Real savage like!

A friend recently posed the question, “What is your favorite Fleetwood Mac album?” Considering that, with the occasional hiatus, the group has been touring since 1967 and has released 17 albums, it’s worth a pause for reflection.

Peter Green, who founded the band, came up with the name by combining the surnames of two of his former band mates with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, stalwart drummer Mick Fleetwood, who is the only original band member remaining and bassist John McVie (Fleetwood Mc?) who was not initially part of the group but who joined after the release of their first single.

Green had included McVie’s name in hopes of enticing him to leave Mayall for the new band, which he most certainly did. Keyboardist Christine Perfect was nearly there from the start too, first playing as a session musician and then becoming a permanent member of the band in 1970 after becoming Mrs. John McVie.

In Green’s days Fleetwood Mac was a popular British Blues band, scoring a huge hit with “Albatross”.  But musical tastes and band personnel changed (Green suffered from mental health ailments), and then changed again, and by 1974 Mr. Fleetwood and the McVies had come to join forces with Californians Lindsey Buckingham and his beloved, Stevie Nicks, who had toured and recorded as Buckingham-Nicks.

Now with a more pop oriented sound the two couples and a drummer released the eponymous “Fleewood Mac” album, which flew to Number One on the Billboard Charts in 1975 while sprinkling such hit singles through the airwaves as: “Over My Head”, “Say You Love Me”, “Landslide” and (taken by the sky) “Rhiannon” …

Unfortunately this would be the zenith for the romantically linked allies.  By the time Fleetwood Mac released its next album in 1977 the McVies had divorced, Buckingham and Nicks were living separate lives and even Mick Fleetwood had gone through a divorce. But their music provided a perfect outlet for all the emotional turmoil and “Rumors” won the Grammy Award for Album of the Year.  With tracks like “Go Your Own Way”, “Dreams”, “Don’t Stop” and “You Make Loving Fun” it would become one of the highest selling album of all time.

Which brings us to my friend’s question. Although the group survived all the turmoil and half a dozen albums followed, the mid ‘70s was clearly their prime. My favorite album? Gotta’ be “Fleetwood Mac”.  How about you?

One may then wonder about today’s selection, released in 1979 as part of the experimental double album “Tusk”. Written by Buckingham, yes the lyrics are rather bitter but listen to that primal beat!

Recorded in L.A.’s Dodger Stadium in collaboration with the USC Trojan Marching Band, “Tusk” (the album’s 19th track) holds the record for the highest number of musicians performing on a single, peaking at Number 8 on the Billboard charts and Number 6 in the UK.  The following year Buckingham, Nicks and Fleetwood personally presented the Trojan Band with a platinum disc during a college football game in the LA Coliseum.

 LISTEN TO TODAY’S SELECTION – Saturday 15 September

Tusk

 Why don’t you ask him if he’s going to stay?

Why don’t you ask him if he’s going away?

 Why don’t you tell me what’s going on?

Why don’t you tell me who’s on the phone?

Why don’t you ask him what’s going on?

Why don’t you ask him who’s the latest on his throne?

Don’t say that you love me!

Just tell me that you want me!

 Tusk!

Just say that you love me!

Don’t tell me that you…

 Real savage like!

Tusk! Tusk! Tusk! Tusk!

Tusk! Tusk! Tusk! Tusk!

Tusk! Tusk! Tusk! Tusk!

Tusk! Tusk! Tusk! Tusk!

Tusk!

 

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