2015 was another busy year for Stevie and the members of Fleetwood Mac. The ON WITH THE SHOW TOUR was front and center, but Stevie made headlines of her own throughout the year. Here is a recap of some of the year’s biggest moments for the band.
Following her surprise New Year’s Eve appearance at a Deer Tick concert in Brooklyn a few weeks earlier, Stevie treated fans to another surprise — an unexpected acoustic performance of “Gypsy” and “Blue Water”! Rolling Stone hosted the performance in honor of Stevie appearing solo on the cover of its magazine for the first time since 1981.
Fleetwood Mac kicked off Leg 2 of the ON WITH THE SHOW TOUR, making another round of the U.S. and Canada.
Just a few shows into the second leg of the tour, Mick Fleetwood fell ill after a show in Nebraska. It appeared to be the stomach flu. Fortunately, Mick recovered quickly and the band was back in business.
In February, Rumours turned 38, still aging gracefully with each passing year.
Stevie graced the cover of Rolling Stone Australia. The editors went retro for the cover, opting for a ’70s-era photo by Sam Emerson. The US version of the magazine, released in January (RS1227), featured a newer photo by Peggy Sirota.
As Leg 2 of Fleetwood Mac’s insanely lucrative ON WITH THE SHOW TOUR was ending, Warner Bros. took advantage of the moment by reissuing Stevie’s 2007 release Crystal Visions…The Very Best of Stevie Nicks on clear double vinyl, with a large poster and a handy-dandy vinyl messenger bag.
LIFE featured Fleetwood Mac in a collector’s edition. Despite the great exposure (for already overexposed album!), the feature met with some controversy, namely from Rumours co-producers Ken Caillat and Richard Dashut who questioned the merits of the piece. Most fans know that the album couldn’t have been made without their studio craftsmanship, so don’t sweat it, boys!
Between tour legs, Lindsey Buckingham paid a visit to USC, whose world-renown marching band helped make
his Fleetwood Mac’s iconic “Tusk” legendary…and the focal point of every college football game’s half-time show! Linds performed his acoustic classics before aspiring student entrepreneurs and encouraged the kids to make a big splash, creatively speaking.
Age-defying Miss Nicks turned 67 in May. People have longed marveled at the seemingly ageless woman with flawless skin, but Stevie’s night-owl schedule, free of those damaging UV rays, is largely to credit. (La Mer skin care products help out, too.)
Fleetwood Mac kicked off Leg 3 of their ON WITH THE SHOW TOUR in May, a day after Stevie’s 67th birthday. Celebrities such as Adele and Florence Welch (of Florence and the Machine) attended the European opener, later taking to Twitter to gush about meeting Stevie. (She seems to have that effect on people.)
In June, Fleetwood Mac performed at the Isle of Wight, England’s largest and most famous music festival of nearly 60,000 attendees. The barrage of hits caused a drunk sing-along among the sea of fans, which spanned kilometers!
As expected, Fleetwood Mac made Forbes’ coveted list of the World’s Highest-Paid Celebrities, ranking at #24 with a whopping paycheck of $59.5 million. Stevie and Christine were the third highest-paid women in music, behind Katy Perry (#1) and Taylor Swift (#2).
Fleetwood Mac ended Leg 3 of the ON WITH THE SHOW TOUR in Dublin, where the seeds of Christine McVie’s return to Fleetwood Mac were planted in 2013.
Fleetwood Mac’s music continued to reach new audiences with this Watkins Family Hour cover of “Steal Your Heart Away” from Mac’s 2003 album Say You Will. Not bad for a band you’ve probably never heard of.
Stevie Nicks ranked No. 53 on Rolling Stone‘s list of 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time. Some fans felt the prolific songwriter should have been ranked higher on the list, but considering the magazine once described her second solo album The Wild Heart as an “outright catastrophe” and her singing as “inchoate ramblings,” it’s a sheer miracle she’s on the list at all! By the way, that disparaging assessment of this two-million seller that produced the monster hit “Stand Back,” is curiously omitted from Rolling Stones‘ online album review archive. Editor’s remorse? Karma? Who knows? But you can read the full critical takedown here.
Thirty-four years after they released “Leather and Lace,” Don Henley and Stevie Nicks reunited for a tender new ballad called “It Don’t Matter to the Sun.” Even if the two are no longer “lovers forever,” they still know how to tug at those heart strings.
Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley made headlines in 2015 by announcing his plans to record a solo album. Leaving a supergroup to do your own thing? Having done it herself, Stevie might have a few things to say about this subject, like “Let me sing on your record!” (Stevie will be providing harmony vocals on Kelley’s cover of Tom Petty’s “Southern Accents.”)
If showing up unexpectedly at a Los Angeles Foo Fighters’ concert to perform two of your own songs wasn’t shocking enough, what Stevie did toward the end of “Gold Dust Woman” will have you in jaw-dropping disbelief. The impromptu moment showed that even Stevie, who rarely strays far from her stage routine, could be spontaneous.
In October, Fleetwood Mac finally made its way to Australia after cancelling a planned tour in 2013 due to bassist John McVie’s cancer scare. Fortunately, McVie recovered and the band was ready to rock fans Down Under. The opening shows in Sydney were blockbusters, catapulting the band into the top spot on Billboard Boxscore, with gross sales exceeding $5.4 million.
After a staggering 150 shows, most of which were sold out, Fleetwood Mac ended the ON WITH THE SHOW TOUR in the beautiful city of Auckland. For most Australasian fans, it was the wind…the rain…the water! that they had to contend with in order to see their heroes in action. Despite the elements, which often made for a soggy concert experience, most fans would probably say it was all worth it. #BucketList Fleetwood Mac closed out the year at No. 6 on Pollstar’s Year End Top 20 Worldwide Tours, with total gross sales of $125.1 million.
Rock a Little was kind of Stevie’s Tusk…big, brash, and a bit all over the place. It also represented everything The Big ’80s could serve up…drum machines, synthesizers, and power ballads. So how does it stand 30 years later?
On December 4, Fleetwood Mac’s most unusual album Tusk got the deluxe treatment, augmented with elaborately reissued editions. Getting the DVD-Audio mix of the album, the track-by-track analysis, and The Alternate Tusk impressed even the most jaded Fleetwood Mac fans.
Never ones to stay at home for long, Stevie and Mick attended the star-studded Broadway premiere of School of Rock in New York. The two megastars schmoozed with the likes of Sting, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Helen Mirren. Mick’s uber-cute twin daughters Ruby and Tess were there too!
Both Mick and Lindsey have been fanning the flames of a possible new Fleetwood Mac album for the past two years. It was clear that Stevie was the lone hold-out, or so it seemed. But now she appears to be on board, if what she told an interviewer at the School of Rock Broadway premiere is accurate.
Though it was an awkward pairing, The Voice judge Gwen Stefani and contestant Jeffery Austin did their best to cover Stevie and Don Henley’s classic duet “Leather and Lace” for the live finale. By the end, you didn’t quite get the sense that Gwen and Jeffery were “lovers forever,” but maybe “pals for a while.”