Mick Fleetwood: "This is the best time to see Fleetwood Mac"

Mick Fleetwood is happy to be playing the hits
Mick Fleetwood is happy to be playing the hits

There's always been an elusive quality to Mick Fleetwood's drumming. One can literally hear different sounds, patterns and textures in his playing with each listen - an assessment Fleetwood himself agrees with.

"I honestly don't know how I do it," Fleetwood says, laughing. "I think it's because I'm a blues-based drummer playing rock 'n' roll and pop music. To me, I respond to a vibe, a certain musical heartbeat. Of course, it creates problems when I play something and I'm asked to repeat it. The whole thing is a mystery to me."

The Greatest Hits Tour

"If any of us ever lost faith the power of this band or our own abilities, it would have been over years ago" Mick Fleetwood

Fleetwood can be forgiven for name-checking one of his own albums, as he and the rest of Fleetwood Mac have been busy combing their multi-million-selling catalog in preparation for the Fleetwood Mac 'Unleashed' Greatest Hits Tour, which starts this March and runs until "the people tell us to stop."

For the first time in their 40-year career, Fleetwood Mac are touring without a new album to promote, something Fleetwood sees as a plus during these troubled economic times.

"Everybody is so frightened," he says, "and with good reason. So for us to go out and play the hits, all the songs that people know and love, it's really going to make for a great show. The fans don't have to sit through songs they don't quite know yet, and we get to really dig in and explore our catalog and shake each song for all its worth. To tell you the truth, I think it's the best time to see Fleetwood Mac - we'll transport you to better times."

Or another way of putting it is, Don't Stop Believing. "Never," says Fleetwood. "If any of us ever lost faith the power of this band or our own abilities, it would have been over years ago."

In this exclusive MusicRadar podcast, Mick Fleetwood discusses his early days playing the blues, then talks about the mercurial musical magic he creates in Fleetwood Mac. He even answers a few questions from MusicRadar readers.

Part One - Fleetwood on his early influences and playing with John McVie and Lindsey Buckingham

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Part Two - Mick talks about the new tour and answers some MusicRadar reader questions

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Joe Bosso

Joe is a freelance journalist who has, over the past few decades, interviewed hundreds of guitarists for Guitar WorldGuitar PlayerMusicRadar and Classic Rock. He is also a former editor of Guitar World, contributing writer for Guitar Aficionado and VP of A&R for Island Records. He’s an enthusiastic guitarist, but he’s nowhere near the likes of the people he interviews. Surprisingly, his skills are more suited to the drums. If you need a drummer for your Beatles tribute band, look him up.