The Life of a Song: Fleetwood Mac’s ‘The Chain’ | FT.com

JANUARY 9, 2017
by: David Honigmann
FT.com

The hit was born of a romantic geometry complex enough to baffle the Bloomsbury Group

Stevie Nicks and Christine McVie perform in Atlanta, Georgia, June 1977 © Getty

In early 1975, two Americans, Lindsey Buckingham and his girlfriend Stevie Nicks, had just joined a once-famous British blues band now down on its uppers. Buckingham, a perfectionist, buzzed around showing the other members how to play their parts on the songs he was bringing to the project. The bassist was unimpressed.

“The band you’re in is Fleetwood Mac,” John McVie told him. “I’m the Mac. And I play the bass.” And that — as Mick Fleetwood, who was the Fleetwood, records in his autobiography — was that.

A couple of years later Buckingham and Nicks had been integrated into the band, and the new line-up had a successful album under their belt. It was now Fleetwood and McVie together who laid down the signature bass-and-drums riff that would define what was (with all due deference to former members Peter Green, Jeremy Spencer, Danny Kirwan and Bob Welch) the high water mark of Fleetwood Mac: “The Chain”, from their globe-conquering album Rumours. Continue reading

Is Stevie Nicks damaging the Fleetwood Mac legacy?

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Will Fleetwood Mac release a new studio album?
Will Stevie Nicks join the band in recording the album?
Will Stevie Nicks tour again with Fleetwood Mac?
Is there a future for Fleetwood Mac?

So many questions, all without any real answers from the band, other then Stevie Nicks is touring her 2014 album “24 Karat Gold: Songs From The Vault” making up time the gave to Fleetwood Mac for the “On With The Show” that brought Christine McVie back into Fleetwood Mac.

However, the rest of the band (well that is not technically accurate as John McVie does not generally say anything to the press) have been talking about recording new music for a new potential Fleetwood Mac studio album and the possibility of another worldwide tour that is likely to be scheduled to co-incide with the 40th anniversary of Rumours, as well as the 50th anniversary of the band being formed and the 30th anniversary of Tango In The Night and 20th anniversary of The Dance (Fleetwood Mac seem to have a thing for years with seven in them!!)

But, Stevie Nicks appears not to be committing to the band, is she about to splinter the group and and force a Fleetwood, McVie, McVie and Buckingham version of the band to cement their legacy in the huge commercial opening that will begin next year within the anniversary year for Fleetwood Mac, this I s likely their last hurrah before old father time call’s it a day. Continue reading

Stevie Nicks Wants a New Fleetwood Mac Tour, Not a New Fleetwood Mac Album | ABC News Radio

Stevie Nicks is currently out on her 24 Karat Gold tour, promoting her recent solo album. But as far as recording a new album with Fleetwood Mac, Stevie believes the band shouldn’t waste their time.

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Before Fleetwood Mac launched their most recent tour, they worked on some new tracks without Stevie. While Mick Fleetwood suggested the tracks might be released with just Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie singing, Stevie doesn’t buy it. “You can never say never, but I don’t think that will happen,” she tells ABC Radio.

That doesn’t mean Stevie’s ready to join her bandmates in the studio, though.

“The only reason that I don’t really wanna do a record is because I think that, in a year and a half, we’ll probably go out and do another Fleetwood Mac tour, since Christine has come back,” she explains. Christine McVie rejoined Fleetwood Mac in 2014 after a 16-year absence.

Stevie thinks touring is the better plan, simply because of Fleetwood Mac’s dynamics.

“Do we want to go and close ourselves up in a studio for a year, [and] make a record that’s really good but that probably won’t sell, because records don’t really sell that much?” she asks. “And then we’ll have been stuffed together for a year in one room, and…when you come out of that room, we may not want to go on a tour!”

The logical solution, Stevie says, is to skip making a new record, and simply hit the road.

“I think that we should choose the tour over the record,” she tells ABC Radio. “Because touring is much more fun than making a record when you don’t have any idea how that record’s gonna come out.”

Stevie has time to figure out her next move: her tour doesn’t wrap until December 18.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Mick Fleetwood Says He Hopes Fleetwood Mac Finishes a New Album “Before We Hang It Up” | ABC Radio

Before Fleetwood Mac launched its 2014-2015 world tour, Christine McVie, Lindsey Buckingham, John McVie and Mick Fleetwood worked on some new tracks that have yet to see the light of day. Fleetwood says that “before we hang it up,” he hopes the band will complete those recordings and release a new studio album, while admitting that he isn’t sure if that will happen.

Photo from Danny Clinch (via ABC News Radio)

Photo from Danny Clinch (via ABC News Radio)

“We have what we would call a large stash of great music. I’m not quite sure what we’re heading to do with it,” he tells ABC Radio. “I hope that we are able to [put an album together]. It’s just getting everyone on the same page to finish off the work that we’ve been doing.”

Mick admits that one Fleetwood Mac member who currently isn’t on the same page is Stevie Nicks , who will be launching a new North American solo tour on October 25.

“She’s busy doing her own stuff,” he points out. “And in this point in life, we’ve all dedicated so much time to Fleetwood Mac, you go, ‘Hey, it’d be great if we could, but if not, don’t worry about it.'”

Fleetwood tells ABC Radio that even if Nicks chooses not to lend her talents to the project, he hopes the music that’s already been recorded will be released in some form.

“I think there’s some thought that some of that lovely music would come out as a sort of duet album, maybe…from Christine and Lindsey,” Mick poses. “And if not, it will stay in a room, waiting for the day that maybe it would make sense that all of us can contribute to that being a Fleetwood Mac album.”

He adds, “Before we hang it up in the next few years, I truly hope there’s another lovely album that will come out.”

13th Oct 2016

Indulgent Showdown: Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Tusk’ vs. The Clash’s ‘Sandinista!’ | The Observer

Observer Music
By Tim Sommer
13th Oct, 2016

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Deep in the heart of every rock musician, from the most credible to the most commercial, there lies someone whining, “Je suis un artiste! If only the world knew what a deep, tortured soul I am, and how complicated my record collection is!”

The more practical of these musicians merely peppers their catalog with maudlin and heartfelt ballads. Let’s call this the Bon Jovi method: “Perhaps you will forgive that Slippery When Wet stuff if I sing another song that is the musical equivalent of the page in the yearbook dedicated to that 11th grader who died.” Other artists make severe left or right turns, and produce albums dripping with uncharacteristic drama and musical complication; here I direct you to Music From ‘The Elder’ by Kiss, a histrionic, incomprehensible, and orchestra-laden concept album from 1981 that very nearly ended Kiss’ career (it’s actually a pretty good record, by the way, and features two songs co-written by Gene Simmons and Lou Reed).

Pop/rock history is absolutely strewn with such artifacts, from Pet Sounds to Bad Religion’s Into the Unknown (a fascinating pop/prog exercise from 1983 that was so offensive to the group’s fans that the band excised it from their catalog). In between these extremes, there’s Springsteen’s bold and courageous Nebraska, McCartney’s remarkable Firemen albums, Neil Young’s fascinating genre exercises (like Trans, Everybody’s Rockin’ and Arc), the Beastie Boys’ game changing Paul’s Boutique, and, of course, the great daddy of all of these sorts of records, Lou Reed’s Metal Machine Music. There are also entire careers that are built on thwarting expectations, e.g. Scott Walker, Beck, Bowie and Prince.[i]

In the autumn of 1979 Fleetwood Mac, a wildly popular and influential band at the peak of their visibility and commercial prowess, released a much-anticipated double album that was interpreted by fans and media as radical, even experimental. Almost exactly a year later the Clash, a wildly popular and influential band at the peak of their visibility and credibility, released a much-anticipated triple album that was interpreted by fans and media as radical, even experimental.

Fleetwood Mac’s Tusk is lean, effective and almost completely without waste or filler. It showcases a great band at their prime. Alternately precise and luxurious, Tusk is one of the most underrated albums of the era. Continue reading

Christine McVie on Fleetwood Mac: ‘Without one of us, we’re incomplete’ | The Guardian (UK)

The Guardian
6th Oct 2016
By Peter Robinson

The singer on the band’s half-finished album, the visitation she had when writing Songbird, and growing up with a psychic mum

Christine McVie: ‘We’re supposed to be talking about – what’s it called? – Mirage.’ Photograph: PR Company Handout

Christine McVie: ‘We’re supposed to be talking about – what’s it called? – Mirage.’ Photograph: PR Company Handout

Hi, Christine. What was it like growing up with the surname Perfect (1)?
It was difficult. Teachers would say: “I hope you live up to your name, Christine.” So, yes, it was tough. I used to joke that I was perfect until I married John.

Fleetwood Mac’s Mirage is being reissued as a box set for £50 (2). Does that seem like a fair price?
It’s a really nice item! It’s quality, isn’t it? It’s good value for money – you’ve got a lot of outtakes, a lot of previously unheard demo versions of songs, you’ve got the vinyl … a CD, I believe, is in there? I mean it’s a nice package! I haven’t had a good look at it, but the label has given me one to take home. I get a free one!

Have you listened to the demos and outtakes?
No. I’m not a big fan of those things. I know people are interested but for my own personal enjoyment I prefer not to listen to them. My songwriting, when I’m writing, is nothing like it is in its finished form – but you have to start somewhere.

Is the new album finished?
No, it’s half-finished. It’s just seven tracks that we’ve got, and they’re only with guide vocals. Continue reading

Reappearance of Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Mirage’ top new releases | Miami Herald

By Howard Cohen
Miami Herald
Sept 27th, 2016

Fleetwood Mac, “Mirage (Deluxe).” Oft-delayed remaster of original 1982 album, plus a disc of outtakes highlighted by Christine McVie’s randier take of “Hold Me” and Stevie Nicks’ demos of “Smile at You” and “If You Were My Love.”

Fleetwood_MirageDeluxe Product Shot

The angry “Smile at You,” later rerecorded in a considerably tamer version on “Say You Will” in 2003, would have given “Mirage” the edge some critics said it lacked after the left-field turn of the preceding “Tusk.” Her cut would have been a better choice than Lindsey Buckingham’s pointless and grating side two opening number, “Empire State.”

“I loved ‘Smile at You’ because it was a real rock and roll song,” Nicks said. “Only thing I can say is when it all came to push and shove we had 19 songs [recorded] and it was 12 songs on the real record. That means 13 to 19 had to go. I lost songs all the time I thought should be on records. But when you are in a band it’s a team and it’s a vote and Lindsey always had a bit of a stronger vote and I kind of went with that.”

The attractively packaged “Mirage” reissue also includes a live disc from the Mirage Tour from The Forum in Los Angeles from Oct. 21-22, 1982, originally issued on VHS. A 180-gram vinyl LP is tucked inside, too. Original co-producer Ken Caillat offers a new 5.1 surround and stereo remix.

“Back then we would paint with indelible colors,” Caillat said. “I had a philosophy early on that I wanted to always have the musician hearing the track as closely as possible to what I expected the end result would be. An engineer friend pulled me aside and asked, ‘Have you listened to ‘Mirage’ in awhile?’ I hadn’t played it and I was surprised how great it sounded. I was pleased with our sounds. We were always pleased with our sounds on the records.”

Christine McVie on Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Peculiar’ ‘Mirage’ Sessions, New LP | Rolling Stone

By Richard Bienstock
26th Sept, 2016
Rolling Stone

Singer-songwriter looks back on heady days at Château d’Hérouville, discusses band’s future plans

Fleetwood Mac's Christine McVie recalls the "peculiar" making of the band's hit 1982 album 'Mirage.' Tim Mosenfelder/Getty

Fleetwood Mac’s Christine McVie recalls the “peculiar” making of the band’s hit 1982 album ‘Mirage.’ Tim Mosenfelder/Getty

Christine McVie has a confession to make. The 73-year-old singer, songwriter and keyboardist is on the phone with Rolling Stone to discuss the new deluxe reissue of Fleetwood Mac’s 1982 effort, Mirage; but, she admits, she hasn’t actually listened to it yet. “I just now got my copy of the remastered edition in my hands,” McVie says, calling from her home in the U.K. “But I just moved to a flat where I don’t have my DVD or CD player yet. So I’m unable to play it. And there’s all these outtakes and demos and things in there that I certainly haven’t heard since we made them. So I’m most curious to listen.”

Indeed, the new package is a treasure trove for Mac completists (and, apparently, band members). In addition to presenting the original 12-track album – which spent five weeks at Number One and spawned two of the group’s biggest and enduring hits in McVie’s “Hold Me” and Stevie Nicks’ “Gypsy” – in remastered form, the three-CD and DVD set offers up a disc of B sides, titled “Outtakes and Sessions,” as well as a live collection culled from two nights at the L.A. Forum in October 1982 on the Mirage tour. The whole thing is rounded out by a vinyl copy of the album and a DVD in 5.1 surround sound, as well as a booklet with extensive liner notes and photos from the era. Continue reading

Lindsey Buckingham On Writing With Christine McVie on ‘Mirage’ | wror.com

Sept 23rd, 2016
By Erica Banas
wror.com

Arriving in store today (September 23) are deluxe editions of Fleetwood Mac’s 1982 album Mirage.

The new set comes as a single-disc remastered version of the album along with a two-disc Expanded edition and a Deluxe package that includes three CDs, a DVD and an LP. The latter two include bonus demos, rarities and alternative tracks, while the Deluxe also features a 1982 concert from Los Angeles.

Mirage was the more “traditional” follow-up to 1979’s experimental Tusk and hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200, going on to be certified double platinum. Lindsey Buckingham tells us that it was also on album on which he and singer-keyboardist Christine McVie — who wrote the first single “Hold Me” — clicked in a way that was different from the way he worked with Stevie Nicks:

“I would say that it’s…an intangible thing. It’s a very strong thing of what I always thought was, for lack of a better term, the whole being greater than the sum of the parts…and I think in that sense Christine and I as two musicians who are very well-grounded in their craft have a kind of symmetry of respect and love for each other on a creative and a musical and a personal level, and I think that was a big part of what that whole being greater than the sum of the parts was at the time. The fact that what I could do for her, I did it for Stevie too but the fact that she (McVie) could infuse her sensibilities into my stuff and I could tap into what I do as a producer, say, and give back so much to her.”

McVie rejoined the band in 2014 following a nearly 16-year leave of absence. Fleetwood Mac has been working on new material but no release plans have been announced.

Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images

Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images

Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.

Mick Fleetwood: For the love of blues | The Sportsman’s Review

By Nathan Weinbender
Sept 22nd, 2016

Legendary drummer, Fleetwood Mac cofounder brings his blues combo to the Fox

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Mick Fleetwood has perhaps one of the most prominent surnames in rock, having lent it to the enduring, platinum-selling pop outfit Fleetwood Mac. But the towering British drummer now has another namesake, the rootsy quartet known as the Mick Fleetwood Blues Band, which stops by the Fox on Wednesday.

“This tour is short and very busy, and we don’t often do it,” Fleetwood said from his tour bus, en route to California. “It’s spotty. It’s not a consistent thing.”

But it’s not like Fleetwood has a lot of free time. Fleetwood Mac recently completed two world tours (one of which brought them to Spokane in June 2013), and four members of the band’s most successful lineup have been working on new original material. Now that he’s back on the road with his other band, Fleetwood admits that he’s something of a “glutton for punishment.”

“It’s just for the love of playing, really,” Fleetwood said. “We’re not out promoting anything. We’re just getting up and doing what we do. I like to play, and this is a great little band.”

The Mick Fleetwood Blues Band formed 12 years ago and frequently serves as in-house entertainment at Fleetwood’s Maui restaurant, Fleetwood on Front St. Unlike Fleetwood Mac, which has had some major personnel shakeups over the years, this band’s lineup has remained the same: Fleetwood on drums, bassist Lenny Castellanos, keyboard player Mark Johnstone and guitarist Rick Vito, who briefly replaced singer-guitarist Lindsay Buckingham during a hiatus from Fleetwood Mac in the late ’80s. Continue reading