.
Liston To: The Chain

That Way Lies Madness
TUSK (Reprise 1979)

In 1979, Tusk was deemed a failure, after shifting four million copies in the same time
it took Rumours to sell 10 million. Perhaps the public were put off by Tusk sounding like two albums jammed together. Since making Rumours, Lindsey  Buckingham had become obsessed with punk and, apparently, chopped off his flowing locks in solidarity with The Clash. Buckingham’s disarmingly raw songs (The Ledge, Not That Funny, the fabulously odd title track) seemed to fight a rear-guard action against Stevie Nicks and Christine McVie’s gentler compositions. Furthermore, those infra band low affairs had descended into bitter resentment and the drugs had taken over. The result an uneasy but brilliant listening experience and arguably the strangest greatest Fleetwood Mac album yet.
Listen To: Tusk

Welcome To The Machine
TANGO IN THE NIGHT (Warner Bros. 1987)
In the eght years between Tusk and Tango In The Night, Fleetwood Mac managed one studio album, the unremarkable Mirage; Stevie Nicks became a solo star and her ex-partner Lindsey Buckingham didn’t. Buckingham was persuaded to turn his next solo venture into a band LP. He agreed on the condition he ran the whole show. Everything on Tango… is an homageto the studio technology of the time: Big Love, Family Man and Little Lies are machine-polished, radio-friendly pop songs, with thee composers’ voices sometimes the only discernibly human element in the mix. While those programmed drums and bleating synthesisers might be a tad rich for the modem palate, some of the songs are as good as anything on Rumours.
Listen To: Big Love

The Compilation
25 YEARS: THE CHAIN (Warner Bros. 1992)
While there has been several Fleetwood Mac compilations over the years (reaching back to 1969’s US collection, English Rose), only 1992’s four-disc 25 Tears: The Chain box set collates material from all areas of the band to date. The means the evergreen Dreams, Rhiannon and Don’t Stop coexist side by side with such Peter Green staples as Albatross and The Green Manalishi (With The Two-Pronged Crown), and even a few items from the overlooked “Bob Welch Years” (see the spooked-sounding Bermuda ‘Mangle). For those put off by the price, there’s a two-disc version, which pays lip service to pretty much every Fleetwood Mac incarnation, and includes the lesser-heard Silver Springs, one of Rumours’ great lost songs.
Listen To: Albatross

10 Commandments from Stevie Nicks | Q Magazine

Q Magazine
March 2017

THE FLEETWOOD MAC SINGER DELIVERS HER GOLDEN RULES FOR LIVING.

1. MAKE LIKE A BOY OR GIRL SCOUT: BE PREPARED
I’m scared, that’s what I am. Before shows, some people – me, Mick [Fleetwood, [ drummer], we get panic attacks. I have always been terribly nervous before shows. So I am so rehearsed and ready that I could be dead and stand up there and still sing the right words and do the right thing. Cocaine almost killed me. It’s better to just not do it. Eventually you’ll have to stop so start saving your money for rehab now.

2. THE DRUGS DON’T WORK, THEY JUST MAKE IT WORSE
Touring with Fleetwood Mac in the ’70s, cocaine was almost part of the daily routine. But when I talk about it now, I would never want the kids of today to think that I’m saying it was something good. Cos it really wasn’t something good. It almost destroyed my life. It almost killed me, and almost killed a lot of people I know. So if anybody thinks it’s safe now – it’s not. It’s better to just not do it. Because you will eventually have to stop, so start saving your money for rehab now. It’s so expensive.

3. LYRICISTS! WATCH YOUR CUSS WORDS
I’ve been listening to The Weeknd’s records. I play them one after the other when I’m in my bathroom getting ready to go out, or just hanging out with myself. He’s brilliant. And his voice – he could have come straight out of 1975 – he could have been like Stevie Winwood. He’s over-talented. But if I were to meet him, I would probably say: “You say over and over again words that I would prefer you didn’t say. I think they’re unnecessary. However, even though I think a lot of your songs are super-dirty, I still really like ’em! So I’ve given you a pass on that!”

4. SINGERS! WATCH YOUR SYLLABLES
I saw Adele at the Grammys [Adele had to restart a performance of George Michael’s Fastlove], and that song was a very hard song to sing for George Michael. It’s all about the syllables. I have a song on my 24 Karat Gold album, Mabel Normand, that’s exactly the same. That’s the reason we’re not doing it onstage. Because if you take a breath, you get off the beat. You’re one word too late, you can never get back on, and you’re dead in the water.

5. YOU’RE A ROCK STAR – THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS A SICKIE
Onstage is the one time you can’t bemoan how you feel. Even if you have pneumonia, you have to say: “I’m leaving that in the dressing room and I’m walking out and I’m gonna be great. And when I come offstage, then I can burst into tears.” Continue reading

Christine McVie: “Fleetwood Mac’s 2018 tour is supposed to be a farewell tour” | Uncut Magazine

Tom Pinnock
March 16, 2017

McVie and Lindsey Buckingham reveal all about their collaboration in our exclusive interview

The pair’s debut as Buckingham McVie – also featuring Mick Fleetwood and John McVie – is set for release this summer.

“I’ve grown up a lot since the last time I really worked with [Christine],” explains Buckingham. “I realised: ‘Oh, here I am, a completely different person. I’m a father of three children. I’ve been married almost 20 years. I’ve had my journey, and Christine has had her own journey.’”

However, the singer, keyboardist and songwriter also reveals that the future of Fleetwood Mac is far from certain.

“The 2018 tour is supposed to be a farewell tour,” says McVie. “But you take farewell tours one at a time. Somehow we always come together, this unit. We can feel it ourselves.”

Buckingham and McVie are on the cover of the new Uncut, dated May 2017 and on sale March 16.

Click here to buy the issue digitally

Mick Fleetwood: ‘I’m 70 years old and I play harder now than I used to’ | The Guardian

The co-founder of Fleetwood Mac talks the glory days of the band, touring as a septuagenarian and what the swinging 60s were really like

‘I don’t know how much longer I’ll be able to do what I do’ … Mick Fleetwood. Photograph: Daniel Sullivan

Hey, Mick. How are you?
I’m OK, but I’ve got coconut oil all over my water bottle.

Coconut oil?
I put it on my hands. When you get old, you get lizard skin. I didn’t know but it’s an antiseptic. I put it on my head too. It doesn’t smell and it’s not full of chemicals. You can use it for cooking and it’s good for sex, too.

Sex and bald heads? Mick, I wasn’t prepared for this.
Well, now you know. It’s multipurpose stuff.

It’s the midway point of SXSW and some people are looking worse for wear. Any tips for hangover cures?
Drink lots of electrolytes even if you need to go to the toilet all the time, it’s worth it. And get hold of avocado or watermelon. Avocado is full of electrolytes and protein. Put it on some toast. Put a big fucking mashed-up avocado on toast and you’ll come back like you’ve never seen before.

Gracias. Why have you decided to put out a book about early Fleetwood Mac?
My former brother-in-law, George Harrison, did a similar thing in 1980. I saw it back then and it was something I wanted to do but didn’t get round to it. Jimmy Page did one for Led Zeppelin too. It’s all about what started the band and a lot of people don’t know about that period, and the band is 50 years old in August for the original members of Fleetwood Mac. This is the beginning of the group and it’s very important to me. Continue reading

Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours is 40 years old | Official UK Charts Company

Chart feats and facts about the classic album, released in 1977.

By Justin Myers
Official UK Charts Company

This year marks 40 years since the release of Rumours, from Fleetwood Mac, one of the most revered and talked about albums ever.

From its iconic cover, to its songs, which you can still hear played regularly on the radio and all around you, Rumours fairly quickly established itself as a classic.

Almost as fascinating as the material itself was the backstory behind its production, with the band in love, at war and, shall we say, indulging in the full trappings of rockstar hedonism.

The album first entered the Official Albums Chart at 57 – it wasn’t unusual for albums to start low and climb back then – but rocketed 50 places into the Top 10 the following week. Rumours would spend a (non-consecutive) 44 weeks in the Top 10 and while it did a little bit of pogo-ing up and down, it never went lower than 15 for almost a year.

Surprisingly, perhaps, Rumours only managed one week at Number 1, in January 1978, dispatching Bread off the top before being deposed themselves by Abba’s The Album.

It also might shock you to know that the album’s four singles weren’t hugely successful. Lead single Go Your Own Way – which gained new fame years later when it was featured in a car advert – peaked at Number 38 in 1977, and while it has made a few reappearances in the Top 100 since downloads were counted toward the chart, it never bested that original high. Follow-up Don’t Stop befell a similar fate, landing at 32, but the third single fared slightly better Continue reading

Fleetwood Mac – Hear an unreleased version of Seven Wonders | The Guardian

Michael Hann
The Guardian
16th Feb 2017

We’ve got an early version of one of the standouts from Tango in the Night for you. Have a listen and let us know what you think

Stevie Nicks … on stage with Fleetwood Mac in 1987. Photograph: Jim Dyson/Redferns/Getty Images

Fleetwood Mac have spent the past few years reissuing their peerless back catalogue in the obligatory remastered, expanded, deluxe editions. Last year brought us the 1982 album Mirage, which somehow managed to make an album already slathered in cocaine sound even more cokey, all sheen and shine.

Next up is Tango in the Night, coming out on Warner on 10 March, and we’ve got this early, unreleased version of the Stevie Nicks track Seven Wonders for you. It’s longer but also a little harsher than the album version, drawing out the fatalism of the chorus and de-emphasising the keyboard hook.

Open Stream in New Windows (UK viewers only)

Tango in the Night came out five years after Mirage, and had originally been planned as a Lindsey Buckingham solo record – Nicks spent only two weeks in the studio with the band because she was concentrating on her solo career. Be thankful that it became a full-band record, because the album became defined not by his songs but by the contributions of the other writers; without the two singles from Christine McVie – Everywhere and Little Lies – it would be a very different record. While many Mac fans might have their favourite writer in the group, it takes all three of Buckingham, Nicks and McVie to balance the group. It was noticeable how different the shows with McVie back in the band were to those when the group was performing only the Buckingham and Nicks songs; it was if her songs were the bridge between Nicks’s airy proto-gothiness and Buckingham’s barely suppressed rage.

Continue reading

Stevie Nicks: ‘I was so sick — I couldn’t shower. I almost died’ | The Times (UK)

Will Hodgkinson
January 21 2017, 12:01am,
The Times

The Fleetwood Mac singer talks about her past lovers, drugs hell — and why, at 68, she’s not too old to get married

Stevie Nicks is coming to Hyde Park for a summer concert
GETTY IMAGES

If you have wondered how Stevie Nicks, at the age of 68, manages to tour the world with Fleetwood Mac, run her solo career and be an inspiration to young female stars including Adele and Florence Welch, here’s the answer. She’s scared that if she stops, she’ll shrink.

“A friend told me that when you retire, you get smaller,” says Nicks, who at 5ft 1in cannot afford to take that chance. “Small means old, so I fight it with a sword. I’ll be on stage, dancing around, thinking, ‘Now, let’s see . . . how old am I again? 110?’ And it blows my mind! But I would be so bored if I wasn’t doing this.”

It is one in the morning, and Nicks is sheltering from a rainstorm in her beachfront apartment in Santa Monica. Announcing that she rarely goes to sleep before the small hours because she is “the Cruella de Vil of the night”, she proves to be fighting the war against age valiantly. Her California gypsy fashion sense, first shared with the world on the cover of Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 divorce-era masterpiece, Rumours, remains unchanged. Her weathered voice, sexy in a stayed-up-till-7am way, is the same as it ever was. And this July she will be sharing a Hyde Park headline slot with Tom Petty, the man who kickstarted her solo career in 1981, when Fleetwood Mac were at their Lear Jethopping height and nobody wanted or expected Nicks to break out on her own.

Stevie Nicks, photographed in 1978 — her California gypsy fashion sense was already established
SAM EMERSON/POLARIS/EYEVINE

“When I started work on [the debut solo album] Bella Donna I wanted it to be like a Tom Petty record, but by a girl. That led me to Tom’s producer, Jimmy Iovine, who did not drink, do drugs, anything,” says Nicks, who at the time was known for her cocaine-centric lifestyle; she even wrote a song, Gold Dust Woman, about it. Continue reading

Stevie Nicks says another Fleetwood Mac album is unlikely: ‘We’re not 40 anymore’ | Standard

London Evening Standard
By Alistair Foster
Tues 17th Jan, 2017

The music icon says the band are more keen to focus on touring

Stevie Nicks says she does not think Fleetwood Mac will make another album together — because they are “not 40” any more.

The singer, 68, believes the band are more likely to focus on touring and doubts they will ever record a follow-up to 2003’s Say You Will.

She said: “If the five of us were to get together to make a record it would take a year, which is what it always takes us.

“It would be a whole year of recording, then press, then rehearsal, and by the time we got back onto the road, it would be heading towards the second year, and I don’t know whether at this time it’s better for us just to do a big tour.”

Iconic: Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac perform (Getty)

The band has sold more than 100 million records and reformed with the classic line-up of Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, John and Christine McVie and Mick Fleetwood for a world tour, which ended in 2015.

Nicks said: “It’s every single penny we make divided by five, so the expense of making a record, which is huge, and then to get back on tour … we are not 40.

“We have to take that into consideration — how long can we do tours that are three-hour shows? Would you rather spend a year in the studio or get back on the road? I think that the band would choose to tour.”

Nicks, who is focusing on her solo career, is also reluctant to make new music.