Feb 162010

A recent post by an otherwise well-respected Townsman in another, unnamed forum (for shame!) has prodded me into action. This Hall member took the time to “join” a “group” professing their admiration for the works of Lindsey Buckingham. Now, we’ve discussed Lindsey in the Hall before, but I feel it’s time for folks to take a stand on this issue. I’m looking for a digital answer, people. No pipe-tamping, no donning of the lab coat, no dithering over shades of gray. Summon all the strength you possess and CHOOSE SIDES! Are you FOR or AGAINST Lindsey Buckingham?


  76 Responses to “CHOOSE SIDES! Lindsey Buckingham”

  1. I’m AGAINST!
    He was much better when he was Bob Welch.

  2. I am FOR!
    Holiday RO-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-OAD!
    he’s a rich man’s Kenny Loggins!

  3. 2000 Man

    I’m for him. I liked him better when he was Bob Welch too, but I like him just fine as Lindsay Buckingham. I saw them back on the Tusk tour, and I thought it was a great show. They were WAY better than opening act Christopher Cross. Plus, having ignored them for so long because of over saturation, I’ve actually been liking them a bit lately. When I feel nostalgic, anyway. I don’t usually listen to music for nostalgic purposes, but Fleetwood Mac seems to fill the bill reasonably well. It doesn’t offend me.

  4. For.

    Say what you will about his annoying personality and style, the guy understands the crucial importance of a rhythm section and knows how to create subtle, layered pop that holds up over time. Personally, he’s probably a wanker, but that’s just not relevant to me.

  5. hrrundivbakshi

    For the record, I am FOR Lindsey Buckingham. The world needs more over-ambitious, frequently failing pop auteurs. (See: Prince, Terence Trent D’Arby, etc.)

  6. FOR.

    Shiny pop hooks are a great thing, and he’s got ’em. But even beyond that, the man can play. I’ve got a bootleg of 70s era Mac with Buckingham ripping through “Oh Well” with so much force, it would have rendered the voices in Peter Green’s head speechless.

  7. For. He’s committed his share of rock crimes, sure, but, yes Hrrundi, he was a fine, fuzzy-haired pop control freak in his day, and he brought out the best in the other Mac members to boot.

  8. Mr. Moderator

    The solo stuff I’ve heard by him sucks, but I like my share of Fleetwood Mac and his role in it. Unless you’re asking us to get personal and pick on him for how he comes off in interviews or react to the “genius” nonsense, what’s the controversy?

  9. What’s all this “when Lindsey Buckingham was Bob Welch” nonsense?

    Fleetwood Mac was a great group in the days of Peter Green. That’s when it ended and ever single individual that was ever associated with that group has failed miserably ever sense. JMO.

    Lindsey Buckingham = FAIL

    At least Bob Welch…well on the other hand, he’s a huge fail too.

  10. BigSteve

    He’s fine in Fleetwood Mac, where his songs have the great advantage of not being Stevie Nicks songs. People kept trying to sell me on his solo stuff, and I really tried and failed to get into it. The last one I heard was whichever one was based around varispeed recording. That was too eggheaded even for me, and I said no mas.

    Remember when he cut his hair and the absence of the poodle cut was interpreted as ‘going new wave’? L.A., so much to answer for….

  11. hrrundivbakshi

    The CHOOSE SIDES exercise forces us to take a long look at the elements in the “good” and “bad” columns of an artist’s career, and issue a summary judgment based on what we find there. I suggest that you’re being lazy about this examination — unless you really think his efforts with the Mac absolve him from albums and albums of stuff that I *know* you can’t stand. How much do you like “Rumours,” anyway? How much of “Tusk,” Lindsey’s great Mac effort, do you really enjoy? Are your positive Mac vibes really enough to sustain your willingness to don the 1970s man-perm wig on Buckingham’s behalf?

    I submit to you, Mr. Mod, that your entire testimony is a PACK OF LIES!

  12. hrrundivbakshi

    Stop dithering, BigSteve! Are you FOR or AGAINST?

  13. Mr. Moderator

    I’m FOR the humble contributions of Lindsey Buckingham in Fleetwood Mac. He was a very good producer, tasteful musician, and singer of one of my favorite Mac song, “Go Your Own Way,” complete with one of the most dated lines ever, the one about “shacking up.”

    I’m AGAINST the assholes who prop him up as some kind of genius just because he pretends he’s KEEE-RAAAA-ZZZY and he wrote an unlistenable song or two in praise of all the bad shit the drug-addled Brian Wilson tried to do post-Pet Sounds and the awesome “Good Vibrations” single. It’s bad enough that Buckingham wants to identify himself as a KEEE-RAAAA-ZZZY artist; it’s much worse that anyone would want to identify themselves as a would-be KEEE-RAAAA-ZZZY artist.

    Baggage, unlistenable solo albums, modern-day interviews that sound more like a chat with a semi-hip lawyer than a musician aside, I’m FOR Buckingham. Beside, he had Nicks in her prime. That’s got to count for something. If he slept with Prime Rondstadt as well then all is forgiven.

  14. For.

    Killer guitar player. Tusk has a lot of cool deep tracks, most of them by LB.

  15. BigSteve

    If he had died or retired after Tusk, I’d probably vote For, but the weight of everything afterwards pushes me into the Against column.

  16. I’m for him.

    I’ve always thought that he was an underrated guitarist, but more importantly, that trio of Mac records between the self-titled to Tusk are all pretty GREAT records. I had a pretty unhealthy obsession with Rumours for about a year and I still crank “Go Your Own Way” every time I hear it.

    The dude may well be a total blowhard and I’ve not had the bravery to dip into his solo records, but I think he was a good compliment to the Mac during the late 70s.


  17. bostonhistorian

    Completely inconsequential in my book, so neither. It’s as if he doesn’t exist.

  18. FOR

    Big Love (acoustic)
    Never Going Back Again
    Go Insane


    Fleetwood Mac songs I’ve heard 100,000 times

    Overall – FOR!

  19. misterioso

    Despite the absolute greatness, even after 30+ years of overexposure, of “Go Your Own Way,” which will never wear out its welcome, against. Certainly post-Tusk, at least, he is an absolute snooze and, frankly, I am not exactly wearing out my copy of Tusk, either. Against. Against. Against.

  20. “Completely inconsequential in my book, so neither. It’s as if he doesn’t exist.”

    Man, I like this! Spot on. LB was a meaningless twit who hasn’t ever contributed anything of substance to Rock music. Fleetwood Mac post Green was an unidentifiable superficial band that turned out FM radio designer music factory. They had no more similarity to the real Fleetwood Mac than Nat King Cole did with Little Richard. No integrity.

  21. BigSteve

    One of the mysteries of pop music is that a lack of integrity is not necessarily an impediment to making great records.

  22. Mr. Moderator

    In this context, at least, I’ve got to back BigSteve on his comment re: lack of integrity. As an offshoot to this more-meaningful-than-I’d-intially understood thread, can we honestly rank the three main eras of Fleetwood Mac: broadly, the Peter Green era; what we’ll call the Bob Welch era; and the Buckingham-Nicks era? My apologies to any in-between eras I’ve glossed over and the one constant era, the Fleetwood-McVie era.

    To me, the Buckingham-Nicks’ soft-rock explosion era is by far the most meaningful version of the band! This may speak to the fact that I’m not a giant Fleetwood Mac fan (I consider the eponymous album and Rumours somewhere between Carole King’s Tapestry and Paul Simon’s ’70s solo career, in terms of artistic value and my personal listening pleasure), but a few years ago I got a box set of all that Peter Green-era blooz stuff, and it’s fine for background music while I work, but for the most part it’s the tired British blooz-rock I’ve avoided my whole life. If white guys aren’t going to speed up da blooz the way The Yardbirds did I have little time for it. I’ll take the hit on my rock credibility for admitting this. So, I’d rank the Mac eras as follows:

    1. Buckingham-Nicks era (not even including the legendary Tusk, which I never got when a friend played it for me a few times in college)

    2. Bob Welch era solely on the strength of the original version of “Sentimental Lady,” which would have been the second-best song from the Buckingham-Nicks era, had Welch stayed in the band, behind Christine McVie’s “Over My Head”

    3. The Peter Green era, which admittedly would have benefitted from more original, mostly instrumental songs and less blooz covers

  23. Truth is, I agree with BigSteve with respect to integrity. Integrity was really the wrong word, or maybe it was the right word but for the wrong reasons.

    That’s truly what makes you guys better musical judges or critics than me. A person such as myself is too philosophically closed minded with respect to pop music.

    Honestly, I just don’t care for the post Peter Green Fleetwood Mac. In fact I can’t tolerate Stevie Nicks. The biggest problem is air play. Man if I hear White Winged Dove or Go Your Own Way or for God’s sake please don’t let me hear “You Make Loving Fun” one more time. I am truly surprised that no one has gone completely psychotic as a result of that one tune with the puppy barking.

    I am very serious about music. That’s my problem. I can’t even listen to music without becoming devoured by it. I NEVER or at best rarely use music as back ground filler by choice. I sometimes have to within the work environment and let me tell you that it disgusts me to hear any song over played to the point of an internal Ad nauseam.

    Music to me is a delicacy of tremendous variety. Too much of anything ruins the epicurean experience. It turns possible medicine into poison and turns delicious food into a nightmare that we most hope to never be confronted by again.

    Such is the stuff Fleetwood Mac is made of.

  24. Mr. Moderator

    writehearnow, to varying degrees, I’m sure a lot of us know how you feel. That’s one of the reasons we’re here. You can’t get all worked up over Lindsey Fuckingham or Doug Meiger out in the everyday world, not without being shunned, that is, if you’re remotely understood.

  25. misterioso

    I had avoided the Peter Green-era FM for many years, fearing it would be incredibly dull British blues rock. Finally, I got a compilation on lp and later on cd. I enjoyed it rather more than I thought I would, but having said that, a lot of it is dull British blues rock. I much prefer, indeed, the “classic era” Buckingham-Nicks version of the band, 1975-80 or thereabouts. This does not mean I especially like either Buckingham or Nicks, as such. But for a few years, it worked really well for what it was.

  26. I got to state that there is more. Much more, but it’s typical stuff most likely of no greater than ego depth.

    quick examples

    The Beatles & Elton John of whom I would categorize myself as not being tremendous fans of either.

    Something about this pop music, albeit extremely played, is utterly magical. I never get tired of certain songs. It helps that I don’t listen to the radio, but have you ever stopped to think about the Beatles or Elton John’s lyrics? There is nothing weak or truly “lost on the emotional moment” about them. The are HUGE and yet exacting. They take on such an appreciable identity, complete with marker rich memories that just seem to live along side you.

    This is the difference between the Fleetwood Mac and the aforementioned artist’s output to me.

  27. writehearnow, we are now entering subjective territory. Fleetwood Mac, even at their most tortured, veered well away from the sappy sentiments that way too much of Elton John’s work embraces and promotes. And the Beatles had their share of cringeworthy moments too.

    Fleetwood Mac did not seem to feel the need to over-dramatize their collapsing personal lives, which has been well-documented. That is not to say they score points for their “backstory” (bad!), but that they wrote intelligent, cool songs in the midst of the turmoil (good!). It could be argued that the drugs perhaps helped.

  28. general slocum

    Who is this guy? “He’s the guitar player in Fleetwood Mac.” Oh.

    Does that make me against? You decide, Hrrundivie. But we’ve finally found an issue on which you provide an answer! Granted, a third-tier non-issue, but still it’s something to be able to take a stand!

  29. Mr. Moderator

    dr john wrote:

    Fleetwood Mac, even at their most tortured, veered well away from the sappy sentiments that way too much of Elton John’s work embraces…

    Huh (not that I really have big beef with most of what you say here – but you know it’s fun to don the Pince Nez), but what’s “Don’t Stop”?

    Fleetwood Mac did not seem to feel the need to over-dramatize their collapsing personal lives, which has been well-documented.

    Isn’t that what most of their songs do? I don’t get it – they sing of collapsing relationships, collapsing lives due to cocaine (that “Snowblind” song, or whatever the “touching” Nicks ballad from Tusk, I believe, is called – not to mention “God Dust Woman,” or whatever that number Courtney Love felt the need to poop on is called. And what’s wrong with songs about any of these subjects? Maybe there are deep cuts from Tusk that are more subtle, but the hits that immediately come to mind seems as straightforward and “personal” as anything The Beatles did.

    What I really find mindblowing is writehearnow seeing the lyrics of Bernie Taupin and The Beatles in a similar vein. Maybe he’s onto something, and if so this might change how I feel about the lyrics of The Beatles! I don’t mind most Elton John lyrics, but I usually don’t get a lot out of them.

    general slocum, nice dig on this thread’s sponsor! It was a long time coming. You know I love you, HVB.

  30. Go Your Own Way is a cool song.

    Stevie Nicks used to be major Hot.

    That’s the extent of my interest.

  31. FOR
    But I can forgive a lot if I really like somebody’s work, and I really like FM,Rumors and Tusk, and I credit him for whipping that band into shape for those three albums.

    I couldn’t care less about Peter Green, Danny Kirwin, etc. More white guy blues and an uncredited rewrite of Howlin’ Wolf’s Whose Been Talkin? You can keep it.

  32. 2000 Man

    Yeah, I like that white boy blues, too. I just think Fleetwood Mac started getting a little direction to their sound with Bob Welch,and then found a guy that could really pull it all together.

    I can’t say I care much for his solo career, but hey, I’m definitely FOR Mick Jagger and his solo career is laughably bad. What Buckingham did right, he did really right. I just ignore the stuff I think sucks (much like I do with the Peter Green era).

    Bernie Taupin’s lyrics leave a lot to be desired, if you ask me. Philadelphia Freedom always made my skin crawl, and Crocodile Rock is pretty basic. But who am I to judge lyrics when I think Wooly Bully is brilliant? Elton and Fleetwood Mac both made it as big as they did because they wrote catchy songs and their lyrics were just less than pointless enough that anyone could take them to mean whatever they wanted.

  33. The Beatles & Elton John’s lyrics:

    Sorry, didn’t mean to infer that they were parallel other than the way that both engage me as a listener without preying on my emotional state of being.

    I see them as both charged with common enough emotion all right, but rather than beg audience as if to impart wisdom to the feeble, they engage the imagination of listener via personal reflection.

    I see the lyrics of one (FM) as being far more so dialog centric and the other (B & EJ)to be far more pituresque and socially reiterative.

    Good heavens…I just got it and I am not talking about The Knack. Of course! Why didn’t I think of it before as it’s all quite simple.

    Fleetwood Mac appeals to emotion as engaged or treated by the the left half of the brain via straight forward dialog. The Beatles and Elton are most of the time coming from the right half via allegory, imagery and drama.

    That’s the biggest reason that I find their (FM) pop tunes annoying via the overt repetition that I delicately alluded to earlier. I’m a control freak and those mental midgets are telling me what to do over and over like they think they’re Ann Landers or something.

    Stevie Nicks however is quite image oriented and deserves a great deal of credit. Just listen to the song Gypsy, which I feel is the best tune she or later period Fleetwood Mac ever did, and try and not see the images that pervade your mind as she sings. Utter magic and certainly beyond the typical FM pop. An incredibly moving song for certain. One that clearly demonstrates that pretty much anything that Buckingham did whatsoever, by comparison, paled completely.

  34. I don’t want to come off as too much of a purist here, because I’m not, but it’s pretty funny that Peter Green gets “integrity” points from people for playing the half tone deaf blooz of the early Mac.

    I mean, I can sort of dig some of the blooz, as long as one doesn’t take its hamfistedness too seriously, and Green is less comic than, say, Humble Pie, but integrity? For being a white guy doing second-rate not quite imitations of another musical form (note: I do understand that blooz is rock and not blues, and needs to be considered accordingly). I mean, like the music or not, but on those grounds? Just because he didn’t have the success of the later Mac, he becomes a purist? Can somebody explain to me why Green deserves that reputation? I just don’t see it, myself.

  35. BigSteve

    I don’t think I can convince any of you to go back and listen to early Fleetwood Mac, but it’s just not true that the Peter Green version of the band played only ‘blooz.’ Early on they played blues, but look at their most famous songs — Oh Well, Albatross, Black Magic Woman, Rattlesnake Shake — these are hardly standard blues songs. I think maybe people have heard the stuff released as Blues Jam in Chicago and thought it’s typical, but it’s not.

  36. Meh.

    Since I have to choose sides, I’ll let him slide. He’s my second “Fav” singer and I like “Second Hand News” and “Monday Morning”, but he is a not-so-close second to my favorite person in the band – Christine McVie. IMHO – she is the MVP in the band.

  37. Mr. Moderator

    andyr, I never knew you felt the same way about Christine McVie. We should start a band one of these days.

  38. The integrity thing is not aimed at musical preference. It’s aimed at continuing the name Fleetwood Mac under so many different hats. That’s the reference to integrity. Integrity speaks of the defense and proclamation of a sole artistic vision. It’s the artistic opposite of reinvention.

    When someone like Mike Bloomfield or Peter Green chooses the Blues genre as an influential medium based on a natural level of admiration unique to themselves, they aren’t attempting to reinvent the Blues. Nor are they sacrificing any form of integrity. It’s just the type of music that they are playing and if anything qualifies their integrity as artists in doing so.

    But I really would like to second the false notion of Peter Green just being represent of some “white man’s blooze band”. That’s utterly ignorant and frankly only serves to indicate those with such pseudo foredrawn conclusions really don’t know what they are on about to begin with.

    It’s bad enough to make such a mistake let alone confuse UK Blues Rock with both US suburban and rural psychedelic tinged Blooze.

  39. McVie always sings those “I’m so glad to be destroyed by you; you’re so wonderful even though you suck” songs. I don’t mind them to break up the rest of the tunes, but the star of the band? No. Great voice, but the songwriting ain’t so hot.

  40. I’ve never denied that I was “utterly ignorant”. But I still don’t like white guy blues. In fact, I don’t really like any blues (or jazz or country for that matter) after about 1962 or so.

    And Mwall nails it about McVie.

  41. Mr. Moderator

    As for any “ignorant” charges of early FM getting stuck in da blooz, remember, I was the one who said I wish the early version of the band had done more originals in the more folk-blues style they were capable of doing very well. I know they did music other than covers of Chicago blues, but they did do a lot of Chicago blues, didn’t they? It’s too bad they did have more of a melodic sense early on or they could have been like a bluesier Fairport Convention.

  42. w/h/n, I think most bands shift between the two types of lyrics. Dylan certainly did, and some of the best Beatles songs, for example, Revolution, take a more direct approach.

    And, Mod, I don’t find “Don’t Stop” sappy. It’s rather cheery (which may bother some), but for me it plugs into the same vibe as pre-crackup Beach Boys.

    And, I’ll say it again, there’s a sense of realism about the songwriting that I really like (and seems to get overlooked). They didn’t pull any punches, but they also didn’t go into histrionic mode, like, say Roger Waters on The Wall–and everything after that.

    And McVie does have a great song, “You Make Loving Fun,” that doesn’t rip on the love interest being addressed.

  43. Even “You Make Loving Fun” has a kind of passive, “you’re in the driver’s seat, daddy,” kind of approach, Dr. J.

    I don’t hate that; it’s especially interesting as counterpoint to the often more aggressive/assertive/persona-oriented Stevie Nicks songs. It gives the band a more mixed approach. But to prefer it to Nicks strikes me as a little too easy, although I’m sure I’m as guilty as any guy of liking songs in which the girl says in a pleasing melodious voices that I can do with her whatever I damn well please. Nick’s voice is harsher, more original and individual, as well as probably less technically refined.

  44. Mr. Moderator

    mwall wrote, regarding the preference for Christine McVie’s songs over Stevie Nicks’ songs:

    But to prefer it to Nicks strikes me as a little too easy

    Dude, do you wear steel wool underwear because boxers are “too easy?” Is the only reason you chew your food rather than swallow it whole because swallowing would be “too easy?” You’re basically making the argument, if I get you right, that a person like me prefers McVie’s songs and lyrical point of view because she projects a more submissive, accommodating, “old fashioned” woman who’ll be a drunkard’s dream or whatever, right? Whereas the likes of you and your fellow advanced males prefer Nicks because she represents the challenge of accepting an untamed witch as an equal, or something like that, right? I say, that way of thinking about this issue, if this is in fact where you’re going, is TOO EASY.

    One of my favorite women singers is the very “old fashioned” Dionne Warwick. The reason I love what she puts across with her voice and the music of Bacharach and David is not really that she represents some kind of Ideal Woman for me but rather her music represents an emotional state that *I* connect with directly. Likewise Christine McVie’s emotional stance, which you characterize well, is one I connect with on a personal level. I’ve got a “soft” and “accommodating” side to me, I’m not afraid to admit, that’s as valid as some other music lover’s identification with the “harsher, more original and individual” side one may connect with in the music of Nicks.

    Hey, I’m all for thinking my own tastes are aesthetically “better” or “more refined” than someone else’s, but sometimes we connect on emotional levels that are all valid, no?

  45. Mr. Moderator

    PS – And don’t think I’m not guilty of confusing such issues now and then!

  46. Actually, Mod, I don’t think anyone has to be considering the issue on the conscious level you’re talking about. But I still think it’s there.

    That said, I suppose I’ll have to accept your POV that you like McVie’s songs because you identify with her as singing them to someone as opposed to as a man who she is singing them to. I mean, I have to accept it, but I don’t entirely buy it, but obviously you have every right to assert that you relate to how she feels and not to the guy who’s being told how great he is.

    And yes, Nick’s songs are tougher, more biting, more independent, and god knows more flaky. I like them for the first three of those reasons and have very mixed feelings about the fourth.

  47. Ok, sorry about the ignorant references. That was a bit harsh but for Pete’s (not Green related) sake, brush up on your music history. A good amount of what Peter Green did, with respect to his FM offerings, were not even Blues Rock. That was his best stuff!

    That’s like saying Alvin Lee was a Jazzer because there was a heavy Jazz influence contained in what he played.

    The song Revolution is not likened to that from an advise column writer to inquiring individuals as is the case with many FM tunes. It’s a very fixed social commentary and definitely invokes reflection on the part of the listener. It’s directed at the futile concept of political protest. It could be sub titled “Sex or Politics: To whom would you prefer to owe your energies spent?”

    Q: When you think about the song Revolution, what’s the first thing that pops into your mind?

    A: Chairman Mao (and possibly some heavy breathing)

    Mod: The dirty vocals of Stevie Nicks can be extremely grating on the soul it’s true. But at the same time it does work for her providing she keeps it real. My advise to her would be to leave the doves alone and concentrate on the sunlight and paper flowers.

    You have to admit that few have ever done the “damaged goods” as well as she.

  48. This sure sounds like advice to me:

    “But if you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao, you ain’t gonna make it with anyone anyhow.”

  49. Mr. Moderator

    Can we take a second to discuss the elephant in the room? In the still image that appears on the YouTube clip that HVB posted to kick off this thread, doesn’t Lindsey Buckingham look like a cross between Mickey Dolenz and Robert Blake? Talk about gaining a new perspective on an artist through Rock Town Hall!

  50. You’re right, but it’s offered in a reflective and picturesque way, not for instance like a far more direct and logic bound approach in,

    “don’t stop thinking about tomorrow”

    It’s true that by this time Lennon was well on his way to loosing it, but it still had a far from over bearing feel to it.

    I think it’s more of an observation than it is advice anyhow.

    It’s like: “you know, it’s doubtful that you are going to get laid if you keep up this political marching crap”

  51. I am for — the guy looks great now — he has really kept it together.

  52. By the way, the poll on the right relative to this question is a bogus manipulation of the issue.

    The poll question should have been this:

    What’s more pathetic, a guy who likes female singers better when they’re clingy, whiny, and weak, or one who likes tougher singers who seem like they could stand up for themselves?

  53. Mr. Moderator

    The poll – and the results to date – are completely valid and tell us important things about the underlying issues you have raised, my friend. I couldn’t have been more fair in the way I phrased that question.

  54. I’ve been listening to that band since I was 13 and always preferred the Nicks songs. You can call yourself Mr. Emotion and me Mr. Intellectual if you want, but I ain’t buying it.

    All in good fun though.


  55. Mr. Moderator

    No, man, I’m having fun too, but the poll question is an attempt at combatting what I know is really your mission here: to call bullshit on our mutual, close personal friend, andyr. I can tell you respect my heartfelt and surprisingly convincing reasons for preferring the McVie material, and now this is all about you wanting to hold andyr’s feet to the fire, to ‘fess up about some perceived outmoded views on a woman’s place behind the electric piano. I can assure you that andyr’s as modern and progressive a man as they come. I know you are, too, and it’s beneath you to use the music of Fleetwood Mac – not to mention the more important discussion our other mutual, close personal friend HVB initiated regarding Lindsey Buckingham – to “prove” that you dig cooler girls than we do. Come on, man, this is a SERIOUS music discussion site, not a place for us to work out long-held hangups.

    Oh, nevermind.

  56. mockcarr

    Good job boiling away any of the nuances these two broads had, that way we don’t have to spend any time even thinking about this. Not that I was going to, or anything.

  57. Mod, I do believe you’re missing mwall’s point: without Stevie’s edge, the band would be much more like ABBA, a band I like, but whose take on relationships is cringe-inducing.

  58. all the personal bs aside, FM is just too pedestrian and common place. Their music is perfect radio schlock that’s just built to a T for the masses to gobble up and thrive on.

    All this talk about female vocals this or that. I mostly hate female vocals because 90 % of the time the music is geared to common place romance based poo.

    Gimmee the glorius treatments by and of Laurie Anderson, Joni Mitchell, Ellen McIlwaine, Lydia Kavina, Bjork, Kirsty McCall & Tina Weymouth.

    You can keep all the Janis Joplin, Stevie Nicks, Christine McVie, Carly Simon, Dolly Parton (boobs n’ all) & Pat Benatar poppers

    Just give me something that smacks of something other than housewife holding up the middle finger or some starlet dizbag that’s spent more time in rehab than she has on stage.

  59. Mr. Moderator

    I don’t know, dr john, if it’s Stevie’s “edge” the band would have missed. I like some of her songs, too, but I don’t consider her much edgier than anyone else in the LA Mellow Mafia. Does Stevie Nicks really present that different a take on “relationships?” If she were homely would anyone bother contemplating her thoughts on “relationships?” (Sorry for the quotation marks, but how touchy-feely we’re getting any time we try to talk about this era of Fleetwood Mac. It cracks me up.)

  60. You’re not trying to muddy the waters here, are you, Mod?

    I mean, Mellow Mafia? You talking about Zevon here? Newman, even?

    When talking about relationships is a “different take” all that important? What next: Men are from Mars, Women from Venus? You gonna drop some pop-cult psychology on us?

  61. BigSteve

    How mellow can those LA gang have been if they were all coked to the gills?

  62. Dr. John is right on regarding my argument. I continue to be able to like Fleetwood Mac because they do indeed have some bite in some of their songs, and Nicks is one of the reasons. It makes for a band that has several different types of attack.

    I’m not really convinced that people only take Nick’s sharper edges seriously because she was hot. Tell it to Bessie Smith, who wasn’t much of a looker; she’d probably knife you.

  63. Mr. Moderator

    dr john wrote:

    You’re not trying to muddy the waters here, are you, Mod?


    mwall, I don’t mean to dismiss Nicks. She’s a huge part of what made Fleetwood Mac pretty good. I AM having some fun with the concept that Stevie Nicks’ lyrics added much. Maybe I never gave her enough credit above the shoulders. If that’s the case, I’m sorry. I keep thinking of songs by her like the one about the Welsh witch, “Rhiannon”; the one about mountains of coke and a crumbling relationship (“Snowblind”???), and “Dreams,” which is a nice song but one whose lyrics I’ve never taken time to piece together. I just read them now… They don’t add up to a whole lot for me. I just read the lyrics to “Rhiannon” too. I never cared for Dungeons & Dragons.

    “Landslide” is the song I keep thinking is called something like “Snowblind” – it’s from the s/t album on which Buckingham and Nicks first appeared. That’s a good song too.

    Listen, I’m fine with Stevie Nicks and I’m fine with the fact that you prefer her songs to McVie’s. What I object to is the holier-than-thou pose that liking McVie is “easy.” Stevie Nicks was the star of Fleetwood Mac. People even like her solo stuff, like that horrible “White Wing Dove” number. At this point I’m not as bugged with mwall and dr john as I am all the reasonable music fans out there who might have the stones to step forth and take a stand on this issue, even one in agreement with the daring young men who prefer the challenging lyrical stance of Stevie Nicks. I’m beginning to agree with mwall that the rest of you Christine McVie fans (myself excluded) are a bunch of wussies! CHOOSE SIDES!

  64. Mr. Moderator

    PS – In case anyone who’s taken part in this side battle is feeling slighted by my recent comments, let me be clear in stating that Townsman writehearnow has displayed ample stones. mockcarr’s disgust is palpable – and appreciated. BigSteve is currently trying to avoid the issue, but at least he’s putting his satchel on the table and avoiding it openly.

  65. Mr. Mod, for the record, you convinced me by your response on the other thread that your particular emotional attachment to McVie’s songs is based on identifying with the emotions she’s expressing and not on being the guy who gets to relate to the “I am so strong” sensation in one key backing vocals moment (the moment would be cringe-worthy except for the irony that I feel like I hear in it, though I could be wrong there).

    I myself do not relate to the emotions she expresses, and overly clingy women annoy me hugely, but I agree that your willingness to own up to having an inner clingy wimpiness in part of your soul is not a wimpy move on your part.

    “Snowblind” is a really grooving Black Sabbath number, FYI.

  66. I think the current direction of this thread has managed to increase my Lindsey Buckingham appreciation.

    That’s not a slight on Mr. Mod or Mwall, mind you. But the more I think about it, the more I struggle to hear much lyrical nuance in either McVie or Nicks’ songs. They write about love or drugs or sometimes both. I am on Team McVie, because I hear an unforced lack of drama in her vocals and melodies, which then paints her lyrics, for me, in a different light than what Mwall is picking up on. I never really thought of her songs as especially needy or clingy.

    Anyway, at least Buckingham’s songs have a bug-eyed rhythmic intensity that I enjoy.

  67. Mr. Moderator

    Yes, mwall, Black Sabbath’s “Snowblind” is the title that kept coming to mind. I love that song.

    Oats, I’m sure the strong, silent HVB thanks you for bringing this thread back to Mr. Buckingham!

  68. Buckingham, then Nicks, then McVie. I’m a fan and they all have songs that I like but that’s generally my preference.

    McVie’s songs are always the most sappy (lyrically and musically), and that wears thin for me more quickly than Nicks’ faux-mystical/witch routine. The general innocuousness of LB’s lyrics work in his favor because they are bland enough not to stand out in a bad way.

    On the other hand, if I had to be stuck on a tour bus with anyone in that band, including the rhythm section, Christine McVie seems like she’d be the least annoying. I can’t imagine having to sit next to Stevie Nicks all the way from Chicago to Omaha and listen to her go on about some ancient Wicca cold remedy or the Save The Unicorn Foundation or some shit.

  69. mockcarr

    Actually, cdm, it’s a LOT of fun to wind those types of people up by playing along for awhile.

  70. mockcarr

    Ah, I’m pretty sure you know that. Sorry.

  71. alexmagic

    I think that bass part on The Chain is the best thing Fleetwood Mac put out, so I guess I’m standing alone on Team John McVie?

  72. BigSteve

    You beat me to it, alex. I was going to respond to Mod’s challenge by saying that I just don’t care enough about these three songwriters to choose sides and that I’m on Team Rhythm Section. I believe I saw live performances by every version of Fleetwood Mac up to but not including the one in question, and those two guys know their stuff. They can even make something like Rhiannon listenable.

  73. Christine McVie had to have an edge to her to date Beach Boys drummer Dennis Wilson near the end of his life.

    Evidently, the hard-working drummer built her a wonderful heart-shaped garden (charging it to her) and wrecked her Rolls so many times she finally threw him out.

    The one time I had tickets to see Fleetwood Mac, Stevie got sick, and they cancelled – thus I like Christine better, but Stevie sure was smoking hot way back when.

  74. I don’t think anyone in this discussion has been close to suggesting that any of the individuals in question are amazing songwriters. As I mentioned in my first response, FM’s biggest strength is certainly the rhythm section, but I also do like the combination of voices/lyricists. I don’t think most and probably even all of us here would want to hear any of these songwriters over the course of a whole solo album release. I’ll admit to owning a Nicks Greatest Hits and being able to play a few songs on it from time to time, but I’ve never been able to get through the whole sixteen or so songs in any one sitting, and like maybe 6-8 of them at most.

  75. 2000 Man

    When Stevie was in Fleetwood Mac, she was awesome. Who cares what she was blabbing about, it all sounded like sex to me, and that’s why I like her better than Christine McVie. Christine’s songs are okay, but they aren’t usually the ones I like the most on the albums. If you’re gonna have to fill an album though, she’s a pretty good filler. A lot of bands would kill to just have a couple of her songs.

    Stevie really lost me with that Tom Petty duet. My wife used to hate when I’d sing, “Stop making that farting sound.” Probably because I thought it was hilarious and I’d sing it way louder than the radio would play.

  76. misterioso

    Not only do Nicks’ contributions to Fleetwood Mac (by which I mean: Fleetwood Mac, Rumours, Tusk) surpass McVie’s, she has the only solo hit I will go to bat for (*pace* the Moderator), “Edge of Seventeen,” which was cool when came out and is cool now, and not only for recycling the Bring on the Night riff, and in spite of sucky covers and samples.

    I don’t mind the duet with Petty, but dear God, let’s not speak of the horrific duet with Don Henley, Leather and Lace.

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