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Lindsey Buckingham: Fleetwood Mac‘s Innovative Guitar Icon

Full Name Lindsey Adams Buckingham
Birthday October 3, 1949
Relationship Status Single
Height 5′ 10′′
Net Worth $100 million
Social Media Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube

American musician and record producer Lindsey Buckingham is best known for being in Fleetwood Mac from 1975-1987 & 1997-2018. With his fingerstyle guitar playing and knack for infectious pop songwriting, Buckingham helped make Fleetwood Mac one of the biggest bands in rock history. Over his five decade career, he has continually pushed musical boundaries and influenced countless guitar players.

Early Life and Musical Origins

Born in Palo Alto in 1949, Lindsey Buckingham first became fascinated with music after receiving a toy Mickey Mouse guitar as a child. He begged his parents for a real guitar and by age 13 was practicing up to eight hours a day, learning to play by copying records from The Beach Boys, Elvis and more.

As a teenager, Buckingham mastered intricate fingerpicking techniques – inspired by guitarists like Chet Atkins – that would become his signature style. He began experimenting with unique guitar tunings on songs he wrote with his first bands. After briefly attending college, Buckingham decided to pursue music full-time.

Joining Fleetwood Mac and Rise to Superstardom

In 1974, Buckingham and his girlfriend Stevie Nicks recorded demos, bringing them to the attention of British blues band Fleetwood Mac. Joining the group, Buckingham insisted they move away from blues into a more pop-oriented sound. On 1977‘s Rumours, Fleetwood Mac struck gold; Buckingham‘s ingenious guitar work and songwriting talents were key.

On hits like "Go Your Own Way," Buckingham pioneered a distinctive fingerpicking approach combined with a rock energy. His inventive playing – using altered tunings and advanced two-handed tapping – gave Fleetwood Mac a unique new sound. Aside from guitar skills, Buckingham wrote and produced some of Fleetwood Mac‘s biggest hits. His talents fueled their rise to become one of the most successful bands ever.

Prolific Solo Work and Productions

Even while in Fleetwood Mac, Buckingham pursued DIY solo projects allowing him to push boundaries. Starting with 1981‘s Law and Order, his solo work revealed his tireless creative spirit and studio innovations. As a producer, Buckingham helmed acclaimed records for Stevie Nicks, The Go-Go‘s, and more – displaying his ear for pop perfection.

Inter-band tensions led Buckingham to leave Fleetwood Mac in 1987. But his time away yielded inventive solo LPs like Out of the Cradle. By the late ‘90s, Buckingham returned to Fleetwood Mac for tours and even fresh music, though creative differences remained.

Legacy as a Guitar Innovator and Songwriting Genius

Still touring and recording new music in his 70s, Lindsey Buckingham‘s artistry and work ethic are incredibly impressive. Many guitar legends regard him as an icon. Blues legend Buddy Guy called Buckingham "amazing – one of the truly great guitarists." The Edge said, "He‘s shaped the way I play guitar…a huge influence."

Beyond iconic bands like Fleetwood Mac, Buckingham‘s solo catalog reveals his songwriting brilliance. Over his career, he has earned honors like a Rock Hall induction and multiple Grammys. But above awards, Lindsey Buckingham‘s legacy lies in crafting timeless songs and redefining pop guitar playing for generations.

Why We Love Lindsey Buckingham

He‘s a Guitar Hero with A Unique Sound

Lindsey Buckingham‘s fingerstyle playing and unprecedented techniques created a remarkably original guitar sound. Songs like "Big Love" highlight his unconventional genius.

He Writes Infectious Pop Songs

A brilliant pop songwriter, Buckingham penned earworm classics like "Go Your Own Way," "Second Hand News" and so many more. Even his deeper album cuts are melodically irresistible.

He Continually Evolves as An Artist

Across his solo work, Buckingham constantly experiments with guitar tunings, textures and songwriting perspective. He also digs into deeper personal themes in his lyrics over time. Well into his 70s, his creativity never ceases.

5 Fun Lindsey Buckingham Facts

1. He taught himself how to play guitar as a teenager

Buckingham is completely self-taught, learning by carefully studying music by The Beach Boys, Elvis Presley and more.

2. He briefly attended college at San Jose State

Buckingham studied for a short time to avoid being drafted for the Vietnam War before dropping out to pursue music.

3. He has a trademark fingerpicking style

Using his fingers and thumbs vs. a pick gives Buckingham distinctive warm, complex guitar tones.

4. He has a multi-octave vocal range

Buckingham‘s angelic falsetto singing complements his intricate guitar work.

5. He alone recorded the demo for "Go Your Own Way"

Playing all instruments himself, Buckingham‘s demo convinced the band the song would be a hit.

Lindsey Buckingham FAQs

What guitars does Buckingham play?

He has used various Gibson and Fender guitars over his career, often favoring Stratocasters and Rick Turner Renaissance models.

How did Stevie Nicks and Lindsey meet?

They met during high school in the late 1960s. Buckingham asked to join Nicks‘ band Fritz and they eventually became romantic partners.

Why did Buckingham leave Fleetwood Mac?

Creative disagreements and intra-band tensions led him to depart Fleetwood Mac from 1987-1996 before ultimately reuniting.

What was Buckingham‘s biggest solo hit?

His single "Trouble" reached #9 on the charts in 1981 and received heavy rotation on MTV.

What guitarists did Buckingham influence?

Artists like The Edge, John Mayer, Oasis‘ Noel Gallagher, and many more cite him as an inspiration.

After over 50 years making music, Lindsey Buckingham‘s artistic vision remains as compelling as ever. His recent solo work proves his talents continue to evolve and inspire new generations. For any music fan, delving into Buckingham‘s catalog is a richly rewarding journey.