I recently introduced, and interviewed live on stage, Jenny Boyd (twice married to Mick Fleetwood plus sister-in-law of George Harrison and then Eric Clapton) at the Wimborne Literary Festival. She was telling me how amazing the days in the video above were. Yeah, I remember the original Fleetwood Mac well. I saw them several times and loved that particular line-up before things got complicated. Jenny has the inside story.
From burgeoning blues band through the acid madness that drove Peter Green into the abyss, Jeremy Spencer into the arms of a religioius cult and Danny Kirwan into the gutter, Fleetwood Mac were an extraordinary rags to riches story. At the point when it seemed there was no future the eponymous rhythm section, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie, drafted in Californian duo Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks together with McVie’s wife Christine - formerly Chicken Shack’s blues keyboards and vocal supremo Christine Perfect - they morphed, apparently seamlessly, into multi-millionaire AOR stadium rockers. There, amid a world driven by millions of dollars, they lived in Malibu-style mansions and struggled to survive non-stop cocaine-fuelled tours and multiple affairs. There are so many stories to tell. The insanity of Fleetwood Mac’s second incarnation as Anglo-American West Coast soft-rock stadium-monkeys was so far removed from their humble beginnings as earnest young but virtualy penniless musicians hustling a crust on the British Blues Circuit. Back in the sixties I met Christine Perfect - somewhere between Chicken Shack and Fleetwood Mac - out on the road with her own band. She was collecting old newspapers to pack round her legs in an attempt to keep warm as the band rattled back up the M1 in their battered and unheated Comma van. But that as they say is another story.
Jenny Boyd was there in the early days of Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac, lived on the road with them when they were a supergroup and amazingly has survived relatively unscathed. What a life - she travelled to India with The Beatles to meditate with the Maharishi, was muse to Donovan who wrote Jennifer Juniper for her and shared a flat with Magic Alex, The Beatles rather dubious psychedelic electronics guru.
Jenny who is pictured on the right in the above picture is now a fully qualified doctor and perhaps not surprisingly, given the number of creative and sometimes troubled beings she has encountered over the years, an expert in psychology. She’s also written a book - It’s Not Only Rock ’n’ Roll - developed from her original PhD thesis that explores the nature of the creative mind. The book of course was the reason she was a guest at the Wimborne Lit Fest or WiLF as it is affectionately known.
*Just for the record the left to right in the above photograph of The Beatles and the wives and girlfriends in India is Jane Asher, Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Cynthia Lennon, the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Patti Boyd, George harrison, Ringo Starr and Jenny Boyd,