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Old 05-28-2021, 06:20 PM
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Question Was it Mick's decision?

I was checking Wikipedia's Tusk page references, and found this paragraph extracted from Evans, Mike (2011). "Superstardom". Fleetwood Mac: The Definitive History (a book I have not read), and it says “"It was Mick Fleetwood, however, who made the first decision concerning the new record: that it was going to be a double album”. Was it? I didn’t recall that, and surely Mick would have said so in his (first) book, so I took my Mick's book and found these parts that talk about Tusk being a double album.

Our writers were prolific, and very early on we realized we had a lot more good songs than we could fit on a single album.
….
Many of the tracks, especially most of Lindsey's (but "Tusk" as well), were rather eccentric in a New Wavy style; this was a direct reaction to the middle-of-the-road feelings of Rumours. But we all considered the Tusk songs to be the crowning jewel of Fleetwood Mac's recorded work. In the end, we decided we could get away with releasing all of the music on a left-field double album.
….
But when we finally gave them the tapes of Tusk, they told us flatly we were crazy to release a double album. Mo Ostin explained that the record industry was in the midst of a severe slump in 1979-80 (few if any of the much-vaunted New Wave bands sold many records), and that a big double album might not be a very commercial proposition. The Warner Bros. executives, meanwhile, listened to Tusk and saw their much-anticipated Christmas bonuses fly out the window. No way, they said, was this package going to sell tonnage. But we never wavered once. We were too far into what we were doing, and at that point there was no question of hacking the album down to one record.


If the record company told them a double album wasn’t a smart commercial proposition, I don’t see Mick insisting the band that the album be double. I think they all wanted to make it double, specially Lindsey. Most likely hearing that, maybe Mick considered reducing it to a single record, but probably he didn't say anything after all the band agreed it would be a double.

Or have you read in any other source that it was Mick's decision?
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Old 05-28-2021, 06:28 PM
bombaysaffires bombaysaffires is offline
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My bet would be that Stevie and likely the McVies would be in favor of whatever the record company thought would sell best, ie single album (short-term thinking).

Mick, despite all his flaws, would have been the one to see that giving LB that creative space etc would be best in terms of the long-term continuation of the band (and not just the money from the Tusk album, whether that turned out to be either a single or a double album, but any future albums and tours as well. The others would have been thinking short-term ie just the sales of Tusk and its associated tour). If that meant backing LB's desire for a double album, then Mick would support that (which he did). Or if that meant letting LB bang on Kleenex boxes instead of drums...

Mick talked about in his first book and in interviews that he sat with LB on LB's front lawn and hashed out LB's unhappinesses/frustrations etc and creative vision. I recall at one point he reported he told LB, "Well maybe you just don't want to be in a band." But he also reported thinking about how to keep the band together longer term and if that meant the double album, supporting that.

Of course, Mick had more power than Stevie at that point in the band's history and she could be outvoted if he got John and/or Chris on his side. Oh how the tables have turned.
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Old 05-28-2021, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by bombaysaffires View Post
Mick, despite all his flaws, would have been the one to see that giving LB that creative space etc would be best in terms of the long-term continuation of the band (and not just the money from the Tusk album, whether that turned out to be either a single or a double album, but any future albums and tours as well. The others would have been thinking short-term ie just the sales of Tusk and its associated tour). If that meant backing LB's desire for a double album, then Mick would support that (which he did). Or if that meant letting LB bang on Kleenex boxes instead of drums...
.
Right, Mick mentioned in his book:
I kept saying that I didn't want the album to be so segregated that people couldn't hear the band. When we were mixing I'd beg Lindsey to make his songs more recognisable as Fleetwood Mac. His songs were fantastic, but my reservations were that they might be too alien for our fans. Do what you're doing, I'd say, but don't forget the ingredients we worked on for years as part of the band. Don't go too far.
To this day, Lindsey feels I wasn't enthusiastic enough about the album. I know he feels I got it all wrong, but in fact I loved Tusk, I think it's a great album, and probably the only artistic reason Fleetwood Mac is still together today. As a double album, it released a lot of creative frustrations.


However I don't think Mick truly thinks 100% about what he wrote here : But Fleetwood Mac's measure was the art. It would be naive to say that we were oblivious to the money, but the music came first. Then maybe you make some money with it. We didn't want to approach our lives with the understanding that "soft rock" is the sort of music we have to do to make money. I sh--t on that whole concept, because the point of the music is lost. It becomes nothing more than another business.


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Originally Posted by bombaysaffires View Post
Mick had more power than Stevie at that point in the band's history.
Yes, it seems that’s right after I read this: (When Stevie heard that we had decided to name the album Tusk, she threatened to quit the band in revulsion. But I chose to ignore her and nothing ever came of it.)
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Old 05-28-2021, 11:54 PM
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Originally Posted by bombaysaffires View Post



Of course, Mick had more power than Stevie at that point in the band's history and she could be outvoted if he got John and/or Chris on his side. Oh how the tables have turned.
Yes, those were the days when Stevie likes to say she was forced to sit in “the back of the bus.”
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Old 05-29-2021, 12:11 AM
bombaysaffires bombaysaffires is offline
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Yes, those were the days when Stevie likes to say she was forced to sit in “the back of the bus.”
Or the days when she first joined and would say that she would have been happy to have just been hired as their secretary she wanted to be part of it all so much.....

"I wanna be a star...I don't wanna be a cleaning lady"......
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Old 05-29-2021, 12:29 AM
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There's a huge difference in art vs. commerce, when you're 30 vs. 80.

I'm sure they felt artistic on the heels of White/Rumours.

Then you become accustomed to being a multi millionaire(or wanting to be, like idiot Mick).

There is no art now. It's all about maintaining their lifestyles. EVEN LINDSEY, who apparently wants to go back the sh*t circus. Legacy? Paycheck...
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Old 05-29-2021, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by michelej1 View Post
Yes, those were the days when Stevie likes to say she was forced to sit in “the back of the bus.”
Actually, or technically, they no longer went by bus during the Tusk tour

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Originally Posted by HomerMcvie View Post
There's a huge difference in art vs. commerce, when you're 30 vs. 80.

I'm sure they felt artistic on the heels of White/Rumours.

Then you become accustomed to being a multi millionaire
And that has happened to many bands.
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Old 05-29-2021, 12:08 PM
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Can you imagine if Rumours was a double album? OMG
The band had such incredible demos especially Stevie stuff like Sleeping Angel. No wonder the double album came to mind. You must rewind time to the mid to late 70s. Double albums were fairly common. When Silver Springs is your left over you know you have incredible songs.
Makes you wonder IF the Mac put out a similar Rumours album what would have happened. It may not sold like Rumours but would have sold at least 10 million. I love Tusk but I always hate Tusk for the wrong reasons. It changed the band forever. Post Tusk the band was always chasing radio singles and pop success which is what Tusk was against. The counter era post Tusk hurt creativity IMHO. Tusk also facilitated the solo albums. Mick no longer managed the band and Irving took over Stevie, etc. Because Tusk was considered a failure (please dont flame me, I said CONSIDERED), it changed things forever. Thats what irks me about Tusk.

***ok off my soap box now****
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Last edited by Macfan4life; 05-29-2021 at 12:14 PM..
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Old 05-29-2021, 02:27 PM
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Stevie had a backlog of songs and was already frustrated that there wasn’t sufficient room on single albums to showcase the bulk of her material. At the bottom of the band pecking order, I’m sure she reveled in the idea of getting to air five new songs (all of them over four minutes long) on the double album.

But I’m betting it really was Lindsey’s glut of new songs and experiments that led to the idea getting seriously discussed. As then manager, Mick had decide whether or not to cave to the label’s expectations or nurture his wildly creative bandmate. He made the right call.

And given that The Visitor, an offbeat, uncommercial record appeared in 1980-81, I’d bet Mick possessed a creative, independent spirit that he has suppressed since the mid-80s.

I don’t think Christine and John held strong opinions on the matter either way.
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Old 05-29-2021, 08:44 PM
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Stevie had a backlog of songs and was already frustrated that there wasn’t sufficient room on single albums to showcase the bulk of her material. At the bottom of the band pecking order, I’m sure she reveled in the idea of getting to air five new songs (all of them over four minutes long) on the double album.

But I’m betting it really was Lindsey’s glut of new songs and experiments that led to the idea getting seriously discussed. As then manager, Mick had decide whether or not to cave to the label’s expectations or nurture his wildly creative bandmate. He made the right call.

And given that The Visitor, an offbeat, uncommercial record appeared in 1980-81, I’d bet Mick possessed a creative, independent spirit that he has suppressed since the mid-80s.

I don’t think Christine and John held strong opinions on the matter either way.
I do.

There was a famous interview with Rolling Stone (I think after Mirage was done and coming out) where Lindsey was sitting with other band members... not Stevie, but the Mc Vies were there, can't recall about Mick) and the conversation got a bit testy about commercial success vs artistic and creative success. Chris and John were bringing up sales and Lindsey was passionately arguing for creativity and I recall the writer described that he slapped his hand against his chest and said "It's what's in here" (the heart) that matters. At that point Chris kinda just trailed off, seemingly not wanting to start that whole argument again....
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Old 05-29-2021, 09:35 PM
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Even though she was the hit writer, Chris always seemed to put the BAND first. That level of success was enough for her. Successful band first, ego can sit in the back seat.

I don't think the same could ever be said for Lindsey or $tevie. Their egos were front and center.

By the same token, Chris's logic also allows her to stand by while dear band mates are thrown to the wolves. I've said it before and I'll say it again.... she's a company shill.

You'd want to hire her for your company, but not put your life on the line for her...
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Old 05-30-2021, 05:58 AM
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Even though she was the hit writer, Chris always seemed to put the BAND first. That level of success was enough for her. Successful band first, ego can sit in the back seat.

I don't think the same could ever be said for Lindsey or $tevie. Their egos were front and center.

By the same token, Chris's logic also allows her to stand by while dear band mates are thrown to the wolves. I've said it before and I'll say it again.... she's a company shill.

You'd want to hire her for your company, but not put your life on the line for her...
So she is the Mike Pence of Fleetwood Mac

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Old 05-30-2021, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by bombaysaffires View Post
I do.

There was a famous interview with Rolling Stone (I think after Mirage was done and coming out) where Lindsey was sitting with other band members... not Stevie, but the Mc Vies were there, can't recall about Mick) and the conversation got a bit testy about commercial success vs artistic and creative success. Chris and John were bringing up sales and Lindsey was passionately arguing for creativity and I recall the writer described that he slapped his hand against his chest and said "It's what's in here" (the heart) that matters. At that point Chris kinda just trailed off, seemingly not wanting to start that whole argument again....
But this was AFTER TUSK came and went. I was responding to the original post about who proposed the initial decision to do a double album.

Yes, after TUSK failed to bring in as much $ and was a comparative commercial failure, the McVies (and others) had strong opinions.
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Old 05-30-2021, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Villavic View Post
I was checking Wikipedia's Tusk page references, and found this paragraph extracted from Evans, Mike (2011). "Superstardom". Fleetwood Mac: The Definitive History (a book I have not read), and it says “"It was Mick Fleetwood, however, who made the first decision concerning the new record: that it was going to be a double album”.
Hi,
I've got this book. I'd recommend it. It's a big opus of a book and nicely laid out. A few obiquitous mistakes, but generally a nice book to have. Probably my favourite Fleetwood Mac-related book.

That part in particular;

It was Mick Fleetwood, however, who made the first decision concerning the new record: that it was going to be a double album. Given that just the one disc of Rumours took so much time to complete, he realised that a double would be far more expensive in terms of studio costs alone. The answer, Mick proposed was to buy their own studio, avoiding both by-the-hour charges and the hassle enountered with Rumours of moving from studio to studio to get the final results they wanted.

later, it goes on to say;

At one stage he (LB) announced that he was planning a solo album, but the band- anxious to keep him 'on side' in every way- said he could include his experiments as part of the new release. 'That's how in essence it came to be a double album' Christine would later claim, although Mick had already planned to make it a two disc release.


In truth, Rumours was such a massive hit, they all probably thought they could sh!t miracles and whatever they did was going to be a massive success. Why not do a double album?
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Old 05-30-2021, 10:46 AM
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So she is the Mike Pence of Fleetwood Mac

If that helps you get through the day...


Mike Pence and I were born and raised in the same town(until I was 9), so I will ignore any Pence comparisons!
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