By Scott Kiefer
Special to the News-Democrat
Friday, June 13, 2008
Rock icon, artist, songwriter, aunt and inspiration to millions, Stevie Nicks just reached the milestone of turning 60 years old on May 26. She sees it as a defining moment in her life that has brought about some realizations about her personal life, her career and what she needs to maintain and to change.
“It’s been a wonderful, hectic, glamorous, miserable, exciting, tumultuous life,” said Nicks in a telephone interview from Florida last week. “Who could ask for more?”
Nicks will perform at 8 p.m. tonight at the Chaifetz Arena at St. Louis University.
Although Nicks has this persona of being mysterious, elusive, mystical, and hard to reach, she has always been an open book during interviews … which aren’t granted often.
“My life has been such an open book anyway, so when I do interviews, there’s really nothing to not talk about,” said Nicks jokingly. “Sometimes I even get to set the record straight.”
Nicks isn’t really bothered by her recent birthday.
“Really, it is just a number,” said Nicks, “but an important one. Better that the alternative. I would say. I’ve never been one to be obsessed with my numerical age. I really do believe you are as young as you feel, and as long as you are happy within yourself and good to others, your youth shines through, no matter what your age. It’s all about change…in lifestyle, diet, and emotionally. Age is about learning and growing, not your number.”
Nicks shows no signs of slowing down.
She is currently working on writing the story for the production of a movie based on the hit Fleetwood Mac single of 1976, “Rhiannon.”
“I have been working on this for quite some time,” said Nicks. “It’s really been a work in progress for 30 years. This is it, though. As soon as this tour is finished, I’m off to a secluded place in Europe (she didn’t disclose where) to finish the writing, and do some tweaking on the finished product. After that, we are meeting with people like HBO or Showtime to hopefully do a mini-series type of movie. It is such a wonderful story, and there is so much more to be told about ‘Rhiannon.’”
After that, Nicks will sign on for the all-original Fleetwood Mac tour.
“Yes, we are going to do it, at least once more,” said Nicks. “All of us except Christy (Christine McVie). She is just so ‘over’ that whole thing. She has done it, again and again, she just doesn’t want to do the touring anymore.”
Nicks stated that the group will start working on material and recording probably in October, and finish an album.
“We should be getting into tour rehearsals in January or February, and get out on the road in the spring of next year.”
Asked about the rumors surrounding the replacement of McVie by Sheryl Crow, Nicks said it would not be happening.
“Actually, Lindsey and I will be taking some of the songs that Christine sang on record, and we will be sharing the vocals,” said Nicks. “After all, we wrote most of them anyway, and we feel it was best for us to do them instead of bringing someone else in to take her place. We want to show her our respect, and include her in the show, because she was such an important part to our group.”
The lives of the members of Fleetwood Mac were definitely the rock ‘n’ roll soap opera of the late ‘70s and ‘80s, but Nicks doesn’t like to dwell so much on the negativity and the hype that surrounded the group.
“We definitely had our moments in the spotlight,” said Nicks, “and some hellatious ones out of the spotlight too. But, it’s all good now. In fact, Lindsey and I are really doing good, we are friends … for now at least.”
Nicks attributes much of the high drama within the band to the creativity each member possesses.
“When you have creative people such as we are, and we are all artists, you have high emotions and feelings, and that is how we expressed ourselves — and still do really,” said Nicks. “It’s hard to live with, work with and be constantly around someone who has such creativity and emotion spilling out of them all of the time, and not have conflict. It’s just the way it is. But we’re all fine right now.”
With the movie script and the band reunion, you would think that Nicks has enough on her plate.
“I also will be working on some of my paintings, and I’m always writing new songs, poems, things like that,” said Nicks.
Will there be a new solo album soon?
“That’s something that I can’t say will or will not happen,” said Nicks. “As I said, I am constantly writing, but not just for me. Some of the stuff I do may turn up on a Mac album, or maybe I will have a solo album, I’m not ruling out anything.”
Nicks has just moved into a large apartment on the oceanfront in Santa Monica, where she lives alone.
“I am in ‘Stevie’s Place’ now,” said Nicks, “all by myself. I loved my large home in Phoenix, but it was more of a bother than it was enjoyable to me. I was always wondering about redecorating this room or that room or the landscaping or the kitchen or whatever. Kind of a pain in the a—, really.”
“See, that’s what I mean about the creativity flowing,” said Nicks. “Where I am at now, I am by myself, and can concentrate on the movie script ideas, my paintings, and my songwriting. I can get up in the middle of the night and see the moonlight on the water and watch it make a glisten on the waves, and work on whatever it is I need too, until I can watch the sun rise over the ocean. Or, I can just do whatever the h—- I want.”
Nicks sees this as an advantage to herself and her family.
“I can do these things when they come upon me, and I can be in my world,” said Nicks. “This is why, I realize, that I never had children, and that I will never be married. Things in my life are kind of like coming together, and yet starting over, all at the same time.”
Nicks is currently on a short tour of only 15 dates in North America in promotion of the Crystal Visions CD and DVD project.
Nicks is also appearing this season on the PBS Soundstage music series in a two-episode concert.
“Doing the show for PBS was a thrill, and an honor,” said Nicks. “Public television is something that is very important, not only for its entertainment value, but for the educational opportunities it provides…”
During this tour, Nicks is doing all of the expected hits such as “Rhiannon,” “Stand Back” and “Edge of Seventeen,” but has thrown in some exciting covers as well.
“We have to do the hits that the fans expect,” said Nicks, “but, we’ve thrown in a Dave Mathews song, and a Bob Seger song, plus a couple of other surprises.”
“This is gonna be more of a rock and roll show,” said Nicks. “I can’t wait to perform at St. Louis, because it was one of the better shows I did last year with Tom Petty.
“Tom asked me to come out and do six shows, and do just six songs on each date,” said Nicks. “And I was thrilled. I’ve always had this fantasy about being a member of the Heartbreakers. Tom helped me to make that dream come true. It was so much fun that we ended up doing 23 days. And for Tom to foot the bill for my expenses for that many dates — and believe me it ain’t cheap — says a lot about my friend.
“After the tour was over, he gave me a gold, five-point sherriff’s badge with five diamonds on each point with an inscription on the back that read ‘To Stevie, our honorary Heartbreaker.’ That was one of my most special moments in life, and I will probably never get the chance to do something like that again.”
Nicks is really looking at a new lease on life.
“With all that I have going right now, it seems as though I have just started my life all over again. To h—- with counting my birthday numbers, who needs ‘em anyway?”
Coke or Pepsi: Coke. Coke Zero, actually.
Favorite Dessert: Red Velvet Cake
Religous or Spiritual: Spiritual
On your iPod: Madonna to Justin Timberlake, Motown to Classic Rock.
By yourself or with others: By Myself.
Obama or McCain: Wouldn’t you like to know.
Worst part of touring: The hectic schedule.
Best part of touring: Playing for my fans.
Passion: Music and painting.
Landscape: The ocean.
Best friend: Lori Nicks. (background singer and sister-in-law).
Paparazzi: Not an issue.
Tour bus: Hate ‘em. That’s why I fly only.
At a glance
Who: Stevie Nicks with Peter Cincotti
When: 8 p.m. today
Where: Chaifetz Arena at St. Louis University
How much: $65 and $45
How:www.metrotix.com, or 314-534-1111.