Lindsey Buckingham

A scheduling conflict led to Lindsey Buckingham’s Fleetwood Mac exit, according to bandmate Stevie Nicks.

The band has replaced the guitarist with Crowded House star Neil Finn and Mike Campbell from the late Tom Petty’s backing band The Heartbreakers for an upcoming tour, and now Nicks reveals her former lover left the band when he couldn’t accommodate the group’s live plans.

“We were supposed to go into rehearsal in June and he wanted to put it off until November, 2019,” she tells Rolling Stone. “That’s a long time. I just did 70 shows (on a solo tour). As soon as I finish one thing, I dive back into another. Why would we stop? We don’t want to stop playing music. We don’t have anything else to do. This is what we do.”

Drummer Mick Fleetwood insists he and his bandmates had no choice but to let Lindsey go: “We arrived at the impasse of hitting a brick wall. This was not a happy situation for us in terms of the logistics of a functioning band. To that purpose, we made a decision that we could not go on with him.

“Majority rules in terms of what we need to do as a band and go forward.”

Fleetwood, Nicks, and John and Christine McVie, who released a duets album with Buckingham last year (17), will hit the road with their new recruits for a 52-date North American tour, beginning on 3 October (18) in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Meanwhile, Campbell reveals he got the call to join the band while he was celebrating his 68th birthday at his home on the Hawaiian island of Kauai: “I was sitting in my yard by my pool contemplating my future without my partner (Tom Petty), which was going to be a dark place in a lot of ways.

“I said, ‘Give me a day to think it over’. The more I thought about it, the more I thought it could be great. I’ve known Stevie for years and we’ve always been very creative together.”

And then Fleetwood called Finn, who tells Rolling Stone, “I was stunned when I got the call from Mick. I was enjoying my life and my music, but I have a restless nature and now I’m relishing this beautiful gift that’s been given to me.”