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The Pious Bird of Good Omen
Compilation album by
Released15 August 1969
RecordedSeptember 1967, January–April & October 1968
Genre Blues rock
Label Blue Horizon
Producer Mike Vernon
Fleetwood Mac albums chronology
Mr. Wonderful
The Pious Bird of Good Omen
Then Play On
Fleetwood Mac chronology
English Rose
The Pious Bird of Good Omen
Black Magic Woman
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic [1]
Blender [2]
The New Rolling Stone Album Guide [3]

The Pious Bird of Good Omen is a compilation album by the British blues rock band Fleetwood Mac, released in 1969. It consists of their first four non-album UK singles and their B-sides, one track from their first album Fleetwood Mac, two tracks from their second album Mr. Wonderful, and two tracks by the blues artist Eddie Boyd with backing by members of Fleetwood Mac. These came from Boyd's album 7936 South Rhodes.

The title of the album is a phrase found in an 1817 gloss (marginal note) to Samuel Taylor Coleridge's 1798 epic poem The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. The phrase refers to the albatross killed in the poem ("The ancient Mariner inhospitably killeth the pious bird of good omen"). Its use as an album title as well as the album art is a sly wink to the featuring of the band's number 1 UK hit " Albatross".

The Pious Bird of Good Omen was not released in the US. The closest US equivalent is the English Rose compilation album, released in December 1968 and sharing four songs with Pious Bird.

In 2002, the album was repackaged by Sony BMG as Greatest Hits with cover art very closely resembling the 1971 Greatest Hits album, and with " Shake Your Moneymaker" and "Love That Burns" added to the track listing. In 2004, when Fleetwood Mac's Blue Horizon era albums were remastered, Pious Bird was reconfigured to remove tracks from the previous two Mac albums and the Boyd tracks, which were replaced by archival recordings from the 1967 and 1968 period.


Reaction to the album has been highly positive. It was described as "excellent" by the Rolling Stone Album Guide. [3] TeamRock ranked the album in the "20 Greatest Blues Albums: 1967-70". [4]

Track listing

Side one
1." Need Your Love So Bad" Little Willie John, Mertis John Jr. [5]3:50
2."Comin' Home" Elmore James2:38
3."Rambling Pony" Peter Green2:40
4."The Big Boat" (with Eddie Boyd)Eddie Boyd2:35
5." I Believe My Time Ain't Long"James2:55
6."The Sun Is Shining"James3:10
Side two
1." Albatross"Green3:10
2." Black Magic Woman"Green2:46
3."Just the Blues" (with Eddie Boyd)Boyd5:35
4."Jigsaw Puzzle Blues" Danny Kirwan1:33
5."Looking for Somebody"Green2:50
6." Stop Messin' Round" Clifford Adams, Green2:18

2004 release

1."Need Your Love So Bad – Version No. 2 (Remake)" (Take 4 – complete master version/remix*)John, John Jr.6:55
2."Rambling Pony" (Complete master version/remix*)Green3:32
3."I Believe My Time Ain't Long" (Master version with studio talk/remix*) Elmore James3:01
4."The Sun Is Shining"James3:10
6."Black Magic Woman"Green2:51
7."Jigsaw Puzzle Blues"Kirwan1:33
8."Like Crying" (*)Kirwan2:29
9."Need Your Love So Bad – Version No. 1" (Take 1 – false start*, take 2 – incomplete* and take 3*)John, John Jr.11:33
10."Need Your Love So Bad – Version No. 2 (Remake)" (Take 1* and take 2*)John, John Jr.13:06
11."Need Your Love So Bad – Version No. 2 (Remake)" (Take 3*)John, John Jr.6:18
12."Need Your Love So Bad – USA Version" (*)John, John Jr.6:18
* Bonus track


Fleetwood Mac

  • Peter Green – vocals, guitar, harmonica
  • Jeremy Spencer – vocals, slide guitar, piano
  • Danny Kirwan – vocals, electric guitar (on side 2, tracks 1 and 4)
  • John McVie – bass guitar
  • Mick Fleetwood – drums

Additional musicians

  • Eddie Boyd – vocals, piano (on side 1, track 4 and side 2, track 3)

Technical staff

2004 release

Fleetwood Mac

  • Peter Green – vocals (except on tracks 3, 4, 5, and 7), guitar (except on tracks 3 and 4), harmonica (on tracks 2 and 3)
  • Jeremy Spencer – vocals (on tracks 3 and 4), guitar (on tracks 3 and 4), piano (on track 4)
  • Danny Kirwan – vocals (on track 8), guitar (on track 5, 7, and 8)
  • John McVie – bass guitar (except on track 2, 3, and 8)
  • Mick Fleetwood – drums (except on track 8)
  • Bob Brunning – bass guitar (on track 3)

Additional musicians

Technical staff

  • Mike Vernon – producer
  • Mike Ross – engineer


Chart performance for The Pious Bird of Good Omen
Chart (1969) Peak
UK Albums ( OCC) [6] 18


  1. ^ Gifford, Barry (10 August 1968). "Records". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2 October 2013.
  2. ^ "Blender :: Guide". Archived from the original on 26 November 2005. Retrieved 17 January 2022.
  3. ^ a b Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian David (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon and Schuster. ISBN  9780743201698. Retrieved 2 July 2017.
  4. ^ "The 20 Greatest British Blues Albums: 1967 – 1970 - Blues". Teamrock. 18 July 2016. Retrieved 2 July 2017.
  5. ^ "Need Your Love So Bad (Legal Title)". BMI. Archived from the original on 30 January 2016. Retrieved 22 April 2011. Credited on the album to Little Willie John, but in fact written by both brothers.
  6. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 23 December 2022.