Fleetwood Mac has my heart and always will. Their music has inspired me to the fullest, and their sense of togetherness has affected the way I look at life in the best possible way. In concert, they always deliver, but Monday night at the Xcel was my favorite one yet.
Every Fleetwood Mac concert tells a story — their story. Their legacy is the history they have with each other, and this show perfectly honored the earliest moments of the band that hadn’t been recognized live in concert before. When you generally think about Fleetwood Mac, you may forget about the fact that they’ve been making music since 1967. Their career has endured many different musical styles and for-fronted a variety of musicians along the way. This concert was special because it honored that. I really enjoyed the moments that praised founder Peter Green as well as Bob Welch, who was the band’s singer-songwriter from 1971 to 1974.
It was obvious that Mick Fleetwood and John McVie were humbled to celebrate the history they created in Fleetwood Mac’s early years. Many of the music released in the late sixties and early seventies sounded like an entirely different band; from album to album, each had a different tone and flavor. I honestly would have loved to hear more of it at this show, especially songs sung by Christine McVie, like The Way I Feel off 1973’s Mystery to Me or Prove Your Love from Heroes are Hard to Find, released the following year. I get down on the bluesy folk tunes they rocked back in the day, and it was fun to hear songs like Oh Well and Tell Me All The Things You Do live. Mick looked his happiest during these performances, almost as if he was having flashbacks to when they first came into fruition.
Black Magic Woman was another cool old-school moment from the show. Stevie Nicks admitted she didn’t know who wrote the song when she first heard it, but she performed it as if her roots ran deep within it. It was phenomenal to hear my favorite rock and roll singer of all time howl out the blues, and this “from the eyes of a woman” rendition made the entire audience fall under her spell of greatness.
Stevie Nicks was at her best all night. Her freak out during Gold Dust Woman was the most intense I’ve ever seen it. As the song came to its close, she screamed into the mic: “You can’t play me. You can’t change me. You can’t do it. You wish you could do it.” I am speculating here, but that angst seemed close to home for her. After all, it wouldn’t be a Fleetwood Mac concert without a touch of shade. They have a lot of history together, and their music revolves around it.
This concert marked the fifth time my best friend Alicia and I have seen Stevie Nicks live together — twice on her own and three times now with Fleetwood Mac. It’s hard to describe into words how we feel about her. She has inspired us to the moon and back, and her music has helped transform us both into strong, confident believers in ourselves.
Mick Fleetwood was right when he told the crowd: “There will never be another night like tonight.” I believe that this kind of tribute show honored the history of Fleetwood Mac, and it could only have been achieved so intensely with this line-up. The addition of Mike Campbell added positivity to the band, and his constant sweet smile made the show for me. He made me love the overall vibe of the band as it is now, especially during their emotional tribute to Tom Petty. Having him there to play Free Fallin’ as a tribute to his bast friend was extremely touching and was the best moment of the show for me.
Neil Finn sounded great on vocals. It was a fun, freeing moment to hear him sing Don’t Dream It’s Over by Crowded House — a song that Mick Fleetwood said affected his heart deeply the first time he heard it. The energy on stage was happy one, and everyone seemed at ease. I like watching a band that enjoys and embraces each other, and believe that is an important attitude for any performer to convey.
Lindsay Buckingham was in no way forgotten in my mind, and unfortunately, the initial ticket sales proved there were many fans uninterested in cashing out huge dough to see the band without him. I could hear him in many songs especially World Turning, Monday Morning and Go Your Own Way. But even still, his absence never killed my mood. I did recently see him perform live when he was here last winter with Christine McVie. It was a very intimate concert and I was able to see him play up close, so I think that’s why I didn’t yearn for him too much on Monday night. As much as I love Lindsay, this moment in Fleetwood Mac history needed to happen. I do hope the band pays respect to everything he contributed to their legacy on the next tour, which could potentially be their last.
I went to this concert full of excitement, and with an open mind regarding Lindsay Buckingham’s absence. Obviously there was some serious drama that went down, and if it did indeed involve Stevie Nicks, her band and most recognizably Big Daddy Mick, stood behind her and wanted her to be a part of this tour. Truth is we will probably never know everything that has happened behind closed doors, but we will always be able to feel the emotion surrounding it in their music.
I will forever love Fleetwood Mac and the people they are. They are passionate and real, and they obviously love and care deeply about one another. I am calling this concert perfect because it was, and I look forward to seeing what they conjure up on the next time around. The special connection Fleetwood Mac has with their fans will continue to take them on the road as long as the power of music keeps calling.
Header photo was captured by RKH IMAGES. See them all here:
Second Hand News
Say You Love Me
Black Magic Woman
I Got You (Split Enz cover)
Tell Me All the Things You Do
Don’t Dream It’s Over (Crowded House cover)
Isn’t It Midnight
You Make Loving Fun
Gold Dust Woman
Go Your Own Way
Free Fallin’ (Tom Petty cover)
All Over Again