Walter Egan - Detroit Free Press (06.09.2000)

It all began in 1976, when the singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist asked Lindsey Buckingham to produce his debut solo album. Buckingham, of course, was guitarist for the legendary Fleetwood Mac and, with singer Stevie Nicks, he formed half of one of the most notorious romances in rock 'n' roll history.

Their split was fresh and bitter, and tensions were still high by the time Egan enlisted both Buckingham and Nicks to work on "Fundamental Roll." In Nicks' own estimation, they were "as compatible as a boa constrictor and a rat."

"The only thing they were doing was bickering," Egan recalls from his home in Franklin, Tenn. "There was no pretense of being together, and there was still some question if they could work together. In fact, they came in to work on different days. I felt in the middle. I was the peacemaker."

But he was also vulnerable to Nicks' prodigious talents and charms, and it didn't take him long to fall for his backup singer.

"I didn't know anything about her but I just felt really drawn to her," Egan recalls. "For two weeks, it was great."

And then Nicks made the comparison that was the kiss of death for the relationship. "She said I reminded her of Lindsey," he says, wincing at the memory. "That was not a good thing. I said, 'Let's back off and finish the record.'"

In retrospect, he realizes he was a rebound romance for Nicks and "I put her on a pedestal and idealized her." It could never have lasted.

Happily - or perhaps amazingly - he remains friends with both Nicks and Buckingham and says that "knowing them certainly has been a highlight of my career." And in 1977, Egan was able to turn his powerful but ill-fated attraction for Nicks into "Magnet and Steel," a career-defining single that remains his biggest hit.