February 4th, 1977 – The music world was forever changed as five people, four of them in relationships with one another, released their 11th studio album, Rumours. This album has sold over 45 million units worldwide, making it one of the best-selling albums of all time.
Rumours was heavily influenced by the relationships within the band. Pianist/vocalist Christine McVie and bassist John McVie had divorced just after touring for their tenth studio album; meanwhile, vocalist Stevie Nicks and guitarist/vocalist Lindsay Buckingham were in the midst of an on and off relationship. Also, drummer Mick Fleetwood was having issues himself in regards to problems with his problems, as he discovered his wife was having an affair.
All the songs on this album involve relationships. In “Go Your Own Way”, Buckingham takes on a pessimistic tone as he addresses his previous relationship with Nicks, which is shown in lines such as “shackin’ up is all you want to do.” In “Songbird,” a Christine McVie ballad, she sings about self sacrifice within love.
Rumours has gone on to be a cultural phenomenon, as most people would be able to identify several songs off the album, even without knowing the title of the work. There are many things that make this album amazing, from its beautiful harmonies, to the creation of “The Chain,” which is the opening track of the B-side that was spliced together from previous workings with a razor blade. Though the atmosphere within the group took on a negative role, from excess drug use and shattered relationships, the band electrified the music world with eleven stellar tracks. Pitchfork’s Jessica Hopper sums it up perfectly by stating, “Rumours was not exactly a game changer, it was merely perfect.”