Fleetwood Mac – The Collection Vol.1

Oh Fleetwood Mac. If there had been one of those American mini series (that seemed to be on the TV regularly when I was kid) about this band, it would have gone on for a year. The band have been so many musicians (well, guitar players really), different line ups and morphed from blues purists to purveyors of soft rock that it has been difficult to keep up. 

My first introduction to the band was ‘Rumours’, the multi million selling album from 1977 that means that no-one in the UK can listen to the songs ‘Chains’ without thinking that motor racing is about to come on the television. My next memory was of the band was the album ‘Tango In The Night’ which came out ten years afterwards and even though not up to the sales and standard of ‘Rumours’ was still a pretty good album. Their 1988 ‘Greatest Hits’ record (the one with the green sleeve) was one of the first CDs I ever bought but this dealt with the soft rock period from 1975 up until that time. This was the period of time where I was first getting into looking into band histories as well as buying my own records and this included my first tentative steps into the world of second hand record shops. Fleetwood Mac were the first band where actively went out to buy all of their records.

What I found when starting to look for the Mac back catalogue was lots of album where there were hairy guys on the cover and no women in the band. Was this a fake Fleetwood Mac (there actually was one of these in the 70s) or a time in the bands history I knew nothing about. As it was, the latter was the correct answer. This hairy bloke band were the group that had produced ‘Albatross’, still the only Mac single to be a number 1 hit in the UK. I had heard of that but I didn’t really put two and two together and didn’t realise these were the same band. I found out that this earlier incarnation was a blues band, and as I was listening to a goo deal of that style of music at the time, I thought I would give them a go. My first purchase of what is known as the Peter Green era was a double LP from the Castle Group called the Collection. It dealt with their records from their time on the Blue Horizon and Immediate record labels. I was instantly hooked. Great guitar playing from Peter Green and if like some humour or Elmore James riffs, you will like the contributions from the other guitar player in this early line up, Jeremy Spencer. 

I then made my way through all of the early albums and didn’t buy any of the more famous 70s and 80s albums for a good number of years. With a limited budget, the blues was winning out in the race of my pounds. I then got to ‘Then Play On’, their third album and the first with third guitar player Danny Kirwan. This was a development of the sound. It still had a blues base but it was moving on from the twelve bars. It was also lacking in any Jeremy Spencer songs. He was given an opportunity to record his songs on an EP that would have come with the LP, but this would remain unreleased until the 1990s. This era would end with Peter Green leaving and the band losing their fan base for the next five years. This second era will be dealt with the next CD compilation. 

This first Fleetwood Mac era has had numerous compilations and box sets, but it has been poorly served by reissues. They are a bit of a mess, especially when they left the Blue Horizon label and signed with Reprise/Warner Brothers. The ‘Complete Blue Horizon Sessions’ covered the first two albums and contains, supposedly, the entire recording output on that label. It is a good place to start of you can find a copy as it is over twenty years old now. ‘Then Play On’ has suffered from multiple different variations and when it was eventually given a deluxe edition in 2013, it was a bit short of bonus tracks. 

If you can find copies of the compilations ‘Show-Biz Blues’ and ‘The Vaudeville Years’ you will hear how much they had left in the can. These compilations have not been readily available down the years and this era continues to be poorly served. In 2019 there was a live compilation of ‘recently’ discovered tapes which was bit lacking in the documentation stakes. The record also included songs that were labeled as demos but I believe that these are actually BBC sessions that did not make the ‘Live at the BBC’ in the 1990s. Someone really needs to make an effort to sorting out this period in the bands history in the same way in which the classic Buckingham-Nicks lineup were compiled over the last few years. The music from this era is great and considering at the time Fleetwood Mac were outselling The Beatles and The Rolling Stones in the UK, it is a shame that this period is not as well known as it should be. 

Disc 1

  1. Hellhound On My Trail
  2. I Believe My Time Ain’t Long
  3. The World Keep On Turning
  4. Black Magic Woman
  5. My Baby’s Good To Me
  6. I Loved Another Woman
  7. Allow me One More Show
  8. Mean Old Fireman
  9. Can’t Afford to Do It
  10. Shake Your Moneymaker
  11. Love That Woman
  12. Love That Burns
  13. Rollin’ Man
  14. My Heart Beat Like A Hammer (Take 2)
  15. Need Your Love Tonight
  16. I’m Coming Home To Stay (1st Album Outtake)
  17. Lazy Poker Blues
  18. Doctor Brown
  19. Watch Out
  20. Stop Messin’ Around
  21. My Baby’s Sweeter
  22. Rambling Pony No.2
  23. Need Your Love So Bad
  24. A Fool no More
  25. No Place To Go

Disc 2

  1. Long Grey Mare
  2. Baby Please Set A Date
  3. Blues With A Feeling
  4. Mean Mistreatin’ Mama
  5. Can’t Believe You Wanna Leave
  6. Looking For Somebody
  7. Trying So Hard To Forget
  8. Sandy Mary
  9. Only You
  10. Tallahasse Lassie
  11. Homework
  12. Early Morning Come
  13. That’s Wrong
  14. Got To Move
  15. Heavenly
  16. When I See My Baby
  17. I Can’t Hold Out
  18. Coming Home
  19. (That’s What) I Want To Know
  20. Worried Dream
  21. Jumping At Shadows
  22. Leaving Town Blues
  23. You’re So Evil (1st Album Outtake)

Disc 3

  1. Intro
  2. Coming Your Way
  3. Closing My Eyes
  4. Show-Biz Blues
  5. My Dream
  6. Although The Sun Is Shining
  7. Like Crying
  8. Something Inside Of Me (Take 1)
  9. Tell Me From The Start
  10. Like It This Way
  11. One Sunny Day
  12. Rattlesnake Shake
  13. Oh Well (Part 1)
  14. Oh Well (Part 2)
  15. Albatross
  16. Man Of The World (Single Version)
  17. Someone’s Gonna Get Their Head Kicked In Tonight
  18. (Watch Out For Yourself) Mr Jones
  19. Mighty Cold
  20. Love It Seems
  21. Without You
  22. Before The Beginning
  23. The Green Manalishi (With The Two Pronged Crown)
  24. Farewell 

This playlist is dedicated to the memory of Peter Green who passed away recently. That news, as well as the death of Danny Kirwan back in 2018 shut the door on any hope of the blue based line up of Fleetwood Mac to reform and play some gigs. All that is left is the great music which these two fine guitar players left us with. 

These play lists could not be reproduced with one or more songs not being available on Spotify. 

Episode 94 – Where Are The Words?

In this episode, we are taking a look at instrumental tunes by bands that are more famous for having lyrics included with their music. 

  • Journey Of The Sorcerer – The Eagles
  • Boogie Woodie (Mono Mix) – The Beach Boys
  • Revenge (Mono Mix)  – The Kinks
  • 2120 South Michigan Avenue (Mono Mix) – The Rolling Stones
  • The Ox – The Who
  • Anji – Simon & Garfunkel
  • Don’t Make My Baby Blue – The Shadows
  • Captain Soul (Single Edit) – The Byrds
  • Interstellar Overdrive (French Edit) – Pink Floyd
  • Flying (Mono Mix) – The Bealtes
  • Wring That Neck (Mono Mix) – Deep Purple
  • Seven Seas Symphony (Mono Mix) – The Bee Gees
  • Side O’ The Road – Creedence Clearwater Revival
  • Sunny Side Of Heaven – Fleetwood Mac
  • Fire On High (Album Version) – Electric Light Orchestra
  • Bron-Yr-Aur – Led Zeppelin
  • Behind My Camel – The Police
  • Walltzinblack – The Stranglers
  • The Brazilian – Genesis
  • Cecilia Ann – The Pixies
  • Is This Music? – Teenage Fanclub
  • Infinite Sadness – The Smashing Pumpkins