Sunday Music – Say You Love Me

Posted on Sun 03/25/2018 by

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Today’s music video is Say You Love Me, sung here in this clip by the English American Supergroup Fleetwood Mac.

Link to Video at You Tube

This video was posted to You Tube by Fleetwood Mac

Many years ago, I watched an English TV series which ran for a number of weeks here in Australia, and it was pretty obscure, as it was on late night TV on the ABC I think, so very few people would have seen it here in Australia., but it was so interesting. It showed the history of rock bands, based upon the members of those bands, and while it was generic in nature, it mostly dealt with English bands. What was most surprising to me was the number of people in so many bands who came from other bands, and not just one or two, but sometimes a number of them. While the TV show covered a number of years, it centred around the early and mid 60s, when so many new bands came into being, in what was referred to in the U.S. as The British Invasion. At that time, I was still only just entering my teen years, and I was just becoming aware of music, and how important it is in your life, even if it is just background, just music on the radio, and later on the records we all started to buy, and add to our own personal collections. At that time, I, (just like every other person of my age) paid no attention to the movement of musicians from band to band, or on to solo careers. It was only years later when I became aware of just how prevalent this really was, not just the occasional musician, but so many of them, and this TV series just highlighted that fact.

The band whose song I have featured today is no exception to that, and in fact, this band probably could almost be referred to as having had a revolving door for band membership across the years.

This band, Fleetwood Mac, actually started out as a title for a song. At the time, Peter Green was a guitarist with the legendary John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers. Peter had come from another band, and had actually replaced Eric Clapton, who had left The Yardbirds to join this band, and then gone off to join another band. One of the members of the Bluesbreakers was the Bass guitar player John McVie, and after a while Peter Green asked John Mayall, if a friend of his, the drummer Mick Fleetwood could join the band from another band that Fleetwood and Green once played in together, and Mayall agreed. Mayall was the ‘big name’ here, and all the others were just members of ‘his’ band. Mayall allowed Peter green some studio time and with the other two members, Peter Green would write and record some of his own music, not really in the same style as Mayall, so it would not be played. One piece he did record was a small Instrumental piece, and not knowing what to call it in amongst so much other music he was writing, he just referred to the song which he titled Fleetwood Mac, after those other two band members working on the song with him. Not long after this, Green asked Mayall if he could leave the band to form his own band. Mayall agreed, because there was always a steady group of guitar players available to come into his ‘big name’ band. The departure was amicable, and Green took Mick Fleetwood with him. He also wanted John McVie, but John was happy staying with the steady (and big) pay involved with being in John Mayall’s band. Green wanted to really attract McVie, so he named this new band Fleetwood Mac, after those two players, hoping this would tempt McVie. They had recruited slide guitarist Jeremy Spencer to be in their new band, and Jeremy also came from another band as well, and hey used an interim Bass guitarist in the hoped knowledge that McVie would finally come across. They brought out their first album, mainly Blues music. John McVie then did come across and join the band, and in the lead up to the next album John asked Paul Green if they might be able to use a lady friend of his, Christine Perfect to play keyboards on the recording session for the album, and Christine came from the band Chicken Shack.

They were now getting regular gigs around the UK, and they asked another band to play lead in for them at concerts where they were the main act. One member of that band was a young Danny Kirwan, still only barely 18 years old. Paul Green wanted this band to get a recording contract, but other than Kirwan, the other two were not willing to leave their ‘day jobs’ for what might only be a transitory career in music. So, Paul Green held auditions to find two replacements for those two members of that second string band, and ever the perfectionist Green was, he could not settle on any of them, so he just asked Kirwan if he wanted to join his band Fleetwood Mac. At around that same time, Green had become a little disenchanted with the other guitarist Jeremy Spencer, so Kirwan was a good fit for the band.

They recorded their third album, and struck their first Number One Smash Hit, that absolutely beautiful Instrumental, Albatross, one of my most favourite songs and one I have featured at this site. (Here at this link) It’s well worth reading that Post for the explanation behind this stunning piece of music.

So, now we have the band Fleetwood Mac, and as you can see, while there is only five members, there has already been a large number of other bands involved.

As it was, this lineup was also quite tenuous, as, after all that work, Peter Green started to become erratic, and he left the band. The others struggled on and during their US tour, Spencer walked out of the band. While Christine Perfect, (who had now married John McVie) played on the recording sessions, she was not a regular member of the band, and after a try at a solo career, she joined the band full time. Once back home, they held auditions for a new guitarist, and Bob Welch joined the band, also coming from another band. Then Danny Kirwan left, and he was replaced by Bob Weston, who also came from another band as well.

See now just how many people have been involved with this band. This lineup was perhaps the longest lived of them, and even that was still not stable, as others joined and left. Then, in 1974, after a hiatus waiting for the outcome of legal proceedings over a fake Fleetwood Mac band, they performed and recorded again as a band. Bob Weston got fired from the band and not long after that, Bob Welch made the decision to leave the band.

So now, all there was were Mick Fleetwod, and John and Christine McVie.

That earlier legal hiatus meant that it was easier to perform and record in the U.S. than in the UK. So, while Mick Fleetwood was looking for someone new, and while at a recording studio, he met Lindsey Buckingham, and immediately impressed, he asked him if he would like to join the band, and Lindsey agreed, but only if he could bring his girlfriend, and fellow member of his duo, Stevie (Stephanie) Nicks with him.

And, in 1975, the new Fleetwood Mac was (re)born.

The band released their (wait for this) tenth studio album, and while the band had been pretty big at time during the earlier 8 years, this time around, they hit the big time. The new lineup, refreshed with Lindsey Buckingham, and the fresh new voice of Stevie Nicks took off, albeit slowly at first. That album was self titled, the second such self titled album from the band, as their first one was also self titled way back in 1967. It took a while to get into the album charts, and the new band toured relentlessly, plugging their new album wherever they went, and ever so slowly, it worked. While it was recorded in 1975, it didn’t enter the charts until half way through 1976. The album sales started off slowly, and then began to soar, and on the release of their next album Rumours, recorded in 1976 and released in early 1977, sales of the earlier album spiked again. What is amazing is that the album finally reached Number One on the albums charts, but one year after its release. By now, the band was well on the way to becoming one of the biggest bands on Earth. The album saw three Singles released from it, and Rhiannon was the biggest of them.

The song I have featured today was one of those Singles, and it almost made it into the Top Ten in the U.S. where the band was now huge. This one self titled album was on the album charts for more than 15 Months and spent 37 weeks inside the Top Ten albums. It sold more than 5 million copies in the U.S. alone. It was the second biggest album of 1976, and the tenth biggest album of 1977, an astonishing record for one album, surpassed easily when their next album Rumours sold 13 Million copies in the U.S.

As for me, personally, I liked the band right from the start in 1967, and that was then amplified with the release of that wonderful Instrumental. I had three of their earlier albums, and by 1975, other than for Albatross, burned into my music psyche, I had all but forgotten about the band.

My record guy at the small music shop I frequented so often, and where I got hold of virtually all my albums, mentioned their new album to me late in 1975, when copies finally made their way to far off Australia. He showed me the album, as I knew so well of this band, and I saw this new lineup, wryly commenting to him that they had (once again) changed their lineup. I purchased the album and when I got home and played it. it was nothing like any of their earlier music. Funny how a band can change style, and yet you still like their music. As much as I liked their earlier music, this was really good, and I liked it as much, if not more.

The song featured today, Say You Love Me, was written by Christine McVie, and that’s her singing the lead vocals at the keyboards in the video clip.

This second image at right shows the five members of the band in the image shown on the back cover of the album, and they are from left to right, Stevie Nicks, Mick Fleetwood, Christine McVie, Lindsey Buckingham, and John McVie.

This was a wonderful album from a renewed band with such a storied career already behind them.

Rock bands might seem that they have been around for so long, and that the musicians in the band were always there, but each individual has a muisc history behind them almost as long as their history with just the one band.

Posted in: Music, Videos