Fleetwood Mac co-founder Peter Green has died at age 73

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Peter Green, Fleetwood Mac co-founder
British musician Peter Green, guitarist and co-founder of rock band Fleetwood Mac, circa 1968. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

The influential blues guitarist and Fleetwood Mac co-founder Peter Green has died at age 73, as reported by the BBC. Lawyers representing Green's family issued a statement reading, "It is with great sadness that the family of Peter Green announce his death this weekend, peacefully in his sleep."

Born in London's East End in 1946, Green took up guitar at a young age and like many British guitarists of his generation, studied the music of Black American guitarists like Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy and BB King.

Although Green began his career as a bassist, he reverted to guitar after he was recruited by John Mayall's Bluesbreakers to take a spot in the band vacated by Eric Clapton. In 1967, Green coaxed his Bluesbreakers bandmate John McVie, along with Mick Fleetwood, to form the band Fleetwood Mac. Although the band name was a mashup of Fleetwood and McVie's surnames, the band were sometimes referred to as "Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac" in those early days. Green composed the instrumental tune, "Albatross," which, in 1968, became the band's first No. 1 hit.

In 1970, Green left the band due to mental illness. He was diagnosed with schizophrenia and received treatment through much of the 1970s.

Green, along with Fleetwood Mac members Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, John McVie, Christine McVie, Danny Kirwan and Jeremy Spencer, were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998.

"Peter Green was one of the greatest Blues guitarists Britain ever produced," BBC music reporter Mark Savage writes. "His shape-shifting riffs and long, improvisational excursions made Fleetwood Mac one of the most exciting live bands of the 1960s Blues explosion."

External Link

Fleetwood Mac - official site

2 Photos

  • Peter Green, Fleetwood Mac co-founder
    Rock band Fleetwood Mac at London's Heathrow Airport, about to fly to the U.S., on Feb. 26, 1969; they are (L-R) Mick Fleetwood, John McVie, Peter Green (1946 - 2020), Danny Kirwan (1950 - 2018), Jeremy Spencer. (Evening Standard/Getty Images)
  • Peter Green, Fleetwood Mac co-founder
    Blues, rock 'n' roll and progressive pop-influenced band Fleetwood Mac, photographed June 17, 1968, when their instrumental single 'Albatross' was topping the British charts. The line up is, from left to right; Mick Fleetwood, Peter Green, Jeremy Spencer and John McVie. (Keystone Features/Getty Images)