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Fleetwood Mac BBC Sessions 1968 Vinyl LP

March 26, 2019

RSD release from http://www.1960s.london

SIDE ONE

  1. A Mind Of My Own (Danny Kirwan) Recorded August 27th, transmitted September 1st
  2. Black Magic Woman (Peter Green) Recorded April 9th, transmitted April13th
  3. Mean Old World (T-Bone Walker) Recorded February 26th, transmitted July 23rd
  4.  You Need Love (Willie Dixon) Recorded August 27th, transmitted October 13th
  5. That Ain’t It (Peter Green) Recorded May 27th, transmitted June 2nd
  6. Please Find My Baby (Elmore James) Recorded April 9th, transmitted April13th
  7. Without You (Danny Kirwan) Recorded August 27th, transmitted November 24th

SIDE TWO

  1.  Albatross (Peter Green)  Recorded October 9th, transmitted November 5th
  2. Talk With You (Danny Kirwan) Recorded August 27th, transmitted October 13th
  3. Sweet Little Angel (Lucille Bogan)Recorded January 16th, transmitted January 21st
  4. Peggy Sue Got Married (Buddy Holly)Recorded April 9th, transmitted April13th
  5. Bo Diddley (Ellas McDaniel)Recorded August 27th, transmitted October 13th
  6. Dead Shrimp Blues (Robert Johnson) Recorded May 27th, transmitted June 2nd
  7. Where You Belong (Eddie Boyd) Recorded January 16th, transmitted March 24th

 

Personnel

Peter Green – lead guitar, vocals

Jeremy Spencer – guitar, vocals

Mick Fleetwood – drums

John McVie – bass

Eddie Boyd – vocals (14)

Danny Kirwan – guitar, vocals (1, 4, 7, 8, 9, 12)

Christine Perfect – vocals, keyboards (1, 4, 7, 9, 12)

 

Sleeve notes by Earl Vince, with thanks to Richie Unterberger

 

According to Ken Gardner’s definitive history of BBC radio sessions “In Session Tonight”, from November 1967 to August 1970 Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac recorded 77 tracks for shows including Top Gear, Saturday Club, Night Ride and Symonds On Sunday. A high proportion of these songs did not appear on any of Fleetwood Mac’s studio LP’s. The 1995 release of Live At The BBC (Castle Communications) featured 36 of these recordings but left many strong tracks unreleased: this record is an attempt to rectify the situation. The quality of sound and performance is excellent throughout, reflecting the BBC’s abilities to bring out the best of this band. Gardner notes that most of these recordings were performed live and are first takes.

Taking these songs in the order in which they were recorded Sweet Little Angel is a BB King song, with Peter Green taking lead vocals. Of Peter Green BB King said “He has the sweetest tone I ever heard; he was the only one who gave me the cold sweats”. A lively Where You Belong features a guest vocal from American bluesman Eddie Boyd. Strangely it was not included on the LP that Boyd recorded with Fleetwood Mac in 1968. Mean Old World had been variously recorded by T-Bone Walker, Little Walter and BB King – the version here appears to be based on the latter version, albeit speeded up and with space for extended Peter Green solos. Introduced by the inescapable Brian Mathews, Please Find My Baby is another example of Jeremy Spencer’s Elmore James fixation – the piano here is uncredited but may well be Christine Perfect (soon to be Christine McVie). From the same session comes a version of Black Magic Woman which sticks pretty close to the original sparse arrangement and Peggy Sue Got Married, a Buddy Holly song which was another manifestation of Spencer’s obsession with vintage American rock’n’roll. Peter Green’s acoustic prowess is showcased on his version of Dead Shrimp Blues, originally written by Robert Johnson. This song is not about fishing.

That Ain’t It is a blues shuffle that appears to be an otherwise unreleased Peter Green original. A Mind Of My Own features new guitarist Danny Kirwan on his own composition. You Need Love was originally written by Willie Dixon for Muddy Waters in 1962 before being adopted by the Small Faces (You Need Loving) and then Led Zeppelin (Whole Lotta Love). Arguably the musical highspot of this collection the track features a strong Peter Green vocal over a propulsive beat and the intertwined guitars that would later underpin Rattlesnake Shake. For Talk With You Danny Kirwan takes the lead vocal whilst Jeremy Spencer faithfully replicates Bo Diddley’s ‘shave and a haircut two bits” rhythm. Danny Kirwan sings Without You (also known as Crazy For My Baby), backed by more Perfect piano. Finally we have a sinuous Albatross, here in a different version to that previously released on Live At The BBC. Incidentally the Live At The BBC version of Albatross was incorrectly labelled: it was actually recorded on March 17th 1969, and transmitted on March 23rd.

This LP is a tribute to the extraordinary creativity of Fleetwood Mac during this initial phase of their career. Tracks such as You Need Love and Sweet Little Angel would easily have justified a place on the eponymous first LP or its successor Mr Wonderful. Finally such tracks get a wider exposure to their rightful audience. So…how blue can you get?

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