Tuesday, November 26, 2013

November 26: John McVie of Fleetwood Mac is 68-years-old today.


British bass guitarist John Graham McVie is best known as a member of the rock group Fleetwood Mac. His surname, combined with that of Mick Fleetwood, was the inspiration for the band's name.

John Graham McVie was born in Ealing, west London. At age 14, McVie began playing the guitar in local bands covering songs by The Shadows. However, he soon realised that all of his friends were learning to play lead guitar, so John switched to bass guitar. When his parents became aware of his musical abilities, his father bought him a pink Fender bass guitar.


John McVie’s first job as a bass player was in a band called the "Krewsaders," formed by boys living in the same street as McVie in Ealing, West London. The "Krewsaders" played mainly at weddings and parties, covering songs from The Shadows.
McVie was asked to to play bass in the Bluesbreakers. McVie accepted while still holding down his daytime job for a further nine months before becoming a musician full time. Not having had any formal training in music, learned to play the blues mainly by listening to B. B. King and Willie Dixon records.  

In 1966, a young Peter Green was asked to join Mayall's Bluesbreakers as the band's new lead guitar player, after Eric Clapton left. Some time later, after the recording of A Hard Road, drummer Aynsley Dunbar was replaced by Mick Fleetwood. Green, McVie, and Fleetwood quickly forged a strong personal relationship, and when John Mayall gave Green some free studio time for his birthday, Green asked McVie and Fleetwood to join him for a recording session.

That same year, after having been replaced by Mick Taylor in the Bluesbreakers, Peter Green opted to form his own band, which he called "Fleetwood Mac" after his preferred rhythm section (Fleetwood and McVie). Mick Fleetwood immediately joined Green's new band, having been dismissed earlier from the Bluesbreakers for drunkenness.

However, McVie initially was reluctant to join Fleetwood Mac, not wanting to leave the security and well-paid job in the Bluesbreakers, forcing Green to temporarily hire a bassist named Bob Brunning. A few weeks later McVie changed his mind, however, as he felt that The Bluesbreakers musical direction were shifting too much towards jazz, and he joined Fleetwood Mac on bass in December 1967.

With McVie now in Fleetwood Mac, the band recorded its first album, the eponymous Fleetwood Mac in 1968, and became an immediate national hit, establishing Fleetwood Mac as a major part in the English Blues movement.

(Continued below CDs...)

HIGHLY Recommended (Links to Amazon):

The Very Best Of Fleetwood Mac (2CD) RumoursFleetwood Mac - The DanceThe Best of Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac
Also in 1968, John married blues pianist and singer Christine Perfect, who became a member of Fleetwood Mac two years later. John and Christine McVie divorced, however, in 1977, about the time the band recorded the album Rumours, a major artistic and commercial success, and which borrowed its title from the turmoils in McVie's and other band members' marriages and relationships.

Here's the official Fleetwood Mac Website:



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