Hear­ing Ru­mours

It was per­haps the great­est break- up record of all time, re­ports Kathy Mc­Cabe

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - FRONT PAGE -

MORE than 35 years ago, Fleet­wood Mac forged Ru­mours in the grips of re­la­tion­ship im­plo­sions med­i­cated by sub­stance abuse.

As the an­niver­sary is marked by the req­ui­site reis­sue, even band founder Mick Fleet­wood shakes his head at how the band man­aged to write and record one of the great­est break- up al­bums of all time in the midst of such heartache.

Th­ese days, as they pre­pare to em­bark on a world tour, the lanky drum­mer and his band­mates Ste­vie Nicks, Lind­sey Buck­ing­ham and John McVie share that com­fort­able af­fec­tion which comes with the sur­vival of such a long mar­riage.

Fleet­wood says it is has been bit­ter­sweet at times to cast his mind back to the record­ing of Ru­mours as the re­la­tion­ships of McVie and wife Chris­tine, and Nicks and Buck­ing­ham dis­in­te­grated.

‘‘ That was life. It wouldn’t have been the same al­bum,’’ he says. ‘‘ The songs wouldn’t have res­onated the way they still do – we were all sad. We weren’t in hate and loathing.

‘‘ This was a bunch of peo­ple who adored each other, who grew out of love, who couldn’t live with each other, who have this funny hang­over of that time still in their lives.’’

Fleet­wood knew the record would never get made un­less the five mu­si­cians could find a way to co- ex­ist. So he booked the Record Plant stu­dios in Sausal­ito, Cal­i­for­nia, and shut the band away for a good part of 1976.

‘‘ We were five peo­ple who were hope­lessly sad and joined at the hip. Ste­vie and Lind­sey were on the rocks and Lind­sey es­pe­cially was hav­ing a hard time ex­tri­cat­ing him­self from the re­la­tion­ship and work­ing and be­ing a mu­si­cal part­ner to the love of his life,’’ Fleet­wood re­calls.

‘‘ My wife then went off with one of my best friends; at least I was spared hav­ing to work with her.

‘‘ Our man­ager would call each week ask­ing if we were still in busi­ness. He was wait­ing for me to say it was all over. But there, all we had was the mu­sic.’’

The 35th an­niver­sary edi­tion of Ru­mours is look­ing likely to head back into the top 10 charts world­wide. Many claim it to be the per­fect col­lec­tion of pop- rock songs with a darkly melan­cholic un­der­belly.

News of a Fleet­wood Mac world tour sent their fans into an on­line frenzy late last year with an Aus­tralian leg likely for late this year or early 2014.

RU­MOURS, THE 35TH AN­NIVER­SARY Out now MAC DADDY: Fleet­wood Mac drum­mer and founder Mick Fleet­wood and ( in­set) the band in their prime, from left, John McVie, Chris­tine

McVie, Mick Fleet­wood, Lind­sey Buck­ing­ham and

Ste­vie Nicks.

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