Fleetwood Mac's 50 Greatest Songs

From British blues to California rock, from smooth sunshine to the most haunting breakup epics ever

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36. "Sentimental Lady"

In 1971, L.A. singer-guitarist Bob Welch was playing with a band in Paris when he was recommended to Fleetwood Mac by a secretary for their management. "I said, 'I'll be there in two seconds,'" he recalled later. "'Could you send me plane fare?' I knew I was being scrutinized not so much for my musical talents but for my psychological soundness." Welch joined a group moving past its blues origins. The highlight of his time with Fleetwood Mac, "Sentimental Lady," was a tender ode to his wife, Nancy, with a mellow California feel that was new to Fleetwood Mac. After Welch left the band, a somewhat slicker version of the song (recorded with Buckingham, Christine and Fleetwood) became a solo hit for him. It remains a beloved soft-rock chestnut. "I had many great times with him after Lindsey and I joined Fleetwood Mac," Nicks said when Welch died in 2012. "He was an amazing guitar player. He was funny, sweet – and he was smart." As Fleetwood put it, "If you look into our musical history, you'll see a huge period that was completely ensconced in Bob's work."

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