Rested, ready Christine McVie reunites with Fleetwood Mac: ‘This is crazy; I’m going back to work’

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Stevie Nicks has an idea about why Christine McVie is back with Fleetwood Mac. In her mind, McVie — who retired from the group in 1998 — had a sudden realization.

“‘Why the hell am I out here in this castle, 40 miles outside of London, gardening and cooking? I’m a rock star,'” Nicks has her longtime bandmate saying to herself, in a talk with Piers Martin of Uncut. “So I think she just got up one day and thought: ‘This is crazy. I’m going back to work.'”

And so, McVie has returned, working on new songs and reanimating a setlist for the Fleetwood Mac reunion tour that’s been without “Little Lies,” “Say You Love Me” and “Everywhere” for some 16 years. At 71, she’s the oldest member of the group, with a tenure that goes back to the turn of the 1970s.

“I look over at her and she looks exactly the same as she did when she left,” Nicks enthuses. “And when she counts in the songs, she goes: ‘A-one, a-two, a-three’ in her English accents and she sounds exactly the same! It’s been a lot of fun as she has a raucously funny sense of humor that my serious singing partner [Lindsey Buckingham] and I don’t have. And then the other two English people in the band [Mick Fleetwood and John McVie] pick up the gauntlet and the whole thing becomes much more easygoing.”

McVie contributed a pair of confirmed songs to a prospective new Fleetwood Mac album, “Carnival Begin” and “Red Sun,” though that project is on hold until after their tour. Nicks missed some of those sessions, as she completed her own new solo album. “I don’t know what Chris has written,” Nicks adds, “but she’s an amazing writer and she’s probably got 16 years of pent-up poetry.”

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