A day after his former Fleetwood Mac band mate Christine McVie died at 79, Lindsey Buckingham says he will miss his “soul mate” and “musical comrade.”
“Christine McVie’s sudden passing is profoundly heartbreaking,” Buckingham wrote in a handwritten note shared on his Instagram Thursday. “Not only were she and I part of the magical family of Fleetwood Mac, to me Christine was a musical comrade, a friend, a soul mate, a sister. For over four decades, we helped each other create a beautiful body of work and a lasting legacy that continues to resonate today.”
McVie, a British vocalist and keyboardist, died Wednesday after experiencing “a short illness,” her family announced.
Buckingham, 73, was Fleetwood Mac’s lead guitarist and one of its main vocalists and songwriters before he was fired in a high-profile controversy in 2018. Beginning in 1975, he was a core member of the group, alongside McVie, Stevie Nicks, drummer Mick Fleetwood and bassist John McVie, to whom Christine was once married.
After a 16-year break in which she lived a solitary life in rural England, Christine McVie rejoined Fleetwood Mac for a reunion tour in 2014 and had performed with the band in recent years.
McVie and Buckingham teamed up in Los Angeles to record an album, 2017’s “Lindsey Buckingham Christine McVie.”
Although the two had written songs together as members of Fleetwood Mac, they had never produced tracks as a duo.
“We’ve always written well together, Lindsey and I, and this has just spiraled into something really amazing that we’ve done between us,” McVie told The Times in 2017 during an interview at the Village Studio’s Studio D in West Los Angeles.
“All these years we’ve had this rapport, but we’d never really thought about doing a duet album before,” Buckingham added. “There is that album that I did with Stevie back before we joined the band, but other than that, it’s all been Fleetwood Mac or solo.”
On the day of McVie’s death, other band mates had written tributes, including notes from Nicks and Mick Fleetwood.
“This is a day where my deer sweet Friend Christine McVie has taken to flight… and left us earthbound folks to listen with bated breath to the sounds of that ‘song bird’ … reminding one and all that love is all around us to reach for and touch in this precious life that is gifted to us,” Fleetwood wrote on Instagram. “Part of my heart has flown away today. I will miss everything about you Christine McVie. Memories abound.. they fly to me.”
In a handwritten letter shared on social media, Nicks revealed that she did not know McVie was sick “until late Saturday night.” Nicks then attempted to travel to London to see McVie, but was “told to wait.”
“A few hours ago I was told that my best friend in the whole world since the first day of 1975, had passed away,” Nicks wrote. Her message concluded with lyrics from the Haim song “Hallelujah.”
Buckingham followed a day later with his own note.
“I feel very lucky to have known her,” he wrote. “Though she will be deeply missed, her spirit will live on through that body of work and that legacy.”