Ironically, Mac never really needed Nicks in the first place. Minus Welch, the band still included bassist and second co-namesake John McVie and his keyboardist/singer/songwriter wife Christine. Why add another ‘girl singer’, or another anyone, for that matter, to the fold who could not even offer instrumental augmentation? Buckingham answered the why by stating that he and Nicks were an inseparable unit. Starting out with a need to prove herself was probably the catalyst that drove Nicks to shape herself into such a compelling singer/songwriter and performance artist.
“Lindsey and I weren’t just a boyfriend and girlfriend that played music together, we were a duet.” As Nicks remembered, “[The band] was smart enough to realize that Lindsey wasn’t going to leave me to join their band. So the band simply said, ‘[We] guess we can work with two girls then’ and they just accepted it.”
She never really thought that the chain of Fleetwood Mac would be broken; the final decision to leave was prompted, at least in part, by the prior departure of former partner Buckingham. Though it has since proved to be liberating for her personal and artistic schedules, Nicks admits that “Lindsey and I joined Fleetwood Mac as a set, and breaking up that set, to me, wasn’t the best idea for Fleetwood Mac. Unless it was going to be the original five again, there really was no reason for me to ever go back.”