Following my previous post, I got to thinking about another album I purchased in 1977 - Fleetwood Mac's "Rumours".
At the time of buying it, I was blissfully unaware of how the band was imploding, but just staggered at the brilliance and craftsmanship of the album. When I later heard about the difficulties that the band members were having with each other, it just seemed to me to raise both the band and album higher in my respect. How they were able to put aside their differences to produce such a work of beauty and quality is beyond me, but I am very grateful.
Again, like "Hotel California", it does seem to be an ageless LP. The songs and melodies have stood the test of time, and it is an LP that I've returned to many times over the years.
I've been a fan of Fleetwood Mac from the very start - and before! I was well into the Blues during the sixties, and in particular, John Mayall's Bluesbreakers in which Peter Green, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie were all members (and from which they were all eventually sacked).
In 1969, they released the album "The Pious Bird of Good Omen" which contained, along with a number of covers, Albatross composed by Peter Green - a stupendous guitar led instrumental which just about blew me away along with Jigsaw Puzzle Blues by Danny Kirwen, a guitarist who had joined in 1968. After a tour of the US supporting some of the blues greats like Buddy Guy and Willie Dixon, the early seventies saw them drift away from the blues - a pace of drift that increased once Peter Green left the band suffering schizophrenia brought on by a LSD spiked drink in Munich. I also lost a bit of interest at this time, and it was only hearing a couple of tracks from the 1976 "Fleetwood Mac" album, that I rekindled my interest in them. I had heard a Stevie Nicks/Lyndsey Buckingham LP which I liked, and hearing that they were now part of the band, decided to give them a listen.
"Rumours" was next, and I was hooked. It was brilliant and my first copy was played to death. I truly believe that the album marked their zenith as a band because nothing I've heard since has come close to the freshness and vibrancy of that album. Sure "Tusk" and "Tango In The Night" are very accomplished albums, but there is something extra about "Rumours" that the other albums didn't have, and it probably has something to do with the way, as people, they were falling apart, but, as musicians, they were able to come together.
Christine McVie explained that the title came from the fact that everyone was writing about everyone else - hence all the rumours! As far as I'm concerned, one great album, and 30 years old this year.