Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks are sparring over the former’s departure from Fleetwood Mac.
Buckingham, Fleetwood Mac’s former lead guitarist and lead singer, was fired from the band in 2018 and replaced by Mike Campbell and Neil Finn. Three years later, Buckingham is putting the blame squarely on Nicks and ex-manager Irving Azoff. Bucking him alleges that Nicks threatened to leave the band if Fleetwood Mac delayed their tour so that Buckingham could do solo work.
“It would be like a scenario where Mick Jagger says, ‘Either Keith goes or I go,’” Buckingham told The Los Angeles Times in a new interview via The Wrap. “No, neither one of you can go. But I guess the singer has to stay. The figurehead has to stay.
“You could do a whole analysis on Stevie at this point in her life and what she’s allowed to happen and what she’s allowed to slip away from her. Her creativity, at least for a while it seemed like she wasn’t in touch with that.”
Buckingham accused Azoff of taking Nicks’ side simply because “he’s still driven by the money.”
Nicks fired back against Buckingham’s accusations in a statement to Rolling Stone.
“It’s unfortunate that Lindsey has chosen to tell a revisionist history of what transpired in 2018 with Fleetwood Mac,” she said. “His version of events is factually inaccurate, and while I’ve never spoken publicly on the matter, preferring to not air dirty laundry, certainly it feels the time has come to shine a light on the truth. Following an exceedingly difficult time with Lindsey at MusiCares in New York, in 2018, I decided for myself that I was no longer willing to work with him.
“I could publicly reflect on the many reasons why, and perhaps I will do that someday in a memoir, but suffice it to say we could start in 1968 and work up to 2018 with a litany of very precise reasons why I will not work with him. To be exceedingly clear, I did not have him fired, I did not ask for him to be fired, I did not demand he be fired.”
Nicks asserted that she removed herself from a difficult situation.
“Frankly, I fired myself. I proactively removed myself from the band and a situation I considered to be toxic to my well-being,” she told the publication. “I was done. If the band went on without me, so be it. I have championed independence my whole life, and I believe every human being should have the absolute freedom to set their boundaries of what they can and cannot work with.
“And after many lengthy group discussions, Fleetwood Mac, a band whose legacy is rooted in evolution and change, found a new path forward with two hugely talented new members.”
Azoff also clapped back at Buckingham.
“I have historically declined comment on artists, but in the case of Lindsey Buckingham, I will make an exception,” Azoff told the Times. “While I understand it’s challenging for Lindsey to accept his own role in these matters and far easier to blame a manager, the fact remains that his actions alone are responsible for what transpired.
“Frankly, if I can be accused of anything it’s perhaps holding things together longer than I should have. After 2018 when Fleetwood Mac evolved with their new lineup, my continued work with the band was due entirely to the fact I’ve been aligned with Stevie Nicks in thought and purpose from the earliest of days. While financial gain was not a motivator for me, it was a delightful bonus that the band scored their highest-grossing tour ever without Lindsey.”
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