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After decades in Fleetwood Mac, Christine McVie decided to exchange music for a quiet life in the English countryside. Her fear of flying had worsened, making touring virtually impossible. Sixteen years later, however, she rejoined the band. She shared the way that her relationship with Stevie Nicks changed upon her return.

Christine McVie and Stevie Nicks stand with their heads close together in front of a microphone.
Christine McVie and Stevie Nicks | Diamond/Getty Images

Christine McVie left Fleetwood Mac in 1998

McVie joined Fleetwood Mac before Nicks, and, nearly 30 years later, she made a seemingly permanent exit

“I left the band because I developed a terrible fear of flying,” she told the New Yorker. “I wanted to restore an ancient house in Kent, and that’s what I did. It was a heap — this Tudor building with the beams painted lime green, so hideous. And I had this idea that I’d love the small village life, with the Range Rover and the dogs and baking cookies for the Y.W.C.A.”

Though her bandmates would miss her, they accepted her exit from the band. After 16 years, however, McVie was bored. She worked with a therapist to address her fear of flying and began to tour with Fleetwood Mac again. 

She shared how her relationship with Stevie Nicks changed when she returned

Nicks and McVie were always friends, but they grew a bit more distant when she left the band. McVie stayed closest with Mick Fleetwood.

“I went for years without seeing Stevie or Lindsey [Buckingham], but Mick was always just there, on my shoulder,” she said. 

When she rejoined the band, McVie said her relationship with Nicks grew even stronger.

“Stevie and I are really good friends, in fact I think we’re better friends now than we were 16 years ago,” she told theartsdesk. “And it’s a fact, when it’s the Buckingham/Nicks show backed by John and Mick, that’s going to cause a lot of tension and stress. But with me in there, it gave Stevie the chance to get her breath back and not have this constant thing going on with Lindsey: her sister was back.”

Stevie Nicks realized the importance of her relationship with Christine McVie

Nicks shared that she was thrilled when McVie rejoined the band. Naturally, she missed McVie’s musical talent, but she also realized how much she valued their friendship.

“When we went on the road, I realized what an amazing friend she’d been of mine that I had lost and didn’t realize the whole consequences of it till now,” Nicks said, per the Star Tribune.


Stevie Nicks Supported Christine McVie’s Exit From Fleetwood Mac: ‘Pack Your Bags and Go Home’

She said that she doesn’t want to go without McVie’s friendship again.

“She brings the funny back into Fleetwood Mac,” she said. “Before, it was just a boys’ club. With her back, there’s more of a feminine touch to the whole thing. I never want her to ever go out of my life again, and that has nothing to do with music and everything to do with her and I as friends.”