Friday, August 10, 2012

183 Fleetwood Mac. I prefer their old stuff

Album: Fleetwood Mac
Artist: Fleetwood Mac
Genre: Pop
Year: 1975


1. Monday Morning
2. Warm Ways
3. Blue Letter
4. Rhiannon
5. Over My Head
6. Crystal
7. Say You Love Me
8. Landslide
9. World Turning
10. Sugar Daddy
11. I'm So Afraid

People are often amazed when I say I'm a huge fan of Fleetwood mac. "You don't strike me as a fan of girly pop" to which I respond with "You're correct but here's the thing..." actually I don't respond that way I usually get annoyed and a bit ranty and embarrassing.

The truth is that Fleetwood Mac make me a bit angry.

Too few people know that The Mac started back in the sixties with a different line up. They still featured Mick Fleetwood on drums and John McVie on bass but there were no female vocalists and in their place was a legend named Peter Green.  Green was a brilliant blues player. He was regularly placed in the same category as Eric Clapton and was revered and loved by Jerry Garcia, Duane Allman and others. Under his guidance Fleetwood Mac were a truly magnificent blues-based rock and roll band. They released some fantastic albums, wrote some great original material (Oh Well is just perfect and Black Magic Woman is originally a Mac composition) and performed some outstanding shows (buy The Boston Tea Party box set- buy it now!)

Fleetwood Mac were seriously outstanding and should have gone on forever. Sadly it wasn't to be. Green didn't handle LSD all that well and in the early seventies he left the band and then left polite society for a while, living as a recluse before being coaxed back to music in the late nineties. The band floundered around without him for a while until they finally found a new guitarist and two female vocalists to fill the void and they sold out.

I hate the term "sold out" but it actually fits in this case. Fleetwood is a great blues drummer and McVie is a fine bass player. They both started in blues bands and love the genre first and foremost (as Fleetwood's pet projects prove) but they realised the big money was in pop. They traded in the music that they loved in order to become the tedious backing rhythm outfit for pop singers.

I'm not for a second saying Lindsey Buckingham, Stevie Nicks and Chrissie McVie aren't talented but I can't listen to them without picturing Fleetwood behind his drums playing a dull beat and wistfully dreaming of the old days when he used to fire up on an intense jam in which he was part of a group and not just keeping time for his friend's wife.

If you love Rhiannon then you will probably love the rest of this album (and know it already) but if you love good blues music played by talented musicians I urge you to check out the original line up. You won't be disappointed.

Influenced by: Money
Influenced: Girly pop

Highlight: The cover (what the hell is going on there)
Lowlight: Sugar Daddy

Favourite Amazon Customer Review Quote: "I have a decent stereo (NAD S500i CD player, NAD S300 integrated amp, Dynaudio Contour 1.3 Mark II speakers and a Velodyne FSR-10 sub), and most well-done remasters sound wonderful on it, but these three recordings are extremely bright and sibilant; harsh really."

-Where's another place I can boast about my stereo? I know: Amazon.

So do you want the old Mac Back or do you cut the new Mac some slack? Let me know below.

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