Mystery to Me

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Mystery to Me
Mystery to Me cover.jpg
Studio album by
Released15 October 1973
RecordedSpring-Summer 1973
StudioRolling Stones Mobile Studio at Benifold, Hampshire; mixed at Advision Studios, London
GenreRock, soft rock
Length47:49
LabelReprise
ProducerFleetwood Mac & Martin Birch
Fleetwood Mac chronology
Penguin
(1973)
Mystery to Me
(1973)
Heroes Are Hard to Find
(1974)
Singles from Mystery to Me
  1. "Hypnotized"
    Released: 15 October 1973
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic3/5 stars[1]
CreemB+[3]
Rolling Stone(negative)[2]
The Daily VaultA[4]

Mystery to Me is the eighth studio album by British-American rock band Fleetwood Mac, released on 15 October 1973. This was their last album to feature Bob Weston. Most of the songs were penned by guitarist/singer Bob Welch and keyboardist/singer Christine McVie, who were instrumental in gearing the band toward the radio-friendly pop rock that would make them successful a few years later. Although Mystery to Me sold moderately and produced no hit singles, "Hypnotized" became an American FM radio staple for many years. In the wake of the Buckingham/Nicks-led line-up's success a few years later, the album achieved a RIAA gold certification in the United States in 1976.

Background[edit]

Mystery to Me was Fleetwood Mac's last album recorded in England, the last to have two guitarists in the line-up until Behind the Mask and the last to be co-produced and/or engineered by Martin Birch. As with the preceding Penguin, the group recorded the album at Benifold, their communal house in Hampshire, with the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio. Dave Walker was asked to leave during the sessions and did not feature in any capacity on the final release.

The album's namesake comes from a line in the chorus of "Emerald Eyes". "Hypnotized" was a minor US radio hit, often getting more airplay on AOR stations than "For Your Love", the single for which it featured as the B-side. "Forever" is one of only two Fleetwood Mac tracks to feature Bob Weston as a composer and one of only a small handful to feature John McVie in this capacity. "Keep On Going" was written by Bob Welch, but sung by Christine McVie because Welch decided her voice was better suited to the song than his. This was one of very few occasions when a member of Fleetwood Mac composed a song which was sung by another member.

"For Your Love" was originally recorded by The Yardbirds, and Fleetwood Mac's cover version replaced a Bob Welch song "Good Things (Come to Those Who Wait)" on the album at a very late stage in production. Some albums came with a lyric inner sheet still showing "Good Things" instead of "For Your Love". The song was also released as a single. Although Fleetwood Mac's version of "Good Things" has never been released, it was later re-recorded by Welch with different lyrics and released as "Don't Wait Too Long" on his solo album Three Hearts. At the time of the album's release For Your Love's composer Graham Gouldman was enjoying success as a member of 10cc.

Select tunes have been included in subsequent tours. Both "Why" and "Hypnotized" were played on the band's eponymous tour in 1975.[5] "Just Crazy Love" was performed by Christine McVie on her solo tour in 1984. Early shows of the 2018-19 An Evening with Fleetwood Mac tour also featured "Hypnotized".[6]

Bob Welch would rerecord five of his contributions to the album - "Emerald Eyes", "Hypnotized" and "Miles Away" for His Fleetwood Mac Years & Beyond in 2003 and "The City" and "Somebody" for its follow-up volume in 2006 although the latter only featured on the digital edition.

Tour[edit]

During the band's 1973 American tour, they appeared on the Midnight Special, but during the venture, it became clear that Bob Weston was having an affair with Mick Fleetwood's wife Jenny. Although Fleetwood tried to carry on playing with Weston, regardless of the extramarital issues, it soon became clear that something had to give and after a gig in Lincoln, Nebraska, Fleetwood told the McVies and Welch that he could no longer play with Weston in the line-up. John Courage, the band's road manager, fired Weston and put him on a plane back to the UK. With the tour cut short, the band also went back to England to break the news to their manager Clifford Davis, who was so angry that he sent another group of musicians on the road as Fleetwood Mac, claiming that he owned the name.[7]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
1."Emerald Eyes"Bob WelchWelch3:37
2."Believe Me"Christine McVieC. McVie4:12
3."Just Crazy Love"C. McVieC. McVie3:22
4."Hypnotized"WelchWelch4:48
5."Forever"Bob Weston, John McVie, WelchWelch4:04
6."Keep On Going"WelchC. McVie4:05
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
1."The City"WelchWelch3:35
2."Miles Away"WelchWelch3:47
3."Somebody"WelchWelch5:00
4."The Way I Feel"C. McVieC. McVie2:43
5."For Your Love"Graham GouldmanWelch3:44
6."Why"C. McVieC. McVie4:55

Personnel[edit]

Fleetwood Mac

Additional personnel

Production

  • Fleetwood Mac – production
  • Martin Birch – production, engineer
  • Desmond Majekodunmi – assistant engineer
  • Paul Hardiman – assistant engineer
  • Clive Arrowsmith – photography
  • Modula – cover design, art direction
  • Mixed at Advision Studios, London

Charts[edit]

Chart (1973) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard 200 67
Canadian Albums Chart 82

Certification[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/sales
United States (RIAA)[9] Gold 500,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

References[edit]

  1. ^ Elias, Jason. "Mystery to Me – Fleetwood Mac". Allmusic. Archived from the original on 14 January 2012. Retrieved 25 December 2006.
  2. ^ Fletcher, Gordon (3 January 1974). "Fleetwood Mac Mystery to Me > Album Review". Rolling Stone (151). Archived from the original on 10 March 2009. Retrieved 14 January 2012.
  3. ^ Christgau, Robert (March 1974). "The Christgau Consumer Guide". Creem. Retrieved 14 January 2012 – via robertchristgau.com.
  4. ^ Jones, Curtins (2019). "The Daily Vault Music Reviews : Power Windows". dailyvault.com. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
  5. ^ "TOUR ARCHIVE: 1975-1976 – The Changing Times of Stevie Nicks". Retrieved 20 September 2019.
  6. ^ Cashmere, Paul (6 October 2018). "Fleetwood Mac Setlist From Beginning To Enz". Noise11.com. Retrieved 20 September 2019.
  7. ^ Alterman, Loraine (28 February 1974). "Fleetwood Mac Flak: Manager Takes Name, Not Members, On Tour". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  8. ^ "Bob Welch Q&A Session, November 1999". www.fleetwoodmac.net. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  9. ^ "American album certifications – Fleetwood Mac – Mystery To Me". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 19 May 2012. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH.