Stevie Nicks performs at Gillette Stadium on 9/23/23.
Stevie Nicks performs at Gillette Stadium Saturday night. (Ben Stas / Boston Globe)

MUSIC REVIEW: Stevie Nicks, Billy Joel a powerhouse pop tandem at rainy Gillette

FOXBOROUGH — When the pugilistic pop composer Billy Joel and the bewitching singer-songwriter Stevie Nicks announced their joint tour earlier this year, it took a second for the pairing to click. Joel’s blend of classical training and punky New York attitude seem at odds with Nicks’s West Coast mystic visions, but the two share a theatricality — not to mention packed back catalogs — that made their show Saturday night at Gillette Stadium a top-to-bottom joyride.

Stevie Nicks played songs from her solo and Fleetwood Mac catalogs. (Ben Stas / Boston Globe)

The hit parade was a bit waterlogged, with rain falling steadily throughout the show. But the weather — which was also marked by decidedly autumnal temperatures — added a sense of drama to the proceedings while also proving that those filling the stadium were committed to seeing the whole night through. Nicks’s set spotlighted both her work with the tumultuous hitmakers Fleetwood Mac and her solo material, with a stunning extended run-through of the world-weary Mac track “Gold Dust Woman” and a fiery take on her grief-stricken solo hit “Edge of Seventeen.”

Mourning ran through the set, with Nicks’s former duet partner Tom Petty being paid tribute through versions of the tug-of-war duet “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” (with Joel more than ably handling what Nicks called “the argument part” of Petty’s vocal) and the modern American standard “Free Fallin’.” Her former bandmate Christine McVie, who passed away last November, was given the spotlight during Nicks’s set-closing version of the yearning Fleetwood Mac smash “Landslide.” That song and “Free Fallin’” have both become modern touchstones of American pop, and Nicks’s presentation of both showed how crucial she and her collaborators have been to the modern pop firmament.

Billy Joel at Gillette Stadium. (Ben Stas / Boston Globe.

Joel opened his set with a take on his 1978 outta-my-face anthem “My Life” that he blended into Ludwig van Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy,” which succinctly summed up at least one facet of his appeal. His musical chops straddle the old and new worlds; his piano playing, as evidenced by the frequent close-ups on his keyboard that blazed across the video screens, hasn’t missed a beat, and he can still hit the high note that marks the yearning title track from 1983′s street-corner-music homage “An Innocent Man.” He’s able to channel that talent and knowledge of pop into songs that speak from a perspective marked by hunger, whether it’s for basic respect from the system (the chugging “Allentown”), bridge-and-tunnel transcendence (the strivers’ anthem “Movin’ Out [Anthony’s Song]”), or something more carnal (the New Wave-y chronicle of frustration “Sometimes a Fantasy”). Joel’s been in music’s upper echelons for four-plus decades, but his wisecracking, fighting spirit still shines through — and his pop craftsmanship makes joining in via singing along even easier.

Maura Johnston can be reached at

Maura Johnston / Boston Globe / September 24, 2023

LIVE IN CONCERT (2023-2024)

Billy Joel and Stevie NicksStevie Nicks

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

February 10, 2024
Atlantic City, NJ

Mark G Etess Arena
On Sale Friday, September 29. 2023

February 14, 2024
Belmont Park, NY

UBS Arena
On Sale Friday, September 29. 2023

February 21, 2024
Greenville, SC

Bon Secours Wellness Arena
On Sale Friday, September 29. 2023

February 24, 2024
Hollywood, FL

Hard Rock Live ^
On Sale Friday, September 29. 2023

February 28, 2024
New Orleans, LA

Smoothie King Center
On Sale Friday, September 29. 2023

March 3, 2024
Omaha, NE

CHI Health Center
On Sale Friday, September 29. 2023

March 6, 2024 – North Little Rock, AR
Simmons Bank Arena
On Sale Friday, September 29. 2023

March 9, 2024 – BILLY JOEL
Arlington, TX
AT&T Stadium

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

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

Ak-Chin Pavilion

Phoenix, AZ
October 6, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

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


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

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

For What It’s Worth (2022)

Edge of Midnight (2020)

Beautiful People Beautiful Problems (2017)

New Release

Stevie Nicks, Stand Back 1981-2017, compilation