Personalities | Fleetwood Mac | Sixties | Jazz & Blues

(Vocal/instrumental group, 1968–present)

Many fans who love Fleetwood Mac’s string of 1970s hits are unaware of their earlier blues explorations. The band came into being when guitarist Peter Green, drummer Mick Fleetwood and bassist John McVie broke away from John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers. In 1968, with Jeremy Spencer on second guitar, Fleetwood Mac debuted on Blue Horizon. A third guitarist, Danny Kirwan, joined in time for the band to gig in Chicago with Willie Dixon and Otis Spann. Their original tunes and covers of blues classics (e.g. ‘I Need Your Love So Bad’) testified to the band’s aptitude.

In 1970, after the release of the album Then Play On, Green became burned out on LSD and was replaced by keyboardist Christine Perfect. Then, during the 1971 tour, Spencer joined the Children Of God cult. The blues content of Fleetwood Mac’s music dwindled as they began to lean towards mainstream rock. By the time the band achieved superstar status in 1975, their blues days were over. The band has survived several personnel changes and break-ups, remaining a popular concert draw.

Styles & Forms | Sixties | Jazz & Blues
Personalities | Stan Getz | Sixties | Jazz & Blues

Source: The Definitive Illustrated Encyclopedia of Jazz & Blues, founding editor Howard Mandel


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