Before the quintet’s ’97 reunion, “we had dinner at [singer] Christine McVie’s house. Everyone literally stood around me in a circle, as if it was an intervention, saying, ‘We’ve got to do this!’ But these are people that I love—I don’t take it lightly.”

The handsome, late-summer mistiness of Skin is a far cry from Fleetwood Mac’s rote reunion material, and Buckingham doesn’t hesitate to say which lies closer to his heart. But he also credits his return to the group with allowing him to grasp his past and arrive at his current work. “It took a long time for me to get over many things,” Buckingham says. “I think it took a long time for me to get over Stevie. It took time for me to come to terms with this huge success we had, which in my mind didn’t seem connected to anything that we were doing. But I’m a family member now and can be friends with the band in a way that I never was before. I’ve come to a point where I’m refining my craft—it doesn’t feel like I’m marking time or sliding down. It feels like an ongoing process of growth.”

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