Rumours was the first Fleetwood Mac album I listened to and taped on a music cassette when I was a teenager many moons ago. So when I recently spotted it while browsing through vinyl records at a great “old-fashioned” record store not far from my house, I had to buy it!
Fleetwood Mac’s 11th studio album certainly doesn’t sound anything like the band’s origins in 1967 when Peter Green and Mick Fleetwood left John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers to form Fleetwood Mac, together with slide guitarist Jeremy Spencer and bassist Bob Brunning. Of course, the band’s transition to mainstream, pop-oriented rock had started with their eponymous album in 1975, featuring for the first time what would become Fleetwood Mac’s most successful line-up: Fleetwood, Lindsey Buckingham, Stevie Nicks, John McVie and Christine McVie.
More than 40 years after its release, Rumours still hasn’t lost any of its magic. The album produced four singles that charted in the Top 10 in the U.S., which remain staples on many pop rock radio stations to this day: Go Your Own Way, Dreams, Don’t Stop and You Make Loving Fun. Dreams was the most successful of the bunch, hitting the top of the Billboard Hot 100 and staying there for one week. Interestingly, the song was the band’s only No. 1 hit on that chart, selling more than a million copies.
Other album highlights include The Chain, the only song credited to all five members of the band, and Gold Dust Woman, one of three tunes that were solely written by Nicks. And then there is Never Going Back Again, a jewel written by Buckingham, which showcases his excellent acoustic guitar skills.
Speaking of Buckingham, in my opinion, he is one of the most remarkable guitarists who managed to develop his one signature style. There is really no one else who sounds like him! I was a bit surprised to see he was “only” ranked 100th in Rolling Stone’s 2011 list of The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time. After initially using Gibson and Fender guitars, Buckingham worked with guitar builder Rick Turner to create his own electric guitar, The Turner Model 1. He has used it ever since. Pretty cool in my book!
Earlier this month, Rolling Stone reported that Buckingham and Christine McVie are working on a duet album, which they are aiming to release in May. While it includes contributions from Fleetwood and bassist John McVie, the album will be released under the moniker Buckingham McVie. The same story also refers to a previous interview with Fleetwood, in which he confirmed the band had recorded new music since Christine McVie’s return in January 2014. But he added very little of that material includes Nicks, so for the time being, a new Fleetwood Mac album seems to remain, well, a rumour!
I’d like to finish this post with a great clip of Go Your Own Way, which is from the band’s Dance Tour ’97. BTW, I saw Fleetwood Mac in 2013 in New Jersey, just a few months before Christine McVie returned, and they sounded just as awesome as in the clip.