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    Song Title »
The Chain
    Authors »
Lindsey Buckingham, Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks, Christine McVie, John McVie

    Year Written »
1976

    This Performance »
Date Performance 1976-00-00
Running Time 4:28
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitars), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Christine McVie (Synthesizers), Christine McVie (Vocals), John McVie (Bass), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Richard Dashut (Produced With), Ken Caillat (Produced With), Fleetwood Mac (Produced By), Stevie Nicks (Produced By), Lindsey Buckingham (Produced By), Christine McVie (Produced By), John McVie (Produced By), Mick Fleetwood (Produced By)
Appears On
Rumours (1977)
Fleetwood Mac
The Very Best Of Fleetwood Mac (2002)
Fleetwood Mac
An Enchanted Hour With Stevie Nicks (1998)
Stevie Nicks
Best Selection (0000)
Fleetwood Mac
Rumours (Rhino Remastered Edition) (2004)
Fleetwood Mac
In The Studio (1992)
Fleetwood Mac
Off The Record (1990)
Fleetwood Mac
Up Close (1990)
Fleetwood Mac
Rock Stars (1989)
Fleetwood Mac
Up Close (1994)
Stevie Nicks
Up Close (1989)
Stevie Nicks
Fleetwood Mac: Rumours (1978)
Warner Brothers Publications Inc.
Fleetwood Mac: Deluxe Anthology (0000)
Warner Brothers Publications Inc.
The Best Of Fleetwood Mac (1982)
Warner Brothers Publications Inc.
Fleetwood Mac: Anthology Of Classics (1989)
Warner Brothers Publications Inc.
Fleetwood Mac: Guitar Anthology Series (1998)
Warner Brothers Publications Inc.
The New Best Of Fleetwood Mac For Guitar (1998)
Warner Brothers Publications Inc.
You Make Loving Fun/The Chain (1977)
Fleetwood Mac
Oh Diane/Rhiannon/The Chain (1983)
Fleetwood Mac
Oh Diane/Only Over You/The Chain (1983)
Fleetwood Mac
Big Love/You And I, Part I/The Chain/Go Your Own Way (1987)
Fleetwood Mac
Paper Doll/The Chain (1992)
Fleetwood Mac

    Lyrics »

Listen to the wind blow
Watch the sun rise

Run in the shadows
Damn your love
Damn your lies

And if
You don't love me now
You will never love me again
I can still hear you saying
You would never break the chain.

Listen to the wind blow
Down comes the night

Run in the shadows
Damn your love
Damn your lies

Break the silence
Damn the dark
Damn the light

And if
You don't love me now
You will never love me again
I can still hear you saying
You would never break the chain.

    Fan Interpretation »

Contributors to this interpretation included Stewy, Lauren Leichter, Thom, Gretchen, Janet, and Lisa.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

With lyrics from Stevie Nicks and music from the rest of the band, The Chain has become the anthem of Fleetwood Mac. The Chain is the never ending tie that bound the band together in the past and binds them together now and, hopefully, well into the future. Undoubtedly this song speaks volumes about bitter feelings, a wavering relationship, and the need to keep the links in the chain together. What is in doubt, however, is the focus of these lyrics. Did Stevie write The Chain as a way to vent her frustration and anger over her shattered relationship with Lindsey Buckingham, or is it a statement about the fragile links between the five members of Fleetwood Mac and their need to stay together for each other and for the sake of the band - or some of both?

The Chain can easily be interpreted as the written expression of love, anger, hate and frustration toward Stevie and Lindseyís torn relationship and their inability to communicate and interact with each other on a daily basis. This can be found in the lyrics "listen to the wind blow, watch the sun rise" and "...down comes the night". " And if you donít love me now/ you will never love me again" could be a warning to Lindsey to be sure that breaking up is what he wants because he will never get another chance to love her, or simply that she knows their time is running out and she knew it was time to decide to stay together or go their separate ways. She might have given a clue to her desire to be away from him and the rest of the band when she writes " run in the shadows" and "damn you love/ damn you lies" . She loves him and he loves her, yet they canít get along and she feels betrayed because he is the one who is leaving the relationship. They need to "break the silence" and start communicating, but instead he lies and finally "breaks the chain" between them. Her total rage toward him over leaving climaxes in the lyrics "I can still hear you saying/You would never break the Chain".

The lyrics also ring true when including all the members Fleetwood Mac as the focus of "The Chain". The discord between Stevie and Lindsey, Christine and John, and the endless fighting within the group took a terrible toll on the band. The energy and passion shown in their music was being consumed by disagreements, finally resulting in Lindseyís departure. "Listen to the wind blow" could refer to the turmoil the band was in day in and day out. Everyone fighting, everyone wanting nothing more that to get away from everyone else. Everyone wanting to get away - to "run in the shadows". Their need to be together was tearing them all apart, and the glue holding them together was weakening day after day - "Listen to the wind blow/ down comes the night". The only way to resolve their problems would be to start communicating - to " break the silence" and strengthen the chain again. Stevieís overwhelming personal anger toward Lindsey comes through with "damn you love/ damn your lies" and "... if you donít love me now/ you will never love me again". The song comes to a climax with the resounding pain and anger of " I can still hear you saying/ you would never break the chain".

Fortunately for all of us, the strength of the five links in the chain have been restored. Their wounds have healed and they have grown together again. Whether or not these lyric interpretations are valid or not are almost irrelevant. What IS relevant is that they came back together - not just for all of us, but for themselves. They have finally healed and "broken the silence". Maybe now they will finally stay together and "...never break the chain".

(The interpretations to these lyrics were compiled through discussions on the message boards of the Penguin, The Ledge. It is entirely possible that the artists had something completely different in mind.)

    Tabs »
This version from The Dance.

Extra note from the transcriber: learn this one before the Rumours
version if you havenít already.  It makes it a lot easier.  That 
version is tabbed out after this one.

Tuning=DADGBe (drop D)
chords used:
A5:  555xxx
D5:  x577xx
Bb5: x133xx
C5:  x355xx

key:
b&r=bend quarter step and release
b=bend up to a certain note
/=slide
h=hammer

(the bigger part of the song is made up of variations
of this riff)
|-------------------|------------------------|
|-----3---3---------|-------3------3---------|
|-------------------|---2--------------------|
|---0-----0---0---0-|-----0--------0---0---0-|
|-------3-----------|---------3b&r-----------|
|-0---------0---0---|-0--------------0---0---|

(Lindsey does this part with the two D strings alternating)
|-------------------------------5b6-3-1---6-1---|
|-1-1-1-3-3-1-1-1-3-3-1-1-1-3-3---------3-----3-|
|-----------------------------------------------|
|-----------------------------------------------|
|-----------------------------------------------|
|-----------------------------------------------|

(the notes in italics are the accented notes)
|---------------|
|---------------|
|---------------|
|-3-2-0-0ó-0--0-|
|-0-0-0-3--0--0-|
|-0-0-0-0--3b-0-|

(this is the riff that Lindsey goes into after the 
chorus that repeats 3 times)
|-----------0-----0-----|
|-3-----3-----3-----3---|
|-2---2---3-----3-----3-| (repeat 3 times)
|-0-0-------------------|
|-----------------------|
|-----------------------|

|-------0-----0-----0-----|
|-3-------3-----3-----3-3-|
|-2---3-----3-----3-----2-| (then to the bass run}
|-0-0-------------------0-|
|-------------------------|
|-------------------------|

(bass solo tabbed for regular guitar)

|-----------------------|
|-----------------------|
|-----------------------|
|-----------------------|
|-------0-1-0-------0---|
|-0/5-5-------5-3-5---0-|

Chorus:
       A5                              
And if you don't love me now, you will never love me again.
      D5             Bb5              C5
I can still hear you sayin' you would never break the chain.
       A5
And if you don't love me now, you will never love me again.
      D5             Bb5              C5
I can still hear you sayin' you would never break the chain.

Verse 2(use the same progression as verse 1):
Listen to the wind blow
Down comes the night

Runnin' in the shadows
Damn your love
Damn your lies

Break the silence
Damn the dark
Damn the light

(the solo at the end is really easy, Iíll just show you the 
notes to hit and youíll be able to figure it out from there.)

|-----|-10-8-|-13-10-|-17-15-13-10-|
|-1-3-|------|-------|-------------|
|-----|------|-------|-------------|
|-----|------|-------|-------------|
|-----|------|-------|-------------|
|-----|------|-------|-------------|

__________________________________________________________________

(Now for the other version)
THE CHAIN
this version from the album Rumours
transcribed by Josh Shank

The ONLY difference between the two versions is that the Rumours 
one is capoed on the second fret and has a different intro.)

(that intro goes like this.  There are different variations
of this riff.)

Tuning=DADGBe
capo on second fret

|-------------0---------|
|-------1---------------|
|---2-------2-----------|
|-----0-------0---0---0-|
|---------3-------------|
|-0-------------0---0---|


|-------------------|
|-------1-----1-1h3-|
|---2-------2-------|
|-----0-------0-----|
|---------3---------|
|-0-------------0---|

    Other Performances »
Performance #1:
Date Performance 1977-00-00
Running Time 4:20
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Richard Dashut (Produced By), Ken Caillat (Produced By), Fleetwood Mac (Produced By), Lindsey Buckingham (Produced By), Christine McVie (Produced By), Stevie Nicks (Produced By), Mick Fleetwood (Produced By), John McVie (Produced By)
Comments(Alternate Mix)
Appears On
25 Years: The Chain (1992)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #2:
Date Performance 1997-06-00
Running Time 5:11
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Christine McVie (Keyboards), Christine McVie (Vocals), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Brett Tuggle (Keyboards), Brett Tuggle (Guitars), John McVie (Bass), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Brett Tuggle (Background Vocals), Neale Heywood (Guitar), Neale Heywood (Background Vocals), Lenny Castro (Percussion), Sharon Celani (Background Vocals), Mindy Stein (Background Vocals)
Appears On
The Dance (1997)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #3:
Date Performance 1982-10-22
Running Time 6:20
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Christine McVie (Keyboards), John McVie (Bass), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Tambourine)
CommentsRecorded at the Inglewood Forum, Los Angeles
Appears On
In Concert Mirage Tour '82 (1984)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #4:
Date Performance 1997-06-00
Running Time 5:11
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Christine McVie (Keyboards), Christine McVie (Vocals), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Brett Tuggle (Keyboards), Brett Tuggle (Guitars), John McVie (Bass), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Brett Tuggle (Background Vocals), Neale Heywood (Guitar), Neale Heywood (Background Vocals), Lenny Castro (Percussion), Sharon Celani (Background Vocals), Mindy Stein (Background Vocals)
Appears On
The Dance (1997)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #5:
Date Performance 1977-08-25
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Christine McVie (Keyboards), John McVie (Bass), Stevie Nicks (Background Vocals)
CommentsRecorded at the Aladdin Theatre Performing Arts, Las Vegas, Nevada
Appears On
Sin City (1977)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #6:
Date Performance 1979-11-00
Running Time 5:47
Performers Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Tambourine), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Christine McVie (Vocals), Christine McVie (Keyboards), John McVie (Bass), Mick Fleetwood (Drums)
Comments(Live)
Appears On
Fleetwood Mac Documentary And Live Concert (1980)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #7:
Date Performance 1994-00-00
Performers Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Rick Vito (Guitar)
CommentsRecorded in Los Angeles
Appears On
Street Blue Angel (1994)
Stevie Nicks
Performance #8:
Date Performance 1998-00-00
Performers Curt Mitchell (Guitar)
Appears On
Guitar Method In The Style Of Fleetwood Mac; Learn The Guitar Style Of Lindsey Buckingham (1998)
Curt Mitchell
Performance #9:
Date Performance 1977-00-00
Running Time 4:20
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Richard Dashut (Produced By), Ken Caillat (Produced By), Fleetwood Mac (Produced By), Lindsey Buckingham (Produced By), Christine McVie (Produced By), Stevie Nicks (Produced By), Mick Fleetwood (Produced By), John McVie (Produced By)
Comments(Alternate Mix)
Appears On
25 Years: The Chain Sampler (1992)
Fleetwood Mac
Selections From 25 Years: The Chain (1992)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #10:
Date Performance 1997-00-00
Running Time 3:46
Performers Nic Johnston (Acoustic Guitar)
Appears On
A Tribute To Fleetwood Mac: An Acoustic Portrait On Guitar (1997)
Nic Johnston
Performance #11:
Date Performance 1987-12-00
Running Time 5:34
Performers Billy Burnette (Guitar), Rick Vito (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Rick Vito (Vocals), Billy Burnette (Vocals), Dan Nash (Remixed By), Dennis May(e)(s) (Remixed By), Dennis May(e)(s) (Produced By), Fleetwood Mac (Produced By), Billy Burnette (Produced By), Mick Fleetwood (Produced By), John McVie (Produced By), Christine McVie (Produced By), Stevie Nicks (Produced By), Rick Vito (Produced By), (Is(s)aac) As(s)ante (Percussion), Sharon Celani (Backup Singer), Elis(e)cia Wright (Backup Singer), Dan Garfield (Additional Keyboards), Dan Garfield (Programming), Lori Perry-Nicks/Perry/Nicks (Backup Singer)
CommentsRecorded live at The Cow Palace, Sam Francisco, CA 12/12/87 & 12/13/87
Appears On
Tango In The Night (1988)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #12:
Date Performance 1998-00-00
Running Time 3:39
Performers Shawn Colvin (Vocals)
Commentsby Shawn Colvin
Appears On
Legacy: A Tribute To Fleetwood Mac's Rumours (1998)
Various Artists
Performance #13:
Date Performance 1997-00-00
Running Time 3:22
Performers Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Christine McVie (Keyboards), John McVie (Bass), Mick Fleetwood (Drums)
Appears On
Classic Albums: Fleetwood Mac - Rumours (1998)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #14:
Date Performance 1976-00-00
Running Time 4:28
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (12 String), Lindsey Buckingham (Acoustic Guitar (2 Parts)), Lindsey Buckingham (Electric Guitar (3 Parts)), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Tambourine), Christine McVie (Vocals), Christine McVie (Electric Piano), John McVie (Bass), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Mick Fleetwood (Kick Drum), Mick Fleetwood (Toms), Mick Fleetwood (Cymbals)
Appears On
Rumours (DVD Audio) (2001)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #15:
Date Performance 1997-00-00
Running Time 4:39
Performers Faster Tiger (Producer), Jeremy Wilson (Producer)
Commentsby Faster Tiger
Appears On
Fleetwood Mac: Patron Saints Of Pop - An Apostilary Homage (1997)
Various Artists
Performance #16:
Date Performance 2004-09-00
Running Time 5:02
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Jana Anderson (Background Vocals), Sharon Celani (Background Vocals), Neale Heywood (Guitar), Taku(ya) Hirano (Percussion), Steve Rinkoff/Rinkov (Drums), Carlos Rios (Guitar), Brett Tuggle (Keyboards), Mike Dean (Keyboard), Ed Cherney/Chernay (Music Mixed By)
Appears On
Live In Boston (2004)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #17:
Date Performance 1982-10-22
Running Time 6:20
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Christine McVie (Keyboards), John McVie (Bass), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Tambourine)
CommentsRecorded at the Inglewood Forum, Los Angeles
Appears On
Superstar Concert Series (1997)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #18:
Date Performance 1997-10-00
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Stevie Nicks (Vocals)
CommentsRecorded live in Irvine, California.
Appears On
Dancing Again (1998)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #19:
Date Performance 1993-00-00
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals)
Commentsby Lindsey Buckingham
Appears On
Superstar Concert Series (1994)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #20:
Date Performance 1990-00-00
Performers Billy Burnette (Guitar), Rick Vito (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Stevie Nicks (Background Vocals)
CommentsRecorded live at Maine Road, Manchester, England.
Appears On
Next Stop: Main(e) Road (1991)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #21:
Date Performance 1982-10-22
Running Time 6:20
Performers Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Christine McVie (Keyboards), John McVie (Bass), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Tambourine)
CommentsRecorded at the Inglewood Forum, Los Angeles
Appears On
Westwood One Radio Networks Show: 6/16/84 (1984)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #22:
Date Performance 1994-00-00
Performers Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Rick Vito (Guitar)
CommentsRecorded in Los Angeles
Appears On
Superstar Concert Series (1995)
Stevie Nicks
Welcome To My World (1994)
Stevie Nicks
Performance #23:
Date Performance 1997-06-00
Running Time 5:11
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Christine McVie (Keyboards), Christine McVie (Vocals), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Brett Tuggle (Keyboards), Brett Tuggle (Guitars), John McVie (Bass), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Brett Tuggle (Background Vocals), Neale Heywood (Guitar), Neale Heywood (Background Vocals), Lenny Castro (Percussion), Sharon Celani (Background Vocals), Mindy Stein (Background Vocals)
Appears On
Fleetwood Mac: The Dance (Piano/Vocal/Chords) (1998)
Warner Brothers Publications Inc.
Performance #24:
Date Performance 1987-12-00
Running Time 5:34
Performers Billy Burnette (Guitar), Rick Vito (Guitar), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Rick Vito (Vocals), Billy Burnette (Vocals), Dan Nash (Remixed By), Dennis May(e)(s) (Remixed By), Dennis May(e)(s) (Produced By), Fleetwood Mac (Produced By), Billy Burnette (Produced By), Mick Fleetwood (Produced By), John McVie (Produced By), Christine McVie (Produced By), Stevie Nicks (Produced By), Rick Vito (Produced By), (Is(s)aac) As(s)ante (Percussion), Sharon Celani (Backup Singer), Elis(e)cia Wright (Backup Singer), Dan Garfield (Additional Keyboards), Dan Garfield (Programming), Lori Perry-Nicks/Perry/Nicks (Backup Singer)
CommentsRecorded live at The Cow Palace, Sam Francisco, CA 12/12/87 & 12/13/87
Appears On
In The Back Of My Mind/Little Lies/The Chain (1990)
Fleetwood Mac
Skies The Limit/Little Lies/The Chain (1990)
Fleetwood Mac
In The Back Of My Mind/Lizard People/Little Lies/The Chain (1990)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #25:
Date Performance 1977-00-00
Running Time 4:20
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Mick Fleetwood (Drums), John McVie (Bass), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Christine McVie (Keyboards), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Christine McVie (Vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Richard Dashut (Produced By), Ken Caillat (Produced By), Fleetwood Mac (Produced By), Lindsey Buckingham (Produced By), Christine McVie (Produced By), Stevie Nicks (Produced By), Mick Fleetwood (Produced By), John McVie (Produced By)
Comments(Alternate Mix)
Appears On
Love Shines/The Chain/Not That Funny/Isn't It Midnight (1992)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #26:
Date Performance 1997-06-00
Running Time 5:11
Sound Clip Listen.
Performers Christine McVie (Keyboards), Christine McVie (Vocals), Mick Fleetwood (Drums), Brett Tuggle (Keyboards), Brett Tuggle (Guitars), John McVie (Bass), Lindsey Buckingham (Guitar), Lindsey Buckingham (Vocals), Stevie Nicks (Vocals), Brett Tuggle (Background Vocals), Neale Heywood (Guitar), Neale Heywood (Background Vocals), Lenny Castro (Percussion), Sharon Celani (Background Vocals), Mindy Stein (Background Vocals)
Appears On
The Chain (1997)
Fleetwood Mac
Performance #27:
Date Performance 1978-00-00
Appears On
Fleetwood Mac Songbook (1978)
Dancers Image

    Comments »

(C) Copyright 1976/1977 Published and controlled by Gentoo Music, Inc. (BMI), Now Sounds Music (ASCAP)/Welsh Witch Music (BMI) (All rights administered by Sony/ATV Songs/Music Publishing, LLC, 8 Music Sq. West, Nashville, TN 37203)/Fleetwood Mac Music (BMI)/EMI Music Publishing Ltd./Warner Bros. Music Ltd./Bright Music Ltd./© 1977 Careers-BMG Music Publishing, Inc. (BMI)/Molly Mac Music (BMI)/Rattleman Music (BMI). All rights reserved/Copyright Renewed. International Copyright Secured. Used by permission. Administered by Screen Gems-EMI Music Inc. for U.S. and Canada.

    Reviews »
Add your review of The Chain here.

    Last Modified »
2011-09-21

    Discography Credits »
Interpretation prepared by Stewy, Lauren Leichter. Tabs prepared by Josh Shank.