Sunday, July 18, 2010

Buckingham Nicks on THE PLAYLIST; Treasures From The Past


Good morning and happy Sunday.

Today, let's have a little diversion from politics and current events, I wanted to feature some music featuring Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks from the days prior to their joining Fleetwood Mac, when the duo appeared as Buckingham Nicks, and released the self titled album in 1973.

Three of the songs are from the Buckingham Nicks album. But leading off is Sorcerer, from Stevie's 2001 solo album Trouble In Shangri-la. The song was written in the early 1970's, however, and was performed by Buckingham Nicks on tour. It was supposedly considered for Fleetwood Mac's Tusk, but didn't make the cut.

The three other songs are Crying In The Night, Stephanie, and Don't Let Me Down Again. For more information about Lindsey, Stevie, Buckingham Nicks, and their joining Fleetwood Mac, please see the two related articles posted in 2009.

If you're troubled by the gratuitous implied nudity of the young Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham (pictured).....that's tough!

Have a great Sunday...and stay cool.

Note! On July 27 2010 I changed the PLAYLIST mentioned in this blog entry. To hear the PLAYLIST that includes Buckingham Nicks click here.

Looking Back After posting this entry a few hours ago, memories of the first time I heard Buckingham Nicks danced raucously in my head. It was a time long ago, in a land, far, far, away, that being the Kingdom of Breckenridge, Colorado, where I first heard the record, courtesy of some old friends. Those were great times, involving some wonderful people....but it also brought up a memory of a very scary incident in my life that I have all but blocked out.

Because while in those mountains I came face to face with three animals that would a short time later maul a child to death.

After getting out of the Air Force I made my way to Breckenridge in early 1976, and settled in with an old buddy in in condo we could barely afford across from Peak 9, overlooking the town. My friend worked for a doctor, I worked at the ski area, doing a bit of everything; I shoveled snow, worked the lift, did kitchen prep, tended bar, flipped burgers, washed dishes....but the most important thing was I got to ski for free. I made friends with a lady named Joni; she worked in the kitchen of the Peak 8 restaurant Joni's hubby Dan was the "Propane Guy"; he drove the truck and delivered fuel to the residents and renters. I would visit Dan and Joni and share music, bringing over Springsteen and Neil Young; they would offer fantastic four alarm chili, Coors, and various herbs to enhance the experience. It was a pretty good trade. Since I didn't have a car I would ride to work with Dan and Joni in the AM, and either hike a couple of miles home after work or hitch hike (hey, it WAS the Seventies).

One of the albums they had was Buckingham Nicks; they were fans from before they joined Fleetwood Mac. As for me, I was a Mac fan from the era of Kiln House; later in the Air Force I started to listen to all of the late 1960's Mac with Peter Green and Jeremy Spencer. But Dan and Joni were not Mac fans- in fact, they were puzzled as to why Stevie and Lindsey would ever want to join the Mac, who were perceived to be just another Seventies revolving door band.

Mind you, this was the winter of 1976-77, almost two years after Buckingham and Nicks joined Fleetwood Mac and released the white Fleetwood Mac, album, and months before they would become rock icons with the release of Rumours. Looking back on it now, it seems even further in the past than it was, and even more unlikely that a group that had been on the cusp of disbanding at least three times in the previous five years would become cultural immortals with what would become (at that time) the greatest selling record in history.

So...I initially posted this entry, and I thought of those days, and Dan and Joni, and Breckenridge. And then I recalled an incident that same year that might have been the most terrifying day of my life.

I couldn't get a ride home from work, so I cut through the woods, up the side of the mountain, more than 10,000 feet above sea level to get back to the condo. On most days I would only see squirrels, crows, and an occasional mule deer. But this day was different.....I met Satan.

Satan was the name of a German Shepherd- St Bernard mix that I had heard of; he belonged to one of the locals in Breckenridge, and he had the reputation as a biter.....I had never seen him until this day. But a few hundred yards from getting to my condo Satan met me on the trail, with two other smaller dogs- I have no recollection what kind of dogs the other two were, only of Satan. They were clearly the followers, and Satan was the Alpha dog....he truly seemed like a Hound From Hell, the curse of the Baskervilles transported to the Colorado high country.

Satan was black, had longish hair, and a stare and a growl that induce shivers all these years later. He must have weighed in excess of one hundred pounds; I noticed he was not frothing at the mouth and didn't appear to be rabid; but he just growled as he blocked the path, just daring me to approach him. The other two dogs joined in on growling. I didn't dare bend down to pick up a stick or rock; they would have sensed my fear and attacked. And had I retreated down the hill, the dogs might have attacked me as prey.

So I decided to advance, but to get off of the trail and find an alternate way up the mountain. I went forward, never looking at the dogs....all three stayed behind me, sometimes nipping at my pants leg, but not biting. I could feel them brushing and drooling on my leg, just adding to my quiet terror.This was CUJO before Stephen King wrote the book, and this time he had accomplices. I heard nothing but barks, snarls, and growls for minutes that seemed like hours....but I just put one foot in front of the other and never looked back.

(Note....I just referred to myself as "he" and not "I" in the previous paragraph before making corrections. Thirty-three years later and the incident seems surreal, and its like I'm remembering this for the first time in many years. I managed to block most of these details out until this morning. The story gets worse).

But I kept walking up the mountain; I was afraid that I was going to trip and get mauled by these crazed dogs....and I could not show that fear. I'm not the most heroic guy on the planet, but I managed to pull it off. After awhile the three dogs went away, and I made it back to the condo....and I needed a couple of shots of OLD GRAND DAD to settle down again.....doubles.

Satan had no resemblance whatsoever to a "pet". How he became that vicious and menacing, I'll never know; there are few "bad dogs", but a heck of a lot of bad owners. What is clear that when he was turned loose to roam with the two other dogs they started to revert to feral- I'd heard of it happening but have never been in the middle of it as an eye witness.

And there is a sad epilogue to the story; Satan and the two other dogs did kill. A few weeks later a little girl was mauled to death by the three of them. Other than the following release from The National Canine Research Council I can find no other information online; the little girl would have been a grown woman approaching age 40 now. So sad.

In 1977, three loose roaming dogs killed a girl in Breckenridge. The owners and caretakers were charged with criminally negligent homicide for the reckless management of their dogs.

I guess the most chilling aspect of this little story is....as I pass more and more milestones .....that my life could have very well ended that day. Instead, the soon to be killer dogs went for easier prey, a small girl who's name I don't remember on a late winter's day in 1977.

Yes.....a little bit of "stream of consciousness" on a hot summer afternoon in July, 2010.

Remembering some old friends, and a day in which I lived a nightmare.

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