If you love the distinctive sounds of Fleetwood Mac, don’t miss the Australian Fleetwood Mac show at Club Forster this month. Gary Stewart and Ursula Cain-Stewart explain how and why they decided to pay tribute to such an amazing band …
What’s your musical background … did you learn to play at a young age?
Gary: I grew up with music in my life from an early age, beginning the piano from the age of 6.
Ursula: I was singing in the school choir and began lead singing in bands from the age of 21.
Please introduce us to the main members of your group and fill us in on what instruments each member plays …
Scott Hardy (Sydney AUS): Scott was our first drummer when the show began back in the year 2000. He left after 2 years to pursue other ventures and has been playing with us again for the past 2 years.
Polisi Fitz (Wellington NZ): The newest member of the show, who brings a wealth of experience (over 25 years), playing Funk, Latin, Soul and Jazz.
Giles Brunning (Sydney AUS): guitar. He has been a member of this show for over 3 years, and emulates the Lindsay Buckingham parts perfectly.
Kristen Linehan (Queensland AUS): Our keyboard player and vocalist. Kris has been with the show the longest (over 6 years) and is an amazing pianist. She fills our sound with her keys and adds the famous Christine McVie harmonies.
Gary Stewart (Christchurch NZ): keys, guitar and vocals. MD of the show and plays keys whenever Kristen is touring with other international acts.
Ursula Cain-Stewart (Christchurch NZ): lead vocalist and founder of the band. Ursula designs the stage set up and brings incredible energy to the show, as she authentically reproduces the part of Stevie Nicks.
Your group is able to access many talented musicians. What will be the line up for your show, Running in the Shadows, at Club Forster?
The Club Forster line up will be as above.
We have many of Australia’s other top session musicians often perform the show with us also.
So, how and when did you guys all actually meet and form the band?
Gary: I met my wife, Ursula, 15.5 years ago. We have performed throughout the South Island of New Zealand and the UK; however, this show was not formed until the year 2000, after being told by many crowd members that she sounds exactly like Stevie Nicks. We advertised within Sydney and had an overwhelming response from Sydney’s musicians.
Why Fleetwood Mac? What is it about this particular band that inspired you all to share their music with the world?
The Fleetwood Mac music has spanned nearly 5 decades, from the early Blues music when they formed and their Pop hits throughout the ‘70s, and then later when the band ‘took a break’, with the individual careers of Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham churning out hit after hit. The music covers many genres and appeals to all age groups to this day.
What’s your personal favourite (or favourites) among Fleetwood Mac’s extensive repertoire – and what is it about these songs that you particularly like?
Gary: It’s hard to choose one or two, but the one I love performing in the show is Go your Own Way. The other song (we have covered before) is Don’t let me Down Again – Lindsay Buckingham.
Ursula: Beautiful Child … a beautiful song, with great lyrics.
Tell us a bit about your show, Running in the Shadows. It’s described as an ‘acoustic’ presentation?
We do perform an acoustic 5 piece show, using acoustic guitar, piano, and percussion; this show is a lot of fun, as we play the same songs, but often fuse them with other musical styles.
However, at Club Forster we are bringing the full Auditorium show, which has been successful for us for over 10 years now.
How far and wide do you guys normally travel to present your shows – do you tour internationally at all, or stick closer to home?
In the early days we used to travel around Australia’s main cities, and we love visiting the small country towns. We had shows booked in NZ; however due to the unfortunate earthquakes, we had to cancel the tour – the venue we were booked to play 6 months later had collapsed.
Now (with 2 small children), we mainly stay within NSW. However, we are looking at tours further afield at the end of this year, and next.
Fleetwood Mac’s music has been around for a long time now – since the late ‘60s and is still popular today. Why do you think their music is still relevant in this day and age?
They have fantastically written and structured songs, which are still relevant today and can easily stand alongside most of today’s songs with their head held high. Their critically acclaimed album written in the ‘70s is still renowned as being one of the greatest albums ever written.
Apart from going to see you at Club Forster on February 23, where can people go to listen to your music, or watch videos of your performances?
Everyone can stay up to date with our shows on Facebook ‘running in the shadows’, or check our website: ‘thefleetwoodmacshow.com’.
Thanks Gary and Ursula.