By Lisa Respers France, CNN
There’s a reason why Christine McVie was considered the heart of Fleetwood Mac.
The band’s keyboardist, who died Wednesday after a brief illness at the age of 79, was also the writer of some of the group’s most beloved songs.
Here are just five of those tunes:
“You Make Loving Fun”
This one is tied to some drama.
Fleetwood Mac is known for, in part, their tumultuous relationships, especially when it came to romantic ones.
Band members Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham had a thing that ended badly and McVie was famously married to, and then divorced from, their other bandmate, John McVie.
He reportedly thought the song, with its lyrics “Sweet wonderful you/You make me happy with the things you do/Oh, can it be so/This feeling follows me wherever I go,” was about their dog as the McVies were married at the time.
But it turns out Christine McVie had penned the love song in honor of the band’s lighting director with whom she had an affair.
Another tune from their famed “Rumours” album.
“Don’t Stop” proved to be a hopeful anthem for the future, which was so meaningful to former President Bill Clinton that he used it as his 1992 campaign anthem.
On Wednesday he tweeted a tribute to McVie.
“I’m saddened by the passing of Christine McVie. “Don’t Stop” was my ’92 campaign theme song – it perfectly captured the mood of a nation eager for better days,” he tweeted. “I’m grateful to Christine & Fleetwood Mac for entrusting us with such a meaningful song. I will miss her.”
“Got a Hold on Me”
This one was actually a solo song for McVie.
The first single off of her self-titled solo album, it sounds like it could be a Fleetwood Mac song with it’s buoyant rhythm and the infectious chorus, “Ooh, I got a love/I got somebody/This love got a hold on me.”
Plus Buckingham plays guitar on this one, giving it even more of a Fleetwood Mac vibe.
“Say You Love Me”
“Say You Love Me” is a jaunty tune that has become a mainstay on rock and easy listening radio stations.
She reflected on the sweet harmonies, she, Nicks and Buckingham achieve on the tune in a 1990 interview.
“The first time I started playing ‘Say You Love Me’ and I reached the chorus, they started singing with me and fell right into it,” Performing Songwriter magazine reported her saying. “I heard this incredible sound, our three voices … and my skin turned to gooseflesh.”
It feels right that so many on social media used this song to pay tribute to McVie after her passing.
The ballad she wrote has been pointed to as the perfect remembrance of someone lost.
Playing it now after her death seems haunting as she pours her heart into the opening lyrics, “For you, there’ll be no more crying/For you, the sun will be shining/And I feel that when I’m with you/It’s alright, I know it’s right.”
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