Danny Kirwan – Misty River

Danny Kirwan began performing live with Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac in 1968 and made his first album appearance on their 1969 release Then Play On. According to Peter Green, Kirwan “was so into it that he cried when he played,” which is awesome. He would perform and record with the band until 1972 when, before a concert he and relative newcomer Bob Welch (who had joined a year earlier) fought over guitar tuning and Kirwan refused to perform. He was promptly fired from the band. According to Mick Fleetwood, he looked at is as “putting him out of his agony,” though it’s likely Kirwan didn’t look at it that way. His sound shifted after his departure from Fleetwood Mac away from blues guitar towards softer, AM pop sounds. Though he recorded three solo records, Second Chapter, Midnight in San Juan (which features Misty River), and Hello There Big Boy! he essentially refused to perform in support of them. He didn’t record or perform again according to most accounts, and allegedly was homeless for spells throughout the 1980s and 90s. There have been talks over the years about reuniting the early Fleetwood Mac lineup with Green and slide guitarist Jeremy Spencer, but nothing has come of them and bassist John McVie thinks it unlikely Kirwan will ever participate. I guess joining the greatest band of all time (and they are, by the way) when you’re 18 is a bit of a double-edged sword.

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