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Stevie Wonderful
(Woolworth�s Tracks Magazine, August 1989)

 

The Other Side of the Mirror Review


Now turned 40, Fleetwood Mac�s Stevie Nicks is still beavering away like a Trojan. She�s relaunching her solo career, paining and writing a novel. She even finds time to party with U2 and talk to David Quantick

�I would have taught speech communication if this hadn�t happened,� says Stevie Nicks, looking most unteacherly in her tulle and chiffon gypsy clobber.

She is allegedly here in London to talk about her new solo album The Other Side Of The Mirror. However, Stevie � born in Arizona but somehow the very model of Californian pop star � seems happy to talk about anything. Most of the journalists who�ve come here and sate in this rather incredible hotel room would rather talk about Stevie�s other occupation anyway. Stevie Nicks is a member of Fleetwood Mac, which she joined in 1975 with her then boyfriend Lindsey Buckingham.

She has written a few of their hits (the first being the somewhat mystic Rhiannon), and as such is a member of one of the most famous and successful groups in the galaxy ever.

Along the way, she�s had various mishaps, such as time in the Betty Ford Clinic and a split from Buckingham, but it�s a tribute to her resilience that she seems to transcend it all.

�I�ve been writing a book for 12 years,� she says. �I�ve been pretty much just writing down my life and everybody else�s life, and it�s very interesting. Recently I�ve become much better at dating things, because for the first seven or eight of those years I never knew what the date was.�

Despite Fleetwood Mac�s stadium status, Nicks manages to come across as the Artistic One. The hotel room is filled with Stevie�s paintings, and her material has always had a dreamy air. Even the current single, Rooms On Fire, despite its dramatic title, sounds ready to drift off somewhere, somehow, some place. In contrast, Fleetwood Mac songs are often slick and sensible affairs, very American and professional.

�That�s because of Lindsey,� agrees Stevie. �He�s an absolute perfectionist. I am not. My album took three months to make; a Fleetwood Mac album takes 13 months, and I refused to sit in a studio for 13 months. I said I just could not do it.�

And Lindsey?

�And Lindsey�s reaction to me having a solo career is very much �how could she do that?� He knows exactly why I have a solo career � three songs every three years isn�t enough for me.�

It�s true that Nicks doesn�t get a vast amount of writing work on Fleetwood Mac records: and one possible reason for this could be her rather personalised style. Some people�s songs just suit them and no-one else. Indeed, Bob Dylan is supposed to have told U2 much the same thing about their songs. I am recounting this to Stevie when she sagely shakes her head.

�See, I disagree,� she disagrees. �And I�m very, very good friends with Bob Dylan. I personally love to interpret other people�s songs, from Tom Petty to stuff like Somewhere Over The Rainbow. I also know U2 very, very well and have had parties for them at my house. We�ve gone into the studio, Bono has sat down and played, and it was very close, loving and sweet of them. They�re very, very nice guys and it wouldn�t bother me a bit to try one or their songs.�

Oh well, as pre-Nicks Mac once said. Another idea bites the dust. Nor would it be true to say that Stevie, despite her infrequent contributions to Fleetwood Mac records and her workmates� apparent disapproval of her solo records, is a depressed woman.

�We have two new guys in Fleetwood Mac, two new guitarists, and I love nothing more than when they show up at my house with a guitar. At lot of that goes on now, and it hasn�t gone on for 12 years, since Lindsey and I split up. We actually sit around and play music. I love that, it�s the best thing in the world � guitar, drumpads and a small recording studio. That�s just the most fun part of all.�
 

Thanks to trackaghost for this article


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