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Classic album wraps breakups in impeccable pop-rock.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

While some songs have a bitter anger against people behaving badly ("Gold Dust Woman," "The Chain," "Dreams") others reflect ex-lovers trying to be positive and civil ("Go Your Own Way)" or lighthearted about the situation ("Never Going Back Again").  "Don't Stop" expresses the hope than things will get better after the current crisis, and songs like "You Make Loving Fun" and "Oh Daddy" celebrate the more positive aspects of relationships.

Positive role models

Stevie Nicks' songs in particular show considerable self-respect in the face of romantic dissolution, while Christine McVie's "Don't Stop" encourages looking at the better times that may come from present troubles.

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In "Secondhand News," the singer invites the straying lover to "lay me down in the tall grass and let me do my stuff."

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Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Stevie Nicks' "Gold Dust Woman" may be alluding to drugs in "take your silver spoon and dig your grave."

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that 1977's Rumours, which followed Fleetwood Mac's self-titled hit 1975 album, is famous for chronicling the troubled breakups of the band's two couples (John and Christine McVie, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham). A masterpiece of well-crafted, accessible pop-rock (including the classics "Go Your Own Way," "The Chain," and "Don't Stop"), the album is filled with fraught lyrics that explore the depths of betrayal, loss, and hope for a better tomorrow. While there's one sexual reference ("Won't you lay me down in the tall grass and let me do my stuff"), and the album's emotional turbulence reflects adult relationship issues, its songs are instantly appealing and memorable.

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What's the story?

In the wake of their self-titled 1975 album, Fleetwood Mac (John and Christine McVie, Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks, and Lindsey Buckingham) became superstars. The relationships of the band members suffered as a result, with both the McVies and Nicks/Buckingham publicly breaking up in the process of recording the album that became RUMOURS. The album, which reflects the best of late-'70s music in the Los Angeles music scene, features songs of love, anguish, betrayal, and getting over it, all set in catchy, impeccably played and produced pop rock.

Is it any good?


Album of the Year for 1977 at the Grammy Awards, Rumours remains one of the best-selling albums of all time and still spent time at No.1 on the Billboard 200 in 2012 -- and for good reason. The band's personal turmoil translated into some of the most heartfelt, catchy, impeccably produced pop-rock tunes ever. Its songs are radio mainstays; and one of them, "Don't Stop," gained new life when Bill Clinton adopted it for his 1992 presidential campaign. All in all, there's not a bad moment on the record, and the songs remain fresh and compelling decades later.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why this album continues to be so popular decades after its release. The quality of the music? The lyrics that resonate with everyone's romantic disasters?

  • Why do you think a politician would use a breakup song like "Don't Stop" for a campaign theme song?

  • Can you think of any other great albums or art that grew out of the grief and misery of the artists?

Music details

Artist:Fleetwood Mac
Release date:February 4, 1977
Label:Warner Bros.
Parental advisory:No
Edited version available:No

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