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Fleetwood Mac singer, keyboardist Christine McVie dies at 79

The musician joined Fleetwood Mac in 1970 as the co-lead vocalist and keyboardist.

Fleetwood Mac singer, keyboardist Christine McVie dies at 79. Video / ABC7

Christine McVie, who joined Fleetwood Mac in 1970 as the co-lead vocalist and keyboardist, has died.

The 79-year-old died peacefully in her sleep after a short illness, her family has revealed.

In a statement issued to Instagram, her family said: “On behalf of Christine McVie’s family, it is with a heavy heart we are informing you of Christine’s death.

“She passed away peacefully at hospital this morning, Wednesday November 30, 2022, following a short illness.”

Rest In Peace Christine McVie

— Christine McVie (@christine_mcvie) November 30, 2022

They added that she was surrounded by her family at the time of her death.

“We kindly ask that you respect the family’s privacy at this extremely painful time, and we would like everyone to keep Christine in their hearts and remember the life of an incredible human being and record musician who was loved universally.”

They signed the post off by saying “RIP Christine McVie.”

Christine McVie has passed away at 79 years old. Photo / Getty Images
Christine McVie has passed away at 79 years old. Photo / Getty Images

McVie’s Fleetwood Mac bandmate Stevie Nicks has also released a handwritten statement of her own that she posted to Instagram this morning mourning the loss of her friend of many decades.

“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 writes.

“I didn’t even know she was ill... until late Saturday night. I wanted to be in London; I wanted to get to London - but we were told to wait.”

Nicks said that as she waited, a song swirled around and around in her head - Hallelujah, by the band Haim, about the death of a best friend.

“I thought I might possibly get to sing it to her, and so, I’m singing it to her now.”

Before Nicks released her own statement, Fleetwood Mac also issued a statement where they say she was truly one-of-a-kind, special and talented beyond measure. They say she was the best musician anyone could have in their band, and the best friend anyone could have in their life.

The band says there are no words to describe their sadness, and she will be so very missed.

— Fleetwood Mac (@fleetwoodmac) November 30, 2022

McVie was a steady presence and personality in Fleetwood Mac, a band known for its frequent lineup changes and volatile personalities — notably fellow singer-songwriters Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham.

During its peak commercial years, from 1975-80, the band sold tens of millions of records and was an ongoing source of fascination for fans as it transformed personal battles into melodic, compelling songs. McVie herself had been married to bassist John McVie, and their breakup — along with the split of Nicks and Buckingham — was famously documented on the 1977 release Rumours, among the bestselling albums of all time.

Fleetwood Mac, co-founded by drummer Mick Fleetwood in 1967, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998. The group’s many other hit singles included “Dreams,” “Go Your Own Way” and “Little Lies.”

- Additional reporting by AP

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