Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Fleetwood Mac

Cool Water

First recorded by The Sons of the Pioneers (US #25 1941).
Other hit versions by Vaughn Monroe & the Sons of the Pioneers (US #9 1948), Frankie Laine & the Mellomen (UK #2 1955).
Also recorded by Bob Dylan & The Band (1967, released 2014), Fleetwood Mac (B-side 1982), The Replacements (B-side 1987).

From the wiki: “‘Cool Water’ was written in 1936 by Bob Nolan, a founding member of the Sons of the Pioneer, and was first recorded by his group in 1941. It briefly charted, peaking at #25 on the Hit Parade. Seven years later, the Sons of the Pioneers would re-record the song with big-band crooner Vaughn Monroe, and it would go on to become the best-selling version charting for 13 weeks on the Billboard chart, peaking at #9.

Sentimental Lady

First recorded by Fleetwood Mac (1972).
Hit version by Bob Welch, writer (US #8 1977).

From the wiki: “Bob Welch joined Fleetwood Mac in 1971, and the group first recorded the Welch-penned ‘Sentimental Lady’ for their 1972 album Bare Trees. The song became a hit when Welch re-recorded it for his 1977 solo album, French Kiss. Christine McVie and Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac sang backup on Welch’s solo version. Many Fleetwood Mac aficionados cite the Fleetwood Mac’s original version as the first song to explicitly reference the softer, more commercial West Coast sound that the group would later make their own.

Black Magic Woman

Written by Peter Green and first recorded by Fleetwood Mac (UK #37 1968).
Other hit version by Santana (US #4/CAN #4/AUS #15/GER #14 1970).

From the wiki: “‘Black Magic Woman’ was written by Peter Green of Fleetwod Mac and appeared as a Fleetwood Mac single in various countries in 1968, peaking at #37 on the UK Singles chart; subsequently appearing on the 1969 Fleetwood Mac compilation albums English Rose (US) and The Pious Bird of Good Omen (UK).

“The song became a fairly popular Blues-Rock hit for Fleetwood Mac, being featured by the group in live set-lists even after Green had left the band, the lead often sung by Danny Kirwan. And, during concerts in the early 1970s, ‘Black Magic Woman’ would form the basis for long mid-concert Blues jams by Fleetwood Mac. The song would often be introduced by a band member reminding the audience that it was a Fleetwood Mac song before it became such a big hit for Santana.