The Legendary Christine Perfect Album, by Christine McVie
There are several ironies about this album from the title alone. For one, Christine Perfect (her maiden name) would not be the name by which she would become legendary, which was Christine McVie , after she married Fleetwood Mac bassist John McVie. Also, at this time Christine McVie was not legendary, having left Chicken Shack but not yet having joined Fleetwood Mac. The album was originally released as Christine Perfect in 1970 but was re-released a few years later when she was famous as The Legendary Christine Perfect Album. Of course, it would be more than a decade before she would release another album, her second fantastic eponymous album, showing that while she became legendary, she became legendary as part of a band and not as a solo artist. Here is a track-by-track review:
Crazy ‘Bout You Baby: This is a charming song with a lovely late 60’s sound that shows how Christine McVie is crazy about someone who doesn’t care about her. This is a catchy tune about unrequited love that is definitely a good listen.
I’m On My Way: The album was apparently originally supposed to be named after this track, a thoughtful and even bluesy song that is a good representation of the blues sound of Fleetwood Mac that she would soon be a part of. This is a song that reflects a desire to be forgiven by a past lover but a realization that the relationship may be over despite.
Let Me Go (Leave Me Alone): The music to this track is fuzzy and comes straight out of the time of the hippies, but it features some sultry singing by Christine McVie pleading for a former partner to let her go and leave her alone, a sentiment that I am sure many people can relate to.
Wait And See: Another song that is definitely of its time, this is the sort of gentle and patient ballad about loyalty and longing that would fit in well with McVie’s body of work as a whole, and it is a beautiful song that could have been a radio hit, as its music is truly lovely and touching.
Close To Me: With some bluesy guitar playing, this song features more sultry singing from Christine McVie about her longing for someone to be there even if they aren’t willing to say that they love her. With some remastering to make the song a little less muddy, this song could be a classic blues rock song.
I’d Rather Go Blind: A remake of an Etta James song, Christine McVie puts her own stamp on this song with some big band instrumentation and clearly committing to the utterly desperate devotion of the song. This is a surprisingly dark song in the body of work of Christine McVie. The song did hit #14 on the UK charts, though.
When You Say: Beginning with some sweet violins, this song shows the more positive side of love. Interestingly enough, this song was released on a Fleetwood Mac album in 1969 and features the rest of the band helping Christine McVie sing this ode to sweet love and devotion. Unfortunately, while the song was released as a single, it did not chart at all.
And That’s Saying A Lot: In this song we get more bluesy sultry singing about Christine McVie singing about how a partner showed her what was love was about and that she’s a woman of few words, which can actually be believed. She does a good job of selling this bluesy song.
No Road Is The Right Road: This song is a thoughtful song about love and its travails and the way that while love makes the singer feel good that the fact that there is no right road in her life and that she has to change her ways gives an element of melancholy to what would otherwise be a happy song, something that would be a fairly typical Christine McVie approach.
For You: McVie sings another sultry song where she openly states that she is there for the taking and that she is there for someone. Again, someone would have to be pretty foolish to leave a woman like this standing alone. The bluesy guitar really adds to the appeal of this song, which is definitely something that retains interest long after its time.
I’m Too Far Gone (To Turn Around): The second single released from this album, it didn’t chart in the United States at all, but it has some classy piano work and a swinging approach to loyalty and love, and it is definitely a song that deserved a better fate than it received at the hand of the radio programmers of the time.
I Want: This song again openly expresses Christine McVie’s desire for someone, saying that she is willing to play a partner’s game but that she is not going to be coy about her desire. There is something admirable in the singer’s openness, as well as in the solid instrumentation that surrounds her singing on this song.
While in many ways this is an album of its time, and even though the production values of this album are not the best, this is an album that even with that said manages to rise above mediocrity and present Christine McVie as a passionate and soulful singer whose songs about love and devotion and the positive and negative sides of love and relationships would be well worth appreciating for decades to come. An album this good deserves to be remastered so that the excellence of its singing and playing can stand out in sharper relief and so it can be as legendary as it deserves to be. While McVie may not have been famous (at least to Americans) at the time the album was released, this album shows right out the gate that she would be a powerful musical presence, and already her focus on love in its many facets and dimensions was clearly evident from the start.
 See, for example: