Mick Fleetwood: My Cocaine Abuse Was Worse Than Stevie Nicks’
Mick Fleetwood said he had been a worse drug addict than bandmate Stevie Nicks, noting that he’d lost two years of his life as a result of his cocaine abuse.
Fleetwood Mac’s substance issues became nearly as well known as the band in the late ‘70s and ‘80s. In her 2015 memoir Visions, Dreams & Rumors, Nicks discussed the cocaine use that eventually burned a hole inside her nose. “There was no way to get off the white horse," she said. "And I didn't want to.''
In a recent interview with Classic Rock, Fleetwood recalled: “There's no doubt we were well equipped with the marching powder. That's a well-worn fairy tale that gets more like a war story, that gets more and more aggrandized. ... I'm not minimalizing the fact that we were definitely partaking in that lifestyle. But these weren't a bunch of people crawling across the floor with green froth coming out of their mouths. We were working, you know?”
He said that period of the band’s existence “went on for a long, long time,” and because Nicks had previously discussed it, he wasn’t “divulging anything that she hasn't spoken about.” “It got out of hand way after the making of Rumours," Fleetwood recalled. "I remember not working for two years. I can't even remember what I did. I was the party animal in the band, for sure. I would venture to say Stevie was a close second.”
In 2019, Fleetwood reflected that the band’s hard-living reputation had overshadowed their music, to his regret. “For a while within Fleetwood Mac, there were romances and that lifestyle … and the other stuff got forgotten,” he said. “All anyone ever asked about was, ‘Who is sleeping with who?’ or ‘Who is angry with who?’ And you start to feel it’s a shame. Now they intelligently talk about what we did musically. That’s important to us. We never wanted to make fools of ourselves too many times.”