Lindsey Buckingham has lobbed a diplomatic hand grenade into the post-exit politics of Fleetwood Mac by comparing Stevie Nicks to Donald Trump, and the rest of his erstwhile bandmates to Republicans lacking the stomach to stand up to her.
The former Fleetwood Mac guitarist and vocalist has his first solo album in a decade out next week, but recent interviews have suggested that a diplomatic push to return to the Mac fold was underway – even going as far as to say that drummer Mick Fleetwood was open to the idea.
However, on the evidence of his recent interview with Rolling Stone, it would appear that Buckingham's diplomacy has some fine tuning to do. When the conversation inevitably turned to his ouster from Fleetwood Mac in 2018, he likened the inter-band dynamics to that of the GOP.
“I think others in the band just felt that they were not empowered enough, individually, for whatever their own reasons, to stand up for what was right,” said Buckingham. “And so, it became a little bit like Trump and the Republicans.”
Buckingham's choice of words is unlikely to precipitate a thaw in his relations with Nicks. Buckingham also asserted his belief that his departure resulted from a dispute over Fleetwood Mac's touring plans, and accused Nicks of wanting to shape the band in her own image.
Buckingham had wanted to push the dates back to play some shows in support of his solo material, and while the situation was up in the air, the decision was taken to let him go.
In her first public statement on Buckingham's firing, Nicks told Rolling Stone that he was telling “a revisionist history of what transpired in 2018 with Fleetwood Mac.“ Nicks went on to explain that the 2018 MusicCares event was the last straw in a long line of straws.
“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,“ she said. “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.“
Whether all this is Buckingham's way of creating headlines around the release of his album, we might never know. But a Fleetwood Mac reunion looks beyond the realms of possibility. Buckingham is presently touring the US, with his self-titled solo album out on 17 September.