This year Fleetwood Mac’s iconic career making and record-breaking album Rumours turned the Big 4-0. The album is a classic, not just for breaking all sorts of records but also equally for documenting the soap opera that was going on behind the scenes. In celebration we’re going to throw it back take a look at the album (and the drama) that put them on the map.
Second Hand News kicks it off. This is one of a few songs that document the breakdown of the tumultuous relationship of Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham. They had been together since their teens but the drug fuelled touring schedule took its toll on the pair and their personal relationship quickly began to fall apart when they joined the band but their musical relationship remained intact. Dreams is Stevie Nicks comeback to this and to Lindsay Buckingham’s Go Your Own Way. You literally would have to be living under a rock to not have heard any of these songs on the radio once or twice. Or if you are an avid Formula 1 fan and then you will also be very familiar with The Chain, a song that has one of the most famous and instantly recognisable baselines. I would 10/10 recommended this for any road trip playlist.
Like any good soap opera the drama doesn’t end here; singer and song writer, Christine MacVie and bassist, John MacVie were married but split before the release in 1977. We all know break ups can be hard but imagine standing on stage and playing a song that details you ex-wife’s new relationship. Which is exactly what happened with John MacVie when it came to performing You Make Loving Fun. And here you were thinking that your last break up was a tough one.
Don’t Stop is probably one of the other most recognisable songs from the album and one of the more upbeat ones in their collection. Former US president Bill Clinton used this as his campaign song and after leaving the band almost 10 years before Lindsay Buckingham joined his former band mates to play this at Clinton’s Inauguration in 1993 and had been back in the band ever since. There are also a few hidden gems that don’t get as much credit as they deserve. Songbird and I Don’t Wanna Know are the two songs that definitely don’t get as much airplay as the aforementioned ones but they are just as good. And then you have Gold Dust Woman, which epitomises Stevie Nick’s bewitching musical style that she has became known for.
We can all learn a lot from Fleetwood Mac, the most obvious thing is to never get into business with your significant other. Taylor Swift may think she is the Queen of the Break-up song but she isn’t even in the same league as these guys. In a way we should be thankful that they were all so unlucky in love because we would never have heard one of the best albums ever made.
– Caitlin Young