Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Whatever happened to Fleetwood Mac?

Around the time I became interested in classic rock music, I decided to do some extensive research on Fleetwood Mac, always having liked their commercial music and curious as to their roots. You can sure as hell bet that I was surprised to find stuff like the Bob Welch era, you know, Hypnotized and all that, which is quite a departure from the well known stuff like Dreams and Don't Stop. Well, that shock was nothing compared to how I felt when I discovered English blues band Fleetwood Mac with Peter Green. I mean, they kicked ass! I love stuff like The Green Manalishi and all that, you know, just darn good classic British blues rock. Peter Green was one of the best blues guitarists England ever produced, which is quite the compliment.
But I guess the question many people are still asking is What the hell happened to Fleetwood Mac? How could this heavy blues band become famous for pop ballads? Well, in 1970 Peter Green basically went nutso and then quit the band. He was replaced by the American guitarist/songwriter Bob Welch, and around the same time John McVie married former Chicken Shack musician Christine Perfect. The music made by Christine and Bob changed the music's direction completely, guiding them away from their blues roots and towards a more melodic, pop-oriented song. And you know, in this case I'm not scoffing at them.They didn't sell out or anything, they just progressed into something new. When Bob Welch left, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham joined, and the band practically said goodbye to their roots forever as Buckingham and Nicks' music pushed them even further towards the mainstream.
There you go. For all the curious out there, this is essentially the career of Fleetwood Mac and how they evolved from Black Magic Woman (bet you didn't know they wrote it first, not Santana!) to Go Your Own Way. Enjoy the following recording of my personal favorite Fleetwood Mac song.

The Green Manalishi

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