Crowded Mac: Lindsey Buckingham leaves as Neil Finn joins Fleetwood Mac

How it might look: Neil Finn will join Fleetwood Mac

In a surprise announcement, Fleetwood Mac have confirmed that guitarist and songwriter Lindsey Buckingham has left the band and Mike Campbell from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and Crowded House’s Neil Finn will step in to replace him on their forthcoming tour.

In a statement, Fleetwood Mac said: “Lindsey Buckingham will not be performing with the band on this tour. The band wishes Lindsey all the best.”

They added: “We are thrilled to welcome the musical talents of the caliber of Mike Campbell and Neil Finn into the Mac family. With Mike and Neil, we’ll be performing all the hits that the fans love, plus we’ll be surprising our audiences with some tracks from our historic catalogue of songs. Fleetwood Mac has always been a creative evolution. We look forward to honoring that spirit on this upcoming tour.”

Neil Finn revealed that he’d been approached a fortnight ago, telling Rolling Stone: “Two weeks ago, I received a wonderful invitation to be a part of a truly great band. A few days later, I was standing in a room playing music with Fleetwood Mac. It felt fresh and exciting, so many great songs, a spectacular rhythm section and two of the greatest voices ever. Best of all, we sounded good together. It was a natural fit. I can’t wait to play.”

He also left a pithy comment to his 45,000 followers on twitter, yesterday:

As the story has developed overnight, many news outlets are reporting that Lindsey was ‘fired’ from the band after disagreements about the forthcoming tour. He has not made any comment, as yet.

The guitarist and songwriter joined Fleetwood Mac in 1975 departing in 1987 before the Tango in the Night tour. He rejoined in 1997 and only last year produced a superb ‘duets’ album with Christine McVie that featured all of the band save Stevie Nicks.

What do you think of this turn of events? Will Buckingham be back? Will Neil be a good fit? Leave a comment on SDE.

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Love Fleetwood Mac and I’m a life member of the Crowded House Fanclub but wouldn’t pay a tenner to see this.

Randy S.

First of all, unless Mick Fleetwood owns the band’s name or something, I don’t see how the band could FIRE Lindsey Buckingham. He’s produced their most successful albums, contributed several hit songs, and is the best player in the band. What I could see is a disagreement that led to Lindsey saying, “I’m out of here.” And as usual, I suspect that it’s something that is going on between Stevie and Lindsey. Stevie has been very vocal in saying that it is pointless for Fleetwood Mac to create new music or do a new album because albums don’t sell. If you watch the DVD “Destiny Rules,” as much as I respect Stevie, her songwriting and her voice, having commercial acceptance and selling millions of albums is important to her. Whereas Lindsey, being the artist he is, “has to” create albums. I have no doubt that Lindsey has been asking Fleetwood Mac to get back into the studio. I have no doubt that if he has, Stevie has been resisting. Who knows what happened. All I know is that love Lindsey’s post-1987 solo work, and the last time I saw him, it was at a 2,500 seat art deco theater. I enjoyed the evening far more than I would have enjoyed a Fleetwood Mac gig with the same 18 song greatest hits set list.

Randy S.

Kind of interesting that when Lindsey leaves the band, they’ve needed to hire TWO guitarists. They did it when he left in 1987.

Mathew Lauren

I can take or leave Crowded House, but I am a HUGE FMac fan. I agree with Andy and wouldn’t pay a tenner to see this mess, either!

This needs to be worked out by the band (proper): PRONTO! Everyone here “in the States,” I tell of this CrowdedMac development, scoffs at the idea of FMAC without the ‘75-‘87 (the big four albums plus ”Tango…” lineup.)

Btw, Max Lousada, many of us are still waiting for a PROPER FM ‘75 24/96 5.1 release — and of course Ken Caillat is ready and available to remix Tango to 24/96 5.1


Agree completely. Saw them last tour, when they were all back together. Glad I caught it. Buckingham is the core of Fleetwood Mac. Anyone remember “Behind the Mask?” Didn’t think so – that’s FM without Buckingham. Buckingham can keep Mac rolling without McVie or Nicks, when he’s had to, the reverse is not true.

Larry Davis

Well well well, just as I thought… Lindsey prob tried to keep it together as long as he could, do the tour and hopefully new music…but there musta been a point where he snapped and he got fired…BUT he is happy about it because he has the freedom to do new music (new solo album on Atlantic later this year…yay)…and proceed drama free with his solo career…which he actually prefers!! And there were points where he was doing a solo record and FM heard it and roped the songs in for a FM record instead…Tango and Say You Will…to be honest, I think Lindsey does not feel anger at all (maybe betrayal or regret)…but def a sense of relief to wring his hands of the Mac once & for all…I do not see him going back ever again…to be honest…and I am also relieved… I’d rather have his more interesting solo stuff anyway…Out of the cradle & gift of screws are faves…but I am also interested to see where FM goes from here too…Mike and Neil are great…this new chemistry…

Mathew Lauren

Yes, but “Tango…” needs a proper 5.1 and “Say you Will” was a bloated mess with the first 5 or 6 tracks imported from inferior sources (Lyndsey’s home studio stereo tapes ) and the surround mix simply sucks with the exception of Elliott Scheiner’s 5.1 of “Bleed to Love Her.” Both those albums could use Ken or Elliott 5.1-remix assistance. “Say you will” needs to be whittled down to 12 solid songs or the WHOLE album needs Christine’s input and new production and re-imaging for a proper FMac 2.0/5.1 re-release


Could this have been a few months in the works? According to a comment by a reader of an article on stuff.co.nz, he/she saw Mick Fleetwood in the audience at a Neil Finn concert in Waipu NZ on the 5th of January. https://www.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/102974004/fleetwood-mac-and-neil-finn-is-the-perfect-musical-marriage


They tried to replace him once before in the late 1980s and it didn’t work. Very strange decision for a “farewell tour”?!


They should have went for Tony Hadley he is looking for a band.

Phillip Fogel

I’ll never get to see Fleetwood Mac in concert a shame. Strange this is happening after the Buckingham/McVie album which I liked. In My Opinion without Lindsey it isn’t FM they should just call it a day or cal them selves something else :(

don cooper

The Buckingham/McVie should have been titled:

I Used To Be In A Band With This Idiot


Finn and Campbell are undoubtedly talented and experienced musicians BUT Fleetwood Mac without Lindsey Buckingham is just not Fleetwood Mac for me. I felt the same when I saw the band without Christine McVie but now I’m so pleased I managed to see the original ‘Rumours’ line-up when the band last toured in the UK!

Charlie Waffles

You don’t fire Lindsey. Are you nuts? FM is going to be awful. Yuk! Ick!


This will probably be unpopular, but having Neil replace Lindsay makes me want to see them more. I never cared much for LB’s songs/solos. I did like his harmonies with Stevie but Neil can harmonize very well too…kind of like having Mike Peters sing with Big Country worked for me.

Craig Hedges

Who owns the name Fleetwood Mac? I’m guessing that it’s Mick and John. They would be the only one’s to the hiring and firing. Why would they fire Lindsey it doesn’t make sense. History has already proved that FM without the key (Rumours) members doesn’t work. I like Neil Finn, but I don’t want to hear him sing ‘Go your own way’


I’m obviously in a very small minority here, but Lindsey is the one I would miss the least if he is absent. I haven’t been a fan of his songwriting since about the mid-80s, and I don’t tend to like his production that much. While i have not seen the band live in person, on live recordings and videos over the past twenty years, I haven’t particularly liked part in the concerts either.

I’m especially excited about Neil Finn being involved because I’ve loved both his solo work and with Crowded House. I’d be fascinated to see what he brings to the group, especially if they decide to go into the studio at some point. I’m not as familiar with Mike Campbell’s work specifically, but I’ve been a Heartbreakers fan since I was in middle-school, so I think he’ll be a good addition as well, and I like that there’s a big difference between Campbell’s and Finn’s backgrounds, though in a way that i think will still be sonically compatible.


Give it up Mick, modern day Mac without Lindsey is a joke. Didn’t work out after TITN, and won’t. A sad tragic multi-year geriatric nostalgia tour eh! Losing one of the world’s greatest guitarists, and iconic front man who wrote, produced, played on and sang lead vocal on a significant portion of your back catalogue – a winning idea! No thanks Mick, I will give it a miss. Saw you the night Ms McVie came up on stage at the O2 prior to rejoining, and that was enough for my memories.

As for Lindsey best thing ever, he can go do his ‘small machine and record some more great solo work – so much more interesting than Mac nostalgia.

Don’t blame Mr Finn, this is an unexpected golden egg for him. A massive pay day the like of which he has probably not seen before (assuming he negotiated a good % ).


Reagarding the comments that it has taken two guitarists to replace Lindsay that is not quite correct.
In recent years FM has toured wth Lindsay’s guitarist (on his solo tours) as a backing guitarist. Assuming he too is going then FM as a touring unit has lost two guitarists. Hence the need for two new guitarists.


There was an interview in rolling stone about 12-18 months ago with Steve Nicks, was surprised how confrontational it was. While I in no way predicted this, thinking back to that interview the signs were there. There did seem to be tensions about touring and new music, and her relationship with Lindsey, as much as with her as the rest of the band. They are obviously all independently weathly so maybe they have they also have the creative desire and intransigence to say “screw it, if you are not in you are out”, not many bands do that today with the touring dollar available today. If what one poster stated is true he has a new album later this year, it’s sounds like he said “screw it, I go my own way”. To me whatever happened it’s a real shame, without him FM will not be the same, even with the high Quality replacements, no one is questioning them.

And to answer a previous message, I had 7th row centre at the London palladium for his solo show that was pulled due to a back injury as I heard, not poor sales. Apparently put his back out playing with his kids. Not sure I have forgiven that cancellation as I was thrilled to see him solo.


I know how you feel Areweld, reference your last paragraph. I was gutted when he cancelled as I was nearer in 2nd row centre for that concert!! But I did forgive him. While sad for FM fans, I am sure this will be an interesting phase for FM now they have Neil in the group.


Mike Campbell is a brilliant guitarist and songwriter. He co wrote many of Tom Petty’s biggest hits. He wrote Boys of Summer (Don Henley).
Neil Finn is a stunning songwriter and extremely good guitarist.
I doubt it’s about the money for either Mike or Neil.
Give them a break. Maybe both just thought it would be a lot of fun.
I think the results could be really really inserting. I just hope they make it to NZ.
In the meanwhile I hope it gives Lindsay Buckingham the time to record more. Check out his last three solo albums. They are just brilliant. The man has a huge amount of creativity still
running through his veins.


I was hoping for a new “Rumours” line-up album… Last year “duet” album didn’t convince me. Well, I guess this time it’s really over because let’s face it, those guys are not getting any younger…

Mark stuart

I’d rather they got Vito and burnette back again, but we shall see. Could be interesting if they record new material, but if its just touring, what’s the point of having members laying a load of songs they had no involvement with? Hope Buckingham does a uk tour, but wasn’t his last one cancelled a few years ago because of low ticket sales? I was going to go to the Edinburgh one until I saw how much tickets were.


@Mark, the UK Buckingham tour was cancelled as his guitarist had injured himself was the official reason given at the time. I had tickets for Leeds and was gutted as I highly rate most of his solo albums.


I think one of the main reasons for having replacements for Buckingham is that they have no lead male vocalist without him. (Though, to be honest, I prefer FM songs with Stevie or Christine on lead.)

william mckinley

They did that to him the last time. Replace him with two guys. Eventually they made a so/so album. It was different. It would be interesting if they made a new album with the new additions. I would be interested in hearing what they would sound like. I doubt there would be any tour places near me and the last tour dvd they came out with is decades old. I am open minded and everyone knows that Fleetwood Mac is full of drama and intrigue. People got fired and replaced so many times with this group. They are not like traditional bands where they have kept their original lineup. Like everyone else, I am interested in a new album from them.

Todd R.

I’m SO over it.
This was supposed to be the last tour. They all hinted at it.
“We’re waiting on Stevie” Mick said, so she could do her solo album/tour.
“Stevie didn’t want to record” Lindsey said – so the Buck McVie album arrived (complete with a song title “On With The Show” – the name of the last FM Tour).
“Just take the money” Lindsey on FM doing the “Classic” East/West.
“We wish him the best” says FM – btw you’re fired.
Don’t “Dreams”. It’s OVER.
I have slaved over following/waiting/following this band. The hype over the love/affairs/breakups has eclipsed any respect for the music.
I’ll wait a bit longer to buy the super deluxe FLEETWOOD MAC box now.

The Ghost Of Bob Welch

I must admit to being pretty surprised by many of the comments here. From 1969-1974, pre-Buckingham, the band recorded 9 studio albums. 1975 – 2018, just 8, and he wasn’t even on 2 of them!! I always did feel though that their sound changed so much that a name change really should have been considered.

The Progster

LINDSEY BUCKINGHAM has replied in this shock NEWS statement just announced….

I am a MAN OF THE WORLD in fact I’m a FAMILY MAN and my reason to be fired from the band may have you MYSTFIED but I really tried to be the PEACEKEEPER in all this forthcoming tour debate but now I feel I’m in TROUBLE for speaking my mind on such matters.
But WHEN I SEE YOU AGAIN it will be on my new solo tour which will be called SKIES THE LIMIT / NEVER GOING BACK AGAIN….Why should I go back to that old ALBATROSS when all I really want to do is some new music while the others just stagnate and tell LITTLE LIES from BEHIND THE MASK so my decision is…GO YOUR OWN WAY give all the fans BIG LOVE because the COUNTDOWN starts here as i ROCK AWAY BLIND it will be known as the SEVEN WONDERS in years to come….But AS LONG AS YOU FOLLOW me and MY LITTLE DEMON things will all be fine and link up together just like THE CHAIN.

JOHN (From Peru - Sudamerica)

esto me hace recordar a Ringo Starr All Star Band….mmmmmmmmmmmmm


Nei Finn NO LE LLEGA NI A LOS PIES DE LINDSEY… no creo eso de que lo hayan despedido o algo mas lamentable por el porque se le espera y se le quiere a el y la banda en sudamerica…salu 2 SDE. JOHN from Lima Peru

Wayne Olsen

Lindsey joins the Eagles, replacing Joe Walsh, who gets the James Gang back together. Steve Howe replaces Trevor Ranin in ARW. Neil Young reforms Buffalo Springfield with Stills, Jack White, and Peter Tork.


You failed to mention that all of these bands will be touring together in the fall!

Daniel ( from Berlin )

for me: fleetwood mac was only great with all three voices: lindsey, christine & stevie.
it’s like ABBA make a re-union album without agnetha.
meanwhile: have anyone heard about agnetha last time? anything new?
back to fleetwood mac: i’m still very happy with “tango in the night” deluxe !!


Who’s abba?

Kris From Perth

Lindsey Buckingham is one of the most unique and exciting guitarists in rock. As well he is an amazing showman (check out on you-tube any live version of ‘Go Your Own Way’ or from the 1982 Mirage tour the 10 minute plus version of ‘Not That Funny’) and yes his absence from the overall sound and package of Fleetwood Mac will be massive. So much more than when the ladies Stevie & Christine took leave of absence in the past!
Really disappointed with this news.

Ben Williams

It could be that Buckingham has left for health or non-FM reasons. If not, hopefully he’ll tour by himself, I’d love to see him – he’s the real showman of FM nowadays!

Larry Davis

If that were the case, the statement would have said that he quit/stepped aside/can’t tour for health reasons, not “FIRED” or disagreements over touring…as someone said, this looks like a powerplay by Stevie…and it does ring of betrayal… Lindsey and Chris and Mick & John did the Buckingham McVie record and did NOT call it Fleetwood Mac out of respect to her, and that’s how she treats him?? And they did Say You Will when Chris was out of the band…still called it Fleetwood Mac when it was more Buckingham Nicks!!

Mark T.

Fleetwood Mac has been old and tired for decades now. You’re not going to get anything interesting from the old line-up these days anyway. And if you haven’t seen them in concert already by now, after 4 tours over the last 15 years, then I can’t see being outraged over Lindsey leaving. Neil’s an interesting choice to bring in, but I’d be more excited if there were some new material forthcoming. I do think he’ll mesh well vocally with the 2 ladies.

alan hansen

i with complete sincerity, for a split second, i thought i’d missed an additional April Fool’s joke.


I saw them live in 2013 without Christine. Did I miss her? A little bit. But the real showman was Lindsey Buckingham. So I’m not interested in this tour!

mick lynch

Forget 1959, or 1970, 2018 is the day the music died. Fleetwood Mac without Buckingham is like the E Street without Bruce. Since Lindsey joined, Fleetwood Mac have never made a bad album with him. I don’t see them progressing any further. Buckingham wants new material, the rest of them are content to rest on their laurels and perform the back catalogue. It’s taken two people to replace him. Do they really need Neil Finn, they already have a crowded house there (lol). “Once you said goodbye to me, now I say goodbye to you”

Larry Davis

New Lindsey solo album on Atlantic listed for later this year… No title or release day listed yet…


How about a Yes “Union” sort of tour with all surviving members of the Mac up on stage at once? How about not.

Radisson Blu Cumberlands

he will be back for the next tour – so much drama with this rabble


Crowded Mac! Love it…that’s what they should have called the recent anniversary big macs at McDonald’s.

Charles K

At this point I don’t care anymore. It’s mind boggling why this band can’t seem to keep it together for what amounts to a tour every ten years or so. Christy finally comes back now this. Goes without saying that Neil and Mike are amazing and anyone’s first choices to replace but this is just silly.


How disappointing! I couldn’t wait for this tour, passed up several concerts this year and even sold the tickets I had to another one, just to ensure time and finances would allow catching FM this summer. It won’t be the same without Lindsey. I’ll probably go anyway, just to hear Stevie, but a lot of the excitement is gone. After last year’s duet album, practically an FM album sans Stevie, it seemed there was a good chance the complete FM would eventually re-emerge. Well, it now seems that’ll never happen.

Stan C

You know, that was my initial gut reaction, as well. But, now that I’ve taken some time to digest it, I think the results might be smashing. I think that they all be inspired and re-energized. Imagine Mike Campbell –a brilliant and disciplined guitarist–getting to take a swing at all those great solos. And I can’t wait to hear Neil’s voice blend in with Stevie’s.

All that being said, you have got to wonder what in the hell went on behind the scenes. I mean, Lindsey has to be nearing 70, right? I’m trying to picture people in their eighth decade of life having a heated band fight/lol. If nothing else, it’s surely the most unexpected/interesting musical development in a long while. Unless we wake up tomorrow, and find that Roger Waters has joined The Cars, I can’t imagine what is going to be a bigger surprise than this.

Larry Davis

Well at one time, Todd Rundgren joined forces with remaining Cars members as THE NEW CARS and the results were good, if short-lived cuz of the Cars reunion…Roger Waters and the Cars would be an odd pairing indeed…haha


I saw buckingham/ mcvie in Virginia and Lindsey was amazing ( 4th row free tickets… yaaah!). As much as I love Christine her voice was shot especially on the slower numbers. By all accounts Stevie’s voice isn’t what it used to be either. Was seriously considering going to the show if it passed through here but definitely not now. Seems like the EP will be the last we hear of classic Mac. Did that ever get a physical release??

If they ever did do a new album it would have to be amazing to do anything. Behind the mask was so/so…songs by the new members let it down badly and the least said about Time the better. Can’t remember one good song on that record although it has been a very long time since I listened to it.

In short, this is a “no” from me.


This looks like the end of the ‘Mac’ they never really recovered after Lindsey left last time. Shame Peter Green isn’t fit enough these days to bring back the real Fleetwood Mac.


Buckingham and McVie just made an album together…strange that he would be “fired” from FM. If that is true, Buckingham must feel a bit stabbed in the back to say the least, espeecially by McVie. Curious to what the real story is but we’ll probably never know, other than that Buckingham is a difficult person. We still don’t know why Andy Taylor left Duran Duran. John Taylor just mentions it in his book. Nothing more. (A bad book by the way, nothing interesting beyond what we already knew. Way too little info. Compare that to Keith Richards’ book). Even though Buckingham was the creative genius behind many of the FM hits, they are just live playing the hits. Any good musician can obviously do that. Buckingham’s voice will be missed on stage. That’s about it. Neil Finn is an incredibly talented musician. He will do great. If they come to NYC, I want to check em out. It’s almost more interesting w. Neil Finn.


If you want to know why Andy left Duran, read Andy’s book!

Gutted, was looking forward to the tour, now will give it a miss.


Read that book too. Only some cliches about his leaving.

Marc K.

It is a bit like Paul McCartney would team up with Kanye West, or Rihanna or so
What’s that you’re saying? He did? Well, what do you know ….:-)

Love Crowded House & Neil Finn, love Fleetwood Mac ‘Rumours-edition’, don’t think this is a good idea……but hey, who am I, not going to buy tickets. I’m sure they will sell out in no time, so good for them and their retirement plans.
A nice Crowded House reunion is more than welcome though…..


I, for one, think this is a very interesting combination. It might not work, but we are dealing with incredibly professional and creative musicians, so it could be fantastic or at the very least the best tribute band you’ve ever heard. Hope they do a live album.

Kevin Galliford

It’s not Fleetwood Mac without Lindsey Buckingham, he’s the creative genius & now he’s gone my interest has waned. Shame we’ll never get another album from their most successful line up!


Quick! Somebody call Pete Frame, there’s a Mac family tree needs updating!


I don’t blame Finn for taking them up on this. I’m sure he’s not short of a few quid already, but he’ll be getting paid mega-bucks for this.


Yes, it would make sense for him RJ… “Neil would you be interested in making more money in a couple of years touring with Mac than in your entire time with Split Enz and Crowded House?”


I’d rather jack than Fleetwood Mac.


I would gladly pay current ridiculous ticket pricing to see this combination play 2+ hours of early bluesy Mac material. Green Manalichi and such now have a chance for new life!


Simplest way said: There is no Fleetwood Mac without Lindsey Buckingham. It’s already been proven (see after Tango In the Night). Sad but true. I’m so heartbroken about this. Truly

Chris Squires

On a smaller scale I know. But for the Neil Finn fans here this is how I felt when I heard the Stephen Duffy became Robbie Williams’ musical director and songwriting partner.
Not necessarily bad, but just plain weird. A quick check of the date…. nope not Rolo Pafil, but definitely WTF? Certainly everything I believed in at that point needed re-evaluating.


Fleetwood Mac is still together? Who knew? Just three days ago I had a discussion with friends about classic rock groups who have remained insanely popular despite breaking up long ago (Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin) and when I mentioned Fleetwood Mac nobody disputed it.