Drummer of Fleetwood Mac
British musician and occasional actor Mick Fleetwood is famous as the drummer and namesake of the British/American rock band Fleetwood Mac. Band founder Peter Green named the band by combining the surnames of his ex-bandmates from John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie. Fleetwood becomes the only member to stay with the band through its ever changing lineup. Formed in London in 1967, Fleetwood Mac enjoyed their first success during the late 1960s British blues boom, when they were led by Green and scored a UK No. 1 hit with “Albatross.” With more pop-orientation, featuring Christine McVie, Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks , the band experienced major mainstream success from 1975 -1987 thanks largely to the multi platinum releases “Rumours” (1977), “Tusk” (1979) and “Mirage” (1982). “Rumours” spawned the band's first and to date only US No. 1 hit single, “ Dreams.” For his work with Fleetwood Mac, Fleetwood has been an inductee in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and has been awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Recording at 6608 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California. He has released several solo albums, including “The Visitor” (1981) and “Blue Again!” (2008). his acting credits include “The Running Man” (1987), “Zero Tolerance” (1994) and “Snide and Prejudice” (1997).
Fleetwood wrote an autobiography called “My Life and Adventures with Fleetwood Mac” (1990), on which he discusses his experiences with other musicians such as Eric Clapton, members of The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, and an affair with Fleetwood Mac bandmate Stevie Nicks, in addition to his addiction to powdered cocaine and his personal bankruptcy although he earned millions from his career as a drummer. Fleetwood has diabetes.
Currently, Fleetwood is married to Lynn Frankel, they have twin daughters. He previously was married to Jenny Boyd (from 1970-1974), with whom he has two children, and Sara Recor (from 1988 to 1992). Fleetwood has lived in the United States since the mid 1970s. He earned a U.S. citizenship on November 22, 2006, in Los Angeles, CA.
Childhood and Family:
Michael John Kells Fleetwood, who would later be popular as Mick Fleetwood, was born on June 24, 1947, in Redruth, Cornwall, England, to John Joseph Kells and Bridget Maureen. His father was a Royal Air Force fighter pilot, which made the family moved around quite a bit when Mick was young. They lived in Egypt for about six years before moving to Norway, where Mick attended school and learned fluency in the Norwegian language. After the family's return to the UK, Mick was sent to English boarding schools, but had difficulties to adjust with the school life. He eventually dropped out of school at age 15. Despite having serious problems with school, Mick showed a mounting interest in drumming. He got his first drum kit from his father at age 13, and he taught himself to play records by Cliff Richard, the Everly Brothers, and The Shadows. After leaving school, Mick moved to London to pursue his dream of becoming a drummer. Mick has two sisters, Susan Fleetwood (actress) and Sally Fleetwood. Susan died in September 1995 at age 51, after a decade battle with ovarian cancer.
Mack married Jenny Boyd, the younger sister of Pattie Boyd, on June 12, 1970. They had two children before divorcing in 1974. The couple later remarried but then divorce again. On April 24, 1988, he married Sara Recor, but they later divorced in 1992. Mack married his present wife, Lynn Frankel, on July 26, 1995. The couple have twin daughters, Tessa and Ruby. Stevie Nicks is the godfather of his twins.
Upon his arrival in London, a then 16 year old aspiring drummer Mick Fleetwood landed a job at Liberty's department store but he was soon fired. Thanks to the help of a young neighborhood musician named Peter Bardens, Fleetwood received his first gig with a band named the Senders before joining Bardens' own band, The Cheynes. While playing the club circuit with the band, he met and became friend with John McVie, the bass player in John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. After The Cheynes broke up in 1965, Fleetwood briefly joined the Bo Street Runners before reuniting with Peter Bardens in his new band, Peter B's Looners (later known as just the Peter B's), whose member also included guitarist Peter Green. With the addition of vocalist Rod Stewart, the band later morphed into Shotgun Express. Green left Shotgun Express in 1966 to join John Mayall, and the band disbanded later in early 1967.
Fleetwood was jobless when the Bluesbreakers' drummer, Aynsley Dunbar, left in the spring of 1967. With the help of Green, Fleetwood then was recruited as a new drummer of the John Mayall & Bluesbreakers, but was fired after a month due to drunkenness. A few months later, Fleetwood was asked by Green to join him along with bassist John McVie in his new band, Fleetwood Mac.
On February 4, 1968 the band released their self titled debut album on Blue Horizon label. It rose to No. 4 in the UK Albums chart and successfully brought the band overnight success. It was followed by the Top 10 UK hit albums “Mr. Wonderful” (1968, #10) and “Then Play On” (#6, 1969), which marked the band's last album with Green as well as their first with Warner/Reprise after being lured away from Blue Horizon. Green was replaced by Danny Kirwan. Also in 1969, the band released a compilation album in the United States called “English Rose” and the UK compilation album “The Pious Bird of Good Omen.” Both albums featured the band's first No. 1 UK hit single, “Albatross.”
Fleetwood and his band mates resurfaced with the fourth studio album “Kiln House” on September 18, 1970. Unlike its predecessor, the album only reached the Top 40 in the UK, but it hit the US Billboard 200 at No. 69. It became the band's last album to feature guitarist and vocalist Jeremy Spencer.
On September 3, 1971, Fleetwood Mac released the fifth studio album “Future Games,” which became the band's first release with guitarist Bob Welch and the first to feature John's then wife, Christine McVie, as a full member. The album charted at No. 91 on the Billboard 200 and finally earned gold certification in the US, thanks to the band's move from blues to the melodic sound. “Bare Tress” followed in April 1972. After the band's mainstream success in the mid-1970s, the album was certified gold by the RIAA in 1976 and went on to receive platinum status. The band embarked on tour to support the album, during which time Danny Kirwan was fired from the band because of his problems with alcoholism.
With new guitarist Bob Weston, Fleetwood Mac launched the seventh studio album “Penguin” in March 1973. It peaked at No. 49 on the Billboard 200. It was followed by “Mystery to Me” (October 1973) and “Heroes Are Hard to Find” (September 1974), which marked the band's first album to enter the Top 40 on the Billboard 200 (#34). By the mid 1970s, guitarists Bob Weston and Bob Welch had left the band. The band then recruited Lindsey Buckingham as guitarist and Stevie Nicks as vocalist.
On July 11, 1975, the new line up released the eponymous album “Fleetwood Mac” on Reprise Records. The album became a breakthrough for the band and was a huge. It reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200 on September 4, 1976 and has since sold over five million copies in the Unites States. The album produced three Top 20 hits on the US Billboard Hot 100 with Christine McVie's “Over My Head" (#20) and “Say You Love Me” (#11) and Stevie Nicks' “Rhiannon” (#11). In the UK, “Fleetwood Mac” peaked at No. 23 on the Albums chart and went gold.
The band garnered further success with the eleventh studio album “Rumours,” which was released on February 4, 1977 through Warner Bros. Records. The record received widespread critical acclaim and was a big commercial success. It reached the No. 1 spot on both the Billboard 200 and the UK Albums Chart as well as in Australia, New Zealand and Canada. It won a 1978 Grammy for Album of the Year, sharing with co-producers Ken Caillat and Richard Dashut. “Rumours” has been certified 19x platinum in the US, 11x platinum in the UK, 13x platinum in Australia and platinum in France. The album featured their first US No.1 hit single, “Dreams,” and the Top 10 hits “Go Your Own Way” (#10), “Don't Stop” (#3) and “You Make Loving Fun” (#9).
“Tusk” followed on October 12, 1979. It peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 and was certified double platinum by the RIAA. The album peaked at No. 1 on the UK Albums Chart and went platinum. It yielded two Top 10 hit singles with the title track “Tusk” (#8) and “Sara” (#7). The band took over a year hiatus after the completion of the worldwide “Tusk” tour and did not release a new album until 1982's “Mirage.” It peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, becoming the band's third album to do so, and No. 5 on the UK Albums Chart. It went double platinum in the US and platinum in the UK. The album produced several hit singles: “Hold Me,” which peaked at No. 4 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, “Gypsy,” which reached No. 12 on the Billboard Hot 100, “Love in Store,” a No. 22 on the Billboard Hot 100, and “Oh Diane,” which reached No. 9 in the UK.
In between “Tusk” and “Mirage,” Fleetwood released his first solo effort, “The Visitor,” in 1981 through the RCA Records. It featured two Fleetwood Mac remakes: “Rattlesnake Shake” and “Walk A Thin Line.” The album peaked at No. 43 in the US. When the band was on hiatus following “Mirage,” Fleetwood returned with his next solo effort, “I'm Not Me,” in 1983, under the name Mick Fleetwood's Zoo.
The Rumours line up of Fleetwood Mac returned with the new studio album “Tango in the Nigh,” on April 13, 1987. It reached No. 1 in the UK Albums Chart and went 8x platinum in the UK. In the United States, the album charted at No. 7 on the Billboard 200 and achieved triple platinum status. The album yielded several singles with “”Big Love” (#9 UK, #5 US), “Seven Wonders” (#19 US), “Little Lies” (#5 UK, #4 US), and “Everywhere” (#4 UK, #14 US).
After the departure of guitarist Lindsey Buckingham, the band released “Behind the Mask” on April 10, 1990, with two new members Billy Burnette and Rick Vito (both guitar players, singers and songwriters). The album peaked at No. 1 on the UK Albums Chart and No. 18 in Billboard 200. the lead single “Save Me” reached No. 33 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 53 on the UK Singles Chart. “Behind the Mask” eventually earned platinum status in the UK and gold in the United States. Both Billy Burnette and Rick Vito left the band in 1991. In the following year, billed as The Zoo, Fleetwood released the third solo album “Shakin' the Cage.”
On October 10, 1995, Fleetwood Mac released the 16th studio album “Time,” with guitarist Dave Mason and country vocalist Bekka Bramlett. The album was unsuccessful and only peaked at No. 47 on the UK Albums Chart. The band disbanded after “Time.” In 1996, Mick Fleetwood worked with Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham on the song “Twisted” for the soundtrack to the film “Twister.” This led to a full Rumours line up reunion when the abnd officially reformed in March 1997. The following year, Christine McVie left the band and returned to the the UK to retire from touring.
In April 2003, the current line up of Stevie Nicks/Lindsey Buckingham/John McVie/Mick Fleetwood released the studio album “Say You Will,” their first record since 1995. The album reached No. 3 on the Billboard 200, becoming the band's first the top 3 in the US since 1982's “Mirage,” and No. 6 on the UK Albums Chart. The album went gold in both the US and the UK.
In 2004, Mick Fleetwood launched his fourth solo album called “ Something Big.” It was followed by “Blue Again!” in 2008.
Apart from music, Mick Fleetwood has acted in several films and on television. He made his feature debut in 1987 in “The Running Man,” an action film starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. Two years later, he landed a guest spot in an episode of “Wiseguy” called “And I Comes Out Here,” playing James Elliot. The same year, he also guest starred as Antedian Dignitary in the episode “Manhunt” of “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” Fleetwood retruned to acting in 1994 when he landed the starring role of Helmut Vitch on the action/thriller film “Zero Tolerance,” opposite Robert Patrick and Titus Welliver. It was followed by the role of Pablo Picasso in the 1997 drama film “Snide and Prejudice,” starring Remy Auberjonois, Rene Auberjonois and Joseph Bottoms. In 1998, he made his television film debut as Simon Eckstal on “Mr. Music.” In 2001, Fleetwood had a featured role as bartender in the film “Burning Down the House.” He served as a judge in the reality TV “Star Tomorrow” (2006). Recently, in 2011, Fleetwood was featured in the comedy film “Get a Job,” Brian Kohne.
Grammy: Album of the Year, “Rumours,” 1978