Sunday, April 5, 2009
Michael John Kells "Mick" Fleetwood (born on June 24, 1947 in Redruth, Cornwall, UK) is a British-born musician best known for his role as the drummer with the blues/rock and roll band Fleetwood Mac. His name, combined with that of John McVie was the inspiration for the name of the originally Peter Green-led Fleetwood Mac.
Aside from his work as a drummer, he also helped form the different incarnations of his band Fleetwood Mac, and is the sole member to stay with the band through its ever-changing lineup. In 1974, he met and invited Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks to join Fleetwood Mac. Although Buckingham and Nicks deserve credit for contributing to much of Fleetwood Mac's later commercial success, Fleetwood's determination to keep the band together was essential to Fleetwood Mac's longevity as a band and their lasting international success. He is known for his distinctive height, standing at 6'6" (197 cm).
Fleetwood was born to Michael and Bridget Maureen (née Brereton) Fleetwood in 1947. His elder sister, the late Susan Fleetwood, was an actress. In early childhood he and his family followed his father, a Royal Air Force fighter pilot, to Egypt. After about six years they moved to Norway where his father was posted. He attended school there and acquired fluency in the Norwegian language. According to his autobiography, Fleetwood had an extremely difficult and trying time academically at the English boarding schools he attended, including Kings School, Sherborne Park, Glos. He performed poorly on exams which he attributes to his persistent inability to commit facts to memory. He dropped out of school aged 15, and, in 1963, moved to London to pursue a career as a drummer.
Keyboard player Peter Bardens gave Fleetwood his first gig in Bardens' band The Cheynes, thus seeding the young drummer's musical career. It would take him from The Cheynes to stints in the Bo Street Runners, Peter Bs, Shotgun Express (with Rod Stewart), and John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. After being dismissed from the Bluesbreakers for repeated inebriety during gigs Mick Fleetwood was asked a few months later by singer and guitarist Peter Green to join him along with bassist John McVie in his new band Fleetwood Mac. Since then more than fifty albums have been released under the name Fleetwood Mac - by far the most popular being the two mega-platinum sets the group put out in the late seventies: Fleetwood Mac and Rumours.
Mick also led a number of side projects. 1981's The Visitor featured heavy African stylistics and a rerecording of "Rattlesnake Shake" with Peter Green. In 1983 he formed Mick Fleetwood's Zoo and recorded I'm Not Me. The album featured a minor hit with "I Want You Back" and a cover version of the Beach Boys' "Angel Come Home". A later version of the group featured Bekka Bramlett on vocals and recorded 1991's Shaking the Cage. Fleetwood released Something Big in 2004 with The Mick Fleetwood Band. That group's most recent album is Blue Again, appearing in March 2009 with the group touring to support it, interspersed with the Unleashed tour of Fleetwood Mac. This music explores the blues roots of the Peter Green era of Fleetwood Mac.
Fleetwood has a secondary career as a TV and film actor, usually in minor parts. His roles in this field have included a resistance leader in The Running Man and as a guest alien in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Manhunt". Fleetwood co-hosted the 1989 BRIT Awards, which contained numerous gaffes and flubbed lines. In the wake of this public mishap, the BRIT Awards were pre-recorded for the next 18 years until 2007; the awards are now again broadcast live to the British public.
He is the author of Fleetwood - My Life and Adventures with Fleetwood Mac, his memoirs of his life, especially with Fleetwood Mac, published in 1991. Included in the book are his experiences with other musicians including Eric Clapton, members of The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, and a romance with Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac. Fleetwood also discusses his addiction to powdered cocaine and his personal bankruptcy after earning millions of dollars and pounds from his drumming career.
In 1979, Mick Fleetwood was diagnosed with diabetes, after having suffered recurring bouts of hypoglycemia during several live shows.
Having lived in the United States since the mid-70s, Mick Fleetwood became a US citizen on November 22, 2006 in Los Angeles, California.
Recorded in Ghana in 1981, Mick Fleetwood's solo debut reveals more diversity and depth of feeling than any of Fleetwood Mac's multi-platinum monsters. Six of the tracks are not overt attempts at worldbeat, instead using a variety of West African musicians as sidemen, sidewomen, and, in the case of drum ensemble Ebaali Gbiko, sidechildren. Of these six tracks, several stand out. "Walk a Thin Line," written by Fleetwood Mac guitarist Lindsey Buckingham, is an infectious pop song blending Adjo Group's enchanting backing vocals with guest George Harrison's lush 12-string and slide guitars. Another Fleetwood Mac veteran, Peter Greenbaum (aka Peter Green), accompanies a multinational percussion section for a remake of his "Rattlesnake Shake," originally found on Then Play On. Even the Buddy Holly classic "Not Fade Away" gets supercharged with a percussion ensemble made up of Fleetwood on drums and Lord Tiki and Adjo Group on hand drums and percussion. The West African tracks that make up the remainder of the album are pure pleasure. "Super Brains" is a funk instrumental with a groove James Brown would be proud of; "The Visitor" features a synthesizer soaring above and growling beneath the Ghana Folkloric Group's vocals and polyrhythmic percussion; and "Amelle" is a lovely finale that again showcases Adjo Group's vocals. An underrated gem, The Visitor rewards repeated listening and deserves a wider audience. ~ Michael Waynick, All Music Guide
I could not have wished to have been with better people in everyway before, during and after the making of this album.
Thank you all for making a not easy endeavor, a reality. Being a visitor to Ghana will be a heartfelt memory with me for the rest of my life
Much love to you all
Dedicated to Amy and Lucy Fleetwood.
Thanks to Faisal Helwani, Founder of Musicians Union in Ghana and Sammy Oto, both instrumental in leading us to Ghanaian musicians used on this album.
1 Rattlesnake Shake 3:49*
2 You Weren't in Love 3:47*
3 O' Niamali 2:47
4 Super Brains 4:07
5 Don't Be Sorry, Just Be Happy 4:24*
6 Walk a Thin Line 3:19
7 Not Fade Away 2:22
8 Cassiopeia Surrender 4:34
9 The Visitor 4:05
10 Amelle (Come on Show Me Your Heart) 4:35
Produced by Richard Dashut and Mick Fleetwood
Executive Producer Mickey Shapiro
Engineered by Richard Dashut
with Randy Ezratty and Bill Youdelman
* Arranged by Andrew Powell with Mike Moran
All tracks recorded in Accra, Ghana, West Africa
January and February 1981
at the Ghana Film Industries,Inc Studio
Posted by abominogjnr at 12:17 PM