Stevie Nicks is many things: Goddess Of Rock, style icon, survivor, and today is her 64th Birthday. We could never hope to give her all of the proper respect she deserves, but here’s a small tribute to her legacy of cryptic lyrics, ethereal stage presence, and shawls.
So many shawls …
1. – “Landslide.” The greatest song ever written. Timeless, and one of the most covered songs of all time, from The Dixie Chicks to anyone learning the guitar … or performing drunken karaoke.
2. “Sisters Of The Moon” – Hands down the best track from Tusk, the chances that Stevie would write a song named “Sisters Of The Moon” were always pretty good.
3. “Gypsy” – One of the definitive Fleetwood Mac songs, and one of the greatest music videos ever made.
5.“Silver Spring” Such a beautiful song, it was originally supposed to be included on Rumours but was left off because there just wasn’t room for it (Stevie would later comment that the song’s exclusion from the album marked a growing tension in the band).
6. “Seven Wonders” – From Tango In The Night, it was Stevie’s biggest contribution to that album, and one of her most underrated songs.
7. Stevie’s 1994 album Street Angel was well, a disaster. It was recorded at the peak of her “troubles,” and it would become her least-selling and most critically maligned release. There were two bright spots, though. The first single “Maybe Love Will Change Your Mind” was a great pop gem … even if it did flop on the charts.
8. The second single “Blue Denim” did even worse, not even charting, but it became a concert favorite. Now let’s not mention Street Angel again.
10. “Sorcerer” – Originally a demo for Buckingham-Nicks, it ended up on the Streets Of Fire soundtrack, performed by the faboo Marilyn Martin. Stevie took her song about drug addiction out of the closet, and with able help from Sheryl Crow, made it one of the high points of her fantastic Trouble In Shangri-La.
11. The classic duet “Stop Dragging My Heart Around” – The first single from the greatest album of the 80’s was also her biggest hit outside of Mac.
12. How big was it? It was honored with a parody by the master himself.
14. “Stand Back” – With Prince on keyboard, Stevie’s first single from her second album became one of her signature songs.
15. “Whenever I Call You Friend” – Her first hit outside of Mac was this duet with Kenny Loggins, which pissed the hell out of co-writer Melissa Manchester.
16. “Every Day” – The first single from Trouble In Shangri-La was a great re-introduction to her unmistakable voice.
17. “Leather and Lace” – Originally written for Waylon Jennings and Jesse Colter, Stevie decided to record it with Don Henley, bringing her another top ten hit from Bella Donna.
18. “If Anyone Falls” – The second release from The Wild Heart, it’s my third favorite Stevie single.
20. Stevie’s commentary on the “Scarlett Version” of the “Stand Back” video. This was the first version of the video, and things … did not go well. Listening to her reminisce about the production problems is priceless.
21. “Has Anyone Ever Written Anything For You” – The last single from Rock A Little was written to Joe Walsh, and the story behind it is heartbreaking. – “I guess in a very few rare cases, some people find someone that they fall in love with the very first time they see them… from across the room, from a million miles away. Some people call it love at first sight, and of course, I never believed in that until that night I walked into a party after a gig at the hotel, and from across the room, without my glasses, I saw this man and I walked straight to him. He held out his hands to me, and I walked straight into them. I remember thinking, I can never be far from this person again … he is my soul. He seemed to be in a lot of pain, though hid it well. But finally, a few days later, (we were in Denver), he rented a jeep and drove me up into the snow covered hills of Colorado … for about 2 hours. He wouldn’t tell me where we were going, but he did tell me a story of a little daughter that he had lost. To Joe, she was much more than a child. She was three and a half, and she could relate to him.”
“I guess I had been complaining about a lot of things going on on the road, and he decided to make me aware of how unimportant my problems were if they were compared to worse sorrows. So he told me that he had taken his little girl to this magic park whenever he could, and the only thing she EVER complained about was that she was too little to reach up to the drinking fountain. As we drove up to this beautiful park, (it was snowing a little bit), he came around to open my door and help me down, and when I looked up, I saw the park… his baby’s park, and I burst into tears saying, ’You built a drinking fountain here for her, didn’t you?’ I was right, under a huge beautiful hanging tree, was a tiny silver drinking fountain. I left Joe to get to it, and on it, it said, dedicated to HER and all the others who were too small to get a drink.”
“So he wrote a song for her, and I wrote a song for him… ’This is your song, ’ I said to the people, but it was Joe’s song. Thank you, Joe, for the most committed song I ever wrote. But more than that, thank you for inspiring me in so may ways. Nothing in my life ever seems as dark anymore, since we took that drive.”
23. “Rooms On Fire” – First single from the underrated The Other Side Of The Mirror was her last top twenty hit, but still sparkles more than 20 years later.
24. “If You Ever Did Believe” – Well, who else could record the theme song for Practical Magic? She and Sheryl Crow always make a great team.
25. Her commentary on the video for “Edge Of Seventeen.” It’s a fascinating glimpse into the life of a Rock Goddess.
26. “Nightbird” – Third release from The Wild Heart is a perfect showcase for Stevie and longtime backup singer Sandy Stewart.
27. “Talk To Me” – First single from Rock A Little was actually her second biggest hit outside of Mac.
29. “Gold Dust Woman” – Take your silver spoon, and dig your grave. Does it get any better?
30. “Silent Night” The definitive version of this holiday standard, recorded for A Very Special Christmas.
31. “Sleeping Angel” – From Fast Times At Ridgemont High, this is one of my top ten Stevie songs. “Someday when we’re older, and my hair is silver gray, a braid with all of the love that you have, like a soft, silver chain.”
33. “Dreams” – Fleetwood Mac’s only #1 single, the crystal vision shows that it’s one of the most enduring songs of the 70’s.
34. And “Dreams” is still alive and well today, thanks to covers from the likes of out singer Matt Alber
36. She always does justice to the songs she covers, whether it’s The Dave Matthews Band …
37. Or old pal Tom Petty. “Free Fallin” is one of the greatest covers ever made.
38. “I Can’t Wait” – The second single from Rock A Little, this was Stevie at her big-haired, shoulder-padded, fabulous 80’s best.
39. The haunting “Moonlight: A Vampire’s Dream,” one of the best songs on In Your Dreams.
40. “Long Distance Winner” – Buckingham-Nicks gem that went unnoticed for years, it’s now a classic.
41.“Beautiful Child” – Gorgeous, haunting heartbreaker about a love that could never be.
43. “Storms” – Features some of Stevie’s most agonizing lyrics about her still-fresh breakup from whatsisface. “Every night that goes between, I feel a little less. As you slowly go away from me, this is only another test. Every night you do not come, your softness fades away. Did I ever really care that much, is there anything left to say.” It always leaves me a weepy mess.
44. “After The Glitter Fades” – Final single from her first album, it speaks volumes about the price you have to pay for success in Hollywood.
45.“Rhiannon” – One of her signature songs, it’s classic rock. “Dreams unwind, love’s a state of mind.” Below you can see the definitive version. From 5 minutes on it’s all goosebumps.
46. “Bella Donna” – Title track from the greatest album of the 80’s. Beautiful woman, indeed.
47. “Beaty & The Beast” – Raw and emotional, it’s one of the most gorgeous songs you’ll ever hear on the concert stage.
50.“Sara” – The biggest hit from the Mac album Tusk, it’s haunting and delicate.
51.“Blue Lamp” – From Heavy Metal, this is one of her best soundtrack offerings. “The Blue Lamp is a real Tiffany Lamp that uh, it was the first, right after I joined Fleetwood Mac, my Mom bought that lamp for me. So it was the first really beautiful thing that I got. And it was from her. And I ended up carrying it back from, from Phoenix to Los Angeles on the, on the plane and they didn’t want to let me on with this Blue Lamp, and I said, ’Well, well then you’re gonna have to run over me, ’cause we’re not going without the lamp.’
“So the Blue Lamp became like this, you know it, it uh, it still sits right in my living room in Phoenix. It’s like, it’s a beautiful lamp and people write songs about it and people walk in the house and say, ’Oh, that’s the Blue Lamp,’ like you just said, you know. So yeah, it really exists, it’s really a lamp.”
53. She has a great sense of humor, especially about herself.
54. And imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Please try the nachos.
55. She inspired an entire movie.
57. “Planets Of The Universe” – Originally a demo for Rumours, it became a number-one hit on the U.S. Hot Dance Club Play chart in August 2001, and earned her a Grammy nod.
58. “Battle Of The Dragon” – From the American Anthem soundtrack, another totally fabulous 80’s artifact.
59. She takes pretenders under her wing.
60. She came roaring back last year with the album In Your Dreams, and the first single “Secret Love,” which was a thirty-year old song that she dusted off.
61. The second single “For What It’s Worth” harkens back to Buckingham-Nicks with its simplicity.
62. The faithful make their annual journey to worship together.
63. – “Edge Of Seventeen” – My choice as the greatest song of the 80’s, it’s just as vital thirty years later … and so is she.
64. – Finally, If it wasn’t for Stevie Nicks … there would be no snicks. Then where would you be?
Okay, what are your fave Stevie songs?