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30 November 2022

Christine McVie Has Died Aged 79

Christine McVie
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Christine McVie of Fleetwood Mac has died at the age of 79, her family has said.

A statement posted on Facebook said: “On behalf of Christine McVie’s family, it is with a heavy heart we are informing you of Christine’s death.

“She passed away peacefully at hospital this morning, Wednesday, November 30th 2022, following a short illness.
“She was in the company of her family.
“We kindly ask that you respect the family’s privacy at this extremely painful time and we would like everyone to keep Christine in their hearts and remember the life of an incredible human being, and revered musician who was loved universally. RIP Christine McVie.”

Christine McVie was born Christine Anne Perfect on 12 July 1943 in the Lake District village of Bouth, England and grew up in the Bearwood area of Smethwick near Birmingham. Born into a musical family, McVie played piano at the age of four and trained classically until age 15, when she discovered rock’n’roll.

While studying sculpture at Birmingham Art College, she joined the blues rock band, Sounds Of Blue. By the time McVie graduated from college with a teaching degree, Sounds of Blue had broken up and McVie moved to London, where she joined Chicken Shack. Their debut single, It’s Okay With Me Baby, was written by McVie. Chicken Shack’s biggest success came with I’d Rather Go Blind, originally recorded by Etta James 1967. The song featured McVie on lead vocals. McVie earned a Melody Maker award for female vocalist of the year.

Chicken Shack and Fleetwood Mac often shared bills and Christine was asked to play piano on Peter Green’s band’s second album, Mr. Wonderful. McVie left Chicken Shack after marrying Fleetwood Mac bassist John McVie. She then recorded a fan-favourite solo album, 1970’s Christine Perfect, after which she became a full-time member of Fleetwood Mac (she had already contributed backup vocals and painted the cover for Kiln House).

Christine was a stabilising presence as Fleetwood Mac entered a period of near-constant line-up changes, contributing strong material to the albums Future Games, Bare Trees, Penguin, Mystery To Me and Heroes Are Hard To Find. The arrival of Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks brought the band a new level of success. Their first album with the new line-up, 1975’s Fleetwood Mac, had several hit songs, with McVie’s Over My Head and Say You Love Me, both reaching Billboard’s Top 20 singles chart.

Huge success would follow with 1977’s Rumours, one of the best-selling albums of all time. McVie contributed the huge hit Don’t Stop as well as the classics You Make Loving Fun and Songbird. A string of successful albums followed, despite turbulent inter-band relationships (Christine and John McVie would divorce in the late 70s). McVie contributed some of the band’s most beloved songs, including Hold Me, Little Lies and Everywhere. Fleetwood Mac’s legend grew over the years through break-ups and reunions and McVie’s songs remained a constant.

Speaking about her solo compilation, Songbird, last year McVie was reflective, “Every once in a while, an idea might pop into my head – but by the time I have woken up the next morning, I’ve forgotten it. I haven’t thought about making another record. The Songbird album might be my swansong. I’m going to be 80 next year, so I gotta slow down a bit, you know?”

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