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Black Jacket Symphony fills the void left by Fleetwood Mac, sells out show at the Bing

Feb. 23, 2023 Updated Thu., Feb. 23, 2023 at 3:16 p.m.

Black Jacket Symphony will perform the entirety of Fleetwood Mac’s iconic album, “Rumours,” during a sold out show at the Bing Crosby Theater on Wednesday.  (Rob Hereth)
Black Jacket Symphony will perform the entirety of Fleetwood Mac’s iconic album, “Rumours,” during a sold out show at the Bing Crosby Theater on Wednesday. (Rob Hereth)
By Ed Condran For The Spokesman-Review

“Go Your Own Way” isn’t just the title of one of Fleetwood Mac’s biggest hits. The Lindsey Buckingham smash could have been the name of the legendary band, which has a turbulent history with as many exits as a freeway.

The most unfortunate departure is the recent death of Christine McVie, who passed away in November. The vocalist-keyboardist, who left the highly volatile band in 1998 but returned in 2014, was known as the pragmatic voice of the band.

Who knows what will be next for an iconic but mercurial act that fired Buckingham in 2018 even though he has arguably been the greatest creative force in the band’s unique history? Nothing is surprising in the world of the celebrated Rock and Roll Hall of Famers.

It will be curious what Mick Fleetwood, John McVie and vocalist Stevie Nicks will embark on, especially since the latter is touring with Billy Joel during a massive summer jaunt.

However, fans can’t wait or get enough of Fleetwood Mac live. Black Jacket Symphony has assembled a group of musicians who will deliver the group’s monster album, “Rumours,” which has sold more than 40 million copies. Black Jacket Symphony will round out the set with a number of Fleetwood Mac classics.

Black Jacket Symphony’s Fleetwood Mac show Wednesday at the Bing Crosby Theater sold out quickly. “Music fans are crazy about Fleetwood Mac,” Black Jacket Symphony technical director Jason Rogoff said by phone from Tuscon, Arizona. “The appeal of this show is that fans can’t get enough of Fleetwood Mac in a live atmosphere. That band evokes so much emotion.”

It makes sense since emotion inspired many of the band’s greatest songs, “Landslide,” “You Make Loving Fun” and especially the aforementioned “Go Your Own Way.”

“A lot of the people who come out were in their formative years when ‘Rumours’ was released back then (1977),” Rogoff said. “It was a time when people were growing up and for many it was a positive period and they want to live through that experience again. And with Fleetwood Mac, who knows when they will perform again?”

But even if and when Fleetwood Mac returns, it’s different with its latest incarnation, which features guitarists Neil Finn of Crowded House and Mike Campbell of Tom Petty’s Heartbreakers.

“Fleetwood Mac is just not the same band without Lindsey Buckingham,” Rogoff said. “And Fleetwood Mac is not an inexpensive ticket. If you come out to Black Jacket Symphony you can experience these incredible musicians who sound like Fleetwood Mac for a fraction of the cost of a ticket for an actual Fleetwood Mac concert. The Black Jacket Symphony show will bring back those feelings from back in the day when you were younger and so were Fleetwood Mac. People want to experience those great songs live and there are so many of them.”

There’s the harmonies of “The Chain,” a rare collaboration from the entire band. The gorgeous “Gypsy,” which features Nicks at arguably her finest. “Little Lies” a clever and melodic Christine McVie track. The list goes on and on with “Say You Love Me,” “Everywhere” and “Don’t Stop,” which was the theme of Bill Clinton’s first presidential campaign.

There’s rarely been a group like Fleetwood Mac, which hasn’t toured since 2019, with three visionary singer-songwriters. The band has had so many ups and downs that Fleetwood Mac makes the Eagles seem stable by comparison.

Fleetwood Mac has always been combustible. Will the band ever return? It might not matter since the fans can’t wait and they’ve proven that by jamming venues featuring Black Jacket Symphony.

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