Friday, September 09, 2016

Song #288: "Second Hand News"--Fleetwood Mac (1977)

Rhetorical rock music questions of the 1970's:

1) When will Boston release its third album?
2) Where exactly is Hotel California?
3) Will "Rumours" ever get knocked off the top of the album chart?

I readily admit to not having my pulse of current popular music, and I know even less now that Rachel is in college and doesn't have nearly as much time to listen to music. I count on her to help me stay hip with my bumper music on our "High School Football Game of The Week" broadcasts this time of year on WHAN Radio and online on RVA Sports Network (subtle plug complete!).

But I'm not sure any group of albums this decade, or really any other, could have made the impact, not just on sales, but on the culture of the album chart, the way the following five did in such a short period in the 1970's. Listed, in order of their release:

1) Frampton Comes Alive--Peter Frampton (1976)
2) Boston--Boston (1976)
3) Hotel California--Eagles (1976)
4) Rumours--Fleetwood Mac (1977)
5) Saturday Night Fever--Various Artists (1977)

Think about the staying power represented in those five pieces of vinyl. And now think about this:

"Rumours" topped the Billboard Top 200 album chart for two weeks in early April, 1977, lost the honor for five weeks to "Hotel California", which now headed the chart for the fourth time, then returned to number one on May 21, staying there for eight weeks.

That's not all. After "Barry Manilow Live" snuck in for a week, Fleetwood Mac returned to the top, and stayed there for NINETEEN more weeks before Linda Ronstadt's "Simple Dreams" finally supplanted it in early December.

When you study and discover the back story behind the making of "Rumours", it makes the completed piece all the more amazing, considering all the obstacles that were around Fleetwood Mac, self-imposed and otherwise, during its production.

However, today's song is the only contribution from the album in my Top 500. This is the first of three Fleetwood Mac tunes overall.


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