Tag: Rumours

Monday 10pm: Feature LP: Fleetwood Mac – Rumours (1977)

Rumours is the eleventh studio album by English-American rock band Fleetwood Mac, released on 4 February 1977 by Warner Bros. Records. Largely recorded in California in 1976, it was produced by the band with Ken Caillat and Richard Dashut. The band wanted to expand on the commercial success of their eponymous 1975 album, but struggled with relationship breakups before recording started. The Rumours studio sessions were marked by hedonistic behaviour and interpersonal strife among band members, which shaped the album’s lyrics.

Recorded with the intention of making “a pop album”, the album’s music featured a pop rock and soft rock sound characterized by accented rhythms and electric keyboards such as the Fender Rhodes or Hammond B3 organ. The members partied and used cocaine for much of the recording sessions, and its completion was delayed by its mixing process, but was finished by the end of 1976. Following the album’s release, Fleetwood Mac undertook worldwide promotional tours. Rumours reached the top of both the US Billboard 200 and the United Kingdom Albums Chart, and became the band’s most successful release. The songs “Go Your Own Way”, “Dreams”, “Don’t Stop”, and “You Make Loving Fun” were released as singles, all of which reached the US top 10.

Having won the Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 1978, Rumours has since sold over 40 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling albums of all time, and has received diamond certifications in several countries, including the United States, Canada, and Australia. The album garnered widespread acclaim from critics, with praise centred on its production quality and harmonies, which frequently relied on the interplay among three vocalists and has inspired the work of musical acts in different genres.

Often considered Fleetwood Mac’s best release, it has featured in several publications’ lists of the best albums of the 1970s and of all time. In 2004, Rumours was remastered and reissued with the addition of “Silver Springs”, which had been excluded from the original due to tension within the band, and a bonus CD of outtakes from the recording sessions. In 2018, the album was selected for preservation in the National Recording Registry, being deemed “culturally, historically, or artistically significant” by the Library of Congress.

1. “Second Hand News” 2:56
2. “Dreams” Stevie Nicks 4:14
3. “Never Going Back Again” 2:14
4. “Don’t Stop” 3:13
5. “Go Your Own Way” 3:38
6. “Songbird” 3:20
7. “The Chain” 4:30
8. “You Make Loving Fun” 3:31
9. “I Don’t Want to Know” 3:15
10. “Oh Daddy” 3:56
11. “Gold Dust Woman” Nicks 4:56

Fleetwood Mac – Rumours (35th Anniversary Edition) 6pm ET

FleetwoodMac_5CD_1LP - 1Rumours is the kind of album that transcends its origins and reputation, entering the realm of legend — it’s an album that simply exists outside of criticism and outside of its time, even if it thoroughly captures its era. Prior to this LP, Fleetwood Mac were moderately successful, but here they turned into a full-fledged phenomenon, with Rumours becoming the biggest-selling pop album to date. While its chart success was historic, much of the legend surrounding the record is born from the group’s internal turmoil.

Unlike most bands, Fleetwood Mac in the mid-’70s were professionally and romantically intertwined, with no less than two couples in the band, but as their professional career took off, the personal side unraveled. Bassist John McVie and his keyboardist/singer wife Christine McVie filed for divorce as guitarist/vocalist Lindsey Buckingham and vocalist Stevie Nicks split, with Stevie running to drummer Mick Fleetwood, unbeknown to the rest of the band. These personal tensions fueled nearly every song on Rumours, which makes listening to the album a nearly voyeuristic experience. You’re eavesdropping on the bandmates singing painful truths about each other, spreading nasty lies and rumors and wallowing in their grief, all in the presence of the person who caused the heartache. Everybody loves gawking at a good public breakup, but if that was all that it took to sell a record, Richard and Linda Thompson’s Shoot Out the Lights would be multi-platinum. No, what made Rumours an unparalleled blockbuster is the quality of the music.

Once again masterminded by producer/songwriter/guitarist Buckingham, Rumours is an exceptionally musical piece of work — he toughens Christine McVie and softens Nicks, adding weird turns to accessibly melodic works, which gives the universal themes of the songs haunting resonance. It also cloaks the raw emotion of the lyrics in deceptively palatable arrangements that made a tune as wrecked and tortured as “Go Your Own Way” an anthemic hit. But that’s what makes Rumours such an enduring achievement — it turns private pain into something universal. Some of these songs may be too familiar, whether through their repeated exposure on FM radio or their use in presidential campaigns, but in the context of the album, each tune, each phrase regains its raw, immediate emotional power — which is why Rumours touched a nerve upon its 1977 release, and has since transcended its era to be one of the greatest, most compelling pop albums of all time. – AllMusic.Com
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