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Thursday, October 2, 2014

READ THIS: Making Rumors The Inside Story of the Classic Fleetwood Mac Album by Grammy-Winner Ken Caillat Our Coverage Sponsored by Stribling and Associates

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Odds are you probably are not likely to win a Grammy in this lifetime: few people do.
Don't you want to know what it's like?
You may have heard a group called Fleetwood Mac just reunited and is on tour, and tonight they're in the city of Joel Quenneville and Kevin Dineen...
And, of course, it's not who you know, it's Whom You Know, and we know Ken Caillat (click his name! follow him! his daughter Colbie too she wrote the Foreword!) through the magic of Twitter!  You may have noticed we love Twitter.  Thank you for following us back Ken, even before we asked to do a book review of your work where you pay homage where it is due and refer to yourself modestly with class.  He shows appreciation and respect for Wally, his mentor which we liked as well, and Ken has integrity, wanting to keep his word on the deal he made with Wally (p. 199).  Ken happens to be the producing/engineering brains behind one of the best albums of all time, Rumors by Fleetwood Mac.  Of anything we do, we are most interested in the brains behind it all.  We were super psyched to review this since not only does it chronicle some of the most amazing music in existence, but also it is told by an insider who produced it.  We are all about getting the inside story, and it doesn't get more inside than this.  To truly enjoy your ticket to the current Fleetwood Mac party, you need to read Making Rumors first.

In case you ever want to win a Grammy, you might see this as a mentoring tale.  If you are fascinated by Grammys and want to know what it takes as an artist, you will learn from this as well.  If you are absolutely curious about how the elite in the music field really make it to the top, this will entertain you.  It is smart, it is insightful and it is one of the most wild rides you can take between two book covers!  Ken is most qualified to pen this tale because it sounds like he was the most stable person among them, and was the one that put it all together literally from a technical standpoint.  There is no Grammy winner without a great engineer behind that and we thank The Recording Academy for teaching us that this summer.  That means just like a photographer can get you from a better angle, or like a certain hue might flatter you more, Ken and other engineers and producers can make you sound better by technically altering the sound.

How did Ken get Fleetwood Mac to work with him?  Well through Wally, he worked with Paul McCartney, Joni Mitchell and Crosby Stills and Nash.  Like other great things, Making Rumors began in January 1976.

"In January 1976, Fleetwood Mac's personal catharis, brilliant artistry, and technical innovation all came together to create Rumors at the Record Plant studio in Sausalito, California...Rumors sat at number one on the charts for thirty-one weeks and, as of this writing, has sold more than forty million copies." (we quote from the Preface).
If you are too young to remember back to this month and this era, it was way before itunes and the internet, and making an album was entirely different.  The time travel alone (cutting reels?) makes this book interesting, and the album got its name from media gossip.  But don't think it's all better today-back then they had plenty of time and money to make an album properly.

You might think Ken might be the right man for the job to chronicle this tale given that he was the producer, but also you should know is he one stellar writer.  This is NOT someone droning on about their glory days: it is a book not to be ignored, particularly by the young now so they can see the work ethic involved.

"Successful musicians are not normal.  Your average person doesn't have the kind of single-minded, relentless determination it takes to spend three hundred days a year playing dive bars and half-empty clubs in pursuit of some elusive, vaguely defined dream of stardom." (p. 62)

You will not want to put down Making Rumors: you will be constantly entertained by the writing STYLE and WORD CHOICE as well as the vivid characters themselves.  "When [Wally] got excited, the words came out faster than his tongue could process them, like Lucy and Ethel trying to sort out chocolates." (p.9)

You'll learn:
"Recording music is largely about the technical manipulation of sound, but it's also about the performance.  No amount of studio wizardry can compensate for a lackluster tale by the artist.  The proof will always be in the pudding.  When the producer and the performance combine, it's an absolute thrill: like bottling fire.  If you've ever seen a great band live, then you know what I mean." (p. 84)

Ken lets us in on secrets like no one in the band could read or write music.  They did it the hard way, by memory.  "Stevie's obsession was her words...For Christine, it was her piano...Christine and I always got along very well, but she never withheld an opinion...beneath his madcap persona, the most methodically and meticulously fanatical member of the group was undoubtedly its leader: Mick Fleetwood." (p. 63)  Stevie learned to sing honky tonk 

 in a bar

 on the lap of her grandfather who sang in that style.

This is much more than a tale of music.  This has great pictures and our favorite might be Ken housesitting for Christine. (p. 207) A good story about a dog and a water hose will have you howling with laughter.  We enjoyed meeting Scooter, the brown-and-white beagle mix, who certainly brings a dose of everyday life and escape from the craziness to the tale and we would agree he's also bright from what we learn in Making Rumors.  We're impressed Ken still has the layout he put together for Studio A.

A final note: our music column is tiny and was even tinier before we met The Recording Academy, which is mainly what that column is now.  This is not because we don't like music, it's because picky Peachy thinks music comes in about three flavors and we don't project this on you: U2, Frank Sinatra (we can't meet him now but we do eat like him thank you Sal) and Rod Stewart (we were super psyched to review Rarities, and also Rod's book.) She has been known to listen to Bono on repeat for months on end, and she really only listens to about fifteen or twenty artists at all.  Fleetwood Mac is one of them and has been for many years, long before she ever had a Twitter account.  

Ken Caillat sought after a career that would lift people up, something positive.  So he chose a career in music.  Good thing!  We all are better for it.
Making Rumors by Ken Caillat has earned Whom You Know's Highest Recommendation!

The Rumors Facebook page says:

Making Rumours tells the story of that year of creating this album: the infighting, pain, spectacle and excess of a star-crossed, storm-tossed band, and how all that tumult and tragedy was distilled into the grooves of one of the greatest rock-and-roll albums of all time. 
Rumours got its name from the incessant media gossip that surrounded its making, but all the gossip — past and present — has been just that: gossip. Outsiders have tried and failed to tell this story, but a true insider is telling it now for the first time. My name is Ken Caillat, and I am the album’s Grammy-winning producer. In the book, Making Rumours, I chronicle the creation of the record, giving a behind-the-scenes account of the people who experienced it: the band members and producers; their lovers and friends; their roadies and security guards; the record execs and lawyers; and everyone else who was lucky enough to be along for the ride as we made the album.

Fleetwood Mac's classic 1977 Rumours album topped the Billboard 200 for thirty-one weeks and won the Album of the Year Grammy. More recently, Rolling Stone named it the twenty-fifth greatest album of all time and the hit TV series Glee devoted an entire episode to songs from Rumours, introducing it to a new generation. Now, for the first time, Ken Caillat, the album's co-producer, tells the full story of what really went into making Rumours—from the endless partying and relationship dramas to the creative struggles to write and record "You Make Loving Fun," "Don't Stop," "Go Your Own Way," "The Chain," and other timeless tracks.Tells the fascinating, behind-the-music story of the making of Fleetwood Mac's Rumours, written by the producer who saw it all happen.

Hardcover 400 pages

ISBN: 978-1-1182-1808-2

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