THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Fleetwood Mac were at the top of their game in August 1977 when the band returned to their adopted home in Southern California to play The Forum in Los Angeles. Rumours had only been out a few weeks when the band left in February to tour the world, returning six months later to deliver three shows at the venue for nearly 50,000 fans.
Rumours Live captures the energy and excitement of the band’s opening night at The Forum on Aug. 29, 1977. The nearly 90-minute performance remained unreleased for decades until 2021, when Gold Dust Woman from the show was included as a bonus track on Live: Deluxe Edition, Rhino’s expanded version of Fleetwood Mac’s 1980 concert album. The other 17 songs on the collection have never been released before.
The concert’s setlist draws almost exclusively from Fleetwood Mac and Rumours, the first two albums recorded by the band’s latest incarnation: Mick Fleetwood, John McVie and Christine McVie, along with their newest members, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham. The lone nod to Fleetwood Mac’s other nine studio albums is a performance of Oh Well, a rock-guitar masterpiece originally released in 1969 and written by the band’s founder, guitarist Peter Green.
Engineer Ken Caillat, who helped record Rumours, also recorded the concert at The Forum using the Record Plant’s mobile recording truck. He captured the band’s impassioned performance at a moment of peak Rumours frenzy, including powerful versions of Landslide, Never Going Back Again, Songbird and The Chain.
In the liner notes from Rumours Live, Sam Graham observes: “The songs are familiar: Dreams, Go Your Own Way, Say You Love Me, Over My Head, and on and on. But most of these live versions are more muscular, more ferocious, than the album recordings, driven by the powerhouse Fleetwood-John McVie rhythm section and Buckingham’s febrile guitar playing; and instead of a rote recital of the hits, the group stretches out in concert, as songs like Rhiannon, World Turning and I’m So Afraid blossom into exuberant tours de force onstage.”