Print, Fleetwood Mulls Another Mac Tour

Addicted to Noise/ site, May 23, 1998

Fleetwood Mulls Another Mac Tour

Singer/keyboardist Christine McVie is currently not interesting in going on the road again.

Contributing Editor Frank Tortorici reports:

NEW YORK -- Mick Fleetwood, jocular drummer for Fleetwood Mac, was a combination of hope and despair as he sat in the offices of Atlantic Records.

On one hand, the band was revitalized by the success of 1997's The Dance reunion album and tour. But due to one member's reluctance to get back on the road, they may not be touring again. At least not with the quintessential Mac lineup.

"Lindsey Buckingham has had a dose of rock 'n' roll," said Fleetwood of the Mac's guitarist/songwriter and principal producer. "He can't wait to get out on the road."

Dressed simply in jeans and a white dress shirt, Fleetwood was discussing the renewed interest in Fleetwood Mac. Buckingham's continued desire to tour is good news for the band, which suffered his acrimonious departure in the past.

But Fleetwood was disheartened because the band's singer/keyboardist Christine McVie made a recent decision to not participate in any Fleetwood Mac touring for now.

Although Fleetwood, Buckingham, bass player John McVie and singer Stevie Nicks are chomping at the bit to make more Mac music, they aren't about to simply discount the feelings of a longtime partner and friend.

"It's a two-way thing really," said Fleetwood. "We're being respectful. We've all worked very hard this year. It's been great, but Christine has made it clear she's not into touring." Fleetwood was in the middle of interviews to promote his current project, Legacy: A Tribute to Fleetwood Mac's Rumours, which was recently released on Atlantic Records. As executive producer, he was pleased with the enthusiasm shown by the young rockers on the CD who did versions of Mac classics from the band's vintage Rumours album, such as Jewel's cover of "You Make Loving Fun" (RealAudio excerpt). But his thoughts were very much with his own band.

"Four of us hope so," said Fleetwood, when asked about the likelihood of a future project by the most successful version of the band. "[Fans] could all write in ... start sending begging letters to Chris."

If all of this sounds familiar with regard to Fleetwood Mac, it's because the band went through the same thing exactly 10 years ago with Buckingham. Having produced the top 5 Fleetwood Mac album Tango In The Night in 1987, the notoriously intense guitarist dropped the bomb that he would not support the release on the road. Fleetwood answered by replacing Buckingham with two guitarists, Rick Vito and Billy Burnette, and staging not one, but two, successful tours without him.

This later incarnation of the band did not produce spectacular results on record though. Perhaps this is what's stalling Fleetwood now. Though Christine McVie hasn't completely nixed recording with the band, her absence on tour would likely tamper with the magical cohesion of the group. "[The Dance] worked for everyone," Fleetwood said. "John and I are like pigs in shit. We can't play without a band. But [now] Chris doesn't enjoy the road. Lindsey, though, has been in the studio too long. He pulled out of the mainstream for personal reasons and because of the horrors of rock 'n' roll. But now, that's all in control. The great thing is that he has come out of [recording The Dance and touring] with the credibility and acknowledgement for his role in the band that he's never really had."

Fleetwood is referring to the incredible attention that frontwoman Nicks has always received, despite her ex-lover Buckingham's creative brilliance in the studio. "I don't think this would have all happened for Lindsey if he hadn't come back to Fleetwood Mac," Fleetwood added.

All in all, Fleetwood remains positive. When asked about the lack of an all-star jam when Fleetwood Mac was inducted this year at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremonies, Fleetwood offered a startlingly hopeful scenario involving the other big-name 1998 inductee: "It's certainly been spoken about that we would go on the road with The Eagles. That would be the coup of coups, if we did stadiums."

Just in case future plans with the band don't pan out, he is not without other ideas. "I don't know when it will be, but I have a very personal yen to put out a strange [solo] album with poetry and weird rhythmic things," Fleetwood concluded. "I can sing. I'll hone it. And there are things I've written that I haven't put music to. Would I dare put that out?"

Thanks to Frank Tortorici (the author) for bringing this to our attention.