Tag Archives: Music

Between 277 and 3,262 Reasons I Won’t Be Seeing Fleetwood Mac in Concert

That’s the range of ticket prices I found on a quick check on Ticketmaster and StubHub: $277 each for nosebleeds behind the stage; $3,262.40 EACH for front row center.

Have mercy, baby. Love me some Mac, but that’s too rich for me. How about you?

Here’s a free YouTube video from their 1982 Mirage tour, instead.

UPDATE: I went to the concert in Atlanta. It was awesome. Read this. 

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The Story of My Lifelong Love Affair with Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac, Atlanta, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Christine McVie, reunion tour, Rumours, 1977

Back in the day, John McVie and Christine McVie were divorcing; Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks were breaking up; and Mick Fleetwood’s marriage was ending while they wrote and recorded “Rumours.” It’s still one of the biggest-selling albums ever.

Fleetwood Mac was everywhere in the summer of 1977, including the back seat of my parents’ Oldsmobile.

We were moving to another state, far away. I was 13. And near the beginning of the trip, I found “Rumours” on sale for $3.99 in Eugene, Ore. A friend convinced me to scoop up the bargain, the first album I ever bought.

It was on vinyl, long before personal cassette players, and our car didn’t even have an eight-track player. So for the unfolding weeks of that sultry season, across the country and halfway back again, I guarded the album from heat, unable to play it but convinced I’d scored a deal because my friend — who was a little older, much more physically mature and impossibly more sophisticated than I was — had told me so.

Fleetwood Mac, Atlanta, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Christine McVie, reunion tour, Rumours, 1977

… and today. The tour, with Christine McVie back behind the keyboard, stops in Atlanta on Dec. 17 at Philips Arena.

Plus, the music was inescapable and, for reasons I couldn’t begin to understand, I knew I loved it, even then. The churning rhythms. The gorgeous harmonies. The Southern California glamour. The already famous infighting among the band’s lovers — songs by three startlingly individualistic writers on an album that morphed to provide, as one critic put it, the audio equivalent of a soap opera told from three different characters’ points of view.

“Oh, Daddy, you know you make me cry. . .”

“Take your silver spoon and dig your grave . . .”

“You can call it another lonely day . . .”

Art from Drama

The back cover of "Rumours"The band had two couples, both breaking up while the album was made, and there’s blood and tears all over it. Back then, I knew nothing about love or its demise. But I already knew I liked a sharp turn of phrase and was drawn to larger-than-life characters, and this band had five.

And, although I didn’t fully realize it until later in life, I wonder whether the epic cohesiveness of the record tapped into some innate understanding I had of alchemy, the magical process of creating something grander than any of its parts.

Sure, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie are a top-flight rhythm section. Of course Lindsey Buckingham is a fabulous guitarist, Stevie Nicks an enchanting beauty and Christine McVie a pristine vocalist and journeyman musician. But put them together, and there was history. Let them all break up with each other at the same time, and forget it.

After “Rumours,” they continued to create, throughout the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s, music that played large parts on the soundtrack of my life — some forced upon us all as mere members of the planet and some, quite deliberately, chosen by me to illustrate my very own affairs of the heart.Buckingham’s self-torture. Nicks’ self-worship. Christine McVie’s nurturing earthiness.

As much as I love Fleetwood Mac’s music, I know that millions of people feel the same way. It’s a powerful connection, and it’s lasted all these years like a bell through the night.

VIDEOS of their 10 best songs, voted by Rolling Stone readers 

Then Play On

Fleetwood Mac, Atlanta, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Christine McVie, reunion tour, Rumours, 1977

The gorgeous “Mirage” cover, 1982… “the gypsy that remains…”

Beyond my family’s move in 1977, I remember that early video with the University of Southern California marching band for “Tusk.” Then, a few years later, my love — timeless and sublime (just a wish) — on her parents’ porch in Denver, the wind whipping her hair as she listened to “Mirage.” And, in the early ’90s, a date with someone 10 years younger who had no idea: “Stevie Nicks? Who’s he?” I even wrote an early version of this post for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution a decade ago, when the band released “Say You Will” without Christine McVie, who had retired.

Now, 37 years after my family’s long drive, I’m in my Atlanta condo listening to an iTunes playlist of Mac classics. Nicks is everywhere in the media — traditional and social — promoting her new solo CD and the band’s tour, which started this week, its first with Christine McVie since the late ’90s. It stops here in Atlanta in December.

They’re all around 70 now. They’ve been together off and on for 40 years. Drummer Fleetwood has come back from his improbable bankruptcy, John McVie from his recent cancer diagnosis, and Christine McVie from early retirement in England. Nicks has survived drug addiction. And Buckingham, the eccentric genius, has found peace with gaudy success.

I’m 50 now. It’s been a long time since that summer of “Rumours.” But I still see those bright eyes. And I’m still fallin’, fallin’ . . . fallin’ . . .

UPDATE: I went to the concert in Atlanta. It was awesome. Read this. 


EARLIER: The Skivvies strip it down — literally

EARLIER: Why Atlanta loves OutKast

EARLIER: More ‘Dangerous’ lovers onstage

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3 Top Reasons Atlanta Loves OutKast and This Weekend’s Concerts (VIDEO, PICS)

OutKast, Atlanta, hip hop, duo, reunion

My friend Madkin Kelly shared a couple of pics and the video below from Saturday night. He loved the “ridiculous” huge crowd. “So many bodies squished together, friends of all colors celebrating the love of music!”

VIDEO AS OUTKAST TAKES THE STAGE SATURDAY NIGHT

“Lend me some sugar — I am your neighbor!”

OutKast, Atlanta, reunion, Andre, Big Boi, downtown Atlanta

Big Boi and Andre

Atlanta loves OutKast, and the superstar hip-hop duo’s three-night stand downtown is proving it.

Crowds packed Centennial Olympic Park on Friday and Saturday nights, and more will for the last show tonight, Sunday, Sept. 28. Hometown rappers André “André 3000” Benjamin and Antwan “Big Boi” Patton have been on a reunion tour this summer, the first time fans have had the chance to see them play songs from their landmark CD “Speakerboxxx/The Love Below.” It came out 11 years ago, sold millions and and won the Grammy for Album of the Year.

OutKast, Atlanta, Centennial Olympic Park, downtown, reunion, Sonia Murray

Early crowd before the show. Madkin says, “Favorite moment was the start of the show, with them coming out with ‘Bombs over Baghdad.’ So much energy and excitement from the crowd,” he said.

Tonight might be the last show for them. The weekend’s appearances, called “ATLast” after “ATLiens,” one of their earlier records, aren’t even listed on the tour T-shirt.

sonia murray, atlanta, outkast, hip hop, duo ,reunion, concert downtown

Sonia Murray

I couldn’t make it, so I asked hip-hop expert and friend Sonia Murray to share some thoughts, which she did after attending Friday and Saturday. She’ll be there again tonight. Sonia was a music writer for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution for many years, where she covered Atlanta’s emerging (now dominant) hip-hop scene. She’s now with V-103 The People’s Station.

Her Top 3 reasons why this was more than just a concert.

1. It’s probably never going to happen again. “I really do believe that this will be the last time we see them together.” The duo formed when Benjamin and Patton were in high school. They were stars as teen-agers and living legends now in their 30s, with Benjamin looking to movie roles, including Jimi Hendrix.

2. “People didn’t get to see them during their highlight period, since they didn’t tour to promote (“Speakerboxxx/The Love Below”),” she said. So it’s the first time audiences saw Andre do “Hey Ya!” or Big Boi on “The Way You Move.”

3. The location. “It’s Atlanta — and it’s not just Atlanta, it’s right in the center of Atlanta. They remarked about how great it was (from the stage). The venue itself is really spectacular, especially to bring a hometown act to. They even had the ferris wheel lit up.”

Sonia says that when Outkast was getting started, rap artists didn’t want to associate themselves with Atlanta. The genre was dominated by the East and West coast factions. OutKast changed that, with songs calling out local streets, neighborhoods and high schools.

“They were immediately and proudly Atlanta,” she said “And I think that’s why people have always been so proud of them.”


 

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