A GoPride Interview

Stevie Nicks

Stevie Nicks: I do not walk away in the face of adversity and never have.

Wed. August 17, 2011  by Jerry Nunn

I do not walk away in the face of adversity and never have.
Stevie Nicks

Jerry Nunn talks sweet dreams with Stevie Nicks

Stevie Nicks twirled her way to fame with Fleetwood Mac and their 1977 album Rumours, which is the tenth highest selling album of all time. She then tackled a solo career with Bella Donna. Listening to her seventh solo record In Your Dreams, produced by Dave Stewart from the Eurythmics, it's easy to see why we still have sweet dreams of Stevie even today.

JN: (Jerry Nunn) Hello, Stevie.

So you are out on the road again. How do you manage touring all the time?

SN: (Stevie Nicks) I am starting to ask myself the same question. You know what I do? I get up in the morning and I go, "Oh my God, do I have to pull those black tights up one more day?" As tired as I get sometimes I wonder how long would I be happy lying around the house watching television? You have to follow a schedule. It's like in the shower at 1, blow dry at 2, vocal lesson at 2:45, flat iron hair at 3. It's pretty easy because you just kind of go through and people tell you exactly kind of what to do. Then you go and you do your show. You get all that great feedback. I kind of hang out all day long and then you get to walk onstage and have everybody love your music. Then you get to fly to the next city. I mean it doesn't really get much better than that.

JN: Chef Art Smith asked me to make sure you got the Hummingbird cake he sent you at the last concert with Rod Stewart.

SN: I did, not that I can really eat the much of it but tell him I said thank you.

JN: I will. When did you notice you had so many gay fans?

SN: It was with the Night of 1000 Stevies about 20 years ago. And so really that was the beginning. And it was a long, long time ago. And who knew? I think when I was first told about it I thought this would be something that would be a great thing that would happen maybe twice. And then it is still going on. So I'm thrilled.

JN: How was it finding a new audience on Glee recently?

SN: Pretty thrilling; first of all I had been watching Glee from the very beginning. We all have our favorite TV shows that we totally look forward to. And if we can't watch them that night we make sure we tape them. I watched them film to just totally sit there and enjoy that. The greatest thing was when it was over, when they were done, they all came and like grouped around me. And Lea Michelle, Rachel, said you know what? "Nobody has ever done this." So, of course you know, I sent them like huge flowers. What a favor they did for me by putting that out the same day that my record came out. I thought that was like so lovely of them. So I sent them more flowers to my Glee children. A day without Glee is like a day without sunshine.

JN: You song "Landslide" is part of a Glee storyline with Brittany and Santana. What do you think of their relationship? Do you want them to get together?

SN: I want them to be happy whoever they are with, you know. So if that is going to be Santana and Brittany then I am thrilled. If that is going to be Artie and Brittany then I am thrilled. So I don't have a preference of how I want it to end up. I always want to be surprised, because I am a writer. So coming from a writer's point of view, I want to never know what is going to happen.

JN: What was it like working with Dave Stewart on the new album?

SN: And we just had the best time. Dave really has the ability to create a world of magic, you know, where you feel magical. In our situation, never a harsh word, never a raised voice, never an argument, no egos happening at all so that he and I were able to write seven songs. And I have never written a song with anybody. I write with Michael Campbell, but he sends me tracks in the mail. So I don't sit in the room with him. I've written with a few people who have sent me tracks. But I have never written a song with a real, live human being that is sitting two feet from me, because I never wanted to share that experience. I never thought it was possible that it could ever happen.

So the first day he was there he just started playing. We had a Pro Tools rig set up so we were recording. I just sort of started kind of reciting my words in a sing songy sort of way. In a half an hour we had written a song and my world changed.

The golden doors opened. I understood why Paul McCartney and John Lennon wrote together for the first time in my life.

If you can find somebody that is not egotistical and does not get their feelings hurt then the world is your oyster. He did that with me. He allowed me to just be like a child and be totally free. I'm sorry that it's done. I'm sorry that we're not, you know, gathering here at 2:00 in the afternoon anymore. When it was done in February, I just sat down on my red couch by myself in front of my fireplace and started to cry, because I was just so sad that that part of the experience was over.

JN: Do you ever want to write your memoirs one day?

SN: I think if I were to do that I would never write like your creepy tell-all book. I would write like a vignette book where one chapter would be Peace Sunday, which was over 100,000 people. I would tell you what happened on that day. One chapter would be the day I met Lindsay. One chapter would be the day that Leslie Woods called and asked us to join Fleetwood Mac. One vignette would be the day I got my record deal; the day I got signed to Atlantic for Bella Donna. It's those kinds of things when I look back on them were so exciting. There are pages and pages to be written about each one of those things.

JN: What do you think of newer artists like Katy Perry?

SN: Oh you know what? I love Katy Perry.

I just think she is so interesting. She is very eclectic and interesting. And I think she is a really good songwriter so that really makes me like her even more. Her "E.T." song, the k-k-kiss me one, I love. I just love it.

JN: What do you attribute your strength as an artist to?

SN: I think I attribute it to the fact that I am not and never have been a quitter. I do not walk away in the face of adversity and never have. I also don't listen to people who don't think I'm right about my music, or really I actually don't listen to people about anything. My mom said to me from when I was like in the fifth grade, "Well I hope that you get a job where you are the boss, because you don't really like anybody to tell you what to do." I took what she said very much to heart. That's why I said I'm going to be a lead singer not a background singer. When I went into Fleetwood Mac, Christine and I, you know, we really realized that because there were two of us that we really were a force of nature and that we were never going to be treated like second-class citizens in the rock-and-roll business.

So if we walked into the room, we were going to be just as respected as Eric Clapton or Robert Plant or any of those guys, and that we were never, ever going to let anybody treat us any less. And we didn't. That was the great thing about being in Fleetwood Mac especially for that first 15 years because after that everybody respected us and we didn't have to call out for that respect anymore. But in the beginning it was like we really had to make a statement. That's why when Chris left it was very hard for me, because as the two of us we were so strong. When she left it was a little bit sort of became the boys' club which was not near as cool as when she was there. And I missed her terribly because of that. We set down rules. If you walk in the room with that kind of an attitude, a good attitude but a strong attitude, of sort of a don't mess with me attitude but in a good way, you can get so far. If you even bow your head one little bit and people see it, then you're toast.

Get your Nicks Fix at rockalittle.com and join her when she comes to Chicago August 23 at the Rosemont Theatre, 5400 North River Road. Visit www.livenation.com for more information.

Related: Enter to win a pair of tickets to see Stevie Nicks on August 23 at the Rosemont Theatre

Interviewed by Jerry Nunn. Jerry Nunn is a contributing writer to the GoPride Network. His work is also featured in Windy City Times, Nightspots Magazine and syndicated nationally.


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