Are Fleetwood Mac still on tour
Bands who appear on stage again after 35 years in show business and say: "Look here, we're still there. We're now making 18 new songs and touring 40 cities"You can count it on one hand. For Fleetwood Mac, however, such behavior is almost characteristic. The troop was on the verge of disbanding several times and then regularly enjoyed great success.
In 1967 Mick Fleetwood, John McVie and Peter Green met at The Bluesbreakers. They found the blues band Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac. Although the combo is still in its infancy, the line-up changes constantly. Numerous musicians have played for Fleetwood Mac since its inception, the only constant members being the eponymous Mike Fleetwood and John McVie.
In 1967 they released "Fleetwood Mac" with slide guitarist Jeremy Spencer. The debut stayed in the UK charts for 13 months and brought the band their first number one hit "Albatross". With the rock albums "Then Play On" and "English Rose" Fleetwood Mac ended their career as a blues band in the late 1960s.
At the same time, Christine Perfect is the first woman to join the ranks. The singer and keyboard player married bassist John McVie shortly afterwards. After initial successes, Fleetwood Mac were getting deeper and deeper into the crisis at this time. Peter Green, the backbone of the band, cannot tolerate excessive use of hallucinogenic drugs and eventually separates from Fleetwood Mac.
After his departure, Fleetwood Mac released the moderately successful rock album "Kilin House" in 1970. When Jeremy Spencer suddenly disappears during a tour through the USA in 1971 and reappears with the sect "Children Of God", the band seems to have come to an end.
But above all, drummer Mick Fleetwood motivates his colleagues to keep going. In 1971 they increased their popularity in the USA with the pop-oriented album "Future Games" and the American guitarist Bob Welch.
Despite constant line-up changes, the band does not lose any of its productivity. After the album "Bare Trees" Danny Kirwan flies, replacing guitarist Bob Weston and Dave Walker. After just two albums - "Penguin" and "Mystery To Me" - these musicians leave the band again.
In 1974 Fleetwood Mac neglected their live performances in the USA because of constant arguments. Manager Clifford Davis then put together a few musicians and called them - tadaa! - Fleetwood Mac. American fans only get to see a fake of the band at the concerts. The real Fleetwood Macs win a lawsuit against Clifford Davis' management after a long struggle.
In view of this dispute, the name of the next record is indicative: "Heroes Are Hard To Find". With renewed energy, the band moved to California in 1974 and separated from Bob Welch (he committed suicide in 2012 at the age of 66).
This is the beginning of the most successful phase. The charismatic singer Stevie Nicks and the guitarist Lindsey Buckingham bring new momentum. With the next album "Fleetwood Mac" the troupe landed real commercial success for the first time. Singles like "Over My Head", "Rhiannon", and "Say You Love Me" achieve consistently high chart prices.
Despite its success, it looks bleak behind the scenes. Christine and John McVie split up, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham end their affair, Mick Fleetwood divorces his wife. In the music of this time, five talented musicians deal with their private problems: "Rumors" overshadows the success of all its predecessors in 1977 and, with 15 million copies sold, becomes one of the most successful records in music history. "Go Your Own Way", "Don't Stop" and "You Make Lovin Fun" are among the evergreens of pop music.
After a seven-month tour, Fleetwood Mac returned to the studio in 1979 for the album "Tusk". They do not repeat the success of "Rumors", but at least they achieve multiple platinum. After almost 15 years, the artists decide to go their separate ways for a while. Stevie Nicks had the greatest success with her solo record "Bella Donna".
After a reunion, "Mirage" was released in 1982 and received only mediocre reviews despite the hit singles "Hold Me" and "Gipsy". "Tango In The Night" (1987) turns out to be Lindsey Buckingham's farewell performance. He is replaced by guitarist Billy Burnette and Rick Vito after his departure.
The band's successful days now seem to be over for good. Internal quarrels repeatedly push the music into the background. In 1990, "Behind The Mask" was the last album on which Stevie Nicks played an active part. In 1993, Fleetwood Mac played in the classic line-up (Fleetwood, McVies, Buckingham and Nicks) for the last time in the inauguration of Bill Clinton, who used "Don't Stop" as the motto of his campaign.
Front woman Stevie Nicks also left the band in 1993. The following year Fleetwood Mac went on tour with Bekka Bramlett and Dave Mason and released "Time". In 1998, Fleetwood Mac's longest-serving musicians were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
After more than 35 years of groundbreaking rock music, nobody believes in a comeback anymore. But Fleetwood Mac once again surprised themselves and their numerous fans by announcing a new album and tour for April 2003. So it happens that Stevie Nicks, Mick Fleetwood, Lindsey Buckingham and John McVie are suddenly back on stage together.
In September 2004 a DVD of a recording of a tour concert at the Fleet Center in Boston will be released. Christine McVie also speaks up again this year. Sensible title of her solo album: "In The Meantime". From 2009 Fleetwood Mac will perform live again, initially without Christine McVie, from 2014 in the classic "Rumors" line-up. In April 2018, Lindsey Buckingham will be kicked out of the band, Mike Campbell (Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers) and Neil Finn (Crowded House) will replace him at the upcoming concerts in summer.
At the beginning of 2020, Peter Green's old homie Mick Fleetwood will initiate a tribute serenade for the founding member with a huge star line-up at the Palladium in London. A few days after the concert on February 26, 2020, the location will close for a long time due to the lockdown. So Mick can still honor his friend during his lifetime. Green dies in July 2020.
At the tribute concert, Christine McVie makes up for the fact that she was not part of the very first album in 1968 and takes over the vocals in the song "Looking For Somebody" from the Fleetwood Mac debut. She will be accompanied by Ricky Peterson on the Hammond organ, a jazz musician who likes to hang around with the WDR Big Band and who understands his craft in the Fleetwood Mac context. It is an enrichment for the entire performance. The recording of all 22 pieces appears on "Mick Fleetwood and Friends Celebrate The Music of Peter Green and The Early Years Of Fleetwood Mac" (2021). John McVie is missing. For this, and this is a small sensation, Jeremy Spencer, who got off in 1971, is on board.
With Buckingham's departure and Peter Green's death, the time seems to have come for a new chapter. The band's last hit, "Peacekeeper" (2003), was penned by Buckingham. However, the new members Mike Campbell and Neil Finn are exceptionally good songwriters. That gives hope ...
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