Fleetwood Mac – Players Only Love You When They’re Playing…Live (Mainstream MSBR-68)


Okalahoma Auditorium, Oklahoma City, OK – May 18th, 1977
Setlist: Say You Love Me, Monday Morning, The Chain, Dreams, Rhiannon, Oh Daddy, Never Going Back Again, Landslide, Over My Head, You Make Loving Fun, Go Your Own Way, Blue Letter, Second Hand News, Green Manalishi, Don’t Stop

This is the third Fleetwood Mac soundboard tape to be released within the past year and a half, joining the tapes from Tokyo and Paris.  Several sources claim this tape comes from Oakland but is in reality from the Fairgrounds Arena in Oklahoma City from May 18th.  It was initially bought by a well-known east coast collector named Devilwoman from the band’s historian and archivist Frank Harding.  The two shows following this, Nashville on May 20th and Little Rock on May 21st, are also known to exist with the former being in circulation and in better quality and more complete than this.
Players Only Love You is a very good to excellent sounding recording with great balance between the instruments and the audience.  It sounds like it was being made for an official release in mind with care for a good “live” sound.  Lower frequencies in particular sound very deep with Mick Fleetwood’s drums sounding very lively and heavy in “The Chain” for example.  Mainstream’s version of the tape is also thirty seconds longer than the one in common circulation.  The only drawback to this tape is the editing between tracks.  Most of the song introductions are cut out and we have more of a live jukebox than a concert. 
The concert itself is very slick, professional and the epitome of Fleetwood Mac in the mid seventies.  In other words their brand of adult-themed rock is very effective and there is a lot of passion coming out.  They were a band who, back when I was growing up in the seventies, never understood.  Their music said to me “you’ll understand when you’re older”.  Now that I’m there I can understand why Stevie Nicks almost breaks down in tears singing “if you see my reflection in the snow covered hills” during “Landslide”, etc.  But the reality is their music is very passive albeit very catchy.   
Players Only Love You When They’re Playing…Live is another release by the Mainstream “soundboard masters” series.  The artwork contains the photo scrapbook style that was often used the seventies with lots of candid shots.  The inside contains several well known pictures from the Rumours tour.  This is a very good release and I hope Mainstream follow this with the Nashville tape.  (GS)

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