Many years later, I started hearing stories about the incredible turmoil between Fleetwood Mac’s members, fueled by drugs, alcohol, and perhaps too many personal relationships and struggles. It was near impossible for me to conceive that a band with that much musical chemistry could have so many incompatibilities, personally.
Come to find out, many of the lyrics written for the album were rooted in what was going on between the members, who overcame all of it to record one of the best selling albums of all time: Rumours sold more than 40 million copies worldwide, making it Fleetwood Mac’s most successful release.
Rumours Coproducer Ken Caillat has just published Making Rumours: The Inside Story of the Classic Fleetwood Mac Album, recounting the story behind the album’s creation – from the fights to the music to technical issues and everything in between…
Before the Rumours sessions even began, bassist John McVie and wife Christine were in midst of a divorce, which John was against.
Newcomers Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham, who had joined the band the previous year as a couple, were also on the outs.
Even drummer Mick Fleetwood wasn’t spared the relationship drama, discovering that his wife was divorcing him and taking up with his best friend.
One of the more surreal stories from the book details how Nicks and Buckingham switched from screaming at each other between takes to singing beautifully together while tape was running, during the recording of “You Make Loving Fun”. That tune was written by Christine McVie about her new love interest, Fleetwood Mac’s lighting director Curry Grant. (Christine had said the song was about a dog to spare John’s feelings).
While the book offers a lot of drama, it also offers a lot of musical and technical insight into the recording of the album. Caillat included eighty photographs from his personal collection, shot during the making of the landmark album.