Fleetwood Mac: The Relationships and Affairs That Nearly Broke the Band
Though Fleetwood Mac’s music made them famous, the band members’ various relationships and affairs are something of legend. The romances and bitter breakups threatened the band’s stability and sometimes spilled into their onstage performances. While they all valued the group too much to break up the band, the dynamic was tumultuous, particularly during the Rumours era. Here are the relationships and affairs that caused chaos in Fleetwood Mac.
Bob Weston and Jenny Boyd had an affair that resulted in a firing
There was still quite a bit of relationship drama in the pre-Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham years of Fleetwood Mac. Bob Weston was a lead guitarist in the band in the early 1970s. His career with the group came crashing down when he started having an affair with co-founder and drummer Mick Fleetwood’s wife.
In 1973, Fleetwood found out that his wife, Jenny Boyd, and Weston were romantically involved. Unsurprisingly, Fleetwood had Weston fired.
“[It was] the most expensive affair I’ve ever had in my life,” Weston said, per Express. “Cost me a career, that did.”
His absence did set the group up for the 1975 addition of Buckingham and Nicks.
Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham are Fleetwood Mac’s most famous couple
Buckingham and Nicks joined Fleetwood Mac as part of a package deal. The band needed a guitarist, and Buckingham would only agree to join if his bandmate and girlfriend, Nicks, came with him. At that time, they were already having relationship problems, but they tried to make it work for the sake of their careers. This didn’t last long, though.
While writing and recording the Rumours album, Nicks and Buckingham split up. The fallout from their relationship lasted for years — they had screaming matches in the studio and physical altercations onstage — but neither was willing to quit the group.
“Really, each one of us was too proud and way too stubborn to walk away from it,” Nicks said, per Uncut. “I wasn’t going to leave. Lindsey wasn’t going to leave. What would we have done — sat around in LA and tried to start new bands? It was just ‘grit your teeth and bear it.'”
Nicks is still a member of Fleetwood Mac, but the group fired Buckingham in 2018.
Stevie Nicks and Mick Fleetwood had a secret affair
In the late 1970s, Nicks started up an affair with Fleetwood. At the time, both were in other relationships.
“Eventually I fell in love with her and it was chaotic, it was on the road and it was a crazy love affair that went on longer than any of us really remember — probably several years by the end of it,” Fleetwood wrote in his book Play On.
While they loved each other, Nicks doesn’t think the relationship would have happened without drugs or alcohol. She also regretted hurting Fleetwood’s family.
“I loved these people,” she said Stevie Nicks: Visions, Dreams, and Rumours by Zoë Howe. “It couldn’t possibly have worked out, and it didn’t.”
Their relationship ended when Fleetwood left Nicks for one of her close friends.
Christine McVie and John McVie ended their relationship while in Fleetwood Mac
Singer and keyboardist Christine McVie married founding member John McVie before joining Fleetwood Mac. She explained that once she joined the band, the strain of working together began to wear on the couple.
“We were very happy. Very happy for probably three years and then the strain of me being in the same band as him started to take its toll,” she told Rolling Stone. “When you’re in the same band as somebody, you’re seeing them almost more than 24 hours a day. You start to see an awful lot of the bad side ’cause touring is no easy thing.”
Eventually, it became too much for McVie to handle. She divorced her husband in 1976, as the band was touring.
“I broke up with John in the middle of a tour,” she said. “I was aware of it being rather irresponsible. I had to do it for my sanity. It was either that or me ending up in a lunatic asylum.”
Christine McVie and Curry Grant inspired a well-known Fleetwood Mac song
Another reason for the split was McVie’s affair with the band’s lighting director, Curry Grant. This didn’t make touring any easier.
“Wherever John was, he couldn’t be,” McVie said. “There were some very delicate moments.”
The song “You Make Loving Fun” was about Grant, but McVie told John McVie that it was about her dog. The song is just one more in a long list of Fleetwood Mac songs about the band’s dramatic romantic relationships.