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Checking In With...Fleetwood Mac
Across the parking lot from Los Angeles' Third Encore studios stand a half-dozen storm troopers. They're Star Wars props, '70s icons brought back to life in the '90s. This seems fitting, since inside Third Encore, the five members of Fleetwood Mac's most popular lineup - Lindsey Buckingham, Stevie Nicks, Mick Fleetwood, and John and Christine McVie - are rehearsing together. Twenty years after Rumours, they're working on old hits and a few new songs for an MTV special to air in late summer, which will be recorded for an album, and, yes, a tour.
Even the band seems surprised to find itself together again, since, well, it has had some problems in the past, including drugs and a mess of public interdating and breakups. They've been together for only three weeks and so far, so good. "It hasn't gotten ugly yet," says Buckingham. But, adds Christine McVie, "You never know." At press time, the group had chosen one new tune: "Temporary One," a love song by McVie.
How did they get here? Fleetwood was working on Buckingham's record, Nicks came in, and later the McVies got involved. "Organic" is how Buckingham and Fleetwood describe the reunion. Today the quintet sits under hot lights for a TV interview. Then, more standing around. The band is wilting. Christine McVie gets in trouble for chewing gum. Fleetwood gets his forehead buffed. "I don't want to look like Nixon," he says.
Then they play. They start with "You Make Loving Fun." Something happens: They light up. By the time they kick into "Go Your Own Way," they just kill. Nicks and Buckingham beam at each other, Fleetwood pounds away on the drums, and the members of Fleetwood Mac look blissful.
After the set, the five sit together, relaxed and almost post-coital. "The easiest thing that this band does is play music," says Nicks, resplendent in a black swirly dress. "The hard part is all the stuff that goes on outside of this room. If we spent most of our time here, we'd never have any problems."
"Just to hear your voice with mine and Stevie's," says Christine McVie to Buckingham. "It just blows me away. I get goose bumps the size of chickens' eggs." -- Jill Hamilton