Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Stevie Nicks fits in all the right grooves

Stevie Nicks fits in all the right grooves; Colvin keeps opener short, sweet

06/17/2008, 9:15 am
By Andy Argyrakis
The Daily Journal correspondent

CHICAGO -- She may have first found fame through Fleetwood Mac, but after the opening synthesizer and cymbal crashes of "Stand Back" Saturday night at the lakefront's breathtaking Charter One Pavilion, Stevie Nicks showed her solo star is burning brightly.

Last year, she released the retrospective "Crystal Visions" and, Sept. 9, PBS' "Soundstage" will present a television special that will also hit CD and DVD.

Saturday, her seven-piece band and three background singers demonstrated over two hours, that there was plenty to celebrate beyond a catalogue crammed with hits. Fleetwood Mac's "Dreams" showcased her 1970s soft pop roots, while the keyboard drenched "If Anyone Falls In Love" was steeped in shimmering '80s-style production.

But Nicks wasn't afraid to try contemporary style, putting her sultry stamp on the Dave Matthews' "Crash." She also gave a rugged interpretation to Bob Seger's 2006 track "Face the Promise."

Nicks also dusted off the mystical "Sorcerer," which was co-written with Mac mate Lindsey Buckingham a year before they joined the band. The group's "Landslide," showcased the lacier side of her vocal register, while a psychedelic stab at Led Zeppelin's "Rock and Roll" was leather all the way.

Amidst the highlight reel, Nicks squelched some of her momentum by changing outfits or shawls several times, leaving her band to stall with instrumental solos. One of the more patience-trying moments came from a five-minute percussion rant leading up to the infamous "Edge of Seventeen."

Shawn Colvin

Opener Shawn Colvin was a stark contrast to Nicks given her acoustic framework and introspective storytelling, which included a reference to her time at college in Carbondale. The veteran troubadour demonstrated a folk undercurrent (think Emmylou Harris), while also addressing her pop side via 1998's double Grammy Award-winning "Sunny Came Home."

Yet the tunesmith made sure to keep her set short and to the point, admitting how excited she was to see Nicks.

Andy Argyrakis is a Chicago based writer/photographer. E-mail him at andy@andyargyrakis.com">andy@andyargyrakis.com.

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