Lindsey Buckingham Walked Fleetwood Mac ‘Schizophrenic Tightrope’
Lindsey Buckingham discussed the difficult balancing act he faced in pursuing a solo career while he was also in Fleetwood Mac.
“After Rumours, I think because I wanted to make an album like Tusk and undermine the external expectations that were about to take hold of us as a band had we made something like Rumours 2, I started down a path where I worked on my own,” the guitarist explained during a conversation with Classic Rock. “I probably would’ve been quite happy to go on making more esoteric albums like that in Fleetwood Mac, but the politics dictated otherwise within the band.”
According to Buckingham, when Tusk didn’t reach the same commercial heights of Rumours, the other members of Fleetwood Mac chose to “rethink about whether that [style of album] was what we wanted to do.” “So at that point, I realized the only way for me to sort of continue to explore the more left side of my talent – which I was pretty sure was where the growth was going to lie for me as an artist – was that I was going to have to do it on solo albums,” Buckingham noted. “So I had this sort of schizophrenic tightrope thing I was walking between the big machine and the small machine, if you will.”
Buckingham released two solo albums - Law and Order (1981) and Go Insane (1984) - before departing Fleetwood Mac in 1987. He’d release another solo effort, 1992’s Out of the Cradle, before rejoining the band in 1997. Three more solo LPs plus a duet collaboration with Christine McVie would come out before Buckingham again left Fleetwood Mac’s ranks in 2018.
His latest album, a self-titled effort, came out in 2021. And even though the guitarist seems happy remaining as a solo artist, he continued to leave the door open for a reunion with Fleetwood Mac. “Maybe we’ll manage to see clear to have one more nice run out there,” the rocker declared. “That would be the proper way to go.”