The inside sleeve of Rumours symbolically shows Stevie and Christine embracing while the fatherly Fleetwood looks on. At the time, she admits she was more interested in Peter Green. She turned him down and instead wrote John a long letter explaining her feelings for him. They were married 10 days later and Christine announced in Melody Maker that she was retiring to become a housewife.
Very belligerent. I was seeing more Hyde than Jekyll. This complex web of relationships almost split the band, before Weston was sacked and the McVies agreed to give it another chance. It was either that or me ending up in a lunatic asylum. I still worry for him, more than I would ever dare tell him.
I still have a lot of love for John.
He just went one step too far. One night during the tour we all got drunk together in the hotel bar after a gig and he decided to address the entire room on the subject. When sober, he is more philosophical. At one point, the highly strung Buckingham thought of quitting.
What would we have done — sat around in LA and tried to start new bands? Instead of quitting, Nicks, Buckingham and Christine McVie began writing songs to each other, like pages from their respective diaries. You had to feel rather sorry for John. Then Buckingham takes up the conversation again. Drug-taking was methodical when we got to LA. For me, it fitted right into the incense and candles and that stuff.
And I really imagined that it could overtake everything, never thinking in a million years that it would overtake me. It was music through chemistry. But it was helping us make the best music. Every so often, one or other member of the band would demand another hit. One day, engineer Ken Caillat substituted a dummy bag full of talcum powder.
But with no real marketing or promotion, it died a death. But Fleetwood Mac already had a female singer in Christine McVie, so his initial. There are plenty of crazy Fleetwood Mac stories, but none of them top the tales that swirled around the recording of the juggernaut Rumours. The addition of volatile couple Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham in brought Fleetwood Mac incredible success, but almost tore.
When it was next called for, he tipped the bag upside down and emptied the contents all over the floor. But such lighter moments were few and far between. Having spent a year making the album, the master tapes had been dragged across the machine heads a thousand times. In those pre-digital days, this had led to a marked degradation of the sound quality, particularly at the upper end of the register, and the band had to go back into the studio in LA to redub.
Initially, the group appeared oblivious to the power of what they had gone and done. Has melodic MOR soft-rock ever surged with such emotional discharge and human electricity? Has such a highly polished veneer ever been so dramatically juxtaposed with such a scalding cauldron of simmering tensions and seething passions?
What was going on between us created a resonance that goes beyond the music itself. You had these dialogues shooting back and forth about what was going down between us and we were chronicling every nuance of it. We had to play the hand out and people found it riveting. Released in February , Rumours topped the US album charts for six months.
The record sold 10 million in its first year and at its height in America was going platinum one million sales every 30 days. And the heady cocktail of success, drugs and more money than they knew how to spend left little space for reflection or time to slow down. Outside were parked a pair of matching Mercedes-Benz cars with license plates named after her pair of Lhasa Apsos.
Fleetwood bought a cliff-top house in Malibu and a fleet of vintage sports cars. Buckingham — who seemed the least impressed by the trappings of celebrity and money — bought a fine LA home which he shared with Rumours producer Richard Dashut, while John McVie divided his time between a foot schooner moored at Marina del Rey and a home in Beverly Hills. None of the band was reticent about flashing their cash. But she bought into the rich-and-famous lifestyle more enthusiastically than anyone, having been taught to spend money, she claims, during her affair with the notoriously ostentatious Don Henley.
I need to go to LA. I need to go now.
That was the biggest surprise. Everybody was angry, because Mick was married to a wonderful girl and had two wonderful children. I was horrified. I loved these people. I loved his family.
Within five months, Nicks had become stepmother to the child by marrying the father. The rest of the band were appalled, and Christine McVie admits she even refused to buy the couple a wedding present. Their misgivings were well-directed. Within eight months the couple were divorced. Touring for Fleetwood Mac by now meant private jets and all manner of preposterous demands. Hotels would be told to paint rooms pink and install grand pianos.
Fleetwood Mac's self-titled debut album was a no-frills blues album and was released by the Blue Horizon label in February Namespaces Article Talk. The Dance returned Fleetwood Mac to a superstar status they had not enjoyed since Tango in the Night. She also released solo albums. Mick Fleetwood musically held the whole emotional stew together with his steady, driving rhythms. Fleetwood Mac was an enormous hit in the U. Grandfather Nicks handcrafted a guitar for young Stevie and taught her well-known selections from the country music cannon.
White, like the one on the cover of Imagine, of course. Somewhere in the midst of the madness, the group managed to record further albums. Following Rumours was never going to be easy and the double album Tusk, released in November , met with distinctly mixed reactions. Again it took over a year to record and cost a million dollars — an unprecedented amount of money at the time. I wanted something that had a little more depth.
The title track employed a piece marching band. And the excess was equally gargantuan on a non-musical level. Exotic food delivered to the studio, crates of champagne. And it had to be the best, with no thought of what it cost. Really stupid. Somebody once said that with the money we spent on champagne on one night, they could have made an entire album. Ultimately, it went on to sell eight million copies.
Impressive for a double album, but in comparison to 25 million, a relative failure. Other band members were not slow to point the finger at Buckingham. There was open hostility. The initially disappointing sales of Tusk were boosted by a mammoth date world tour, on which every date was recorded for a live album. When a battle-weary Fleetwood Mac ended the Tusk tour at the Hollywood Bowl in late , they were physically and mentally drained and barely able to stand the sight of each other.
Nicks, Buckingham and Fleetwood all made solo albums. But when only the former was successful, accountants and record company executives were soon agitating for another Fleetwood Mac album, and the band reconvened to make Mirage. Released in , it was an unsatisfactory album that lacked either the raw emotion of Rumours or the runaway ambition which Buckingham had injected into Tusk.
It sounded like a record made for the sole and cynical purpose of sustaining the Fleetwood Mac brand. Lindsey arranged and made a song out of all the bits and pieces that we were putting down onto tape. Sessions at the Record Plant in Sausalito, California could be tedious affairs, with little for Nicks to do. To keep the boredom at bay — and to keep friction with Buckingham to a minimum — she often sought refuge in an unused studio down the hall that had been built for funk renegade Sly Stone.
By all accounts it was quite an inspiring space, done up in full-tilt Seventies style.