Fleetwood Mac says scheduling behind Buckingham dismissal

Fleetwood Mac members Stevie Nicks, John McVie, Christine McVie, Lindsey Buckingham -- who has since gone his own way -- and Mick Fleetwood during a ceremony honoring the band in New York in January 2018
AFP

New York (AFP) – Fleetwood Mac has opened up on its dismissal of Lindsay Buckingham, saying its longtime guitarist did not agree on the dates of an extensive tour the band announced Wednesday.

The classic soft-rock group, notorious in its heyday for its internal tumult, jolted fans earlier this month by again parting ways with Buckingham, as Fleetwood Mac’s veteran members had recently reconciled for the group’s 50th anniversary.

Explaining the move for the first time in an interview published Wednesday in Rolling Stone, singer Stevie Nicks said that the group had planned to start rehearsing in June and Buckingham wanted to wait until November 2019.

“As soon as I finish one thing, I dive back into another,” said Nicks, whose sandy voice came to define Fleetwood Mac and who recently completed a solo tour.

“Why would we stop? We don’t want to stop playing music. We don’t have anything else to do. This is what we do,” she said.

Drummer Mick Fleetwood, the only consistent member of the band whose hits include “Don’t Stop,” “Landslide” and “Dreams,” in the same interview said that the group had hit an “impasse.”

“To that purpose, we made a decision that we could not go on with him. Majority rules in term of what we need to do as a band and go forward,” Fleetwood said.

Buckingham has not commented on his dismissal. 

The British-American group replaced him with two guitarists — frontman Neil Finn of Australian pop stalwarts Crowded House and Mike Campbell, who led the backup band of late rocker Tom Petty.

The band announced a tour of North America that will begin on October 3 in Tulsa, Oklahoma and continue until April 5 with a two-month break in the winter.

Buckingham, a key songwriter for Fleetwood Mac, initially joined when he was dating Nicks and first left the band in 1987.

The group’s messy internal romances and breakups famously created a tension that belied an uneasy musical unity on the 1977 album “Rumours,” the group’s most acclaimed work.

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