Buckingham says he's happy to be back with the old firm. Time has healed old wounds and he claims he's better friends with Nicks than at any time in the past. That's a remarkable turnaround, considering the former lovers didn't speak for much of the '90s and in 1994 Nicks told Rolling Stone "I just bug him to death."

Buckingham says his life is very different nowadays. In 2000 he married his girlfriend, Kristen Messner, and the couple have a five-year-old son and a three-year-old daughter. Another baby is due in April. Buckingham has even torn down his bachelor pad in the plush LA suburb of Bel-Air and built a more family-friendly house. "[Family] puts me in a whole other thing," says Buckingham. "I have my own world, which isn't always Stevie's world."

Once in a while, Buckingham allows himself to ponder how his life might have turned out had he not joined Fleetwood Mac. He says he and Nicks were almost penniless when a chance meeting with Mick Fleetwood in a Los Angeles recording studio put them on the road to a world of packed stadiums and private jets.

"You know, he asked me to join the group first," says Buckingham. "He didn't ask Stevie. But I said, 'We're kind of a package deal.' I like to remind Stevie of that now and then."

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