Book: Black Swan Green
Author: David Mitchell
Composer/Artist: Fleetwood Mac
I said a couple of days back that there would be a run of early 80s hits over the next few weeks. I should’ve qualified that by admitting that there were some late 70s songs and a couple of others sprinkled throughout to leaven the richness of the artistic output of Thatcherite Britain at its musical zenith. In David Mitchell’s very enjoyable and evocative Black Swan Green the main character – Jason or Jace, for short – had an older sister whose taste, coloured by her few additional years of life and boyfriends’ influences, extended further back than his.
My wife is the world’s biggest Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mac fan. I surprised her last winter with tickets for their concert in Newark, New Jersey. It was a wonderful surprise for her. And, it turned out, it was a wonderful surprise for me. I never bought Rumours so it’s safe to presume that neither did I buy any of the band’s other albums. Fleetwood Mac’s songs just seem to have become part of my mental music catalogue by osmosis. The surprise for me was that I knew almost every song that night. It was one recognizable classic after another. Ironically, Songbird was probably the only one I didn’t know and, oddly, it was the final encore of the night – a solo performance by the (relatively) recently returned Christine McVie. It was lovely but not your typical big, leave-them-begging-for-more finale to a rock gig.
We had a fantastic time and then got the hell out of Newark as quickly as we could.
We were also among the younger members of the audience. Which was nice.