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Creedence Clearwater Revival At Royal Albert Hall: No Encores, But Worth The 52-Year Wait
Creedence Clearwater Revival. Clockwise from left: Doug Clifford, Tom Fogerty, Stu Cook, John Fogerty.

Photo: Didi Zill

interview

Creedence Clearwater Revival At Royal Albert Hall: No Encores, But Worth The 52-Year Wait

Five decades on, a long-lost documentary and live album from CCR's 1970 Euro tour have been released. Drummer Doug Clifford and director Bob Smeaton discuss the releases, playing the Beatles' house, and a lifetime of chooglin'.

GRAMMYs/Sep 19, 2022 - 01:40 pm

Creedence Clearwater Revival were at the peak of their powers in 1969, an extremely prolific year where the foursome netted four Billboard top 10 singles and three top 10 albums.

Having conquered America, even out-selling the Beatles, they headed into 1970 with their sights set on Europe for their first-ever overseas tour — an eight-show run through Denmark, Holland,Germany, France, and most importantly, England.

That tour — and, specifically, its two sold-out London dates — is the focus of a new documentary and live album, both of which have remained unreleased for more than 50 years. The film, Travelin' Band: Creedence Clearwater Revival at the Royal Albert Hall, is being released concurrently with live album Creedence Clearwater Revival at the Royal Albert Hall

Creedence perform with such rarefied level of precision that the sound of their hit records literally come to life on the prestigious Royal Albert Hall stage. Muscular renditions of their hits are doled out throughout the 12-song set, though lesser-known tracks like the gloomy groover "Tombstone Shadow" and an absolutely frantic "Commotion" threaten to steal the show. Although Fantasy Records erroneously released Creedence’s January 1970 performance at The Oakland Coliseum as The Royal Albert Hall Concert in 1980, the actual Royal Albert Hall tapes would sit in storage for an additional 40 years.

Creedence's performances at the Royal Albert Hall occurred mere days after the Beatles announced their break up. While the world was still reeling from that shock, the four young men of Creedence were finally enjoying the fruits of their labor and tasting a little more freedom than they were accustomed to in America. "Europe is shades of gray compared to the black and white of America." bassist Stu Cook opines in the film. 

Creedence Clearwater Revival was about as far from an overnight sensation as you could get, with an origin story that dates back to 1959. While still in junior high, John Fogerty, Doug Clifford, and Stu Cook formed the Blue Velvets. John's older brother, Tom, soon joined as lead singer and principal songwriter and they became Tommy Fogerty & The Blue Velvets. After further name changes, including the regrettable record label-mandated moniker the Golliwogs, John became the de facto leader of the group.

In 1968 the group chose a new name, Creedence Clearwater Revival — "Creedence'' was taken from the name of a friend of Tom Fogerty; drummer Doug Clifford's interest in ecology and also a commercial for Olympia beer gave them "Clearwater." According to John, "We wanted to have a little revival among ourselves. That’s what that part [of our name] meant. Let’s get back to the basics." 

The documentary, narrated by actor Jeff Bridges (whose infamous The Big Lebowski character, the Dude, was a fan of CCR), includes not just the Royal Albert Hall performance, but archival footage and interviews where the band meditates on its success and on the future. Travelin' Band also features additional performances captured on the 1970 European tour. The documentary and album were restored and mixed at Abbey Road Studios by producer Giles Martin and engineer Sam Okell, both multiple GRAMMY winners. 

GRAMMY.com sat down with CCR drummer Doug "Cosmo" Clifford and GRAMMY-winning director Bob Smeaton (The Beatles Anthology, and Jimi Hendrix Band Of Gypsies) to discuss the long-lost live recording and new documentary.

In hindsight, CCR were at the zenith of its powers in 1969/1970 – was the RAH show a peak of your time in Creedence?

DOUG CLIFFORD: It was one of them, I'd have to say that. Woodstock was another one. Those are the ones you remember. 

Coming over [to Europe] for the first time, and playing the Beatles' house was thrilling. I'm an athlete, so I'm a competitive person. I wanted to knock them off their chair at the Royal Albert, in a good way. I respect the Beatles more than anybody. 

Travelin’ Band is comprised entirely of original footage. Can you give me some context about the filming?

CLIFFORD: It was our first time out of the US of A. and we were playing the Royal Albert Hall. I'm not sure whose idea it was, probably [Fantasy Records owner] Saul Zaentz; he went on the trip with us. Of course, he ended up being a movie mogul down the road. 

Could you tell me what was so special about the Royal Albert Hall gig in comparison to the other shows on that same tour in Europe?

CLIFFORD: The simple fact is that that's where the Beatles played. We were on their turf. They came to America in '64 and played "The Ed Sullivan Show," we played "The Ed Sullivan Show," twice. It was our first time in many countries actually. To be able to go over and play and do that, from where we started, it was quite a thrill for us. 

CCR is as American as apple pie, yet has a worldwide appeal. What do you think it was about Creedence that spoke to a global audience? Did you feel like you were exporting America?

CLIFFORD: Well, we had good songs to start with, a style of rock and roll that sort of goes back to the very beginning of rock and roll and being able to execute all of that. No note is worthy of being in there unless it's bringing something more than the note behind it or in front of it. And so, keeping it simple and singing from the heart.

We weren't gonna do psychedelic music just because it was the thing to do. We were laughed at by our peers and they called us, "The Boy Scouts of rock and roll." That was fine with me. Years later, I ran into some of the guys in Jefferson Airplane and they said, "We used to put you guys down and call you a Top 40 band. We tried and tried and tried to make a big single, but we could never do it. You guys were putting them out double sided. Boom, boom, boom." So there was mostly envy when it came to those guys.

It seems important that Creedence paid homage to your influences live. You were doing Ray Charles, Little Richard and Leadbelly songs. Did that importance change at all when you were playing to European audiences who may not have had the same cultural background or context with early rock and roll or the blues?

CLIFFORD: No, it didn't. In fact, it was the British who resurrected the blues in America. They were students of the blues, to an extent that it was much more realistic than than most of the American bands. I found that to be very interesting. They put that all together, executed it and made it so real. And so good. 

That happened and also to a lot of jazz musicians who found their way to Europe and they were greatly appreciated. The British had more of a student-type approach to learning that music and then letting it grow.

Your Royal Albert Hall performance was a 12 song set with no encore – a hard fast rule set by John. How did it feel to never do encores when the audience was screaming for more? Did you also believe in the "leave them wanting more" school of thought? 

CLIFFORD: It was a stupid thing to do. That was anywhere we played, not just this show. When you get a 15 minute standing ovation in England and to not go back out, I was sitting backstage in disbelief. I never understood why. Maybe somewhere we played somebody played an encore that was not earned, but we always played our very best and it took the heart out of the band. 

Do you have any favorite stories or memories from the tour or the Royal Albert Hall Show that might have not been included in the documentary?

CLIFFORD: I just really enjoyed being in a place where civilization had been going on for hundreds of years. Made America look like a little kid. Stu was the only one of us who had been out of the country before. 

To go over there and see the Berlin Wall was amazing. We went for a tour inside East Germany in a van. It was all set up and with all these lawyers, driving around and I'm goin', "Holy s what? Why are we here?" We went inside the wall, we were driving around, and every person that was there was in a uniform of some type. No one was wearing civilian clothes. It was all very, very strange.

What was your involvement with this film and the live album, and why has it taken 52 years to be released?

CLIFFORD: Well, my involvement was that I played drums. That part was easy and most enjoyable [laughs]. It was the only unreleased music that we had left. Originally, later in the mid-70s, John made a deal with Fantasy Records to get out of his contract. And one of the things he wanted in the contract is you can only release one piece of unreleased music and no more. 

BOB SMEATON: I worked a lot for Apple Records, which is the Beatles' company. There's the guy that worked at Apple, Jonathan Klein, who spoke to me and said, "There's this project which might happen, which I think would be right up your street" because now, most of the big bands have already been done. So he said CCR and I thought, "Holy s—!" 

I like CCR but they were never my favorite band, like our British bands like Zeppelin, the Who, the Stones, Free, the Beatles and that sort of stuff. So I started to read up on them and got the albums and played them. And I thought, You know, how did I really miss out on this band? I knew their hits like "Bad Moon Rising," and obviously I know "Proud Mary." But then we got more into the story. And then suddenly, they were my favorite band because Fogerty is a great singer, and they're a great band.

Despite being so massive and prolific, CCR doesn't seem to be held with the same reverence as Dylan, the Stones, or the Beatles. Do you feel like Creedence is due for a critical reassessment with these new releases?

CLIFFORD: I don't know. That's just how it played out. We didn't have a manager; John was our business manager and he knew nothing about that. Maybe we could have stayed together longer if we had somebody who was a real professional. 

This wonderful legacy of music that we have, that's all that matters: the work. And we worked hard; there was no no goofing around. We couldn't achieve all the things that we were able to do musically had we not been straight and sober. That's what's important and I can't change the way the other things were. No one can. So there you have it.

There are no talking heads in this film, which is unusual for a music documentary today. Instead, it straddles the line between concert film and documentary. Can you describe your thinking around formatting?

SMEATON: When we first started on the project, the plan was to interview Doug, Stu and John, and that was it. Right from the get go, [I thought we should] end with when the band walked off stage at the Royal Albert Hall rather than get into all the later drama within the group. Those wheels were in motion, then the pandemic happened and I couldn't fly anywhere. 

It makes for a much more interesting film, rather than talking heads and guys in their seventies sitting for the camera. Let's go back to the period — any interview that the guys have done — we went out there, [found] radio interviews, all that stuff. 

And then we started to get a sense of what the biggest revelations were: the players and the Royal Albert Hall after they played. They actually brought a camera guy on [the European] tour. One guy was shooting 16mm film; that was in addition to those video cameras that actually shot the show. [There was] tons of footage from the gigs in Europe, shot on film, not video tape like the Royal Albert Hall gig. 

This is unseen material. I don't know why they didn't use it earlier. So then, we started to get the story in place with only the guys in the band back in the day. There were a few gaps in the story. So I started to write the voiceover just to give the viewer a backstory. The backstory takes 40 minutes before we see the actual concert. We wanted to show why Creedence was such an important band in the first place.

Whose brilliant idea was it to cast "The Dude" himself, Jeff Bridges, as narrator?

SMEATON: That was the producer Sig Sigworth’s idea. Jeff was great. He worked at it. He would do takes until he got it right. He was perfect for the job. 

The documentary and live album looks and sounds fantastic. The sound is crystal clear. What processes did you go through to restore the original footage and multitrack audio?

SMEATON: At the end of the day, it's still the 1970s. It's not Get Back, it's not shot on 16 mm film. It was shot on video. We didn't have that sort of thing. But what we also had was Giles Martin. 

So we said it’s been recorded on 8-track audio. Giles got the tapes, did his magic. He didn't have to fix anything. He says: "What you hear is what those guys played.” I've worked on live albums and I've recorded live recordings at the Royal Albert Hall where we've had to go in and correct things. The rhythm section in the pocket all the way to Thailand. It’s timeless music and most of those songs are three minutes long. Everything you want is contained within those songs. 

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John Fogerty Performs At The GRAMMY Museum
John Fogerty

Photo: Mark Sullivan/WireImage.com

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John Fogerty Performs At The GRAMMY Museum

GRAMMY winner discusses the making of his latest album, Wrote A Song For Everyone, and performs Creedence Clearwater Revival classics

GRAMMYs/Dec 3, 2014 - 05:06 am

John Fogerty recently participated in an installment of the GRAMMY Museum's An Evening With series. Before an intimate audience at the Museum's Clive Davis Theater, Fogerty discussed his songwriting technique and the making of his latest album, 2013's Wrote A Song For Everyone. Fogerty also performed several Creedence Clearwater Revival songs, including the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame-inducted "Proud Mary" and "Fortunate Son."

"As the record began to take shape, I could see that this was really special," said Fogerty regarding Wrote A Song For Everyone, which features the singer teaming with guest artists to perform songs from his catalog. "Something like this may not happen again."

A native of Berkeley, Calif., Fogerty began his career as the lead singer/songwriter and guitarist for Creedence Clearwater Revival, with whom he released the No. 1 albums Green River (1969) and Cosmo's Factory (1970), the latter of which was inducted into the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame this year and features six tracks that peaked in the Top 5 on the Billboard Hot 100, including "Long As I Can See The Light" and "Run Through The Jungle." Among the hits Fogerty composed for CCR are "Bad Moon Rising," "Proud Mary," "Green River," "Down On The Corner," "Have You Ever Seen The Rain," "Travelin' Band," and "Fortunate Son." The group's final album before disbanding was 1972's Mardi Gras, which peaked at No. 12 on the Billboard 200.

In 1975 Fogerty released a self-titled solo album, which cracked the Billboard 200 and featured the Top 40 hit "Rockin' All Over The World." In 1985 Fogerty released Centerfield, which climbed to No. 1 and earned the singer/songwriter his first career GRAMMY nomination for Best Rock Vocal Performance — Male. (In 2010 Fogerty became the first musician to be honored during a Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony and performed the album's title track.) Fogerty earned his first GRAMMY in 1997 for Best Rock Album for Blue Moon Swamp, which peaked in the Top 40 on the Billboard 200. Fogerty subsequently released several albums to crack the Top 40, including Premonition (1998, No. 29), Deja Vu All Over Again (2004, No. 23), Revival (2007, No. 14), and The Blue Ridge Rangers Rides Again (2009, No. 24).

Released in May 2013, Wrote A Song For Everyone is a 14-track set that features Fogerty recording songs from his catalog with several guest artists, including fellow GRAMMY winners Bob Seger ("Who'll Stop The Rain"), Brad Paisley ("Hot Rod Heart"), Zac Brown Band ("Bad Moon Rising"), Foo Fighters ("Fortunate Son"), Keith Urban ("Almost Saturday Night"), and Miranda Lambert and Tom Morello ("Wrote A Song For Everyone"), among others. Following the album's release, in September 2013 the GRAMMY Museum launched the exhibit John Fogerty: Wrote A Song For Everyone, which was on display through January and featured artifacts such as Forgerty's personal scrapbook from his time with Creedence Clearwater Revival and his "Centerfield" baseball bat-shaped guitar.

Upcoming GRAMMY Museum events include The Record Theater: Meet The Beatles! (Capitl T 2407) In Mono (Feb. 24).

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GRAMMY Hall Of Fame Class Of 2014

The Hall adds 27 new recordings, including selections by Miles Davis, George Harrison, Robert Johnson, Dolly Parton, Run-D.M.C., and U2

GRAMMYs/Dec 3, 2014 - 05:06 am

Continuing the tradition of preserving and celebrating great recordings, The Recording Academy has announced the newest additions to its legendary GRAMMY Hall Of Fame. With 27 new titles, the list currently totals 960 recordings and is on display at the GRAMMY Museum in downtown Los Angeles.

List of 2014 GRAMMY Hall Of Fame recordings

"Spanning the 1930s to the 1980s, this year's GRAMMY Hall Of Fame entries represent a diverse collection of influential and historically significant recordings," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy. "Memorable and inspiring, these recordings are proudly added to our growing catalog — knowing that they have become a part of our musical, social and cultural history."

Representing a great variety of tracks and albums, the 2014 GRAMMY Hall Of Fame inductees range from the Mary Poppins — Original Cast Sound Track album to Sugarhill Gang's early rap hit "Rapper's Delight." Also added to the highly regarded list are the Drifters' "Under The Boardwalk," B.B. King's "3 O'Clock Blues," Kris Kristofferson's self-titled debut album, Dolly Parton's "Jolene," the Rolling Stones' "Honky Tonk Women," and U2's album The Joshua Tree. Other inductees include the original soundtrack from Woodstock and recordings by James Brown, Chicago, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Miles Davis, Run-D.M.C., B.J. Thomas, and Neil Young, among others.

This latest round of inducted recordings continues to highlight diversity and recording excellence, and acknowledges both singles and album recordings of all genres at least 25 years old that exhibit qualitative or historical significance. Recordings are reviewed annually by a special member committee comprised of eminent and knowledgeable professionals from all branches of the recording arts, with final approval by The Recording Academy's National Board of Trustees.

Celebrating the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame's 40th Anniversary, The Recording Academy has partnered with FX Marketing Group to publish a 150-plus-page collector's edition book. GRAMMY Hall Of Fame 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition features in-depth insight into many of the recordings and artists represented in the Hall. Legendary artists provide exclusive firsthand accounts of the making of their GRAMMY Hall Of Fame-inducted recordings, including Mel Brooks, Herbie Hancock, Loretta Lynn, the Mamas And The Papas' Michelle Phillips, Carlos Santana, James Taylor, the Who's Pete Townshend, and Bill Withers, among others. The full-color book also highlights the legacy of the Beatles, the group with the most titles inducted into the Hall. The book is available online at the official GRAMMY store, and is sold in Barnes & Noble, Target and Walmart stores as well as on newsstands nationwide and at the GRAMMY Museum in downtown Los Angeles.

For more information on the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame, visit www.grammyhalloffame40.com.

The 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards will take place on Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014, at Staples Center in Los Angeles and will be broadcast live in high-definition TV and 5.1 surround sound on CBS from 8–11:30 p.m. (ET/PT). For updates and breaking news, visit The Recording Academy's social networks on Twitter and Facebook.

New Woodstock 50th Anniversary Box Set Offers A Complete Listen To The Summer '69 Fest

Santana at Woodstock

Photo: Tucker Ransom/Getty Images

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New Woodstock 50th Anniversary Box Set Offers A Complete Listen To The Summer '69 Fest

The limited-edition set will allow music fans to listen to the powerful live performances from Santana, Jimi Hendrix, Sly Stone, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead and every other artist who played Woodstock '69

GRAMMYs/May 9, 2019 - 05:01 am

An official 50th Woodstock anniversary concert may or may still not be in the works, but one thing's for sure: a lot of music fans really want to celebrate the Summer of '69 on its 50th birthday.

Now, with an expansive special-edition box set titled Woodstock 50 — Back to the Garden — The Definitive 50th Anniversary Archive, listeners can hear full performances from the original Woodstock concert.

Spanning 38 CDs, the limited-edition (of 1,969 copies, of course) set, which will be released on Aug. 2 via Rhino, will include 432 songs, 267 of which are previously unreleased, from the three-day event. It will be the most comprehensive look at Woodstock '69, i.e., the first time every artist, including greats Santana, Jimi Hendrix, Sly Stone, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Janis Joplin and the Grateful Dead, are included on record.

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As reported by Rolling Stone, the tracks are ordered chronologically based on the actual lineup order and sets performed during that mystical weekend of Aug. 15–17, 1969, with each artist's set on one disc.

The collection came together from the work of Los Angeles producer and archivist Andy Zax and co-producer Steve Woolard, who had the herculean task of making a pile of 8-track tapes from 1969 see the light of day in the digital age of music. Zax was originally sent to take a look at the tapes back in 2005, and realized there was a massive musical treasure that needed to be unearthed. He didn't have the resources to do a fully comprehensive release with the 2009 40th anniversary Woodstock set he also worked on, so the new set will finally give (almost) all of the tracks the light of day.

"The Woodstock tapes give us a singular opportunity for a kind of sonic time travel, and my intention is to transport people back to 1969. There aren't many other concerts you could make this argument about," Zax said to Rolling Stone. "From the moment I saw those tapes, I was like, 'Oh my God, there's so much more than I'd ever thought. It was clear to me that no one was exploring this stuff and dealing with it in totality. Here was this vast trove of material not treated correctly."

The three tracks that didn't make the cut include two songs from Hendrix's set, per the request of his estate, for "aesthetic reasons." The only other missing song is from Sha Na Na.

The first 37 CDs take you through each act's show, and the 38th "bonus" CD features audio extras, like attendee anecdotes recorded during the fest. 

The non-musical audio moments, also featuring off-kilter announcements, are hidden gems of the archival work themselves. Zak speaks to the 38th disc, which includes "this one guy moaning about what a disappointing experience [Woodstock] was and that it was a sell-out. It's a great slice of real people in the moment reacting to it, which pleases me immensely."

In addition to the CD collection, the deluxe edition of the new set also includes a DVD of the director's cut of the 1970 Woodstock film, the 2009 "Woodstock" book by Michael Lang and various replicas of Woodstock '69 paraphilia, like a copy of the original program book. This deluxe set, housed in a plywood box designed by GRAMMY-winning graphic designer Masaki Koikethe, costs $800 and is the only option with the full audio.

Rhino also offers more economic 10-CD, 3-CD or 5-LP vinyl sets; all four options are available for pre-order now.

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Remembering Christine McVie Of Fleetwood Mac Through Her GRAMMY Triumphs, From 'Rumours' Onward
Christine McVie in 1969

Photo: Evening Standard / Stringer via Getty Images

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Remembering Christine McVie Of Fleetwood Mac Through Her GRAMMY Triumphs, From 'Rumours' Onward

Unflashy and undramatic, McVie's contributions to Fleetwood Mac led to some of their greatest contributions to popular song — with two GRAMMY wins to boot.

GRAMMYs/Dec 2, 2022 - 08:32 pm

In an acclaimed career that spanned more than half a century, Christine McVie staked her claim as one of the most potent singer-songwriters of her generation. A beloved original member of the seminal rock group Fleetwood Mac, with whom she sang, wrote and played keyboard, she and her bandmates catapulted to fame in the early '70s, scoring GRAMMY gold and influencing generations of musicians.

"As a GRAMMY Award winner and 2018 Person of the Year honoree, the Recording Academy has been honored to celebrate Christine McVie and her work with Fleetwood Mac throughout her legendary career," Recording Academy CEO Harvey Mason jr. stated. In an announcement of her death, the remaining members of Fleetwood Mac mourned her passing by saying "She was truly one-of-a-kind, special, and talented beyond measure."

McVie, who passed away Nov. 30 at 79 after a brief illness, may have not been as flashy, or as dramatic, as fellow Fleetwood Mac members Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks. But McVie's contributions to the band led to some of their greatest contributions to popular song, with two GRAMMY wins among seven nominations.

The tour de force that is Rumours is one of the most acclaimed and best-selling albums of all time and an inductee into GRAMMY Hall Of Fame. The masterpiece earned McVie her first GRAMMY (for Album of the Year no less) at the 20th Annual Ceremony in 1978, also earning a nomination for Best Pop Vocal Performance By A Group.

Fleetwood Mac's 11th studio album, Rumours was actually McVie's 7th album with the band after making her name in the English blues scene, rising through the ranks as part of the band Chicken Shack, and even releasing a solo album.

In 1971, McVie joined Fleetwood Mac alongside her then-husband John McVie. The potent combination of the McVies, along with Mick Fleetwood, Buckingham and Nicks, catalyzed and detonated into the stratospheric Rumours.

"It's hard to say (what it was like) because we were looking at it from the inside," McVie said about the iconic album earlier this year.  "We were having a blast and it felt incredible to us that we were writing those songs. That's all I can say about it, really."

McVie's coyness may stem from the fact that prior to its production, Christine and John divorced after eight years of marriage. Meanwhile, Buckingham and Nicks were having a tumultuous relationship themselves. 

McVie is credited as sole songwriter on a handful of instant-classic Rumours tracks, all written during a perilous moment. "I thought I was drying up," explained McVie. "I was practically panicking because every time I sat down at a piano, nothing came out. Then, one day,  I just sat down and wrote in the studio, and the four-and-a-half songs of mine on the album are a result of that."

That includes "Don't Stop," an ironically peppy ode considering the turmoil McVie and her bandmates were grappling with at the time. With lyrics that staunchly proclaim "Yesterday's gone!," the song was reportedly written as a plea from Christine to John to move on from their relationship.

"I dare say, if I hadn't joined Fleetwood Mac, we might still be together. I just think it's impossible to work in the band with your spouse," McVie later said. John, meanwhile, was oblivious to the song's message during its production and early acclaim. He revealed in 2015: "I've been playing it for years and it wasn't until somebody told me, 'Chris wrote that about you.' Oh really?"

John was also equally ignorant to the source inspiration of "You Make Loving Fun"; McVie told him the joyful song ("Sweet wonderful you/ You make me happy with the things you do") was about her dog. In reality, it was about an affair with the band's lighting designer.

"It was a therapeutic move," McVie later mused of her lyrical penchant for hiding brutal honesty in plain sight. "The only way we could get this stuff out was to say it, and it came out in a way that was difficult. Imagine trying to sing those songs onstage with the people you're singing them about."

When McVie was asked earlier this year what song she written she was most proud of, it was an easy answer: the Rumours track "Songbird."

"For some peculiar reason, I wrote "Songbird" in half an hour; I've never been able to figure out how I did that," she told People. "I woke up in the middle of the night and the song was there in my brain, chords, lyrics, melody, everything. I played it in my bedroom and didn't have anything to tape it on. So I had to stay awake all night so I wouldn't forget it and I came in the next morning to the studio and had (producer) Ken Callait put it on a 2-track. That was how the song ended up being. I don't know where that came from."

McVie's most recent GRAMMY nominations were for her contributions to The Dance, Fleetwood Mac's 1997 live album that featured her stand-outs from Rumours along with the McVie penned-tracks "Say You Love Me" and "Everywhere."

The album earned McVie and the band GRAMMY nominations for Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal (for the Lindsay Buckingham-written "The Chain") and  Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal (for "Silver Springs," penned by Stevie Nicks). It also landed a nomination for Best Pop Album. It was her final album with the band before a 15-year self-imposed retirement.

In her final years, McVie was a vital member of Fleetwood Mac, including in 2018 when they became the first band honored as MusicCare's Person of the Year.

Speaking to the Recording Academy before the ceremony, Nicks expressed that her initial goal upon joining the group was a humble one: "Christine and I made a pact. We said we will never, ever be treated as a second-class citizen amongst our peers."

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