Fleetwood Mac, Tango in the Night, 1987
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Welcome to the Room…Sara

Written by Stevie Nicks, “Welcome to the Room…Sara” is Track 9 on Tango in the Night (1987), Fleetwood Mac’s 14th studio album.

About the Song

Initially, Stevie kept the meaning of “Welcome to the Room…Sara” vague to the press. “‘Welcome to the Room…Sara’ is very much a secret kind of song,” she told Creem magazine in 1987. “Sara is from Tusk, that’s the same Sara we’re talking about — and she just has some experiences that she’s talking about. I don’t really want anyone to know whether I’m going into her room or she’s coming into mine, or what’s in the room. This room is an ominous room. I’m not Bob Dylan, but every once in a while I’ve gotta say something” (Kordosh, 1987).

But Mick Fleetwood revealed this secret three years later in his autobiography Fleetwood: My Life and Adventures in Fleetwood (1990). The song actually recounted Stevie’s 28-day stay at the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, CA, where she was treated for cocaine addiction. Stevie had used the pseudonym Sara Anderson to check into the facility. (Fleetwood, 1990, p. 272). Sara, was the title of her 1979 recording from Fleetwood Mac’s Tusk album and Anderson, the surname of her ex-husband.

In the song, Stevie referenced Irving Azoff and Howard Kaufman’s Frontline Management Group (“Frontline baby”), which had been managing her career at that point, or in Stevie’s words, “held her prisoner.” According to Mick, entering the Betty Ford Center was “an intervention by friends, members of her family, and the management company.” However, Stevie “didn’t like being coerced into this facility, and Frontline was fired shortly thereafter” (Fleetwood, 1990, p. 272).

Stevie drew inspiration from either Margaret Mitchell’s 1936 novel Gone with the Wind and/or its 1939 film adaptation, using the story’s main character Scarlett (O’Hara) and its Civil War-era cotton plantation setting of Tara (“It’s not home and it’s not Tara”) in the song’s lyrics.


It’s not home
And it’s not Tara
If fact do I know you
Have I been here before
This is a dream, right
Deja Vu
Did I come here on my own
Oh I see

Welcome to the room…Sara
For Scarlett
Welcome to the choir, sir

Well I will be different
When I get back
And you can take all of the credit
You say everything’s fine, baby
But sometimes at night

Where the first cut is the deepest one of all
And the second one
Well, it’s a worthless thing, so
Take it all the way back home
Take it home

Oh, downstairs where the big old house is mine
Oh, upstairs where the stars laugh and shine
Oh, oh well I thought that you were mine
Well I thought that you were mine

Welcome to the room…Sara…Sara (for Scarlett)
Welcome to the choir, sir
Well of course it was a problem (for Scarlett)
Front line baby

Well, you held her prisoner
And after all these years
Well as well as you knew her (welcome)
In the never forgotten words of another one of your friends

In the never forgotten words of another one of your friends, baby
When you hang up that phone
Well you cease to exist

Welcome to the room…Sara
Welcome to the room…everyone

(Stevie Nicks) © 1987 Welsh Witch Music (BMI) admin. by Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC


Fleetwood, M. & Davis, S. (1990). Fleetwood: my life and adventures in Fleetwood Mac. Morrow & Co., Inc.

Kordosh, J. (1987, September 1).  Fleetwood Mac return without leaving. Creem.

Mitchell, M. (1973). Gone with the wind. Avon.