On this day in music history: October 12, 1979…

On this day in music history: October 12, 1979 – “Tusk”, the twelfth album by Fleetwood Mac is released. Produced by Fleetwood Mac, Ken Caillat and Richard Dashut, it is recorded at The Village Recorder and Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, CA from Mid 1978 – Mid 1979. Issued as the highly anticipated follow up to the multi-million selling “Rumours”, the sprawling twenty track double LP set costs over $1 million to record with the band spending more than a year in the studio. With Lindsey Buckingham’s musical interests turning toward punk rock and new wave, he has a strong influence over the work in progress. It receives largely mixed reviews from critics and fans bewildered by the largely experimental nature of the record, and put off by the high retail list price ($15.98) affect album sales. Sales of the album are also hurt by large numbers of people recording it off the air when the RKO radio network previews the album in its entirety prior to its release. It ends up selling about one fifth of the ten million copies that “Rumours” had sold to that date. In later years, “Tusk” is re-evaluated and receives greater appreciation for its musical invention, and willingness to push boundaries. It spins off three singles including “Sara” (#7 Pop) and the title track (#8 Pop). Fleetwood Mac tours the world extensively in support of the album, spending eighteen months on the road, and releasing a double live album (“Fleetwood Mac Live”) taken from the tour in December of 1980. When “Tusk” is originally released on CD in the mid 80’s, it features the edited single version of “Sara” instead of the full 6:22 LP version. This is done since the album runs over the original seventy four minute time limit set for a single CD. The full version makes its CD debut in 1988 on “Fleetwood Mac’s Greatest Hits” (the 2002 “Very Best Of Fleetwood Mac” set), and is restored to the original album when it is remastered in 2004. The 2004 reissue also includes a bonus CD featuring demos, alternate takes and previously unreleased tracks. The original twenty track album is reissued on vinyl by Warner Bros’ Rhino Records reissue division in 2012. It is also reissued as a sprawling Super Deluxe box set in 2015. The set includes five CD’s with remastered versions of the original album, outtakes, live tracks, single mixes and edits, and DVD-A disc with new 5.1 surround mixes and high definition audio of the stereo mix. Also included is the remastered double vinyl LP. An another version of the album featuring the alternate outtakes, from the 2015 five CD deluxe edition is released as a limited double vinyl album titled “The Alternate Tusk” for Record Store Day in April of 2016. “Tusk” peaks at number four on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 2x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.