The Ledge

Go Back   The Ledge > Main Forums > Rumours
User Name
Password
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Mark Forums Read


Make the Ads Go Away! Click here.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 02-07-2012, 02:16 PM
michelej1 michelej1 is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: California
Posts: 24,636
Default Caillat Gives Rumours Analysis, Track by Track

From Music Radar, by Joe Bosso, Tue 7 Feb 2012
http://www.musicradar.com/news/drums...ack-528375#!12

Fleetwood Mac's Rumours track-by-trackProducer Ken Caillat reflects on the mega album's 35th anniversary


"Records like Rumours don't happen anymore," says Ken Caillat, who along with Richard Dashut and Fleetwood Mac produced the 1977 mega album that has sold a mind-boggling 44 million copies. "We spent a year and a lot of hell working on it. Lives were changed, people changed, everything became different. Something like Rumours could never happen these days. A record label would have shut us down after two weeks."

The soap opera that attended the making of Rumours has been extensively documented - married band members John and Christine McVie broke up, as did lovers Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks; even Mick Fleetwood's marriage dissolved, as well - and Caillat confirms that 1976 was a wild ride. "There were fights, breakups, drinking, drugs... We all indulged in substances. But I had to be a therapist and record producer. When everything was insane, I had to be sane. If there was a rule book, nobody game me one."

Although 1975's self-titled release was rising up the charts during the making of Rumours, Caillat says that the band was still learning how to play together. "Basically, you had two teams: Christine, John and Mick, the three Brits, were pros, and the two Americans, Lindsey and Stevie, had their shorthand, but they were still new to the group. During the making of Rumours, they became a real band, one that was very intuitive, musically and otherwise.”

This intuition lent itself to songwriting. Rather than work with demos, the group's principle writers - Buckingham, Nicks and Christine McVie - would present live fragments of ideas for the group to build work on. "Richard and I had to capture light in a bottle," says Caillat. "The band would be tuning up, and before you knew it, a song was going down. John and Mick would hear something, they'd start playing, and we had to react fast. That kind of creativity doesn't happen these days - it's frowned upon. In 2012, a band has to have a committee approve their songs. Can you imagine Fleetwood Mac making Rumours under such conditions?"

Released on 4 February 1977, Rumours hit like a meteor, permanently altering the landscape of all involved. "Like Richard Dashut, I went from being a mid-level engineer to a Grammy-winning producer in one year," says Caillat. "The record was like Jaws and Star Wars combined. Everybody saw those movies, and everybody during that time bought a copy of Rumours."

In his forthcoming book, Making Rumours: The Inside Story Of The Classic Fleetwood Mac Album, Ken Caillat and Steve Stiefel recount the producer's year behind the glass in brilliant, page-turning detail. "It's amazing how everything came flooding back to me once I started the book," says Caillat. "It's one thing to remember cutting a number one song, but to think about what I was wearing that same day, that's incredible.

"But that's the kind of record Rumours is: You remember your first time hearing it. You even remember where you were when when you heard it. Not every album has that power. This one does. I was just lucky to be a part of it."

On the following pages, Ken Caillat takes a track-by-track look back at Rumours. To order his book, Making Rumours: The Inside Story Of The Classic Fleetwood Mac Album, click here.

Second Hand News

“We called it ‘Strummer.’ Before Lindsey had the structure and the words, he would strum his guitar very very hard go these chords. I always thought he’d turn it all into a song.

“A lot of Lindsey’s lyrics sparked fights with Stevie. I didn’t know exactly what was happening at the time, but words were flying around, particularly Lindsey’s, about their breakup. Stevie hated when Lindsey got even a little literal. The minute Lindsey would start singing his lyrics, Stevie stormed out and the session would end.

“Originally, John McVie had an amazing, flowing and melodic bass part. Lindsey had a problem with that. It took him a while, but eventually, while John was on vacation, he put down his own bassline, one that was very simple, just quarter notes.

“It worked, though. Lindsey had a grand plan in his head, and he got his way. This was the start of him really calling the shots. It became a ‘my way or the highway’ thing with him, which he perfected on the Tusk album.”

Dreams
“Stevie didn’t always have a lot to do. If she wasn’t singing, she’d bang on the tambourine, but that was about it. She had a lot more free time than the other band members.

“There was a spare room down the hall called Sly Stone’s Pit, and it had a piano. This was like heaven to Stevie. She spent hours in that place, just writing simple, three-chord songs. One day she came out the pit with something called Dreams.

“Once Stevie and Lindsey figured the song out, we had some tempo and groove problems. Things felt fine, but they had to be perfect - the rhythm had to be rock solid. Mick Fleetwood is a great drummer, one of the best, but he’d shift his parts and dynamics around - every drummer does.

“We made an eight-bar loop of Mick's playing, which created this fantastic, deep hypnotic effect. It’s funny, but when people talk about the classic rhythm section of Mick Fleetwood and John McVie and they point to this one song, I’m always amused that they’re talking about a drum loop.”

Never Going Back Again
“Lindsey had a pretty cool song called ‘Brushes’ – we called it this because we were going to have Mick do a press roll on his snare with brushes. That idea kind of went away.

“A lot of our focus shifted to Lindsey and his acoustic guitar. I noticed that anytime he played, there was a big different in how bright his strings sounded after just 20 minutes. So I said, ‘Can we restring your guitar every 20 minutes?’ I wanted to get the best sound on every one of his picking parts. He said sure.

“It took a long time to nail everything – all day, actually – and I’m sure the roadies wanted to kill me. restringing the guitar three times every hour was a bitch. But Lindsey had lots of parts on the song, and each one sounded magnificent.

"And it did. The only problem was, when Lindsey went to sing, he realized that he played all of his guitar parts in the wrong key. Oh, man! So we recorded everything all over again the next day, dispensing with the changing of guitar strings – we had to lose all of that so we could get Lindsey singing in the right key.”

Don't Stop

“I never really liked this song. It was the first shuffle I ever worked on. I didn’t like the drum sound, either – maybe it’s because it started out kind of slow.

“This was Christine’s song, and she loved it, so that's all that matters. What did improve it dramatically was when she said to Lindsey, ‘It doesn’t sound that great when I’m singing it myself. Why don’t we make it a duet?’ That opened things up.

“The end is funny. The band kept changing their background vocals. Anytime I thought I knew what they’d sing, they’d do something different. That’s a hallmark of classic Fleetwood Mac, their backgrounds. They’re incredible singers.”

Go Your Own Way

“Lindsey was beating his acoustic guitar as hard as he could and screaming his lungs out. The first time I heard it, I thought, What the heck is going on? [laughs] It sounded so non-musical. I didn’t know if anything would come from it.

“As the months went on, we filled it out and it became a song. Lindsey figured out some fantastic guitar parts to lay down. In particular, he did an acoustic part on the 1, a flourish overdub, and that really drove the rhythm.

“There’s two guitar solos, the tag and the first one. For both, Lindsey didn’t know what he wanted - the song had progressed from an acoustic piece into this searing electric rocker. I gave him seven or eight tracks and he comped the solos. They sound seamless, as if they were totally composed, but they weren’t.

“The right drum approach was crucial. One day, Lindsey came in and said he heard Street Fighting Man by the Stones, and he thought that kind of feel would work well. I remember watching him guide Mick as to what he wanted – he’d be so animated, like a little kid, playing these air tom fills with his curly hair flying. Mick wasn’t so sure he could do what Lindsey wanted, but he did a great job, and the song took off.”

Songbird

“Christine started playing something she had written on the piano one day, and it floored me. It was so beautiful and special, so personal – I knew I had to get just the right recording of it.

“Before Rumours, I had worked recorded an album with Joni Mitchell at the Berkeley Community Theatre. I thought doing a similar kind of concert recital recording was perfect for Songbird. Christine and the whole band loved the idea.

“The Berkley Community Theatre wasn’t available, so we used the Zellerbach Auditorium, the same kind of vibe. Christine sat on the stage and played a nine-foot Steinway, and she sounded magnificent. I used 15 tracks for the piano – two close mics and the rest were distant mics. For something like Songbird, I wanted the room to really speak.”

The Chain

“The very first song we worked on. It began as one of Christine’s things, something called Keep Me There. I remember Richard and I almost got fired while trying to record it because we spent five days on drum sounds – the band thought we were clueless.

“They ran through it one day and John McVie did that incredible bass line – just like that it just came to him. What a part! Next, the band began playing the tag at the end, that big rocking section. Amazing. Then, out of nowhere, Lindsey played a screaming guitar solo. Really exciting stuff.

“Over the next nine months, we’d revisit the song. There was great playing on tape, but it still wasn’t right. Finally, three weeks before we wrapped the album, Lindsey figured out how to connect everything. He took the verses apart, played a Dobro and asked Mick to play a straight quarter-note beat on the kick. Next, Lindsey rewrote the chorus and put a whole new rhythm to it. Everything clicked.

“The Chain changed drastically over the course of a year, but there was something about it that always made people think it was worth coming back to.”

You Make Loving Fun

“My favorite-sounding song on the record. I just love those four clicks on the hi-hat and bam! we’re right into it, with everybody playing. I still think it sounds great.

“Originally, it was done on Christine’s Yamaha electric piano. We wanted it to sound nastier and dirtier, though, because everybody was playing very hard. I made a remark about a Clavinet, and one of the engineers said there was one in Sly’s room. We ran out and grabbed it.

“To accentuate the ‘Clav-iness,’ we put it through a wah-wah pedal. Christine couldn’t play her keyboard part and work the wah at the same time, so Mick got down on his hands and knees and worked the pedal while Christine played. Being a drummer, he knew just what kind of rhythm it needed.

“I remember when we were doing background vocals, Stevie and Lindsey were having an argument. Vicious name-calling – ‘you mother****er’ this, 'you ****ing bastard' that. Back and forth it went. The tape would start rolling and they’d sing, ‘Yooooooou make loving fun,’ just beautiful, two little angels. The tape would stop and they’d be calling each other names again. They didn’t miss a beat.”

I Don't Want to Know

“We had a song called Silver Springs that couldn’t make the record because it was too long. That broke Stevie’s heart – she loved Silver Springs so much. But we needed something shorter, a little uptempo, and out came this kind of country thing she and Lindsey had been doing live.

“We cut the song with Lindsey and the others – Stevie wasn’t there that day – and Stevie came in later and sang her parts. It might have been the easiest song on the record. We were done with it fast. It’s a great sing-along.”

Oh Daddy


“Another early one. I think we did Oh Daddy right after The Chain. Christine played the organ and Lindsey had some wonderful guitar lines that he put down. I think he played a Strat on this song, but it could have been a Les Paul.

“We had something called a Stratoblaster that we used. It fit inside the guitar and added about a 15dB boost. I had the guitar designer Rick Turner build me one and stick it inside a little metal box. I kept it on the console and I could feed anything through it and give it a kick, just make it sound edgier and nastier.

“The song was called ‘Addy’ for a while because of a crazy studio accident. We were going to do some overdubs, and while rewinding the tape, a portable tape oscillator fell on the machine, sending it into free-wheel – the reels were spinning out of control. I jumped on the machine to stop it - and snapped the tape! Oh, man... [laughs] We listened back and there it was: ‘Oh ‘addy.’ The ‘D’ part of Christine’s vocal was cut off. My heart sunk.

“We fixed the part eventually, but for a month the song was referred to as ‘Addy.’ Nobody took my head off over the accident, but I felt terrible.”

Gold Dust Woman
“It was a weird song, and truthfully, I wasn’t very excited about it. I couldn’t tell where it was going. It was typical Stevie – most of her songs, in their inception, are close to 10 or 12 minutes long, with endless verses and epic stories.

“My job became one of editing, taking all of these sections and making them flow, cutting out the fat. Stevie would go crazy – ‘Oh, that verse was about my mother! That part was about my dog!’ [laughs] These things would mean something to her, but they had to work for the listener.

“The song grew more evil as we built it. I called over to SIR and they send over a bunch of weird instruments, like an electric harpsichord with a jet phaser – that created a cool, whooshing sound. We weren’t looking for musicality, we were looking for accents, mood. We marked the keyboard with tape so Mick could play the right notes.

“Stevie had a lot of Courvoisier in her, and she did this incredible coyote-like howling at the end. She had become this witch she was always writing about. To accentuate her vocals, Mick went into this room we had miked up, and he broke sheets of glass. He was wearing goggles and coveralls – it was pretty funny. He just went mad, bashing glass with this big hammer. He tried to do it on cue, but it was difficult. Eventually, we said, ‘Just break the glass,’ and we fit it all in.”
Reply With Quote
.
  #2  
Old 02-07-2012, 02:29 PM
michelej1 michelej1 is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: California
Posts: 24,636
Default

That was hilarious him mocking Stevie objecting when he tried to edit and cut her songs, "That verse is about my mother. That verse was about my dog." So, funny.

For NGBA after going through all that trouble with the strings to not be able to use it . . . how frustrating. What painstaking work. So, Lindsey doesn't just sing off-key when he's trying to rile up his bandmates, huh? Sometimes, it happens quite by accident.

Michele
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02-07-2012, 03:48 PM
Christopher's Avatar
Christopher Christopher is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 2,076
Default

After reading through Ken's snippets/teasers, it's looking like this will be a good insightful read. Looking forward to this book!

The part about Stevie & Lindsey cussing each other out between YMLF takes, and not missing a beat is hillarious.
Also, Kens recounting of GDW first incarnation as a "wierd song" that was close to 10 or 12 minutes long, with endless verses and epic stories. -Would love to hear that version! That's our Stevie!
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02-07-2012, 04:48 PM
HejiraNYC's Avatar
HejiraNYC HejiraNYC is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 4,793
Default

Thanks for posting the snippet! It does look like a fun read; however, I can't help but think much of the backstory was already covered in the Classic Albums DVD. Still, I find it interesting that all of the songs were written from the ground-up using only snippets of musical ideas. Hence, the absence of bootleg demos for Rumours tracks! I do find it interesting that Christine couldn't control her own "wah." I would have assumed it would not be unlike using the sustain pedals on a piano. Or better yet, Christine could have controlled the "wah" with one of those straw contraptions in her mouth ala Peter Frampton.
__________________
**********************
hejiranyc
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02-07-2012, 06:02 PM
mylittledemon's Avatar
mylittledemon mylittledemon is offline
Moderator
Supporting Ledgie
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Akatarawa, New Zealand
Posts: 8,367
Default

Great article! I'm looking forward to his new book
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02-07-2012, 08:56 PM
vivfox's Avatar
vivfox vivfox is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 13,064
Default

Very enjoyable to read. One wonders what else he'll have to write about.
__________________
 photo d754aa6e-1605-473c-895b-9665a3f17371_zpsrtovtrei.jpg
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 02-07-2012, 09:13 PM
HomerMcvie's Avatar
HomerMcvie HomerMcvie is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Indiana/Tennessee
Posts: 9,656
Default

I'm looking forward to it, too! I'm sure Ken will post on FB, and probably here, when it's finally coming out. There's not a release date yet, right?
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 02-07-2012, 09:50 PM
elle's Avatar
elle elle is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: DC
Posts: 9,062
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by HomerMcvie View Post
I'm looking forward to it, too! I'm sure Ken will post on FB, and probably here, when it's finally coming out. There's not a release date yet, right?
i'm pretty sure there is a release date. i pre-ordered it on amazon a while back.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 02-07-2012, 09:55 PM
CADreaming's Avatar
CADreaming CADreaming is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 6,325
Default

Excellent read!

Love the part about Mick's looped drum track getting the credit for the renowned rhythm section.
__________________

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CA_Dream
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 02-07-2012, 10:04 PM
louielouie2000's Avatar
louielouie2000 louielouie2000 is offline
Addicted Ledgie
Supporting Ledgie
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 6,341
Default

I found it interesting that Ken very openly expressed his dislike of Don't Stop. I guess I just didn't expect him to say anything but glowing things about the music he helped craft. It's also one of the most well known, signature Mac tunes. You'd think he'd be heralding it's glories. Looks like he feels the same way as the majority of the Fleetwood Mac community, though... that the song just isn't so great.

Another illuminating tidbit was Ken's description of Lindsey's scorched earth way of doing things. I guess I didn't realize that aspect of Lindsey had begun emerging during Rumours. I cannot imagine the tension Lindsey must have created by either 1) booting John's bass parts altogether 2) basically demanding Mick play exactly what he wanted, and Mick doing it. It really piques my interest that Ken would again be this unabashed with his feelings- makes me wonder what kind of relationship he maintains with the band members these days, if any. I know none of the band members would agree to be interviewed for the book, and I'm starting to see why.
__________________
http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a382/louielouie2000/The_Plant_-_Sausalito_-_front_door_2.jpg
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 02-07-2012, 10:14 PM
HomerMcvie's Avatar
HomerMcvie HomerMcvie is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Indiana/Tennessee
Posts: 9,656
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by louielouie2000 View Post
I found it interesting that Ken very openly expressed his dislike of Don't Stop. I guess I just didn't expect him to say anything but glowing things about the music he helped craft. It's also one of the most well known, signature Mac tunes. You'd think he'd be heralding it's glories. Looks like he feels the same way as the majority of the Fleetwood Mac community, though... that the song just isn't so great.
I tell you, though, my band plays Don't Stop, and used to play GYOW. We could never get anyone to dance to GYOW, so we dropped it. We consistently fill the dance floor with Don't Stop. So, say what you will....haters gonna hate!
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 02-07-2012, 10:57 PM
madeline madeline is offline
Senior Ledgie
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 127
Default

I thought I had heard Stevie claim many times that they took the chorus for The Chain out of one of her songs that she had written. Now Ken is saying it was a Christine song. And that Lindsey rewrote the chorus. What is the actual truth on that? Does anyone else remember Stevie saying that?
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 02-07-2012, 11:44 PM
WildHearted's Avatar
WildHearted WildHearted is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 4,136
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by madeline View Post
I thought I had heard Stevie claim many times that they took the chorus for The Chain out of one of her songs that she had written. Now Ken is saying it was a Christine song. And that Lindsey rewrote the chorus. What is the actual truth on that? Does anyone else remember Stevie saying that?
I think he's saying musically, it began as a Chris song, and that musically, Lindsey rewrote the chorus.

In what little recording evidence we have regarding the chain, it seems (to me anyway, I might be wrong, someone correct me if so) that they just kind of started jamming, and there wasn't really words, they were just kind of saying nonsense... then Lindsey came up with the 'listen to the wind blowwwww.'

I think what happened was that a majority of the lyrics were taken from something Stevie had written. I feel like there may have been a quote from one of them about that, but I'm not sure. Stevie has definitely mentioned before that The Chain was 'her song' - I think even as recently as one of the signings in the past year, to a fan?
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 02-08-2012, 12:17 AM
On Ice On Ice is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 403
Default

I think in all likelihood, "listen to the wind blow, watch the sun rise, run in the shadows... was written by Stevie..."damn your love damn your lies" I'm going with either Lindsey or Christine. "and if you don't love me now" is Lindsey for sure. I think the song is actually a brilliant splicing of several different songs, hence the shared writing credits. And John McVie's baseline is hands down the best bass line ever recorded in rock history.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 02-08-2012, 01:02 AM
Blueletter18's Avatar
Blueletter18 Blueletter18 is offline
Addicted Ledgie
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Michigan
Posts: 538
Default

I just preordered the book on Amazon! Release date is April 10, I believe. It will be really interesting, for sure. Hopefully he'll provide a more unbiased approach than any of the band members could.
__________________
"Where is the reason? Don't blame it on me, blame it on my wild heart!"
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump

1976 Press Photo Carol Burnett & Billy Wilder - cvp77031
$22.88
1976 Press Photo Carol Burnett & Billy Wilder - cvp77031 picture1997 Pretty Blond Singer Bekka Bramlett With Billy Burnette Press Photo
$20.0
1997 Pretty Blond Singer Bekka Bramlett With Billy Burnette Press Photo picture1981 Press Photo Billy Burnette, entertainer - nop12943
$17.99
1981 Press Photo Billy Burnette, entertainer - nop12943 picturePress Photo Billy Burnette, Guitarist - spp41773
$17.88
Press Photo Billy Burnette, Guitarist - spp41773 pictureRARE 1980s Original 35mm Negative Strip of (3) Rock Star BILLY BURNETTE
$15.88
RARE 1980s Original 35mm Negative Strip of (3) Rock Star BILLY BURNETTE picture



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:28 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 1995-2003 Martin and Lisa Adelson, All Rights Reserved