London, Nov 30 (EFE).- Christine McVie, the keyboardist and singer who penned many of Fleetwood Mac’s biggest hits, died Wednesday at a London hospital after a “short illness,” her family said. She was 79.
The musician “passed away peacefully … in the company of her family,” her loved ones said.
“There are no words to describe our sadness at the passing of Christine McVie,” Fleetwood Mac said in a statement. “She was truly one-of-a-kind, special and talented beyond measure. She was the best musician anyone could have in their band and the best friend anyone could have in their life.”
Stevie Nicks, the band’s other female vocalist, posted on Instagram a handwritten note: “A few hours ago I was told that my best friend in the whole world since the first day of 1975 had passed away.”
“Part of my heart has flown away today,” said drummer and band co-founder Mick Fleetwood.
Born Christine Perfect, the future member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame studied classical piano for several years before an encounter at 15 with Fats Domino songs turned her in the direction of popular music.
Christine had been a member of several groups before wedding bassist John McVie – the “Mac” in Fleetwood Mac – in 1969 and she joined the band the following year after the departure of the original leader, guitarist Peter Green.
Fleetwood Mac enjoyed significant success in the early 1970s, but the band’s breakthrough followed the addition in 1975 of Nicks and then-partner Stevie Nicks.
While the first album with the new lineup did well, the second, “Rumours” (1977), sold more than 20 million copies.
Christine McVie wrote or co-wrote eight of the 16 songs on the band’s “Greatest Hits” collection, including hits such as “Say You Love Me,” “You Make Loving Fun,” “Hold Me,” “Don’t Stop,” “Over My Head” and “Little Lies.” EFE gx/dr