Stevie Nicks Would’ve Left Fleetwood Mac Because of One Band

Stevie Nicks Would’ve Left Fleetwood Mac Because of One Band | Society Of Rock Videos

via Stevie Nicks/YouTube

Exploring the various phases of Fleetwood Mac’s history often feels like discussing two entirely different musical groups. While Mick Fleetwood and John McVie remained the constant foundation throughout the band’s evolution, their early days as a blues-rock ensemble were a far cry from the sound they’d adopt with the addition of Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham.

The Making of the Fleetwood Mac White Album

Before Stevie Nicks joined Fleetwood Mac, she and Lindsey Buckingham formed a duo called Buckingham/Nicks. During their time at Sound City Studios in California, Fleetwood Mac happened to be recording in the same studio. It was there that Fleetwood was captivated by the sound of their track “Frozen Love” echoing through the hallway.

With the band still reeling from the departure of their guitarist Bob Welch, Fleetwood approached Buckingham with an enticing offer to join Fleetwood Mac. Buckingham agreed, but on one condition: Nicks had to come with him. The result was the iconic self-titled White Album, featuring Nicks’ unforgettable songs like “Rhiannon” and “Landslide.”

On paper, everything seemed perfect, but behind the scenes, tensions brewed within the band. Conflicts between Nicks and Buckingham, as well as between John and Christine McVie, strained relationships during the making of their next album, Rumours. Despite these challenges, the band pressed on, producing noteworthy albums like Tusk. However, Nicks kept a close eye on another rising act from Florida.

Emerging from the remnants of Mudcrutch, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers were gaining prominence in the rock scene, with hits like “Breakdown” and “American Girl.” Their album, Damn the Torpedoes, propelled them to become one of the most sought-after live acts of the late 1970s, featuring chart-toppers like ‘”Refugee” and “Here Comes My Girl.”

Stevie Nicks’s Solo Debut

As Fleetwood Mac’s style no longer resonated with Nicks, she began contemplating the idea of collaborating with Petty. In her own words, “I started to prefer Tom Petty’s music to Fleetwood Mac’s music at the time. If they had told me to leave Fleetwood Mac and join them, I would have gone out with them,” as she revealed in the documentary Runnin Down a Dream.

Nicks decided to embark on her solo career, enlisting producer Jimmy Iovine to create her debut album, Bella Donna. The album included the hit duet “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” featuring Petty. Nicks achieved remarkable success as a solo artist, and she even shared the stage with Petty for a live rendition of “Needles and Pins.”

Though she never officially joined Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Nicks received an honorary membership. She shared her sentimental gift from Petty with Rolling Stone, saying:

“Tom made me a little platinum sheriff’s badge that had 24-karat gold and diamonds across the top and said ‘to our honorary Heartbreaker, Stevie Nicks’. On the back, it says, ‘To the only girl in our band’. I keep it on my black velvet top hat. It goes with me everywhere. It’s probably the most beautiful piece of jewellery a man has ever given me.”

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