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Stevie Nicks wild at heart

Stevie Nicks - In Your Dreams (2011)Stevie Nicks wild at heart: as the legendary singer-songwriter releases her first studio album in a decade, she opens up about her iconic fashion moments and rock-star life.

STEVIE NICKS is Team Edward all the way. Honestly, is it any surprise that the now-62-year-old gypsy queen of ’70s rock, singer for the epic band Fleetwood Mac, arbiter of romantic, Gothic style, and writer of magical songs about devastating heartbreak is a Twilight fan?

“I saw New Moon when I was on tour with Fleetwood Mac,” Nicks says, curled up under a white fur throw on an armchair in the Santa Monica condo she shares with her 12-year-old Yorkie, Sulamith. Through the floor-to-ceiling windows, the sun is setting over the Pacific, and with the room’s soft lighting–all chandeliers and crystals–and her elbow-length blonde hair cascading over her shoulders, it’s as if she’s been beamed down from classic-rock heaven. Nicks is an ageless creature, wearing a handful of gold chains with charms dangling over a navy silk dolman-sleeved top and black pants. Only when she puts on her glasses, an ombre-tinted pair of aviators, does she look her age. “When Bella just sat there in the window, crying for months because she thought she’d never see him again,” Nicks trails off, looking wistful about their vampire love. She’s had a Bella moment or two herself. “Its happened to me twice, when there was no explanation. It was just over.”

Stevie NicksNicks was so moved that she wrote a song about it, “Moonlight (a Vampire’s Dream).” And when she got home, she recorded her first studio album in 10 years, In Your Dreams, out this month. She worked on it with friend and producer Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics at her other L.A. home, a 1930s mansion, which became a sort of rock sorority house. “We’d have dinners for 12 every night. It was the best time of my life.” New friend Reese Witherspoon came over for a session and ended up naming a song, “Cheaper than Free.”

What is surprising, given Nicks’s deep and complicated history–an infamous struggle with drugs, several torrid affairs, and a unique style that’s inspired designers for almost 40 years now–is that she is so firmly rooted in the present. She’s as likely to mention Rihanna (she’s a fan) as her own song “Rhiannon.”

Fritz
Fritz, circa 1970

As the Fleetwood Mac story goes, Stephanie Lynn Nicks met Lindsey Buckingham at a high school party in 1966, joining him in a spontaneous duet of “California Dreamin’.” Two years later, Buckingham called her to see if she’d consider singing in his band, Fritz. They opened for legends like Jimi Hendrix and eventually became a couple. By the time Nicks was 23, they had broken off to become Buckingham Nicks. Then came a call from Mick Fleetwood.

Suddenly, Nicks was part of the main event, the frontwoman of a world-famous band, and she knew she needed to look the part. “I didn’t want to look like anyone else–like Janis Joplin or Grace Slick. That’s why I never went to any of the big designers. I drew a stick figure of what I dreamed up and gave it to my costume designer, Margi Kent, who I still work with. It was a handkerchief dress with a jacket, long, droopy chiffon sleeves, and velvet platform boots. I didn’t want to wear high heels,” she says. “That’s when it started.”

At the time, she also cut her own locks: “I’d take the top, measure it with my fin-gets, and chop it off. I did it pretty well.”

Stevie NicksWhen the band went to London, Nicks scoured the flea markets in Chelsea and on Portobello Road for Victorian lace–“the real deal,” she says. At five foot one, Nicks likes anything with volume that gives her more stage presence, like the endless shawls and scarves she spreads wide into wings. (Among the boxes packed for her spring tour, there’s a giant bin marked STEVIE’s SARIS.) And, along with the platforms, that iconic top hat added height. “I found a top hat at a thrift store in Buffalo, New York, on our first tour, and I loved it,” she says. “Now I have several. It really became part of my look.”

Over the years, Nicks’s singular style has inspired designers from Ralph Lauren to Anna Sui. “No one had done this look before,” explains Kent, her costume designer. “I remember I went on the road with them, and there were hundreds of Stevie look-alikes. Everyone wanted to look like her.”

Fleetwood Mac
(Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

Fleetwood Mac’s escapades with drugs and sex and the ever-present feuding that went along with them were as outrageous as everyone’s wardrobes. While the band was recording its Grammy-winning 1977 album, Rumours, Nicks broke up with Buckingham. She went on to sleep with two of the Eagles (first Don Henley, then Joe Walsh, in the ’80s) and have an affair with the then-married Fleetwood–who broke her heart when he ran off with her best friend, model Sara Recor. But while one would think that Nicks has her share of party stories, the way she tells it, the lives of female rock stars at the time were “very cloistered” compared with the dudes in the band. “Christine [McVie] and I didn’t go out. We didn’t pick up guys,” remembers Nicks. “We’d hang out, play cards, and watch movies. It wasn’t that much fun.”

Back at home, it was a different story. Even while she was touring, recording, and launching a solo career, Nicks got heavily involved with drugs. “I watch interviews from the early years of Fleetwood Mac and I’m so, like, out there,” she says. “I think, ‘God, could you have just laid off the blow for an hour? Because this is not attractive. You sound like an idiot.”‘

Fleetwood Mac
Bill Clinton Inaugural Ball, January 1993

Despite her escalating addiction, Nicks managed to record three solo albums and several Top 10 hits, including a duet with Tom Petty and a collaboration with Prince. “I saved the dress I wore to the Purple Rain premiere. a vintage white beaded dress,” says Nicks, who keeps all her costumes archived in a temperature-controlled room. “Prince and I were just friends. I think he would have been happy to have had a relationship. But I really wanted a musical relationship, and I had smartened up, even then. You’ll break up and never speak again. But he wasn’t interested in just that.”

In 1986, she found herself too strung out to keep up with her busy schedule. She checked herself into the Betty Fold Center to kick her cocaine addiction. But in the process of beating one drug, a doctor prescribed another; Klonopin. “It took my soul,” she says. “It was worse than brandy, coke, pot, and cigarettes combined. I had no energy. I lost my fire. I’d perform now and then, but mostly I sat on the couch, watched TV, and ordered Jerry’s Deli.”

By the time president-elect Bill Clinton called to ask Fleetwood Mac to perform “Don’t Stop” at the 1993 inauguration, she was fully addicted and 175 pounds. But she couldn’t say no. Finally, in 1994, she’d had enough and entered rehab again. “My hair turned gray. My skin molted, just fell off,” she says. “But I did it.”

Stevie NicksLately, Nicks has been spending time with a cleaner-cut group. She sang a duet with Taylor Swift at the 2010 Grammys. “I didn’t want to do it,” she says. “I didn’t want to stand next to her, at 5 foot 11 and 100 pounds, and be broadcast to 50 million people. But she wouldn’t hear it. She had a plan.” And recently, Nicks showed up on the set of Fox’s Glee to see Gwyneth Paltrow perform “Landslide.”

“Lea Michele told me I was the only one, out of all the big, old songs they’d performed, who’d come to the studio or even called to say they liked it,” says Nicks. “Those kids are spectacular.”

Stevie Nicks and Rod Stewart (Donald Kravitz/Ethan Miller)
Stevie Nicks and Rod Stewart (Donald Kravitz/Ethan Miller)

The night after this interview, at her last rehearsal before her tour with Rod Stewart, Nicks is in her element, standing in front of a microphone draped with scarves and rhinestones. “The Glee album with Gwyneth’s ‘Landslide’ just hit number one,” she announces to the friends who have gathered. There are a few grumbles. “Ka-ching, ka-ching” she says. “I don’t care who sings it. As long as they keep singing it.”

Nicks is still a commanding presence, belting out “Stand Back” better than women half her age. And despite the hard living, she looks nothing like some other rickety relics of rock’s golden age. She attributes this to one of the better decisions she made in her drama-fueled life: “Smoking is what destroys your skin. I didn’t smoke,” she says, flashing a sly grin. “I did everything else.”

Christine Lennon / Harper’s Bazaar (p. 151) / May 2011

stevienicks

LIVE IN CONCERT (2023-2024)

Billy Joel and Stevie NicksStevie Nicks

FEB 10, 2024
Mark G Etess Arena
Atlantic City, NJ

FEB 14, 2024
UBS Arena
Belmont Park, NY

FEB 17, 2024
CFG Bank Arena
Baltimore, MD

FEB 21, 2024
Bon Secours Wellness Arena
Greenville, SC

FEB 24, 2024
Hard Rock Live
Hollywood, FL

FEB 28, 2024
Smoothie King Center
New Orleans, LA
TICKETS

MAR 3, 2024
CHI Health Center
Omaha, NE
TICKETS

MAR 6, 2024
Simmons Bank Arena
North Little Rock, AR
TICKETS

MAR 9, 2024
AT&T Stadium
Arlington, TX
Billy Joel
TICKETS

MAY 3, 2024 – MAY 5, 2024
Lovin’ Life Fest
Charlotte, NC
TICKETS

MAY 7, 2024
Enterprise Center
St Louis, MO
TICKETS

MAY 10, 2024
WinStar World Casino & Resort
Thackerville, OK
TICKETS

MAY 14, 2024
Bridgestone Arena
Nashville, TN
TICKETS

MAY 18, 2024
Frost Bank Center
San Antonio, TX
TICKETS

MAY 21, 2024
Yaamava’ Resort & Casino – Yaamava’ Theater
Highland, CA
TICKETS

MAY 24, 2024
BottleRock Napa Valley
Napa, CA
TICKETS

MAY 27, 2024
Delta Center
Salt Lake City, UT
TICKETS

MAY 30, 2024
Ball Arena
Denver, CO
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JUN 4
Gainbridge Fieldhouse
Indianapolis, IN
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JUN 9 
Mohegan Sun Casino
Uncasville, CT
TICKETS

JUN 12
MVP Arena
Albany, NY
TICKETS

JUN 15 
Hersheypark Stadium
Hershey, PA
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JUN 18
Van Andel Arena
Grand Rapids, MI
TICKETS

JUN 21, 2024
Soldier Field
Chicago, IL
TICKETS

Two Icons One Night presented by Live Nation
^ Non-Live Nation show


Previous 2023 dates

March 10, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Los Angeles, CA
SoFi Stadium

March 15, 2023
Seattle, WA
Climate Pledge Arena

March 18, 2023
Las Vegas, NV
T-Mobile Arena

May 12, 2023
Raleigh, NC
PNC Arena

May 16, 2023
Knoxville, TN
Thompson-Boling Arena

May 19, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Nashville, TN
Nissan Stadium

May 22, 2023
Atlanta, GA
State Farm Arena

May 25, 2023
Orlando, FL
Amway Center

June 16, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Philadelphia, PA
Lincoln Financial Field

June 20, 2023
Toronto, ON (Canada)
Scotiabank Arena

June 23, 2023
Chicago, IL
United Center

June 27, 2023
Louisville, KY
KFC Yum! Center

August 5, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Columbus, OH
Ohio Stadium

August 8, 2023
Milwaukee, WI
Fiserv Forum

August 12, 2023
Houston, TX
Toyota Center

August 15, 2023
Austin, TX
Moody Center

August 19, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Kansas City, MO
Arrowhead Stadium

September 23, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Foxborough, MA
Gillette Stadium

September 27, 2023
Pittsburgh, PA
PPG Paints Arena

October 1, 2023
New York, NY
Madison Square Garden

October 4, 2023
Buffalo, NY
KeyBank Center

October 7, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Baltimore, MD 
M&T Bank Stadium

October 28, 2023
Memphis, TN
FedEx Forum

November 1, 2023
Savannah, GA
Enmarket Arena

November 4, 2023
Allentown, PA
PPL Center

November 7, 2023
Detroit, MI
Little Caesars Arena

November 10, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Minneapolis, MN
U.S. Bank Stadium

November 29, 2023
San Diego, CA
Viejas Arena

December 2, 2023
Inglewood, CA
The Kia Forum

December 5, 2023
Palm Desert, CA
Acisure Arena

December  8, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Phoenix, AZ
Chase Field

December 12, 2023
Sacramento, CA
Golden 1 Center

December 15, 2023
San Francisco, CA
Chase Center



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
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Maine Savings Amphitheatre
Bangor, ME
September 22, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Sound on Sound Festival
Bridgeport, CT
September 24-25, 2022

Ohana Festival
Dana Point, CA
September 30, 2022

Hollywood Bowl
Los Angeles, CA
October 3, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

POSTPONED
Ak-Chin Pavilion

Phoenix, AZ
October 6, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

POSTPONED
Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

The Woodlands, TX
October 9, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Ameris Bank Amphitheatre
Alpharetta, GA
October 12, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Ascend Amphitheater
Nashville, TN
October 16, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Credit One Stadium
Charleston, SC
October 19, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

PNC Music Pavilion
Charlotte, NC
October 22, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre
Tampa, FL
October 25, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre
West Palm Beach, FL
October 28, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Orion Amphitheatre
Huntsville, AL
October 31, 2022

RESCHEDULED SHOWS

Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
The Woodlands, TX
November 2, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Ak-Chin Pavilion
Phoenix, AZ
November 5, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton