At 79 she had lived a long life. How much more can any of us squeeze out of it or heights can we scale once we reach those age peaks? Would we even want to? Woodie Allen once quipped that we could all live to be 100 if we gave up everything that would make it worthwhile living to be 100. Life is to be enjoyed not endured and some of the enjoyment I derived from life has come through music. Christine McVie takes a large part of the credit for that.
Described in the New York Times as "the serene eye of the storm in Fleetwood Mac, one of rock history’s most tumultuous and beloved bands," she seemed to have been around forever, having joined the band in 1970 after a two album stint with Chicken Shack where, as Christine Perfect, she really was perfect in her immaculate rendition of I'd Rather Go Blind. Chatting with my childhood friend on Twitter this morning I commented that she was singing that song while we were kids running the streets. His response:
Innocent children football football football and playing with Dets...Kids we were - the smell of damp burnt wood - I put my hand on a pillow soaked in blood - Falls Rd ... 1969 ... how were we to know - all we knew was football and more football.
Which would take us back to August 1969. Even if the music has died that alone is illustrative of how long it lived.
Always one of the less flamboyant performers she revealed in 2017 that she was suffering from acrophobia upon leaving Fleetwood Mac, and had retreated into herself. The writer of You make Loving Fun and Oh Daddy, Fleetwood Mac Classics, she was part of the unforgettable Rumours album team, a body of music that I still listen to as I walk my dog along the Boyne. Perhaps more than any other song from her repertoire she will be remembered for writing Songbird in all of thirty minutes. That took just about as long as it took me to write this. This piece will be forgotten in thirty minutes. Her thirty minutes will endure for decades.
Her bandmate Stevie Nicks would in 2013 reminisce about their partnership and friendship:
We felt like, together, we were a force of nature. And we made a pact, probably in our first rehearsal, that we would never accept being treated as second-class citizens in the music business. That when we walked into a room we would be so fantastic and so strong and so smart that none of the uber-rockstar group of men would look through us. And they never did.
What a talent. That voice might be silent but as a Led Zeppelin song put it The Song Remains The Same.
⏩ Follow on Twitter @AnthonyMcIntyre.