Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Christine McVie, Fleetwood Mac's biggest hitmaker dies, she was 79

Christine McVie, Hitmaker for Fleetwood Mac, Is Dead at 79
As a singer, songwriter and keyboardist, she was a prolific force behind one of the most popular rock bands of the last 50 years.

By Jim Farber
Nov. 30, 2022

Christine McVie, the singer, songwriter and keyboardist who became the biggest hitmaker for Fleetwood Mac, one of music’s most popular bands, died on Wednesday, November 30th. She was 79.

Her family announced her death on Facebook. The statement said she died at a hospital but did not specify its location or give the cause of death. In June, Ms. McVie told Rolling Stone that she was in “quite bad health” and that she had endured debilitating problems with her back.

Ms. McVie’s commercial potency, which hit a high point in the 1970s and ’80s, was on full display on Fleetwood Mac’s “Greatest Hits” anthology, released in 1988, which sold more than eight million copies: She either wrote or co-wrote half of its 16 tracks. Her tally doubled that of the next most prolific member of the band’s trio of singer-songwriters, Stevie Nicks. (The third, Lindsey Buckingham, scored three major Billboard chart-makers on that collection.)

The most popular songs Ms. McVie wrote favored bouncing beats and lively melodies, numbers like “Say You Love Me” (which grazed Billboard’s Top 10), “You Make Loving Fun” (which just broke it), “Hold Me” (No. 4) and “Don’t Stop” (her top smash, which crested at No. 3). But she could also connect with elegant ballads, like “Over My Head” (No. 20) and “Little Lies” (which cracked the publication’s Top Five in 1987).

All those songs had cleanly defined, easily sung melodies, with hints of soul and blues at the core. Her compositions had a simplicity that mirrored their construction. “I don’t struggle over my songs,” Ms. McVie (pronounced mc-VEE) told Rolling Stone in 1977. “I write them quickly.”

In just half an hour, she wrote one of the band’s most beloved songs, “Songbird,” a sensitive ballad that for years served as the band’s closing encore in concert. In 2019, the band’s leader, Mick Fleetwood, told New Musical Express that “Songbird” is the piece he wanted played at his funeral, “to send me off fluttering.”

Ms. McVie’s lyrics often captured the more intoxicating aspects of romance. “I’m definitely not a pessimist,” she told Bob Brunning, the author of the 2004 book “The Fleetwood Mac Story: Rumours and Lies.” “I’m basically a love song writer.”

At the same time, her words accounted for the yearning and disappointments that can lurk below an exciting surface. “I’m good at pathos,” she told Mojo magazine in 2017. “I write about romantic despair a lot, but with a positive spin.”

‘That Chemistry’
Ms. McVie’s vocals communicated just as nuanced a range of feeling. Her soulful contralto could sound by turns maternally wise and sexually alive. Her tawny tone had the heady effect of a bourbon with a rich bouquet and a smooth finish. It found a graceful place in harmony with the voices of Ms. Nicks and Mr. Buckingham, together forming a signature Fleetwood Mac sound.

“It was that chemistry,” she told Mojo. “The two of them just chirped into the perfect three-way harmony. I just remember thinking, ‘This is it!’”

A sturdy instrumentalist, Ms. McVie played a range of keyboards, often leaning toward the soulful sound of a Hammond B3 organ and the formality of a Yamaha grand piano.

With Fleetwood Mac, she earned five gold, one platinum and seven multiplatinum albums. The band’s biggest success, “Rumours,” released in 1977, was one of the mightiest movers in pop history: It was certified double diamond, representing sales of over 20 million copies.

In 1998, Ms. McVie was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame along with various lineups of Fleetwood Mac, reflecting the frequent (and dramatic) personnel shifts the band experienced throughout its labyrinthine history. Ms. McVie served in incarnations that dated to 1971, but she also had uncredited roles playing keyboards and singing backup as far back as the band’s second album, released in 1968. Before joining Fleetwood Mac, she scored a No. 14 British hit with the blues band Chicken Shack on a cover of Etta James’s “I’d Rather Go Blind” for which she sang lead.

Christine Anne Perfect was born on July 12, 1943, in the Lake District of England to Cyril Perfect, a classical violinist and college music professor and Beatrice (Reece) Perfect, a psychic.

Her father encouraged her to start taking classical piano lessons when she was 11. Her focus changed radically four years later when she came across some sheet music for Fats Domino songs. At that moment, she told Rolling Stone in 1984, “It was goodbye Chopin.”

“I started playing the boogie bass,” she told Mojo. “I got hooked on the blues. Even today, the songs I write use that left hand. It’s rooted in the blues.”

Ms. McVie studied sculpture at Birmingham Art College and for a while considered becoming an art teacher. At the same time, she briefly played in a duo with Spencer Davis, who, along with a teenage Steve Winwood, would later find fame in the Spencer Davis Group. She helped form a band named Shades of Blue with several future members of Chicken Shack.

After graduating from college in 1966, Ms. McVie moved to London and became a window dresser for a department store. One year later, she was asked to join the already formed Chicken Shack as keyboardist and sometime singer. She wrote two songs for the band’s debut album, “40 Blue Fingers, Freshly Packed and Ready to Serve.”

She was twice voted best female vocalist in a Melody Maker readers’ poll, but she left the band in 1969 after marrying John McVie, the bassist in Fleetwood Mac, which had been formed in 1967 and had already recorded three albums. That same year, she recorded a solo album, “The Legendary Christine Perfect Album,” which she later described to Rolling Stone as “so wimpy.”

“I just hate to listen to it,” she said.

Joining the Band
Her disappointment in that record, combined with her reluctance to perform, caused Ms. McVie to put music aside for a time. But, in 1970, when Fleetwood Mac’s main draw, the guitarist Peter Green, suddenly quit the band after a ruinous acid trip, Mick Fleetwood invited her to fill out their ranks.

Initially, she found the invitation to join her favorite band “a nerve-racking experience,” she told Rolling Stone. But she rose to the occasion by writing two of the catchiest songs on her first official release with the band, “Future Games” (1971). That release found the band leaning away from British blues and toward progressive Southern Californian folk-rock, aided by the addition of an American player, the singer, songwriter and guitarist Bob Welch.

The band fine-tuned that sound on its 1972 set “Bare Trees,” which sold better and featured one of Ms. McVie’s most soulful songs, “Spare Me a Little of Your Love.” The band’s 1973 release, “Penguin,” went gold. The next collection, “Heroes Are Hard to Find,” was the band’s first to crack the U.S. Top 40. But it was only after the departure of Mr. Welch and the hiring of the romantically involved team of Ms. Nicks and Mr. Buckingham, for the 1975 album simply called “Fleetwood Mac,” that the band began to show its full commercial brio.

Ms. McVie‘s song “Over My Head” began the groundswell by entering Billboard’s Top 20; her “Say You Love Me,” reached No. 11. After a slow buildup, the “Fleetwood Mac” album eventually hit Billboard’s summit.

Just over a year and a half later, the group released “Rumours,” which generated outsize interest not only for its four Top 10 hits (two of them written by Ms. McVie) but also for several highly dramatic behind-the-scenes events within the band’s ranks, which they aired out in the lyrics and openly discussed in the press.

During the creation of the album, the two couples in the band — Ms. Nicks and Mr. Buckingham and the married McVies — broke up. Ms. McVie’s song “You Make Loving Fun” celebrated an affair she was then having with the band’s lighting director. (At first, she told Mr. McVie that the song was about her dog.) The optimistic-sounding “Don’t Stop” was intended to point her ex-husband toward a new life without her.

“We wrote those songs despite ourselves,” Ms. McVie told Mojo. “It was a therapeutic move. The only way we could get this stuff out was to say it, and it came out in a way that was difficult. Imagine trying to sing those songs onstage with the people you’re singing them about.”

It helped dull the pain, she told Mojo, that “we were all very high,” adding, “I don’t think there was a sober day.” And the album’s megasuccess gave the members a different high. “The buzz of realizing you’ve written one of the best albums ever written; it was such a phenomenal time,” Ms. McVie told Attitude magazine in 2019.

But the group yearned to stretch creatively. The result was the less commercial sound of the double-album follow-up, “Tusk,” released in 1979. Though not a success on anything near the scale of “Rumours,” it sold more than two million copies and produced three hits, including Ms. McVie’s “Think About Me.”

Into the ’80s
The group moved smoothly into the new decade with the 1982 release “Mirage,” which hit No. 1 aided by Ms. McVie’s “Hold Me,” a Top Five hit that was inspired by her tumultuous relationship with the Beach Boys’ Dennis Wilson. Two years later, Ms. McVie issued a solo album that made the Top 30, while its strongest single, “Got a Hold on Me,” broke the Top 10.

In 1987, the reconvened Fleetwood Mac issued “Tango in the Night,” which featured two hits written by Ms. McVie, “Everywhere” and “Little Lies.” (“Little Lies” was written with the Portuguese musician and songwriter Eddie Quintela, whom she had wed the year before. They would divorce in 2003.) Mr. Buckingham left the group shortly afterward, shaking the dynamic that had made their recordings stellar. The 1990 album “Behind the Mask” barely went gold, producing just one Top 40 single (“Save Me,” written by Ms. McVie), while “Time,” issued five years later, was the band’s first unsuccessful album in two decades.

Ms. McVie didn’t tour with the band to support “Time.” But the early 1990s brought broad new attention to her hit “Don’t Stop” when it became the theme song for Bill Clinton’s successful presidential campaign. In 1993, Mr. Clinton persuaded the five musicians who played on that hit to reunite to perform it at an Inaugural ball.

They came together again in 1997 for a tour, which produced the live album “The Dance,” one of the top-selling concert recordings of all time. Yet by the next year a growing fear of flying, and a desire to return to England from the band’s adopted home of Los Angeles, inspired Ms. McVie to retire to the English countryside.

Five years later, she agreed to add some keyboard parts and backing vocals to a largely ignored Fleetwood Mac album, “Say You Will,” and in 2006 she produced a little-heard solo album, “In the Meantime,” which she recorded and wrote with her guitarist nephew Dan Perfect.

Finally, in 2014, driven by boredom and a growing sense of isolation, she reunited with the prime Mac lineup for the massive “On With The Show” tour. In its wake, Ms. McVie began to write lots of new material, as did Mr. Buckingham, resulting in an album under both their names in 2017, as well as a joint tour. The full band also played shows that year; even though Mr. Buckingham was fired in 2018, Ms. McVie continued to tour with the group in a lineup that included Neil Finn of Crowded House and Mike Campbell of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. In 2021, Ms. McVie sold publishing rights to her entire 115-song catalog for an undisclosed sum.

Information on her survivors was not immediately available.

Throughout her career, Ms. McVie took pride in never being categorized by her gender. “I kind of became one of the guys,” she told the British newspaper The Independent in 2019. “I was always treated with great respect.”

While she always acknowledged the special chemistry of Fleetwood Mac’s most successful lineup, she believed her role transcended it.

“Band members leave and other people take their place,” she told Rolling Stone, “but there was always that space where the piano should be.”

Friday, November 18, 2022

Billy Joel and Stevie Nicks Live in Kansas City, MO August 19, 2023

Arrowhead Events, the special events arm of the Kansas City Chiefs, has announced that Rock and Roll Hall of Fame musicians Billy Joel and Stevie Nicks will take the stage together for an unforgettable evening of live music at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium on Saturday, August 19, 2023. This show marks the first time either performer has headlined the Home of the Chiefs.

Tickets will go on sale at 10 a.m. CT on Friday, December 2 and are available at or the Ticketmaster app on mobile devices. 

A presale for Jackson County residents will begin at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, November 30 and will take place online only. Jackson County purchasers must use a credit card with a billing zip code within Jackson County to participate. Presale tickets for Chiefs Season Ticket Members will go on sale at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, November 30, and they will be contacted via email with additional information on how to participate. There is an eight-ticket limit per purchaser for the show.

Citi cardmembers will have access to presale tickets beginning Monday, November 28 at 10 a.m. CT through Thursday, December 1 at 10 p.m. CT through the Citi Entertainment program.

Christine McVie's "Songbird (Orchestral Version)" Nominated For a Grammy!

Christine McVie, "Songbird (Orchestral Version)," taken from her first solo music compilation, Songbird, has been nominated for a Grammy in the Best Arrangements, Instruments and Vocals category. The nomination is for the orchestral arranger,Vince Mendoza. 

SONGBIRD (A SOLO COLLECTION) was released on June 24, 2022.

Congratulations Christine and Vince!

Friday, November 04, 2022

Stevie Nicks and Billy Joel Announce Co-Headlining Shows


Tickets On Sale Starting Friday, November 11 at 10AM Local Time

Music legends Billy Joel and Stevie Nicks, two of the most loved and universally respected entertainers of all time, announce one unforgettable evening of live music. The spectacular one-night-only shows mark the first time the two have ever performed on the same stage.

Confirmed venues so far include:

March 10, 2023 - Inglewood, CA at SoFi Stadium
April 8, 2023 - Arlington, TX at AT&T Stadium
May 19, 2023 - Nashville, TN at Nissan Stadium

TICKETS: Tickets will go on sale to the general public beginning Friday, November 11 at 10AM at

Citi cardmembers presale November 7th at 10am 
Live Nation presale November 10th at 10am
General Public On sale November 11th at 10am

About Billy Joel

New York’s quintessential son, Billy Joel, is one of the greatest musicians of our time. Joel ranks as one of the most popular recording artists and respected entertainers in history. The singer, songwriter, and composer is the sixth best-selling recording artist of all time and the third best-selling solo artist. Joel’s songs have acted as personal and cultural touchstones for millions of people across five decades.

Joel’s biggest hits include “Uptown Girl,” “Just The Way You Are,” “The Longest Time,” and “Vienna,” among others. In 2016, the Library of Congress selected “Piano Man” for preservation in the National Recording Registry for its “cultural, historical, and artistic significance.”

Joel is also the recipient of six Grammy Awards, including the prestigious Grammy Legend Award. Joel has received the RIAA’s Diamond Award twice for “Greatest Hits Volume I & Volume II” and “The Stranger.” Joel has been inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and has received numerous industry awards, including a Tony Award for “Movin’ Out,” a Broadway musical based on Joel’s music.

Joel has also performed alongside other music greats at two of Madison Square Garden’s most extraordinary benefit concerts – “12-12-12, The Concert For Sandy Relief,” which raised awareness and money for those affected by Hurricane Sandy, and “The Concert for New York City,” which was held to help aid 9/11 victims and heroes.

About Stevie Nicks

Legendary singer, songwriter, and storyteller Stevie Nicks is one of rock and roll’s most successful, inimitable, and groundbreaking artists. As a multi-platinum, Grammy Award-winning solo artist and member of Fleetwood Mac, she is the first woman to have been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame twice and has collectively sold more than 140 million albums. 

Having captivated audiences for decades with her iconic live performances, distinctive songwriting, and constant cultural influence, Nicks continues to be an inspiration and mentor to younger performers. 

A member of Fleetwood Mac since 1974, the band’s enduring spirit stands for an incredible body of music – including Rumours, one of the best-selling albums of all time – that has connected with generations of people all over the world for more than 50 years. 

In October 2020, Stevie Nicks 24 Karat Gold The Concert was released at select cinemas, drive-ins, and exhibition spaces around the world for two nights only. The sold-out film offered audiences a virtual front-row seat to the magic Nicks brought on her sold-out 24 Karat Gold Tour.

Business is booming for these two boomers: Billy Joel and Stevie Nicks have announced that they’re co-headlining three shows together this spring, with more dates expected to come. 

“Excited to hit the road with the amazing @billyjoel in 2023,” Nicks wrote on Instagram. “More soon!” 

While Joel has brought out many guests at his long-standing Madison Square Garden residency, he’s never shared a stage with Nicks before. 

Wilson Howard, Live Nation’s southeast division chairman, told the Nashville Tennessean that the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers may end up having “five to seven shows” together, which would mean that at least a couple more shows remain to be added. Tickets to see the piano man and the tenacious witch will go on sale on November 11.

REVIEW Stevie Nicks Live in Woodlands, TX Nov 2, 2022

Stevie Nicks tells Woodlands crowd she has ‘no idea’ what the Astros play
Nicks is forgiven for not keeping up with sports. She's spent the last several decades cementing her status as a rock goddess.

By: Joey Guerra 

Steve Nicks had just finished a cover of Tom Petty's "Free Fallin'" when she gave the Wednesday night crowd at the Woodlands Pavilion some good news.

"The Astros won!" she said as the crowd cheered. Several people in the crowd were wearing Astros shirts.

A few minutes later, she made a confession.

"If I told you I had no idea what the Houston Astros play, would you believe me?" she asked. "But I know they must be good because they won."

Nicks is forgiven for not keeping up with sports. She's spent the last several decades cementing her status as a rock goddess. Her current tour is the first since before the COVID-19 pandemic, a time she says she survived thanks to Lily, a Chinese crested she got in Houston six years ago. Nicks dedicated "Landslide" to her "little soul mate" and brought Lily onstage to meet the crowd.

"I believe music can save the world. I believe that you can sit down with a Democrat and a Republican and have a great talk about music,"Nicks said. "Just turn up the music."

The late Petty, a longtime friend, figured heavily into Nicks' set. His songs preceded and followed her performance. She introduced "Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around," her duet with Petty, with a story about how the song came to be. Nicks' then-boyfriend Jimmy Iovine was worried that "Bella Donna," her first solo album, didn't have a hit single on it and suggested the Petty song.

Images of Prince flashed on the screens during "Edge of Seventeen," a song rumored to have inspired his own "When Doves Cry." In turn, Prince's "Little Red Corvette" inspired Nicks' "Stand Back" and featured him on synthesizer.

Nicks was in strong voice and chatted frequently about the inspiration behind songs. She dedicated "Soldier's Angel" to those suffering in the Ukraine and said she recently recorded Buffalo Springfield's "For What it's Worth," a call for peace, because of its renewed relevance. The band whipped "Gold Dust Woman" into an extended fervor that seemed to put Nicks into a trance, shaking her head vigorously and waving her hands.

There were Fleetwood Mac hits ("Dreams," "Rhiannon") and shawls. So many shawls. Black and gold and fluttering in the breeze as Nicks did her signature twirls across the stage.

"It just never ever gets old," she said. "Kinda like me." 

Thursday, November 03, 2022

REVIEW Stevie Nicks in Huntsville "It was like a dream-sequence or something"

If you weren’t at Stevie Nicks’ Halloween concert, you missed out

By Matt Wake

It was like a dream-sequence or something. Beneath a crescent moon and wearing a witch’s hat, Stevie Nicks told us, “Well, this is the best Halloween I can ever remember having.”

Which is akin to getting a high-five from Michael Jordan after sinking a jumper, or Steve Jobs saying that new idea of yours is pretty good.

Did this really happen in Huntsville, Alabama? Oh yeah.

There we were, 8,000 people at Orion Amphitheater, getting mesmerized by Nicks, rock & roll’s ultimate witch. And we mesmerized her right back.

Nicks played a sold-out show at Orion on the most Stevie of all nights, Oct. 31. Backed by her ace eight-piece band, she radiated the talent that made her the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s first two-time female inductee.

That voice. Those songs. The star-power. They’re still there and in no short supply. Nicks is now 74. But ever since she was a 25-year-old ingenue on the “Buckingham Nicks” album she’s always seemed simultaneously young and old.

Onstage at Orion, her aura remained ageless. And unlike many male classic-rock singers, including a couple of my all-time favorites, she still sounds and looks like herself. Her crystal-velvet rasp is a bit more head-voice than chest-voice than it used to be. But she’s retained her range and tonal vibe and hits all the notes.

Nicks’ set was introduced by a dear, departed friend. Her intro tape blasted “Runnin’ Down a Dream,” the 1989 rock hit by Tom Petty, a collaborator and coolness colleague. It would not be the night’s last echo of Petty, who died in 2017 from toxicity-induced cardiac arrest at age 66.

The fact Nicks, who’s famously battled demons of her own, is still with us -- healthy, rocking and thriving -- is a gift. And there’s little doubt everyone at Orion last night, including her, appreciates that.

After house lights darkened, stormy visuals projected on an onstage video screen. Nicks’ band strode out and began grooving on “Outside the Rain,” a sashaying cut from her excellent 1981 debut solo album “Bella Donna.”

When Nicks walked out -- poised as you’d expect -- from the back of the stage, the crowd gave her a hero’s welcome. On her way to a scarf-adorned mic stand, she bid hello to her band and her audience. Her hair in long blonde curls, she wore a dark velvety long skirt and black top with spangles around the sleeves.

From the first note she sang, Nicks’ voice charged the electrons in the air. It’s a haunting, stirring sound. Even though she has her own rock heroes, including Janis Joplin, Nicks has never sounded anything like them. And no one since has sounded like Stevie Nicks either. She owns her frequency.

“Outside the Rain” is a good song. But when Nicks and her band segued directly into a great song, the Fleetwood Mac classic “Dreams,” the entire amphitheater seemed to levitate. All told, Nicks allocated five songs of her 16-song, hour-and-40-minute set to the band that first made her famous, back in the mid ‘70s.

Fleetwood Mac is a band full of supremely talented, unique musicians. But hearing Nicks sing a few Mac hits with her solo band made it clear whose magic put that band over the top, from blues-rock also-rans to stadium-crushing superstars.

[Before you angrily email me, of course I adore the musicianship of Lindsey Buckingham, Christine McVie, John McVie and Mick Fleetwood too. But I’ve been to a Buckingham solo gig, in Los Angeles a few years ago right after he was sacked from Fleetwood Mac because of tensions with Nicks -- they were a couple back in the day, in case you’re from Mars -- and it was a spirited and good show. Buckingham’s a gifted, one-of-a-kind guitarist. But he didn’t leave his audience spellbound like Nicks does hers. After his ouster, Buckingham took a cheap shot in the press theorizing Nicks was envious he’d become a parent and she hadn’t. She might not have biological offspring, but her adoring fans are her spiritual children.]

As a live performer, there’s not much choreography involved with Nicks. Unlike many classic-rock sex symbols, female or male, she’s never been inclined to run around stage acting crazy or shaking it. At Orion, at the mic stand she’d flow her arms and sway as she sang. Whenever she grabbed the mic, she really meant business.

Other Mac songs later in Nicks’ Halloween set included a version of acoustic gem “Landslide” that turned the amphitheater into a campfire hangout. Keyboardist Darrell Smith played a poignant electric-piano solo on that one. The character in Nicks’ singing voice gives a line of lyrics a novel-chapter’s worth of imagery.

Before several songs in the set, Nicks told a background story about the next song, in that charming personality of hers. Leading into “Gypsy,” she said how sometimes she’d put her mattress on the floor to reconnect with the young woman she was before joining Fleetwood Mac. A groover laced with incense, blow and Beaujolais, the reflective “Gypsy” had the many ladies in the audience singing along.

Ditto, “Gold Dust Woman,” which featured an extended mystical intro and echoed vocal riffs. It was thrilling to see Nicks get lost in that nearly half-century old song, from Fleetwood Mac’s mega-selling “Rumours” album, like this was the first tour she’d performed it on. Ninety-five percent of the night she stuck to her original melodies. The few times she deviated, the subtle variations were as artful as Miles Davis trumpet fills.

It’s wild just how much Nicks’ fans, especially female, see themselves in her and her songs. At Orion Amphitheater, many of them echoed some of Nicks’ signature looks, with lots of top-hats, shawls, cowls, berets and black being worn out in the crowd.

Stevie Nicks ends up on a lot of bucket lists. The bucket lists of fans, many of whom at Orion were seeing her perform for their first time. It was definitely Nicks’ first Huntsville show.

More journalists than just yours truly were jazzed about covering the concert. Even the concert’s opening act Ingrid Andress -- a country songsmith who conjured Taylor Swift-meets-Miranda Lambert-on-solo-piano vibes on songs like “Wishful Drinking” -- told the crowd, who showed up early en masse, opening for Nicks realized a lifelong dream.

Since it was Halloween, there were some full-on costume-clad fans at the show. The best: a group dressed as the new-wave band Devo. The worst: the Caesar whose nonstop mid-concert loud-talking had a few rows of other fans ready to throw him to the lions.

Four songs in, Nicks hit an early peak with a rousing “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” her smash-hit duet with Petty. Waddy Wachtel, Nicks’ longtime curly-haired guitarist, replicated Petty guitarist Mike Campbell’s stinging leads. In addition to Nicks, Wachtel has been a go-to guitarist for stars like Keith Richards, Linda Ronstadt and Steve Perry, to name a few.

The “stage moves” Nicks does have are also more about getting lost in the music than hey-look-how-cool-and-foxy-I-am. Throughout her Halloween concert, Nicks would periodically execute some of her trademark twirls. Seeing her twirl in-person made me wonder if she was the inspiration for Lynda Carter’s transformative spinning on the “Wonder Woman” TV show.

At Orion, Nicks worked a tambourine during some of the set, another vintage Stevie visual. After singing the ethereal “Bella Dona” title track, she drew the crowd’s attention to the shawl she was draped in. It was the same blue one from that album’s back cover photo. Still in perfect condition, somehow.

In addition to the hits, Nicks’ set highlights included “Enchanted,” a boogie off radiant 1983 sophomore LP “The Wild Heart.” Drummer Drew Hester’s kickdrum sounded like Godzilla steps during a hard-rock version of 2011 track “Soldier’s Angel.” Nicks dedicated the song to Ukraine. The stage lights turned to Ukraine’s yellow and blue flag colors and a QR code for donations to Ukrainian war relief was shown on the video-screen.

As thrilling as it was hearing Nicks sing Mac monoliths, the solo stuff ruled. Particularly how this quintessential ‘70s rocker utilized synthesizers during the ‘80s. At Orion, “Stand Back” pulsated with neon simmer, courtesy of keyboardist Ricky Peterson. Guitarist Carlos Ruiz sliced slinky rhythms and peeled off a hot solo. During “Stand Back,” Al Ortiz’s bass rearranged Orion into a dancefloor for both fans and Nicks, who rang up at least nine twirls during that song alone.

The overall sound mix was crisp and warm throughout the show. You never once had to strain to hear Nicks’ vocals, and everything was expertly balanced and sonically articulate.

Set-closer “Edge of Seventeen” opened with an extended drums and guitar intro. Wachtel, who played the simple-staccato groove on the song’s original recording, stretched out for bluesy licks, before the whole band returned to lock in. The backing vocal ooh-baby-oohs, so integral to “Edge of Seventeen,” were done onstage by Sharon Celani and Marilyn Droman, who provided angel textures all night.

Before her first exit from Orion’s stage, in lieu of announcing the band, Nicks walked to each band member and bowed to them. Band intros can be a cool gesture. But it was noticeable last night how better a show flows without them. And really, audience members rarely commit the backing musician names to memory. Whether announcing them or not, showing the band appreciation is what matters. Nicks obviously appreciates hers.

After Nicks and band walked off, the stage returned to dark. The crowd roared and applauded, and not the typical level of encore-inducing appreciation either. This was louder. More urgent.

A few minutes later, the band and Nicks returned. After “Edge of Seventeen,” where do you go from there? The answer, at least tonight, was a heartfelt cover of Tom Petty’s signature song, “Free Fallin’.”

A photo montage of Petty and Nicks together over the years heightened the moment. For the “Free Fallin’” choruses, Nicks had 8,002 backing singers. On the side of the stage, Nicks’ roadcrew had donned Halloween costumes. They were reveling in the moment too.

After the Tom Petty tribute, Nicks told the Orion crowd not to leave yet because she had a Halloween surprise. A few minutes later she and band returned, all wearing witch hats. They then unfurled the tribal beats of “Rhiannon,” Nicks’ witchy Fleetwood Mac classic.

The audience became cats in the dark and then we became the darkness. Nicks donned a flower-crown she picked up off the stage floor and floated across the stage like the May Queen.

The band jammed the song out a bit. Then, Nicks bid a fond farewell. She sounded eager to return Huntsville, where she’d spent the last three days leading up to the show.

Right before Nicks’ set, a video message from the city’s music officer, Matt Mandrella, proclaimed Oct. 31, 2022 as Stevie Nicks Day in Huntsville. The Orion crowd roared its approval. During the concert, Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle could be seen at his floor seat using his phone to record some of Nicks’ performance.

After the second encore, the house lights went up. A tape of Tom Petty’s cautionary-Hollywood hit “Into the Great Wide Open” eased fans out of the amphitheater.

The Nicks concert put an exclamation point on the state-of-the-art Orion’s first season. After a year-one lineup boasting stars like Jack White, Dave Matthews Band, Chris Stapleton, Earth, Wind & Fire and others, it’s intriguing to think what year-two will be like.

No one who witnessed Stevie Nicks’ Halloween show at Orion will forget it anytime soon. And it was humbling for her to say -- before fading into the night -- she’ll remember us too.

REVIEW Stevie Nicks Live on Halloween in Huntsville, AL

 A night at The Orion with Stevie Nicks
“Welcome, Huntsville!” Nicks said after her first couple of songs. “We all know it’s Halloween, right?”

By Anna Mahan
Photo: Josh Weichman

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (TENNESSEE VALLEY LIVING) - There are many reasons why Stevie Nicks is considered the queen of rock and roll. If you caught her show at The Orion Amphitheater in Huntsville, you know why.

It was October 31st, a sold out show on Halloween under the night sky. What could be more Stevie Nicks than that?

If the crowd wasn’t already excited enough, the lights dimmed and Tom Petty’s “Runnin’ Down a Dream,” kicked off the show as an introduction to the witchy woman’s highly anticipated arrival.

Tom Petty’s voice faded and was replaced by the familiar notes of “Outside the Rain.” Nicks walked on stage in her black boots with a long black skirt and corset top to match. She clutched the mic draped with ribbons sparkling along the side.

The audience met her with a warm, loud welcome. From “Outside the Rain” she made a smooth transition to Fleetwood Mac’s iconic “Dreams.”

The way she sings these songs and tells the stories behind them, it’s evident the music is part of who she is at her core.

“Welcome, Huntsville!” Nicks said after her first couple of songs. “We all know it’s Halloween, right?”

The crowd, decked out in shawls, top hats and Halloween costumes responded with a loud cheer and wide-eyed wonder. The new amphitheater was filled with fans around Nicks’ age, to a new generation of music lovers.

Eight-thousand people in the crowd together, we all seemed to fall under a trance as the band played.

Throughout the night, Nicks took time in almost every song to turn her attention to her eight band mates on stage.. She would look at them in awe, dancing and rocking out alongside of them. Nicks, 74, spent a lot of time next to lead guitarist, Waddy Wachtel, 75, who played plenty of mean licks to go round.

Nicks shared many stories with the audience that night. One of them was about how when she isn’t quite feeling herself, she takes the mattress off her bed and covers it in old quilts and paper flowers and becomes old Stevie, the gypsy that remains. Cue the song.

That night, the crowd got a glimpse into Nicks’ gypsy, and our very own.

Because she’s Stevie Nicks, she wore four different shawls throughout the night. One of which was the original shawl she wore on the back of the 1981 album, “Bella Donna.” She joked about how she throws it around like an old blanket, yet it’s still in perfect condition. Must be some kind of Stevie magic.

As the night went on, the queen of rock and roll continued to open up. When the first chords of “Soldier’s Angels” began to play, Nicks spoke about how hurt she was for the people of Ukraine. She dedicated the song to the country as the their blue and yellow flag was shown on the screen behind her along with QR code to donate.

When she sang “Gold Dust Woman,” Nicks, the crowd and myself all went wild. She danced and whirled around the stage in a gold shawl, not letting go of the audience for one second.

“Edge of Seventeen,” is the first song of Nicks’ I ever heard thanks to Jack Black’s iconic movie, “School of Rock.” Hearing her sing it live was a dream come true along with “Landslide.”

With another nod to her late friend Tom Petty, Nicks gave a lot of energy to “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” and her beautiful rendition of “Free Fallin” as photos of the two old friends danced along the video-screen behind her.

Before any of us knew it, Nicks had been playing for a little over an hour and a half and the night was beginning to wind down.

The lights went dark as Nicks told everyone not to leave just yet, but to wait for a special Halloween gift she had for us. A minute went by and the band walked back on stage all in witch hats.

We all heard the opening notes to “Rhiannon,” before Nicks floated back on stage in a purple cape and a witch hat to match. The whole amphitheater, Nicks, her band and everyone in the audience was dancing along in a dreamy trance.

The band played for a while before they began to say their goodbyes. Nicks twirled around stage with her cape following every move she made. The band came together and bid us all adieu with a couple of bows.

“Well, that’s the best Halloween I can ever remember having,” Nicks said as the audience cheered in agreement.

The lights came back on and we all realized what we just experienced. If you were there, you know what I’m talking about. And if you ever get the chance to see her, do it.

Stevie Nicks closed out The Orion’s first season and I can’t imagine anyone better for the job.

Until we can see her again, we pick up the pieces and go home. Rock on, gold dust woman.

Saturday, October 29, 2022

REVIEW Stevie Nicks was triumphant in Tampa

Review: Stevie Nicks stupefies and hypnotizes in very sold-out return to Tampa
With some heavy tributes to Tom Petty, too.
Photo and Review By Josh Bradley

“I want you to know that I don’t know how hard that hurricane hit you, because I don’t live here, but we all worried. All over the world, we worried about you every day,” Stevie Nicks admitted to an almost brimful MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre on Tuesday night.

It goes without saying that against all odds, Tampa Bay got off fairly easy from Hurricane Ian. But even the 74-year-old Fleetwood Mac frontwoman knows that Ian is only a fraction of what made 2022 such a shitty year in the news.

Nicks was angered enough to release a cover of Buffalo Springfield’s “For What It’s Worth” earlier this year—penned by Florida boy Stephen Stills—which she  apparently wanted to record from a young age. “It’s always really fun to be a woman, and sing a man’s song, so I did that, and I tried to be very loyal to his version, but to sing it from my heart also,” she explained.

She also reminded us that voting season has arrived, and that we had better not sit the midterms out. “I never voted until I was in my mid-‘60s. What a shame, oh the shame,” she added, citing tour and studio schedules as her excuse.

Then there was the time she was gifted a hand-painted box for her birthday last year, crafted by a Ukrainian artist named Julia. Days after her birthday, Nicks—who had befriended Julia—got a text from her, saying that she was in the process of escaping the country and preparing to seek refuge. In honor of her—and her entire country—Nicks then dedicated a heartfelt rendition of “Soldier’s Angel” to Julia, while graphics of the ailing country flashed behind her. Once done, she encouraged the packed crowd to donate a few dollars to Save Ukraine.

Other than said moments of solemnity, every other ounce of Nicks’s performance was triumphant. Clad in her standard black dress and wiccan-esque regalia, her nine-piece band—not featuring ex-Heartbreaker Benmont Tench III due to scheduling—kicked things off by launching into “Outside The Rain,” which oh-so-smoothly segued into “Dreams,” the latter of which featured no cranberry juice, or, in Nicks’ case, roller skates. Just the majestic twirls and fringed-up microphone she's embedded into our minds.

That didn’t mean that there would be no wardrobe adjustments, though. She had three different cloaks and capes in her vicinities. She sported one drenched in gold sequins that went down like a scarf on “Gold Dust Woman,” and another black one with gold hearts on “Stand Back.” Most notably, however, Nicks was draped in the exact cape she wore on the back cover of her 1981 Bella Donna album.

“It is in perfect condition,” she bragged after twirling around to prove it. “I really don’t get it, but it just keeps on truckin’.”

Twice did she remember her old friend—and ours—Tom Petty, who died five years ago this month. While introducing “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” Nicks told the story of how her at-the-time boyfriend Jimmy Iovine managed to get Petty and the Heartbreakers—who he had produced Damn The Torpedoes for a few years prior—to help spawn a hit for Bella Donna by duetting on the Petty-Campbell-penned track.

The second remembrance came at the start of the encore, in the form of a “Free Fallin’” rendition. If you didn’t shed some tears or at least take off your hat for that one, are you even a true Floridian?

She didn’t skip over “Edge of Seventeen,” which everyone going up to the packed lawn knew was about to be performed based on the tempo of the drums that opened the song. She also didn’t forget to salute the Fleetwood Mac songs that put her on the map in the first place. “Landslide” was a strange way to follow the 10-minute-long epic that was “Gold Dust Woman,” but guitarist Waddy Wachtel provided the acoustic accompaniment for the one tune that has been performed just about every time Nicks has hit a stage, which was penned in a really dingy house belonging to her friends.

“Rhiannon” was presented as one final witchy spectacle at the tail end of Nicks' all-too-short 105-minute set.

“It’s almost Halloween!” She announced afterward. “I’m just getting myself ready.”

Nicks may take a bit longer to prepare herself, but I’m certain that everything majestic about her has a few thousand witches and wizards of Tampa Bay fully ready.

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

REVIEW Stevie Nicks Puts a Spell on Charlotte, NC

Stevie Nicks puts a spell on Charlotte at the PNC Music Pavilion
A packed house saw Stevie Nicks perform songs pulled from her acclaimed career as a musician.

Author: Nathaniel Puente

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — After nearly a half-century of releasing music with the likes of Fleetwood Mac, and Tom Petty, and on her own during her illustrious solo career, Stevie Nicks has just about done it all.

At 74 years old, Stevie could call it a career and be remembered as a wonderful performer who made some tremendous songs. But Stevie Nicks is not done wowing audiences and releasing musing just yet.

Nicks made a stop in Charlotte at the PNC Music Pavilion on Saturday as part of her 2022 United States tour that was canceled in 2021 due to COVID-19 cases.

The 2022 shows are Nicks's first performances since before the COVID-19 pandemic began. She told the audience that the gap made her appreciate her music even more.

That appreciation was on full display as Nicks gave it her all on some of her most beloved songs.

Nicks and her band opened with "Outside the Rain" from her solo debut album Bella Donna (1981). The song faded into "Dreams," one of the most popular songs Nicks made with Fleetwood Mac.

Songs were pulled from both her time in Fleetwood Mac and as a solo artist. "Gypsy," "Stand Back," and "Edge of Seventeen" were some of the most prominent songs of the night that got the raucous crowd even further amped up.

Every twist and twirl Nicks made on stage brought exuberant cheers from the crowd, which filled up just about every seat and lawn spot the PNC Music Pavilion had to offer.

In between songs, Nicks would tell stories about the track's origin and how she felt at the moment writing the lyrics.

Before "Landslide," Nicks told a story about her early days as a struggling musician when she was in a relationship with Lindsey Buckingham, who would join her in Fleetwood Mac just a year later. 

Before "Soldier's Angel," Nicks pleaded with the audience to donate to the Ukraine war effort. She also requested for people in the crowd to vote in the upcoming midterm election, noting that she voted for the first time in her mid-60s.

Throughout the night, Nicks paid tribute to Tom Petty, who died in 2017. She played the acclaimed duet she recorded with Petty, "Stop Dragging My Heart Around" and covered Petty's "Free Fallin'" as photos of the pair flashed on the concert monitors.

Those in attendance were beyond thrilled watching the "high priestess," as opening act Vannesa Carlton dubbed her, in action. The show proved why Nicks is a premier entertainer even to this day. 

Nicks told the Charlotte crowd she plans to come back to the area for a future tour.

Saturday, October 08, 2022

FLEETWOOD MAC AUCTION From The Lives and Careers of John McVie, Christine McVie and Mick Fleetwood



An auction celebrating three members of the iconic band Fleetwood Mac, that includes the personal items of John McVie, Christine McVie and Mick Fleetwood. This collection represents over fifty years of stage-played instruments, wardrobe, touring gear, memorabilia, jewelry, furniture, and more.

A Portion of Proceeds will Benefit MusiCares

Highlights from John McVie’s collection include…

  • A 1976 Rumours Photo-Matched Custom Alembic “Continuously Fretted” Stainless Steel Fingerboard Electric Bass Guitar.
  • A 1976 Prototype Alembic Series 1 Graphite Neck Through Electric Bass Guitar.
  • A Peter Green Gifted 1962 Fender VI Six-String Electric Bass Guitar.
  • A Royal Albert Hall Stage-Plated 1960 Fender Precision Electric Bass Guitar.
  • A Stevie Nicks Gifted Surfboard.
  • A 1953 First-Year Gibson EB1 Violin Body Electric Bass Guitar.
  • A 1965 Hofner Club Electric Bass Guitar acquired by John McVie during the Peter Green era of Fleetwood Mac.
  • A Rare 1970 First-Year Fretless Fender Precision Electric Bass Guitar.
  • A “Songbird” Stage-Played Photo-Matched Ernie Ball Earthwood Acoustic Bass Guitar.
  • A Black “Little Lies” Music Video Played Video-Matched 1980s Kramer Ferrington Electroacoustic Bass Guitar.

Highlights from Mick Fleetwood’s collection include…

  • The Rumours stage-and album cover-worn hanging balls and signed art print.
  • An iconic stage-played Talking Drum.
  • A 40-inch Stage-Played Zildjian Traditional Gong.
  • A “Bare Trees” RIAA “Gold” Record Award.
  • A Bill Clinton Signed Drumhead and Farewell Concert Setlist.
  • A Harry Styles Pleasing “Shroom Bloom” Campaign Ensemble.
  • A vintage 1967 Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac Debut “7th Annual Jazz and Blues Festival Windsor” Poster.
  • A studio-played DW Collector’s Series Rumours Snare Drum.
  • A black felt crow top hat custom-made for Stevie Nicks by Mick Fleetwood with two attached taxidermy crows featuring a wide black ribbon hat band.
  • A 1998 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Award.
  • A stage-worn ensemble worn by Mick Fleetwood on various tour stops.

Highlights from Christine McVie’s collection include…

  • A Rumours photo-matched album cover-worn dress.
  • A 1960s stage-played, chopped, and customized touring Hammond B-3 Organ.
  • A Stage-Played Yamaha C3 Baby Grand Piano.
  • A Yamaha E3 Series Disklavier Electric Piano with custom “Christine F*cking McVie” slipcover.
  • A 1969 Christine Perfect Melody Maker “Pop Poll Awards Top Singer” award.
  • A circa 1960s stage-used Hammond Leslie Rotary Speaker.
  • A stage-and event-worn naavy and green polka dot Thea Porter dress.
  • A “Gypsy” American Video Award.
  • A black Four Seasons of London hooded coat.
  • A stage-played Weltmeister LM-25-12 Bandmaster Accordion.
  • A rust-colored, Velvet Blazer worn by Christine McVie to the 1998 Brit Awards.
  • A black velvet biker-style “Songbird” patch jacket ensemble stage-worn by Christine McVie during a live concert performance at First Direct Arena, Leeds.
  • A pair of black, lace-up Zadig & Voltaire combat boots worn by Christine McVie to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at Barclays Center on March 29th, 2019 and throughout the 2018/2019 Fleetwood Mac Tour.
  • A 2018-2019 “An Evening with Fleetwood Mac” dressing room road case with portable Yamaha Keyboard and accessories.
  • A 2018-2019 “An Evening with Fleetwood Mac” tour traveling vanity case.

Fleetwood Mac: Property From the Lives and Careers of Christine McVie, John McVie and Mick Fleetwood Limited Edition Catalogue Box Set.

For more information visit Juliens Auction

Stevie Nicks Reschedules Phoenix and Woodlands Shows

Stevie Nicks postponed her October 6th show in Phoenix, AZ and rescheduled it to November 5th. All tickets will be honored for the new date.

The Woodlands, TX show scheduled for October 9th has also been rescheduled to November 2nd.

The two shows were postponed due to a non-covid respiratory illness and Stevie's Doctors have advised that she needs vocal rest.

Stevie Nicks enjoyed two triumphant nights in Southern California

Stevie Nicks Current Tour A Joyous Celebration Of A Rock Icon By Both Fans And Artist
by Steve Baltin

At the time of his death from cancer in 2016, David Bowie was widely and rightly regarded as arguably the greatest rock star of all time. Certainly, he is very high on the short list. However, Bowie did not have a top ten studio album in the U.S. from 1983's Let's Dance to 2013's The Next Day.

Fame is an insanely fickle game. And you can take all the top scientists and statisticians in the world, lock them in a room for a year and they would never be able to figure out the algorithm for fame. It does not exist.

Take the case of the iconic Stevie Nicks. This past weekend Nicks enjoyed two triumphant nights in Southern California, first headlining night one of Eddie Vedder's Ohana Festival Friday night. She followed that with a sold-out show Monday before an adoring crowd at the Hollywood Bowl.

So, what changed? As stated, it's hard to know for sure since fame is determined by so many moving parts. But one can point to quite a few factors and speculate. There was the insane TikTok "Dreams" phenomenon that catapulted that Mac song back to the top of the charts. Then there was Nicks induction into the Rock Hall as a solo artist in 2019. And, maybe most of all, the incredible admiration she has received from a new generation of stars, from Harry Styles and Taylor Swift to HAIM. So between TikTok and Harry Styles billions of fans under 20 have had a chance to discover Nicks and her status as a true rock and roll queen. On Friday, at Ohana, Pearl Jam frontman Vedder joined Nicks to sing the Tom Petty portion of "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around."

Maybe far more important than what brought about the well-deserved renaissance is that, as she showed at both shows, Nicks is thriving with the adulation. Nicks has been very careful touring as a result of COVID so in the last few years she has done only a handful of appearances.

It was very evident watching her last weekend how much she missed the road. During a show-stopping "Gold Dust Woman" she twirled and danced around the stage with the reckless glee of a 20-year-old in a mosh pit. Between songs she engaged with the audience so much that during the Bowl show, before the beautiful "Soldier's Angel," dedicated to the people of Ukraine, she joked with the crowd about being on a script so as not to run too long and go over.

She told stories about why she chose to cover Buffalo Springfield's 1967 classic protest anthem, "For What It's Worth," as her latest single, and about the creation of "Landslide." That she could make the crowd laugh as she told a story about writing it in a random millionaire's mansion, then bring the crowd to tears with a perfect version of one of the 10 most poignant songs ever penned in rock was just part of the magic of these shows.

So maybe the better question is what makes these shows so special to Nicks, who is clearly at the absolute pinnacle of her performance because she is so clearly loving being on the road.

Again, this would be speculation, though I did speak to the forthcoming and captivating Nicks for 90 minutes in 2020. At that point she offered a profound tribute to fallen friends like Tom Petty, who she honored multiple times at the Bowl. She came out to Petty's "Running Down A Dream" and covered "Free Fallin,'" in the encore. At the time of our talk she spoke about losing so many friends.

So maybe having suffered so much loss, Nicks is appreciating being on the road and the rapport with her friends with a renewed vigor. Or maybe she just missed touring. Whatever the case may be Nicks showed at both shows the admiration and love between her and her growing legion of fans is very mutual and appreciated by all. The result is an incredibly joyous evening celebrating a true rock icon.