Mick Fleetwood

The Visitor Press Kit

 

THE VISITOR

Produced by Richard Dashut and Mick Fleetwood
Executive Producer Mickey Shapiro

Engineered by Richard Dashut
wiyh Randy Ezratty and Bill Youdelman

(*)Arranged by Andrew Powell with Mike Moran


OUR BAND


Mick Fleetwood. drums and percusion
Todd Sharp, guitars and vocals
George Hawkins, bass and vocals



SELECTIONS

Side One

1.

Rattleshake Shake (*) Peter Greenbaum  
2. You Weren't In Love Bill Fields
3. O'Niamali Nii Amartey
4. Super Brains A.B Crentsil
5.   Don't Be Sorry, Just Be Happy (*) Todd Sharpe

Side Two

1. Walk A Thin Line Lindsey Buckingham
2. Not Fade Away Charles Hardin/Norman Petty
3. Cassiopewia Surrender George Hawkins
4. The Visitor C.K Ganyo
5. Amelle (Come On, Show Me Your Heart) Nii Amartey


... BUT WHY AFRICA ?

It all started when Mick mentioned the idea of going to Africa with some of his friends and living in a village with master drummers, and "capturing' the entire experience on record and film. The idea of packing up five or ten tons of equipment and flying it to Ghana, recruiting a team of musicians and technicians to spend six weeks in West Africa recording whatever we might find, and then selling this obscure and expensive project to a record company was not proverbial "piece of cake."

Coupled with a good, healthy dose of paranoia, e.g. green mamba snakes, endemic malaria, and substandard medical care.., the odds of The Visitor becoming a reality were akin to Switzerland successfully invading the Soviet Union! But Mick Fleetwood kept believing, and off we went to Ghana in December of 1980 to attempt to pull it off.

After an overabundance of meetings, negotiations and laughter, we were sure it could happen. We found unbounding friendship, limitless hospitality, and refreshingly unspoiled musical talent. Six more weeks of 12- to 14-hour workdays by our band and crew interfacing with Ghanaian players, and we all sighed with relief and a deep sense of satisfaction that we had done it. Of course, there was more mixing, fixing, and overdubbing to be done by Mick and Richard Dashut, but as we left West Africa, we were sure The Visitor would indeed become a reality.

Through it all, the clich again surfaced -- the music linked us all in emotion, friendship and affection. I think The Visitor will touch you deeply if you really come to understand what it symbolizes to Mick and to all of us.


Mickey Shapiro

BIOGRAPHY

"The Visitor is the culmination of a lifelong ambition," says Mick Fleetwood, whose debut solo album, on RCA Records, was recorded earlier this year in Ghana. "I'd always wanted to do an album that would use African rhythms as a base for a modern, rock-symphonic synthesis of Western and African music.

To realise his dream, Fleetwood flew to Ghana, taking along with producer Richard Dashut, bass  player George Hawkins (from the Kenny Loggins band), guitarist Todd Sharp (from the Bob Welch band), two 24-track portable recording units, and a film crew which shot the proceedings for a documentary which will be aired at a later date over the Public Broadcasting System in the U.S.

The album is only partly African in nature. Laced with Ghanaian music and drumming are such songs as Fleetwood's "Walk A Thin Line," the Buddy Holly oldie "Not Fade Away," a composition written by Todd Sharp, and another by Peter Green, a former guitarist with Fleetwood Mac.

"The African contribution was essential to the project," explains Mick. "We used more then 200 Ghanaian musicians . Most of them came from villages, and they contributed to the album a sound that's both unique and different."

Fleetwood, of course, is better known as the drummer of Fleetwood Mac, a group he created in 1967 with Peter Green and bass player John McVie. Throughout the years, the membership of the band underwent many changes, evolving into the current lineup which consists of Fleetwood, McVie, Chris McVie on keyboards, Lindsey Buckingham on guitar and Stevie Nicks on vocals.

Since 1975, Fleetwood Mac's album successes have included Rumours, which remained an unprecedented six months at the top of the charts, yielding four hit singles, and selling over 13 million copies worldwide, and Tusk. Today, the band is recognized as the foremost rock group in the world, with Mick Fleetwood providing the recognizable driving beat that has become so much a part of the unit's sound.

The concept for The Visitor began to take shape in 1973 when Mick decided to go to Zambia in order to be alone and away from the pressures of the music life. "I went out into the bush on my own," he says, "and loved it so much that I'd always wanted to return to Africa." Ghana was eventually chosen for the project over other African countries, says Fleetwood, "because all the musicologists I consulted advised me that it probably was the most suitable place for such a venture."

As to the reasons why it took so long for him to finally undertake it, Fleetwood simply explains that, in between recording and touring with Fleetwood Mac, "I just didn't have the time..."


05/81


 

 



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