Mystery to Me album cover

Hypnotized

Fleetwood Mac made a bold move toward future success with Mystery to Me.

Released on October 15, 1973 as part of Mystery to Me, “Hypnotized” became an album-rock radio staple even as it helped make the final argument for Fleetwood Mac’s move into pop music.

Bob Welch’s dreamscape journey across an majestic, unknowable landscape — delivered vocally with a whispery detachment — unfurls amid an insistent conversation on the hi-hat from Fleetwood and this thrilling series of jazz-inflected guitar fourths. Sound familiar?

Much has been made, and justifiably so, of the arrival of Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks — but “Hypnotized” illustrates how far Fleetwood Mac had come toward their polyester-era California singer-songwriter style in the era before that duo joined.

True, “Hypnotized,” with its dreamy AM-era sexuality and garrulous, riffy guitar soloing, is only just getting the hang of the success that would follow — but it’s the most complete portion of the bridge between Fleetwood Mac’s first and second hit-making periods.

Fleetwood Mac continued to evolve. Mystery to Me would be the final album to feature Bob Weston as guitarist and songwriter; Welch’s departure in 1974 then opened the door for Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks. Weston later worked with Murray Head and Steve Marriott’s All-Stars Band, while Welch had his own subsequent solo hit with “Sentimental Lady” – which was originally featured on Fleetwood Mac’s Bare Trees in 1972.

Still, as Bob Weston’s Wes Montgomery-isms are surrounded by a swirling, sometimes wordless breeze of voices from Bob Welch and Christine McVie on “Hypnotized,” it’s easy to see — just over the next horizon, after a few more personnel switches — Fleetwood Mac’s charttopping promised land.

Editor’s note: Bob Welch committed suicide in 2012.

Nick DeRiso / Something Else Reviews / Saturday, October 17, 2015

Nick DeRiso: Over a 30-year career, Nick DeRiso has also explored music for USA Today, All About Jazz, American Songwriter, Ultimate Classic Rock and a host of others. Honored as columnist of the year five times by the Associated Press, Louisiana Press Association and Louisiana Sports Writers Association, he oversaw a daily section named Top 10 in the nation by the AP before co-founding Something Else! Contact him at nderiso@somethingelsereviews.com.

2022 Tour

Stevie Nicks

Jazz Aspen Snowmass
Snowmass, CO
Labor Day 2022

Ravinia Festival
Highland Park, IL
September 8, 2022
September 10, 2022

Pine Knob Music Theatre
Clarkston, MI
September 13, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Sea Hear Now Festival
Asbury, NJ
September 17, 2022

Xfinity Center
Mansfield, MA
September 19, 2022
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Maine Savings Amphitheatre
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September 22, 2022
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Sound on Sound Festival
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September 24-25, 2022

Ohana Festival
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September 30, 2022

Hollywood Bowl
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October 3, 2022
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Ak-Chin Pavilion
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October 6, 2022
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Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
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Ameris Bank Amphitheatre
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October 12, 2022
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Ascend Amphitheater
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October 16, 2022
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Credit One Stadium
Charleston, SC
October 19, 2022
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PNC Music Pavilion
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October 22, 2022
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MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre
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October 25, 2022
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iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre
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October 28, 2022
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