Fleetwood Mac earned their place at rock and roll’s top table in the 1970s, with albums like Rumors and Tusk. They continue to explore new music, releasing original material as recently as 2013 – and older records regularly receive remasters. Evidently, interest in such iconic acts will never burn out – but are tribute bands, playing those stellar hits for significantly smaller crowds, such a good idea?
Enter Fleetingwood Mac, a tribute band exuding a breezy personality, steering clear of any tacky imitation with wigs and fancy dress outfits. Most of the men are sporting loud floral shirts whilst drummer Sean Kennneally adds formality with a waistcoat topped off with a piece of red ribbon around his neck.
Guitarist Paul Carunana leads with the bluesy track ‘Black Magic Woman’ from Fleetwood Mac’s 1969 album titled English Rose. The alluring song is brought back to life with younger vocals while still preserving its ‘60s smoky, rocky quality in the guitar solos.
Attention to detail is noticeable throughout the gig. Lead singer Bethany Raine holds a silver crescent moon shaped tambourine with a delicate piece of black lace attached, subtly hinting at Stevie’s persona rather than copying it.
After some crowd-pleasers including ‘Dreams’ and ‘Isn’t It Midnight’, Raine ushers us forward for the jolly ‘Hold Me’ number, assuring us she doesn’t bite. This track feels incredibly nostalgic with the gentle twinkling lullaby introduction perfected and Raine throws in some Stevie-esque spins and twirls in her witchy, flowy black dress.
Over the rowing crowd, the set changes to a softer tone, ‘Landslide’ is introduced as “Just a little number Stevie Nicks wrote.” Only the lead vocalist and one guitarist fill the stage while the other members turn inward to watch. The first line, “I took my love, I took it down”, comes across with a real rawness, Raine’s voice cracking with emotion.
Fleetingwood Mac remained free from gimmicks and is a prime example of why tribute acts matter, they give those who once loved a band a chance to reminisce and others the chance to discover these bands. Fleetingwood Mac state on their Facebook page: “As much as we aim to create a genuine Fleetwood Mac sound, we can’t help but give it a modern edge, it’s just the way we are.”