Fleetwood Mac Guitarist Danny Kirwan Has Died At Age 68

Danny Kirwan, a guitarist who appeared on five of Fleetwood Mac’s albums, died in London on June 8, according to the band. He was 68.

Kirwan was 18 when he joined Fleetwood Mac, which at the time consisted of Fleetwood, John McVie, Peter Green and Jeremy Spencer, according to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Kirwan contributed guitar and vocal work in addition to songwriting while he was with the band, and his talents were first featured on the band’s 1969 effort, “Then Play On.” His work appeared on several other albums, including 1970’s “Kiln House” and “Future Games” a year later.

“Danny was a huge force in our early years,” said a Facebook post signed by Mick Fleetwood, one of the band’s founders. “His love for the Blues led him to being asked to join Fleetwood Mac in 1968, where he made his musical home for many years.”

Kirwan was fired in 1972 shortly after the release of the album “Bare Trees.”

Kirwan was among the members of the band inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1998, though he didn’t attend the induction ceremony, Rolling Stone magazine noted.


“Danny’s true legacy, in my mind, will forever live on in the music he wrote and played so beautifully as a part of the foundation of Fleetwood Mac, that has now endured over fifty years,” Fleetwood said on Facebook. “Thank you, Danny Kirwan. You will forever be missed!”

Fleetwood Mac fans took to social media to express their condolences. Clearly, Kirwan made a lasting impression on the band, its music and its fans.

One commenter wrote on Facebook: “Very sad to hear this. Danny Kirwan was an unsung hero in Fleetwood Mac’s legacy, not only having written and sung a lot of great songs for them, but also being instrumental in the band’s shift towards the pop rock format that they became famous for later. Hopefully he will be recognized and remembered by many for his contributions.”


Another fan credited Kirwan with shaping his own approach to music: “So sad to hear about the passing of one of my heroes. Danny will truly be missed by all those who his music affected and influenced. On a personal level as a musician, he changed the way I approached guitar playing. As a person, he inspired me to always try to find the beauty in life that he captured so well in the songs he wrote. God rest you well, Danny.”

Fleetwood Mac 2018 Tour — Without Lindsey Buckingham

When Fleetwood Mac hits the road this year, it will be without Lindsey Buckingham for the first time in decades.

The legendary band has split with the beloved guitarist prior to its fall tour, according to Rolling Stone, and it’ll apparently take two men to replace him. Both Mike Campbell, of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, and Neil Finn, of Crowded House, will replace Buckingham:

It’s not entirely clear why Buckingham was let go, but a source close to the band told CNN they split “over musical differences regarding the tour.” So far, both the band and Buckingham have been silent about the split on social media.

lindsey buckingham photo
Getty Images | Steven Ferdman

For fans looking to see Buckingham perform alongside his former girlfriend and longtime bandmate Stevie Nicks, this new will undoubtedly be a disappointment—but the band is maintaining its stance. Fleetwood Mac issued a statement which read, in part:

“With Mike and Neil, we’ll be performing all the hits that the fans love, plus we’ll be surprising our audiences with some tracks from our historic catalogue of songs. Fleetwood Mac has always been a creative evolution. We look forward to honoring that spirit on this upcoming tour.”

2018 MusiCares Person Of The Year Honoring Fleetwood Mac - Show
Getty Images | Dia Dipasupil

Buckingham joined the band in 1974, along with Nicks, writing some of the band’s most popular hits, including “Go Your Own Way,” “Monday Morning” and “Second Hand News.” According to Rolling Stone, he left the band in 1987, only to join again in 1996, continuing to tour with them since then.

In 2017, Buckingham released an album with fellow longtime Fleetwood Mac member Christine McVie, titled “Lindsey Buckingham/Christine McVie.”

lindsey buckingham mcvie photo
Getty Images | Cindy Ord

Does Buckingham not being part of the band make you reconsider going to see Fleetwood Mac in concert?

Written by Dakin Andone for CNN. Additional reporting by Simplemost staff.

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