Why Fleetwood Mac Didn’t Make a New LP When Mike Campbell Joined
Former Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell said he’d expected to find himself recording an album as soon as he joined Fleetwood Mac.
Campbell and Neil Finn were announced as new members in 2018, after the acrimonious departure departure of Lindsey Buckingham. The new lineup undertook a world tour, but a studio project wasn’t part of the schedule.
“I would love to do an album with them. In fact, when I first got the call, I thought we were going to do a record,” Campbell told Yahoo in a new interview. “And then I realized, ‘Oh, they've got some tour commitments. So, that's going to take a year and a half.’
"And at the end of that tour, we were all pretty tired: You know, we went around the world once or twice," Campbell added. "So, we had a meeting and everybody said, ‘Let's take a couple of years off and relax and do other things, and see how we feel in a couple of years. And if everybody is engaged, come in and we're up for it.’ We'll reconvene and see what we can do. So, it's up in the air.”
He said that the invitation to join came from Mick Fleetwood, despite Campbell's longstanding connections with Stevie Nicks. “It was on my birthday, actually,” Campbell said. “I was at home and Mick called me. I’d only met him once or twice before. He said, ‘Lindsey has left the band,’ and I said, ‘Oh, that's really sad; I know how you guys must feel.’ And then he goes, ‘I'd like you to think about joining the band.’
"I was kind of shocked, really, but honored," Campbell remembered. "I said, ‘Give me 24 hours to think about it,’ and I thought over the pros and cons and decided it would be a good thing. But Mick said, ‘This is not an audition. … If you want the gig, I'd like to give it to you.’ And I don't know if this is true or not, but he also said, ‘This is not coming from Stevie. This is coming from me.’”
He said the members discussed a number of potential additions before inviting Finn to take part. Campbell also admitted he received a negative response after suggesting old Fleetwood Mac associate Steve Winwood. “They just looked at me like, ‘Um, what did he say?’ Mick said, ‘I think that'll tip the scales a little too far.’ … I think they wanted somebody that wasn't already that strong of a voice that would maybe pull away from the Fleetwood Mac legacy too much.”
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