Behind The Mask Press Kit
Fleetwood Mac -- Mick Fleetwood, John McVie, Christine McVie, Stevie Nicks, Billy Burnette and Rick Vito -- is a band which has always thrived on change. As one of rock's pre-eminent and most enduring groups, they continue to grow with each new development in their career, enjoying commercial and critical success that has resulted in the sales of more than 40 million records worldwide.
In the 20 years since a blues-based Fleetwood Mac first emerged on the scene as a group composed of founders Mick Fleetwood and John McVie together with guitarist Peter Green and changes in personnel and an ongoing evolution of musical styles have only served to define Fleetwood Mac as one of the most adventurous and innovative entities in rock music.
Fleetwood Mac's ascent to super stardom began in 1975 when Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham joined Mick Fleetwood, John McVie and Christine McVie, and together they recorded their first number one album, Fleetwood Mac. With the release of Rumours in 1977, the band achieved a level of success that most had only dreamed about. Rumours has sold over 20 million copies worldwide, remained at number one for 31 weeks (a record for longevity topped only by Michael Jackson's Thriller in the last 20 years), and earned Fleetwood Mac a Grammy award for Album Of The Year. All four singles released off of Rumours made the top ten, with "Dreams" becoming their first number one single.
The release of the albums Tusk, Live and Mirage further solidified Fleetwood Mac's position as one of the least predictable and most creative bands in rock and roll. With the release of Tango In The Night (which went double platinum in the U.S.), Fleetwood Mac once again ventured into the realm of the unpredictable.
The LP spun off four major hits: "Little Lies," "Seven Wonders," "Big Love" and "Everywhere." Outside of America, Tango In The Night turned in a similarly impressive performance, vaulting into the Top Ten in no less than 12 countries (Australia, Canada, Belgium, Denmark, England, Sweden, Germany, Holland, Japan, Switzerland, South Africa and New Zealand). In addition, Tango In The Night was certified in England (6 X platinum), Canada (4 X platinum), Australia (4 X platinum) New Zealand (3 X platinum), Holland (2 X platinum) and platinum in Ireland, West Germany, Japan and Sweden.
In addition to their triumphant, critically-acclaimed 1987 North American concert tour, Fleetwood Mac headed to Europe and the U.K. for the first time in eight years and were greeted with an equal fervor from audiences overseas. Highlighted by ten sold-out shows at London's famed Wembley Arena and three SRO shows at Birmingham's N.E.C, the tour also found the band journeying to West Germany, Holland and Sweden. Another tour highlight was the group's performance at the annual music festival in Koblenz, Germany -- an outdoor event that attracted some 80,000 fans.
Director Wayne Isham captured on film two of the final nights of the 1987 North American tour. Those performances at the San Francisco Cow Palace resulted in the best-selling Tango In The Night long-form concert home video, which was originally seen as a Showtime cable network special.
Writing about the video in the October 20, 1988 issue of Rolling Stone, Jim Farber said, "When Lindsey Buckingham refused to tour with Fleetwood Mac. in '87, the band gained more than it lost -- literally. Replacing Buckingham with two guitarists -- Billy Burnette and Rick Vito -- plus one percussionist and three back-up singers, the biggest Mac to ever take to the road played tighter. and sounded fuller, a fact underscored by this document of the tour."
In late 1988, Fleetwood Mac released the platinum Greatest Hits -- which featured 14 classics alongside two new songs ("As Long As You Follow," "No Questions Asked") that marked the official recording debut of Billy Burnette and Rick Vito, both of whom joined the group for the Tango In The Night tour.
Burnette is hardly a stranger to Fleetwood Mac. Prior to joining the group for their Tango In The Night tour, he had toured and recorded with Mick Fleetwood's side group, the Zoo (which has occasionally featured surprise guest appearances by Stevie Nicks). Burnette also co-wrote a song with Christine McVie, "So Excited," for her 1984 solo album "Christine McVie". The son of renowned 50's rock musician Dorsey Burnette and the nephew of rock pioneer Johnny Burnette, Billy Burnette is a singer/songwriter/guitarist who has released his own albums and whose songs have been covered by the likes of Gregg Allman, the Everly Brothers, Roy Orbison, Ray Charles and Jerry Lee Lewis.
Rick Vito also had a link with Fleetwood Mac prior to joining the group. In the mid-'70s, he and Fleetwood Mac bassist John McVie recorded together with John Mayall. Vito came to Fleetwood Mac after making his presence strongly felt as the lead guitarist for Bob Seger's Like A Rock album and tour. Vito has also played lead guitar for Jackson Browne (on the Lawyers in Love album), Bonnie Raitt, and Roger McGuinn, among others.
Now, with the Behind The Mask album and a worldwide concert tour in motion, Fleetwood Mac is extending its reign as one of rock and roll's most successful and innovative bands. Just as Fleetwood Mac has rolled with the changes in the past, look for them to rock into the future.