Sunday, January 25, 2009

Fleetwood Mac Drummer - Mick Fleetwood

The Original Fleetwood Mac album coverImage via Wikipedia

Famous Drummer - Mick Fleetwood by Drew Mers

Mick Fleetwood is one of the musicians with a tumultuous life that many think of when they think of rock in the seventies and eighties. Out of a chaotic life though, came the drummer for one of the most influential bands around who added lots of passion and strength to his creativity in the bargain.

Mick Fleetwood was one of the founding members of the band and also stuck with it the longest, through periods of rising and ebbing fame, losses of band members, and changing music trends. His devotion to the band made others think that he was married to the band, not to the women he married over the course of his life, and such dedication put a strain on his relationships with other people. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998.

Mick Fleetwood was born in 1947 in England. His family moved around a lot because of his fathers involvement in the Royal Air Force. He attended several boarding schools, but he was never very good at schoolwork, preferring drumming instead. He was a self-taught musician, encouraged by his father who bought him a drum kit at the age of thirteen.

He was also involved in theatre and fencing, but his lack of interest in academia drove him to move out of his parents home at the age of fifteen and move in with his sister. It was there that he first attracted the attention of a band, the Senders and then The Cheynes which allowed him to do club gigs.

From there, there was no looking back for Mick. He met three founding members of Fleetwood Mac while working briefly for another band and the four of them immediately hit it off and formed their own band, with the leader wanting no-one but Mick on the drums. Over the life of the band, he was the only one who did not come and go; he was dedicated to his music and this dedication spilled over into a number of failed marriages.

He was also there as the band rose and fell in fame, became the leader of the band, in the sense that he was the one looking for and choosing members to replace those who left, and tried to manage two solo careers (Bob Welch and Peter Green), though he was less successful at that.

However, Mick's health was not always the best. He was addicted to cocaine for a long period, and still considers himself to be an addict; he drank heavily and was very overweight when he met his last wife who helped him through several of his personal problems. He was diagnosed with diabetes in 1979 and had fought off several bouts of hypoglycemia while on stage. Despite all this, he continues to perform, is planning a family with his current wife Lynn, and enjoys spending time with his grandchildren. Mick Fleetwood may not have had the idyllic life that many try to have when they are famous, but his rough life translated into brilliant drumming and an incredible dedication to his band.

Drew Mers is a consultant to Empire Rehearsal Studios, which rents aspiring bands, musicians and drummers a music studio in Long Island City, Queens, New York.

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