So, I was sorry to hear the news about Christine McVie's passing. She was my favorite of the many talented singer/songwriters who were part of that protean group Fleeetwood Mac over its many years. If I had to pick a single song of hers as my favorite, it'd be "Homeward Bound", from BARE TREES (1972) -- which, not coincidentally, is my favorite of their albums.
Second place wd probably go to "Brown Eyes" from TUSK (1979). The album is a self-indulgent mess* but this song, where she was backed up by Fleetwood Mac founder Peter Green, stands out along with a few others.
I got to see her once (this wd have been around 1984), when she was performing in small venues in places like Milwaukee in support of her solo album, which stays in the memory as pleasant. In those days I was deeply interested in rock music's version of the phenomenon that I have since learned is called Theseus's ship. If something is in continual use, and is repaired and maintained throughout that time, so that at what point it consist entirely of replacement parts, is it still Theseus's ship at that point? Or, in the rock n roll version, in rare cases, a group would be stable, with the same line-up of the same personal). More often a long-lasting group will be ever-evolving, so that the line up would change over time: Fleetwood Mac and Jefferson Starship were typlical examples. In some cases an old group continue to tour without a single remaining original member (there was a point in the early seventies in which there were two rival versions of Fleetwood Mac on tour).
In any case, McVie's passing has put me in the mood to, in the words of Bob Seger, "take those old records off the shelf; I'll sit and listen to them by myself". I think over the next few days I'll be listening to all the Fleetwood Mac albums I have on vinyl (plus one on cassette and two I only have on cd):
THEN PLAY ON (the standout tune here is the blistering "Oh Well").** when they sounded like Santana before there was a Santana.
KILN HOUSE (for which McVie did the cover art). back in the day when they did Buddy Holly covers.
FUTURE GAMES (a transition album; an uneasy combination of Danny Kirwan and Bob Welsh)
BARE TREES (dominated by Danny Kirwan; their best album of them all)
MYSTERY TO ME (dominated by Bob Welsh)
HEROES ARE HARD TO FIND (still v. much Welsh's band)
FLEETWOOD MAC (the first of the albums made by the classic line-up most people think of when they hear the name 'Fleetwood Mac: Mick Fleetwood, John McVie, Christine McVie, Lindsey Buckingham, & Stevie Nicks. second in sales and reputation only to the follow-up, Rumours)
RUMOURS (one of the best-selling albums of all time and the high-water mark of their career)
TUSK (Buckingham's folly: a rambling hodge-podge that proved Rumours was a hard act to follow.)
LIVE (essentially a live album of the concert tour to support Rumours, plus a few others, like Beach Boys cover "Farmer's Daughter")
MIRAGE (going through the motions)
TANGO IN THE NIGHT (more of the same)
SAY YOU WILL (something of a comeback for the group: Buckingham/Nicks without Christine McVie)
--So there it is: not a complete discography, but a lot of music on a dozen albums, plus a few solo efforts (two by Kirwan and two by Nicks, in addition). I'm grateful the Christine McVie for the songs we have thanks to her that we wdn't have otherwise.
*It's one of those albums that proves just how hard it is to do a worthy follow-up to a best0selling career-defining album; the Eagle's THE LONG RUN is another example.
**Here are the lyrics to Green's little ditty: