Stevie Nicks began her two-night run at the ICC Sydney Theatre in Sydney on Tuesday night — the 59th show of the 24 Karat Gold Tour. Sydney fans were treated to Queen of Rock, girl-power realness, as Stevie and show-opener Chrissie Hynde rocked the packed house of 9,000 for nearly three-and-a-half hours.
True to form, Stevie delivered another solid set of her classics and told charming stories in between songs, including her now-famous “Bella Donna is not a fluke” and Bella Donna cape story (see the video and transcript below).
Photos courtesy of Chris, Michelle Chaperon, and Lynn Dang — much love and thanks to you!
Much love and thanks to Nicole Barker and Sandy Shakes for sharing these videos from the show!
Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around (with Chrissie Hynde) (Sandy Shakes)
Gypsy (Nicole Barker)
Wild Heart/Bella Donna (Nicole Barker)
“Bella Donna was never really done on stage very much. Bella Dona was done for about four weeks. We had a four-week tour and then we got the call from Fleetwood Mac of whom I made ‘the promise’ to saying we need you. So I had to say to Waddy, ‘We have to wrap it up and I have to go to Paris because they’re making Mirage.’
“So that’s what we did, I went to Paris, which could have been worse, it could have been like Siberia. It wasn’t, it was Paris. But so anyway, when I went to Paris, I realized that I’d had a really successful record so how was I gonna actually deal with this because I, in my heart of hearts, knew that if I didn’t have a second successful record that they were gonna say that Bella Donna was a fluke — and I was not gonna have that. So the second I got to the castle — 40 miles outside of Paris, the Honky Chateau — and I walked into that castle to make Mirage. I was actually walking into that castle to write Wild Heart. So I raced in — hello! hello! hello! [kissing sounds] — and straight up to my room and I started writing it. And so Wild Heart was written really fast, and so I had my title song and that’s like half of it.
“So writing, writing, writing. We finished Mirage; got my, whatever, three songs; went out, did a tour; the whole time we’re on the tour writing, writing writing writing. I’m very busy — they never see me. And when the tour was almost over I called Jimmy and said, So I’m ready; it’s called Wild Heart. That’s the title song and I’ll be home Monday. Can we go in like on Thursday? He could hear the desperation in my voice, he said, ‘OK. Sure, I’ll book the time.’ So in we went and we did Wild Heart.
“Wild Heart was not near as easy as Bella Donna was because Bella Donna was organized and together and you’re always worried when you make your first record that you can’t mess with the record company. You have to like not spend too much money. So by the time we got to Wild Heart, I was definitely crazier, wilder — you have read all the stories. So, you know, I would never get to the studio, and Waddy will tell you, I would never get to the studio until like 8 or 9 o’clock at night. And they would have been there since 2, and Jimmy would already be asleep on the couch in the entry way.
“So it’s like it took longer, but it had a certain je ne sais quoi that um, I don’t know, Bella Donna was like very Celtic, you know. This record was very sexy and very like wild. And so anyway, it was exactly what I wanted. It was totally different than Bella Donna. So we finished the record. I was really proud of it, but you never know. You think it’s great and you never know what the world’s gonna think. So we put it out — the world loved it! It went straight up the charts, got to No. 1, sold a gazillion records.
“The great thing about Wild Heart is that Wild Heart was the thing that proved that Bella Donna was not a fluke. And Wild Heart was the thing that proved that Stevie Nicks, that girl from Fleetwood Mac, had a right to have a solo career. [Raises arms in victory and bows.]
“Truly, blissfully happy, I was happy. So then I got to have a solo career, and here I am. In 2017 with a solo career.
“So the last part of this story is this cape. This cape is the Bella Donna cape that was on the record. It was on the back and the front of the album, on the inside. I wore it onstage. It was on the cover of Rolling Stone. It’s like, this cape has been around. But if you look at this cape, it’s perfect. There is not one thread out of place. There’s not one little burn hole and there could have been because I did smoke for a while. Like this: [pretends to smoke carelessly]. So thank God this escaped that, like all my 50 cashmere blankets that are packed away just to remind me in case I ever think I’m gonna start smoking again. So anyway, I’m gonna show it to you because it’s pretty. [Proceeds to show the cape to the audience.]
“And the best thing is that my mom, Barbara, who passed away a few years ago, she was really poor when she was little. So, my dad did really well, so they actually were quite wealthy, and I was brought up in a quite wealthy household except that my mother was very strict and didn’t believe in “wealthy” and didn’t believe in spoiling me, and didn’t spoil me. And she tried to really bang that into my head that how important every penny was and that, you know, it might be gone tomorrow and that you never knew what was gonna happen. So she was gonna make me into an independent, strong woman who didn’t need anybody to take care of her, if it killed her. And it just about did kill her because I was very, you know, I was like my dad: ‘I will have my suits made in San Francisco. I mean, that’s it. I’m flying there to get my suits.’ And my mother would go like, ‘No, you’re not and also you’re not going to any of those really expensive department stores.’ So getting even anything expensive from my mom was impossible. When we joined Fleetwood Mac, I never told her about all this stuff and how much…that’s a nice outfit. I would never say, ‘Well, that outfit cost $5000,’ ’cause my mom would’ve just fallen over dead.
“So this cape stands for a lot of things. At this point in her life, if she was still here and she was at this concert, she would walk out here and say, ‘Well I guess Stevie, you picked a really good fabric. It’s silk chiffon that’s never gonna fall apart.’ No. 1, that was good. But No. 2, you were smart enough to know that you were making something that was very beautiful. Let’s see how many times have you worn this, like 50,000 times since it was made? So if you divide 50,000 times onstage into $3,000, that’s a pretty good deal. My daughter did good!’ So thank you, Barbara. Thank you, Mom. And then that’s my Bella Donna story.”
Outside the Rain/Dreams (Nicole Barker)
Edge of Seventeen (Sandy Shakes)
Stevie Nicks review: ‘Like wise counsel from an elder sister’ (Sydney Morning Herald)
“The singer, who between Fleetwood Mac and a 36-year solo career has sold more than 140 million records, managed to build an intimate connection with 9000 people inside a convention hall, holding us spellbound for most of the two-and-a-half-hour set.”
— word (@SignalIntrusion) November 7, 2017
— Sandy Shakes (@SandyShakes) November 7, 2017
— (photo)shoot_stevie (@shoot_stevie) November 7, 2017
thank you stevie nicks for the most amazing and magical night of my life ❤❤❤❤❤
— lex 🌼 (@crystalgypsylex) November 7, 2017
@StevieNicks Thankyou Stevie, your Sydney show was just perfect ❤️🤗
— Kirsti Perry (@kirky2627) November 7, 2017
Saw the legendary Stevie Nicks tonight she KILLED it!!! 🎉❤️ pic.twitter.com/seTQl9wjWJ
— Emily 😴 (@morrisonjlaw) November 7, 2017
— M E G A N (@Megan_Pega) November 7, 2017
— Chris 🌈 (@kylieminge) November 7, 2017
— Lynn Dang 🏳️🌈 (@LynnDangAU) November 7, 2017
— Michelle Chaperon (@michchap) November 7, 2017
Stevie Nicks, still fabulous and still belting it out after all this time. pic.twitter.com/couuKCuoQM
— Darcy James (@DarcyJames01) November 7, 2017