Lindsey Buckingham is on tour across the US right now and the former Fleetwood Mac guitarist/vocalist has been debuting a handful of tracks from his forthcoming solo album alongside a string of Mac classics.
The string of dates kicked off at the Pabst Theater, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on 1st September, and a number of fan-filmed tracks have been turning up on YouTube – many with respectable audio.
With Buckingham's upcoming solo album – his first in a decade – scheduled for release on 17 September through Rhino Records, all eyes have been on his setlist. And he has duly obliged in giving fans a first taste of the new material, with five songs from the eponymous album being played each night.
Opening the shows with Not Too Late, from his 2006 solo album Under The Skin, Buckingham's set includes new tracks I Don't Mind, On The Wrong Side, Scream, Swan Song and Time – the latter a show-closing cover of the 1966 psych-folk classic from the Pozo-Seco Singers.
Of the new tracks, Swan Song [above] sounds very interesting. It sees Buckingham play a Latin-inspired figure on his distinctive Turner Model One electric guitar over an electronic beat for what comes across as a work of fusion pop.
As for Time, that seems like a perfect song for Buckingham to cover. His songwriting roots draw heavily from that late 60s folk scene. When introducing the song onstage at Milwaukee, Buckingham said his appreciation of the track has grown. “It was something that had an academic resonance for me but it has been sneaking on these last couple of years with a more visceral meaning,“ he said.
There are six Fleetwood Mac tracks in the set: Tusk, I'm So Afraid, Second Hand News, Big Love, Go Your Own Way and Never Going Back Again. And speaking of going your own way and never going back again, Buckingham has made no secret that his ousting from Fleetwood Mac still rankles, arguing that the split had damaged the band's legacy. That said, he sounds like he would jump at the chance of a reunion.
Only last month, he revealed that he had been speaking to Mick Fleetwood about the possibility, and that he believed the Mac drummer was open to welcoming Buckingham back in fold.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, he said he was in regular contact with Fleetwood. “There have been intimations from Mick [Fleetwood], who I've talked to several times, that he wants to try to get the five of us back together,“ he said.
Given that there would need to be some urgent repairs to Buckingham's relationship with singer Stevie Nicks before that could become a reality, we perhaps should not hold our breath. In the meantime, Fleetwood Mac fans will have to make do with his solo performances.
The tour resumes next Tuesday 14 September at Warner Theatre, Washington DC, and Buckingham's self-titled solo album is available to pre-order now. You can check out some YouTube highlights from the tour below.